Aaron is joined by Tyler Brandt, associate and editor at the Foundation for Economic Education, who recently wrote a great article about the dangerous connections between protectionism, socialism, and even communism. Aaron and Tyler discuss Frederic Bastiat as an unfortunately-neglected figure in political thought and theory, as well as discussing libertarian maxims like “taxation is theft,” as well as the difficulties which underlie protectionism, and why a free society cannot function when the free market is stifled by tariffs, no matter how strong the supposed “moral” claim to protectionism.
Aaron explains why he thinks the psychological literature of racism and prejudice also apply to economic policies like protectionism, Tyler explains why he doesn’t trust the supposed “evidence” of people who approve protectionism, and Aaron and Tyler both discuss the underlying moral assumptions of protectionism which are often brought up by its defenders and adherents.
Tyler’s article that inspired this episode: https://fee.org/articles/frédéric-bastiat-on-the-connection-between-socialism-communism-and-protectionism/
FEE’s link to purchase Bastiat’s “The Law,” complete with his “The Candlemaker’s Petition,” where he takes down the idea of protectionism: https://store.fee.org/products/the-law
FEE’s free online link the Bastiat’s “The Law”: https://fee.org/resources/the-law/