No to Trade Barriers: New at Reason

Protectionism doesn't protect Americans.

John Stossel writes:

No, President Trump, it's not true that if you tax imported steel, we "will have protection for the first time in a long while."

The opposite is true. If you raise tariffs on steel and aluminum, you punish consumers.

Yes, such tariffs also punish Chinese producers and protect some American businesses and workers, but the tariffs will hurt many more Americans.

They'll hurt every business that makes things from steel or aluminum. They'll hurt most everyone who buys anything. Tariffs are taxes, and they don't just affect inanimate metal objects. They punish people.

Even if China "dumps" products—sells below their manufacturing cost—that just means that China hurts its people and gives us discounts. We win. We get products. All the Chinese get is paper with pictures of American presidents printed on it.

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