Thursday, March 10, 2016

"Free Trade" Agreements and "Free Market" Think Tanks

As a follow up to my post, What A Mess, I am reminded by a friend that, in the period leading up to the passage of the North American Free Trade Agreement, crony America was pushing hard for the deal.

The pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly held a briefing at the time in Washington D.C. for "free market" think tanks. The firm announced that it was willing to $pon$or any papers that the think tanks put out in favor of NAFTA. Most bit, indeed, the Cato Institute became known for awhile by those in the know as the Taco Institute.

Among the few that did not receive any "sponsorship" money, even though at the time it had  a D.C. office, was the Mises Institute.

The heroic founder of the institute, Lew Rockwell, instead wrote a piece pointing out that free trade was not a thousand plus page agreement that had to be checked to see what "free trade" was, but that free trade was when an American could drive over the border into Mexico and load up his car with goods and wave to the border guards when driving back into the US, and vice versa, a Mexican could dive into the US load up his car and drive back into Mexico.


1 comment:

  1. “The folks who have brought us NAFTA and presume to call it ‘free trade’ are the same people who call government spending ‘investment,’ taxes ‘contributions,’ and raising taxes ‘deficit reduction.’" Murray Rothbard