Don’t Feel for Protected Workers

Source: Cafe Hayek
by Don Boudreaux

“Mr. Hutchison: Commenting at Facebook on my recent letter regarding Oren Cass’s misunderstanding of what is meant by ‘production,’ you write: ‘DB missed the point that people value feeling that they are effectively contributing to society, not just working to consume now or in the future.’ I don’t miss this point at all. It’s clear that Oren believes — correctly — that workers in jobs protected by tariffs do indeed feel that they are effectively contributing to society. But this feeling is unwarranted. What Oren misses — and what protected workers miss — is the reality that workers in such jobs are not ‘effectively contributing to society.’ Workers in such jobs make their fellow citizens poorer than these citizens would be absent protectionism.” (05/02/22)