Entries by Donald J. Boudreaux

The Elemental Case for Free Trade

How can one bakery focus on selling this many flavors of macaron cookie? Production in our economy is increasingly specialized. Specialization requires trade, which in turn promotes more specialization. And, the greater the number of consumers and producers, the larger the scope for each producer to focus on a narrow specialization. That’s part of the story of trade.

Countries Don’t Trade

We can – and do – talk about “America trading with China,” and about “Germany having a comparative advantage in the brewing of beer.” The very notion of “international trade” causes us to miss the essential reality of trade, which is always flesh-and-blood individuals bargaining and exchanging with each other in ways that each person judges to be in his or her best interest.