Donald Trump Vs. Free Markets

I haven’t spent much time on this blog discussing Donald Trump, partly because I haven’t taken him seriously, partly because I find him nauseating, and partly because I hoped he would just disappear. Clearly he’s not going away, and may be poised to take my home state’s caucus. So as childish as this campaign is, it needs to be taken seriously.

Steve Horowitz states “no one hates capitalism more than capitalists.” Donald Trump’s presidential campaign serves as Exhibit A. Consider these two points:

-As I’ve posted previously, Trump rejects free trade. Along with attacking Mexican imports, Trump wants to make imports from China effectively impossible via a massive tariff. The benefit to certain businesses would be narrow. This narrow benefit comes at a high cost, as historically more jobs are lost than saved by tariffs, and they lower our standard-of-living.

-Trump defends the use of eminent domain for private interests. It’s a standard business practice of his. Apparently Trump’s so-called Christian ideals don’t include the 8th Commandment. Along with the immorality of legalized theft, eminent domain has a poor track record of spurring economic growth.

These aren’t inconsequential issues. Secure property rights and the ability to buy/sell/trade with a mutual partner are fundamental components of a free society. A candidate for office that rejects these tenets is a threat to liberty and our economic well-being.

Even Bernie Sanders rejects eminent domain for private interests. Are Republicans at all concerned a socialist makes more sense on property rights than their leading candidate?

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