Archive for the ‘Trade’ Category

I already wrote about Leonard E. Read’s essay “I, Pencil” last year: economics in two minutes. But now the Competitive Enterprise Institute has produced a beautiful video that also tells the story:

Each part of the pencil is the result of the collaboration and cooperation of millions of people.

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island of bliss

Yesterday, the World Economic Forum released its new World Competitiveness Report 2011-12.

From a Swiss perspective, the report contains some charming results:

  • Overall competitiveness ranking: 1st
  • Quality of overall infrastructure: 1st
  • Quality of the educational system: 1st
  • Credit rating: 2nd
  • Wastefulness of government spending: 8th
  • (Positive) Brain drain: 1st
  • Pay and productivity: 5th
  • Quality of scientific research institutions: 2nd

But with regards to economic openness (i.e. absence of trade tariffs), Switzerland only ranks 48th. Needless to say, this ought to change.

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free trade

A great 5-minute history lesson on free trade by Robert P. Murphy:

It is the maxim of every prudent master of a family, never to attempt to make at home what it will cost him more to make than to buy…What is prudence in the conduct of every private family, can scarce be folly in that of a great kingdom.

This famous quotation stems from The Wealth Of Nations, Book IV, Chapter II, page 458.

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