During last night’s Republican presidential debate, Ted Cruz said: “Smoot-Hawley led to the Great Depression.” But if you look at the chart below, you will see that tariffs during the 1930s were not unusually high by historical standards:
And I might add that tariffs were very high during the period between the Civil War and World War I when the USA grew into a superpower. And that was no accident. In fact, it was our plan. Tariffs were the centerpiece of the American School of Economics. This is historical fact. High-tariff America didn’t have 45 million people on food stamps like free-trading America does today.
Cruz also said: “…a tariff is a tax on you, the American people…” But that’s only half of the transaction. The tariff would bring some production back to the USA, people would get hired, start spending money again, and your business would have more revenue. Or, if you work for somebody else, their revenue would increase and you could ask for a raise.
Both of Cruz’s statements are straight out of the globalist book of talking points. I wouldn’t go out of my way to criticize him if he weren’t posing as an outsider. But the two quotes discussed here are 100% establishment.
It is painfully obvious that the “grand” experiment of free trade and mass-immigration conducted over the past 25 years has failed. These polices need to be reversed, and Ted Cruz is obviously not the man to do it.