Category Archives: Free Markets

Trade Deficits In The Context Of State-Managed Trade And Systemic Debt

Capitalism, Debt, Economy, Free Markets, The State

THE NEW COLUMN is “Trade Deficits In The Context Of State-Managed Trade And Systemic Debt.” It’s now on  

An excerpt:

…  What goes for “free trade,” rather, is trade managed by bureaucratic juggernauts—national and international—central planners concerned with regulating, not freeing, trade; whose goal it is to harmonize labor, health, and environmental laws throughout the developed world. The undeveloped and developing worlds generally exploit and pollute as they please.

One of the promises Candidate Trump had made and hasn’t yet violated was to simply make these statist organs and trade agreements work for the American people. To wit, the president believes in reducing trade deficits.

Far be it from me to endorse tariffs as a means of reducing trade deficits. I am only here questioning the totemic attachment free-traders have to trade deficits, given that Americans live under conditions of systemic debt and state-managed trade that is anything but free.

If free trade is an unknown ideal, it is quite appropriate to question the alleged glories of an aggregate, negative balance of trade, in this “rigged system,” as Trump would say.

As to systemic debt: Yes, libertarians ought to oppose tax increases, which is what tariffs are. We hold that voluntary exchanges are by definition advantageous to their participants. Trader Joe’s, my hair stylist and the GTI dealer—all have products or skills I want. Within this voluntary, mutually beneficial relationship, I give up an item I value less, for something I value more: a fee for the desired product or service. My trading partners, whose valuations are in complementary opposition to mine, reciprocate in kind.

Ceteris paribus (all other things being equal), there’s nothing wrong with my running a trade deficit with Trader Joe’s, my hair stylist or my GTI dealer, as I do—just as long as I pay for my purchases.

And there’s the rub: The data demonstrate that we Americans, in general, are not paying for our purchases.

Americans, reports, actually have more debt relative to income earned than Greeks. “Indebted U.S. households carry an average credit card balance of $15,706, according to NerdWallet.”

Corporate America is likewise heavily leveraged.

The Federal government is the definition of debt. The U.S. national debt is over $20 trillion without federal unfunded liabilities. Those exceed $210 trillion, by Forbes’ 2017 estimate. Total public debt as a percent of Gross Domestic Product, announced the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, is 104 percent.

Our improvident government’s debts, liabilities and unfunded promises exceed the collective net worth of its wastrel citizens.

Given these historic trends, it seems silly to dismiss the yawning gap between U.S. exports and U.S. imports as an insignificant economic indicator.

Because of decades of credit-fueled, consumption-based living, the defining, current characteristic of our economy is debt—micro and macro; public and private. Unless one is coming from the pro-debt Keynesian perspective, is this not an economically combustive combination? …

… READ THE REST. Trade Deficits In The Context Of State-Managed Trade And Systemic Debt” is now on

The Mercer Column can be read on WND, as well, titled “State-Managed Trade Is Not Free:” “The defining, current characteristic of our economy is debt.”

It’s also on The Unz Review, America’s smartest webzine.

UPDATE II (12/2): A Country Is More Than An Economy

Classical Liberalism, Economy, Free Markets, IMMIGRATION, libertarianism

A country is more than an economy. America has an economy. Americans no longer have a country. I’ve been mocked for close on two decades by libertarians for holding this opinion. No worries; I won. I was right about immigration and La Raza libertarians.

I believe this is what Steve Bannon was trying to tell the libertarian-minded at the “Values Voters Summit In Washington D.C.:

Bannon specifically called out policy centers such as the Heritage Foundation, CATO Institute, and American Enterprise Institute for their constant support of free trade. He also critiqued for the Austrian school of economics for stressing that ‘everything is about the economy.’ He hopes to eventually bring these folks on board with his program of economic nationalism.

“We’re a civic society and a culture that has a capitalist, free market system as our economy,” Bannon said. “But we’re not an economy, and you’re not just units of production. You’re free men and women in a civic society underpinned by a capitalist system, but where other people in the world don’t practice capitalism, we have to be savvier than that. …”

UPDATE (10/23):

Nationhood? US immigration population hits record 60 million, 1-of-5 in nation:

Importing Islamabad:


UPDATE (12/2):

UPDATED II (4/24): Why The H-1B Visa Racket Should Be Abolished, Not Reformed

Business, Free Markets, IMMIGRATION, Labor, libertarianism, Paleolibertarianism, Technology, Welfare

Why The H-1B Visa Racket Should Be Abolished, Not Reformed” is the new column, trending on An excerpt:

Billionaire businessman Marc Cuban insists that the H-1B visa racket is a feature of the vaunted American free market. This is nonsense on stilts. It can’t go unchallenged.

Another billionaire, our president, has ordered that the H-1B program be reformed. This, too, is disappointing. You’ll see why.

First, let’s correct Mr. Cuban: America has not a free economy, but a mixed-economy. State and markets are intertwined. Trade, including trade in labor, is not free; it’s regulated to the hilt. If anything, the labyrinth of work visas is an example of a fascistic government-business cartel in operation.

The H-1B permit, in particular, is part of that state-sponsored visa system. The primary H-1B hogs—Infosys (and another eight, sister Indian firms), Microsoft, and Intel—import labor with what are grants of government privilege. Duly, the corporations that hog H-1Bs act like incorrigibly corrupt rent seekers. Not only do they get to replace the American worker, but they get to do so at his expense.

Here’s how:

Globally, a series of sordid liaisons ensures that American workers are left high and dry. Through the programs of the International Trade Administration, the Export-Import Bank, the Overseas Private Investment Corporation, the International Monetary Fund, and other oink-operations, the taxpaying American worker is forced to subsidize and underwrite the investment risks of the very corporations that have given him the boot.

Domestically, the fascistic partnership with the State amounts to a subsidy to business at the expense of the taxpayer. See, corporations in our democratic welfare state externalize their employment costs onto the taxpayers.

So while public property is property funded by taxpayers through expropriated taxes; belongs to taxpayers; is to be managed for their benefit—at least one million additional immigrants a year, including recipients of the H-1B visa, are allowed the free use of taxpayer-supported infrastructure and amenities. Every new arrival avails himself of public works such as roads, hospitals, parks, libraries, schools, and welfare.

Does this epitomize the classical liberal idea of laissez faire?

Moreover, chain migration or family unification means every H-1B visa recruit is a ticket for an entire tribe. The initial entrant—the meal ticket—will pay his way. The honor system not being an especially strong value in the Third World, the rest of the clan will be America’s problem. More often than not, chain-migration entrants become wards of the American taxpayer.

Spreading like gravy over a tablecloth, this rapid, inorganic population growth is detrimental to all ecosystems: natural, social and political.

Take Seattle and its surrounding counties …

… READ THE REST. “Why The H-1B Visa Racket Should Be Abolished, Not Reformed” is now trending on

UPDATE (4/22): A poignant observation on, where the column is now trending:

This article is spot on. The insane importation of h1b workers from India by Microsoft and Amazon has changed the Seattle area beyond recognition. The author’s contention that each visa is just a meal ticket to move the whole clan over is spot on. Everywhere you look in this area, trees are being cut down to make room for more development. All new homes now have 3 levels, with a finished basement intended for the grandparents who moved here to take care of the grand kids while both parents work, since Obama also allow the spouses of H1bs to work. Indians are taking over all the jobs in this area. Every new home buyer is either Indian or Chinese, both move the whole clan over. All the schools here are now at least 50% Asian, some are 90% Asian, esp. the elementary schools.
We need a 20 year moratorium on immigration, not just the H1b but its close cousins, H2b, H3, H4, J1, OPT, L1 and the EB5 all need to be cancelled for 20 years. Immigration is the colonization tactic of the 21st century. The US is being colonized by the third world. Most of the Mexicans and Asians are wildly liberal and vote Democrat, esp. the Indians. Republicans are dead if they continue to allow this stream of migration. They need to wise up in a hurry and stop this third world invasion.

UPDATE II (2/24):

On, Jamie Lockett responds:

“Wouldn’t the real libertarian response to this be an immigration system unregulated by government and depended on economic necessity?”

MY REPLY: “A clear-thinking libertarian addresses reality. Would I like to see a world governed by private property? Indeed. Until that happens—if—I am obliged to address the reality I addressed in the column and call out the bluff of the H-1B visa by pointing to the existence of the 0-1 visa. I am not advocating for these systems; I’m illustrating how the immigration industry—corporations, lawyers, lobbyists and other clientele—stick it to American workers. I hope you are not suggesting that instead of addressing reality, I pontificate about my purist preferences.”

Robert McReynolds, aka JamieLockett: “Well, I don’t think I could of said it any better really.”

Open Borders & GDP: Relying On One Statist Scam (GDP) To Promote Another

Debt, Economy, Free Markets, Government, IMMIGRATION, libertarianism, Paleolibertarianism

Ilya Somin, Professor of Law at George Mason University, states that “free migration throughout the world could potentially double world gross domestic product.”

Relying on the GDP measure to motivate for open borders is typical of the arguments made by lite libertarians.

The GDP measure is itself a state-driven metric. Official GDP numbers are deceptive because they chart—and include—the growth of government debt. In order to come to grips with America’s real economic prognosis, you must tease apart modest economic growth from the monstrous accretion of public debt.

“The GDP is a political construct, defined, tracked and manipulated by the D.C. political machine. GDP statistically conflates the growth of debt with economic growth.”

In a word, the good and surely sincere professor is relying on one statist scam, GDP, to promote another, centrally planned mass immigration.

Besides, a country is more than an economy.