Editor, The New York Times
To the Editor:
If Krugman is correct that access to inexpensive goods and services from abroad causes unemployment by reducing demand for domestically produced outputs (and, hence, for workers who produce those outputs), it must also be true that access to inexpensive goods and services from labor-saving technology causes unemployment. In both cases, fewer domestic workers than before are required to make outputs available to consumers.
So here's a question for Krugman: does today's high unemployment rate also justify Uncle Sam imposing punitive tariffs on R&D teams, inventors, and other sources of labor-saving technologies?
Donald J. Boudreaux
Don Boudreaux is the Chairman of the Department of Economics at George Mason University and a Business & Media Institute adviser.