Essay Free Trade Policies During The 21st Century

1632 Words Mar 17th, 2015 7 Pages
Free Trade
Free trade policies have been in effect since the first stages of the Industrial Revolution; however, the theory of free trade has always been linked with conflict. 1976 Nobel Prize winner, Milton Friedman, once said in an interview that many people forget, "the most important single central fact about a free market is that no exchange takes place unless both parties benefit” (PBS). This fundamental problem brought up by Friedman is prevalent in the minds of millions of Americans. Many workers unions, such as the AFL-CIO, oppose and protest free trade for the U.S. with the notion that it leads to discrimination in the workplace and displaces American jobs, rather than creates them. However, free trade programs such as NAFTA should continue to be established, as they promote economic efficiency, and therefore productivity in the global economy, which has led to the best economic outcomes for the U.S. and its fellow marketeers. The theory of free trade found its origin in the late 18th century. Economist Adam Smith, author of The Wealth of Nations, was perhaps the first major figure in history to present and promote the idea of free trade. Smith is often times called the father of modern economics, credited for his writing involving laissez-faire and the idea of the "invisible-hand." (Adam Smith). In The Wealth of Nations, Smith states, "very good grapes can be raised in Scotland, and very good wine too can be made of them at about thirty times the expense for…

Related Documents