The Olympics have gone smoothly despite—gasp!—America’s team wearing clothing made in China at the opening ceremony.
“I’m so upset,” said Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. “Take all the uniforms, put them in a big pile, and burn them….We have people in the textile industry who are desperate for jobs.”
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Here, Reid demonstrates economic cluelessness. It seems logical that Americans lose if American clothing is made overseas. But that’s nonsense. First, it’s no surprise the uniforms were made in China. Most clothing is. That’s fine. It saves money. We invest the savings in other things, like the machines that Chinese factories buy and the trucks that ship the Olympic uniforms.
The Cato Institute’s Daniel Ikenson’s adds: “We design clothing here. We brand clothing here. We market and retail clothing….Chinese athletes arrived in London by U.S.-made aircraft, trained on U.S.-designed and -engineered equipment, wear U.S.-designed and -engineered footwear, having perfected their skills using U.S.-created technology.” That’s free trade. Trade makes us richer.
While making the clothes in America would employ some Americans, the excess cost would mean that the Olympic committee had less to spend on other products—many of which are made in America.
Read More at reason.com. By John Stossel.