President Rand Paul would give libertarian economics a bad name

I watched Senator Rand Paul's announcement that he was running for president.  He had good goals, but his economic ignorance was dismaying.  For example, he argued that allowing American corporations to bring back profits from overseas at a low tax rate would encourage investment in American manufacturing.  Exactly the opposite.  Doing so would not only make outsourcing more profitable, but it would also bid up the exchange rate of the dollar (American corporations would convert foreign profits to dollars), which would put even more American manufacturing workers out of work.

Several of his goals were excellent:

  1. Balanced Budget.  He called for a balanced budget, one of the requirements for stable economic growth.  Unfortunately, balancing budgets can cause recession unless monetary growth and trade are also balanced. 
  2. Bringing Back American Manufacturing.  He called for increasing U.S. manufacturing jobs.  Unfortunately, his program for doing so would reduce U.S. manufacturing jobs.  U.S. manufacturing jobs could be increased simply by requiring balanced trade through a Scaled Tariff.
  3. Auditing the Federal Reserve.  The Federal Reserve under Bernanke supported financial losers by buying their bad loans, which awarded those with political power and contributed to crony capitalism.  The Federal Reserve should be put on a much tighter leash.  Recent Federal Reserve chairs Bernanke and Yellen caused asset price bubbles by purchasing long-term bonds, not just the short-term bonds that their predecessors purchased.  In contrast, their predecessors Volcker and Greenspan maintained balanced monetary growth during the 1980s and 1990s, producing stable economic growth that would have continued if not for the growing U.S. trade deficits.

Senator Paul may be the candidate for president who is least tied to the crony-capitalist system that is becoming entrenched in U.S. economic policies.  If he only understood economics, he could be a great president.  Unfortunately, his economic policies would backfire.  They would produce recession and increased loss of American manufacturing jobs, giving economic libertarianism a bad name.

We need a president who not only understands the need for smaller government and balanced budgets, but also understands the need for balanced monetary growth and balanced trade.  The combination of balanced budgets, balanced monetary growth, and balanced trade would restore American prosperity. 

Howard Richman with his father and son co-authored the 2014 book Balanced Trade: Ending the Unbearable Costs of America’s Trade Deficits, published by Lexington Books, and the 2008 book Trading Away Our Future, published by Ideal Taxes Association

I watched Senator Rand Paul's announcement that he was running for president.  He had good goals, but his economic ignorance was dismaying.  For example, he argued that allowing American corporations to bring back profits from overseas at a low tax rate would encourage investment in American manufacturing.  Exactly the opposite.  Doing so would not only make outsourcing more profitable, but it would also bid up the exchange rate of the dollar (American corporations would convert foreign profits to dollars), which would put even more American manufacturing workers out of work.

Several of his goals were excellent:

  1. Balanced Budget.  He called for a balanced budget, one of the requirements for stable economic growth.  Unfortunately, balancing budgets can cause recession unless monetary growth and trade are also balanced. 
  2. Bringing Back American Manufacturing.  He called for increasing U.S. manufacturing jobs.  Unfortunately, his program for doing so would reduce U.S. manufacturing jobs.  U.S. manufacturing jobs could be increased simply by requiring balanced trade through a Scaled Tariff.
  3. Auditing the Federal Reserve.  The Federal Reserve under Bernanke supported financial losers by buying their bad loans, which awarded those with political power and contributed to crony capitalism.  The Federal Reserve should be put on a much tighter leash.  Recent Federal Reserve chairs Bernanke and Yellen caused asset price bubbles by purchasing long-term bonds, not just the short-term bonds that their predecessors purchased.  In contrast, their predecessors Volcker and Greenspan maintained balanced monetary growth during the 1980s and 1990s, producing stable economic growth that would have continued if not for the growing U.S. trade deficits.

Senator Paul may be the candidate for president who is least tied to the crony-capitalist system that is becoming entrenched in U.S. economic policies.  If he only understood economics, he could be a great president.  Unfortunately, his economic policies would backfire.  They would produce recession and increased loss of American manufacturing jobs, giving economic libertarianism a bad name.

We need a president who not only understands the need for smaller government and balanced budgets, but also understands the need for balanced monetary growth and balanced trade.  The combination of balanced budgets, balanced monetary growth, and balanced trade would restore American prosperity. 

Howard Richman with his father and son co-authored the 2014 book Balanced Trade: Ending the Unbearable Costs of America’s Trade Deficits, published by Lexington Books, and the 2008 book Trading Away Our Future, published by Ideal Taxes Association