Protectionism and “Weak Dollar” Trade Policy
Until disco came back to me at dance clubs and via the great “boogie nights” in the 1990s, I didn’t recall a whole lot from my childhood in the 1970s. Trying to build my own “Speed Racer” and being in awe of the rock group KISS stand out.
“Too many dollars chasing too few goods” was another. That was the catchphrase used to describe the inflationary times, and it would be the last time monetary issues/policy would make sense to me for many, many years.
Why We Use Money
It’s not my favorite topic to deal with in class. Explaining money on the other hand, is pretty straightforward.
Technically, we don’t need it to survive. We simply need to be able to produce a good or service of some value to others. Since trying to translate that into terms of what another person produces (bartering) tends to gum up the gears of commerce, we have money.
At various points in time, salt has been used as currency, as has tobacco. George Washington wrote about using wampum. Whatever is in steady supply at the time, and holds an agreed-upon value can be used as money. For much of our history, it was gold.
Rather than having to produce all that is necessary to survive, money allows us to specialize in just one or two tasks. We can then trade with others to get what we need, or possibly want.
“Weak Dollar” P
Article from Mises Wire