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The Fair Trade Fraud: How Congress Pillages the Consumer and Decimates American Competitiveness Paperback – August 15, 1992

4.3 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

Unlike other books that discuss America's foreign trade policies, Bovard's work looks critically at these policies and how they directly and adversely affect U.S. consumers. Stating that "fair trade consists largely of the U.S. government devising new ways to protect American consumers against the scourge of low prices," Bovard gives specific examples that illustrate his claim that U.S. consumers are forced to pay higher prices for many goods because of our protectionist foreign trade policy. Writing from the viewpoint of one who has investigated and reported on the inconsistencies and hypocrisies in government practices, he makes his position quite clear--the government decides what consumers may buy by levying stiff tariffs on and restricting imports of many foreign goods. A disturbing work on a timely topic. Recommended for public and college libraries for existing foreign policy collections.
- Lisa K. Miller, American Graduate Sch. of International Management Lib., Glendale, Ariz.
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

“A disturbing work on a timely topic.” ―Library Journal

“Bovard offers a smashing condemnation of American trade policy and exposes the corrupt core of protectionism and the absurdity of Congress making trade more 'fair' by making it less 'free'. . . . (shows) how arbitrary and ultimately counterproductive and restrictive our trade practices are.” ―The Wall Street Journal

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin (August 15, 1992)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312083440
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312083441
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.9 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,629,695 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I bought the book because Bovard clearly wasn't one of the two-week Okura Experts. For those not familiar with the local jargon, Okura Experts are Washington, D.C. appointees who run our trade policy based on a two week stay at the Okura, a luxury hotel near the American Embassy in Tokyo.
Like me, Bovard has been in the trenches and seen trade issues in Japan face-to-face. If you are willing to discard your media managed notions about how Japan cheats and is unfair on trade and look at the whole picture, this book is well worth the read.
Bovard is neither an apologist nor a basher, but I'll guarantee that if you read this book, you will never look at trade issues in the same way again.
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Format: Hardcover
Bovard clearly expounds on the fact that our very own government is hiking the prices of consumer goods through the vehicle of trade restrictions. Via anti-dumping, quotas, arbitrary tariffs, and other forms of trade restrictions, America is violating the very principle of the free market that it worships. Full of countless statistics and facts (look at the number of footnotes), Bovard belabors his point beyond the threshold of absurdity.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Bovard, a free trader and libertarian, makes a strong case against many of America's silly trade policies. A lot of what he says sounds ike something from the Onion, but it's all too real. To take just one example, the government limits the amount of ice cream we can import. Amusing and satirical.
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Format: Hardcover
It's impossible to argue, for those who are 'awake' today and see our country in it's current state. Government spying on citizens and controlling them with the largest Prison State IN THE WORLD (U.S. now imprisons more people than any other government in the world and that includes PER-CAPITA & total population, including over countries like China, Russia and Dictatorships). Back in 1991, I was finishing High School and America was still "America", in it's final moments of freedom, having just finished the Cold War victorious. That was the LAST great American generation. Today, two and a half generations later, America is in ruins. HALF of Americans are on "Government Assistance" of some kind. All the "new jobs" are paying "slave-wages" to our young adults who cannot start families and are moving back in with their parents.

"Fair Trade" that began in the late 70's (when our factories moved overseas due to trade agreements and lowered tariffs) then culminated with NAFTA, was one of the MAIN reasons for the economic WASTELAND you see America in today. And the public is so brainwashed by the mass-media and dumbed down by our bad schools that they think America is still "great". Folks, it's not. America is a virtual 2nd World nation now. Most of our wealth has been transferred overseas and our Dollar's value is shrinking through inflation and the U.S. Govt has no spending power yet continues to borrow money it can't pay back (because the Govt surrendered American sovereignty and our businesses to Globalism and as a result, destroyed America's wealth).

James Bovard's book today is a chance for people to look back into the past and see that someone actually did tell the truth and laid out the consequences of the criminal policies our "Elected Masters" drew up in the back room to rob America blind/Sell-out America through a phony swindle called "Free Trade".
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Format: Paperback
The main thesis of this book is great and perfectly worth the effort that Bovard has made in exposing a real problem. However, you have surely never read a more repetitive book in your life. Here Bovard tackles the inefficiency and capriciousness of US "free trade" laws and the bizarre politics at the Commerce department. US trade officials make an art of penalizing foreign companies for behavior that US companies are subsidized to commit, and have attitudes toward imports that we pledge to go to war to prevent in other countries. All the rhetoric about "free" trade from politicians is swamped by protectionism in real life, with unfair and often ridiculous consequences. For example, politically motivated tariffs against imported steel, designed to save a few jobs in the American steel-production industry, have destroyed a far larger number of jobs in American steel-using industries.
Once again, the points here are excellent but the book isn't. First, Bovard is prone to blanket statements and polemics like "The U.S. International Trade Commission is a loose cannon on the shipdeck of the American economy." Worst of all, Bovard's main point of argument is the fact that there are thousands of extremely arbitrary and unfair trade sanctions in US trade relations. That's good to know, but Bovard apparently feels the need to explain just about every one of them in a ridiculously repetitive fashion. Bovard's main points could be made much more effectively in an in-depth magazine article, rather than a rambling 300+ page book that becomes a never-ending and mind-numbing list of numbers and regulations. Bovard apparently doesn't notice that he makes the same point several hundred times. [~doomsdayer520~]
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