Following up on this post, let me reframe things in the following way. NOTE: I truly am not posting these thoughts as a, “Nana nana boo boo, what a bunch of hypocrites!” I really just think this is curious/interesting, and so I’m encouraging people to dig through their intuitions and see if they can refine them into a coherent framework that still spits out their desired answer on each question.
Suppose I approach an American who is a big fan of free-market economics and libertarian political philosophy. I say to him (let’s assume a guy):
There’s a manufacturing company, let’s call it A, that competes with dozens of American manufacturing companies, that I will call B, C, D, E, … Z. Now it just so happens that right at this moment, company A faces lower taxes and regulations than do B, C, D, … and Z. It is obvious that this disparate treatment makes it harder for these companies to compete with company A. Now the question:
Should the US federal government adjust its own policies vis-a-vis company A, to remove this competitive advantage and force it to sell products to American consumers on the same playing field as companies B, C, D, …. Z? If you so desire, you can split your answer up into economics and political justice.
Given the commentary I’ve seen on social media the past month, I am pretty sure that the typical male American free-market economics libertarian would say, “Before I answer your question, you need to tell me: Is company A located inside or outside the United States? My answer depends critically on this point.”
Especially since this typical person is a fan of open borders and often complains about “arbitrary lines that bureaucrats draw on a map,” I find this response quite interesting.