Saturday, 5 September 2015

Quote of the day - on 'buying local'


It is widely held that, by some feat of magic, buying stuff at higher prices because it is 'locally-sourced' or 'independent' represents a coherent regeneration strategy. We're told that this approach builds something called 'resilience' and that the 'local multiplier' means that, as a result of this local spending, we are all richer and wealthier (as opposed the the more prosaic truth that the owners of those locally-sourcing independent business are richer and wealthier whereas us consumers are poorer and less wealthy).

Courtesy of the Samisdata blog comes the defining truth about the nonsense of this idea (at least in economic terms). A tad sarcastic but oh so accurate:

In olden times, armies would lay siege to cities to cut them off from outside trade. The strategy forced the city to “buy local” until it was so prosperous that everyone was too rich and lazy to fight. (Rocco Stanzione)

All this transition towns, localism and such like is quite simply protectionism given a different name. And the only beneficiaries of protectionism are the protected businesses. No-one else benefits.


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