Trump, Tariffs and Ferris Bueller

May 10, 2018 | Dan Rudisuela


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What do these 3 things have in common? Anyone? Anyone?

I want to share this article from the CBC for its lighthearted take on a timely history lesson.

In 1930 over a 1,000 American economists, concerned for the state of their economy, sent a letter to government in response to the Smoot-Hawley Act which proposed tariffs on hundreds of products. This bit of history was immortalized in that famous scene from Ferris Bueller's Day Off  with Ben Stein playing a monotone economics teacher. Ben Stein's character drones on about this fateful period in the history, failing to illicit any participation from the class asking "Anyone? Anyone?"

Fast forward nearly 90 years from the great depression (32 from the movie) and today's top economists are quoting that same letter and lobbying the current American government and President Trump to reconsider imposing new tariffs and risking a repeat of history.

In the movie, the class does not remember the Smoot-Hawley Act nor the devastating impact it had on the American economy. Let's hope there are a some better students in the current American administration.

For more economic commentary and obscure movie references please feel free to reach out to me directly here.