John Stossel recently wrote an essay entitled The Stupidity of "Buy American". Link to the essay appears below:
Stossel is correct in that the rational consumer buys the best value regardless of the nation of origin. Many times the rational consumer buys American as it represents the best value. However, “buy American” is basically presented as a particular duty of the rational consumer to act irrational by limiting choice. That the irrational behavior will somehow, someway create American jobs. As pointed out by Stossel, if rational behavior yields basket of goods Y at price P, irrational behavior yields basket of goods Y at P+1 or basket of goods Y-1 at price P. In both situations, P+1 or Y-1 represents a value forgone by the irrational path. Where does this forgone value go?