In defense of free trade

There have been a slew of thoughtful, articulate defenses made on free trade recently. Here's some of them:

> British Prime Ministers speech to the US Congress was a rallying call against protectionism and looked to free trade as the way out of the present economic crisis (click here).

> William Watson, commenting in Foreign Policy, that "free traders will prevail" (click here).

> Daniel Ikenson of the Cato Institute discusses why protectionism will be short lived (click here).

> European Trade Commissioner Ashton also defended free trade, describing the WTO's role as the center of international trade governance. For copy of the speech, click here.

> Jagdish Bhagwati, who wrote In Defense of Globalization and Free Trade Today, says that the critics of free trade are mistaken (click here) and that free trade should be kept free (click here).

And it is Prof. Bhagwati who gives one of the best things to remember in the current debate relating to the economic crisis: “'Free but fair trade' becomes an exercise in insidious protectionism that few recognize as such." (from "Obama and Trade: An Alarm Sounds," Financial Times, 9 January 2009)