Another email from a protectionist containing this gem of a line:
Service industries do not produce wealth.
No, seriously, they do believe this. They go on:
There are a limited number of ways a society can become wealthy.1. Hunting2. Gathering3. Fishing4. Farming5. Manufacturing (along with that go the exploitation of natural resources: mining, oil production and timber)
In the context of the US they are therefore saying that agriculture (8% or so of GDP) and manufacturing (12%) are the only things that produce wealth. All of everything else, 80% of US GDP, isn\’t in fact wealth at all.
In fact, they\’re stating that all the lawyering, medical care, insurance, banking, restaurants, hotels, supermarkets, well, just about everything in fact, do not add to the wealth of those who consume their products.
Which is sufficiently weird as a belief to explain their similarly odd ideas about trade really.