Given the tug of war between the economic benefits of free trade and the political appeal of protection, which force has prevailed? The history of U.S. tariffs. shown in Figure 15-10 on page 318. has been bumpy. For most of American history, the United States has bee’n a high-tariff nation. The pinnacle of protectionism came after the infamous Moot Harley tariff of 1930,which was opposed by virtually every American economist yet sailed through Congress.

The trade barriers erected during the Depression helped raise prices and exacerbated economic distress. .In the trade wars of the 1930s. countries attempted to raise employment and output by raising trade barriers at the expense of their neighbors, Nations soon learned that at the end of the tariff-retaliation game, all were losers.