There’s an old saying that sacred cows make the best hamburger. And more than a few sacred cows are being cooked up these days.
American President Donald Trump has been pretty good at this. He especially has a beef with Canada’s supply management system. It prevents imports of dairy and poultry products into the country, curtails production of these products here at home and leads to higher prices for both farmers and consumers.
Another area that enjoyed the longstanding protection of supply management is the taxi industry. And now that Uber and Lyft want into Saskatchewan we’re seeing civic administrations wrestle with regulations.
The whole point of disruption and disruptors – things like smartphones replacing cellphones, which replaced land lines and walkie-talkies – is that they bring about change. And the ones that survive generally bring a better standard of living or performance with them.
That’s the whole point. So, when governments – whether local or national – fight or impede innovation, they stunt growth and distort markets by negating natural advantage and artificially inflate prices, favouring selected elites over average consumers.