There's often a temptation -- and it's particularly strong during a recession -- to propose protectionist measures as the solution to economic problems. Campaigns stressing the need to "buy locally" are understandable. They seem to hold out the promise of jobs that could easily be created if a few purchases were diverted from one seller to another.

The problem is that in today's economy no one can really afford to be parochial. The world is more interconnected than ever. Although sweeping economic statements are often hard to make with certainty, one may argue that the current global recession won't end with...

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