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Reason Foundation

I, Flag

Ted Balaker
July 5, 2007, 9:49am

You know it's coming, but from election to election it's hard to tell what form the protectionist panic will take. Will we fret over Japanese buying American property or selling us their cars? Will we worry about China's economy eclipsing ours, about Indians taking our jobs, or Spaniards building our roads? Perhaps the '08 election will bring us more of this this: But how can concerned citizens be sure the flags they fly haven't been made by foreign hands in faraway lands? Enter the Flag Manufacturers Association of America: "the association created a certification program two years ago that bestows a seal-of-approval to flags made with domestic fibers and labor. " Leonard Read's classic I, Pencil, is relevant yet again. And the essay should give consumers pause. Can the FMAA's seal ensure that flags are really, truly "American"? Checking on the labor seems pretty easy, but what about the dyes, what about the machines and instruments used to make the flags? Related: i, Pod Related: Remember the Port Panic?

Ted Balaker is Producer


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