This essay is a defence of protectionism (emphasis added):
Once upon a time, the leading car-maker of a developing country exported its first passenger cars to the US. Until then, the company had only made poor copies of cars made by richer countries. The car was just a cheap subcompact ("four wheels and an ashtray") but it was a big moment for the country and its exporters felt proud.In chronological sequence, then, with some information added that was excluded from the protectionist argument:
Unfortunately, the car failed. Most people thought it looked lousy, and were reluctant to spend serious money on a family car that came from a place where only second-rate products were made. The car had to be withdrawn from the US.
The year was 1958 and the country was Japan. The company was Toyota, and the car was called the Toyopet. Toyota started out as a manufacturer of textile machinery and moved into car production in 1933. The Japanese government kicked out General Motors and Ford in 1939, and bailed out Toyota with money from the central bank in 1949.
... had the Japanese government followed the free-trade economists back in the early 1960s, there would have been no Lexus. Toyota today would at best be a junior partner to a western car manufacturer and Japan would have remained the third-rate industrial power it was in the 1960s—on the same level as Chile, Argentina and South Africa.
1933 - Toyota begins car production
1939 - Japan kick out foreign car manufacturers
1958 - Toyota's first exported car is a failure in a competitive market
1960s - Policy of trade liberalisation begins
1960s to 1980s - Japan's economic miracle happens
2007 - The above essay is published, and there is a Lexus
Note particularly that while the article states that the Japanese government did not follow the "free-trade economists" in the 1960s, this is the opposite of the truth. There was no abrupt switch to entirely free trade, but liberalisation was accompanied by unprecedented growth and increasing competence in, among other things, car manufacture. Yes, there were other factors and yes there were still restrictions on trade, but the movement was towards freer trade than before.
Richard Feynman coined the term "cargo-cult science" to describe work that looks like science but is not, because it lacks "a kind of scientific integrity, a principle of scientific thought that corresponds to a kind of utter honesty".
That principle of thought is completeness - not leaving out inconvenient facts that do not seem to accord with your argument, even pointing out yourself the main problems with your own work. Climate science has become cargo cult science.
The argument for protectionism quoted above is cargo cult economics.