The Journal of Libertarian Studies

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Technological Change and the Profit Motive

The Journal of Libertarian Studies

Tags World HistoryBusiness CyclesEntrepreneurshipProduction Theory

07/30/2014Barry W. Poulson

The United States emerged with a superior technology early in the nineteenth century. British customs officials confiscated shiploads of American clocks and other products as a violation of British anti dumping laws. They discovered, however, that the low prices on American clocks reflected lower costs of production because of the machine production of interchangeable parts, compared to the British clock industry, which relied on higher cost handmade parts. The British began sending delegations to inspect the technology of mass-produced interchangeable parts in the clock and firearms industries. At the Crystal Palace Exhibition in London in 1851, this new technology was referred to as the American system of manufacturing.

Volume 8, Number 2 (1987)


Barry W. Poulson

Barry W. Poulson is in the Department of Economics at Universiry of Colorado.

Cite This Article

Poulson, Barry W. "Technological Change and the Profit Motive." Journal of Libertarian Studies 8, No. 2 (1987): 247–267.