"The cheapest things are bought in India; as much labour or manufacture may be had there for two pence as in England for a shilling. The carriage there is dear, the customs are high, the merchant has great gains, and so has the retailer; yet still with all this charge, the Indians are a great deal cheaper than equal English manufacture"
Considerations upon the East India Trade, 1701.
Most people seem to want to attribute Considerations to Henry Martyn (or Martin), but the source that threw this across my path firmly says Sir Dudley North. I'll go with Sir Dudley because apparently he was snatched by gypsies when a child (Yes! Really!), and that's strangely hard to resist. Not least as a post title...
And yes, this is a little Schwarz-ish, but the quote struck me as such a case of plus çe change etc, I had to share.