Friday, July 27, 2007

The NYT Case For Trade

The NYT carries an Editorial supporting trade and whacking Democrats for opposing fast track and free trade agreements with Peru and Panama and states that increases in trade since WWII have added $1 trillion/year (2003 - $s) to the economy and that if the rest of the barriers fell and additional $500 billion. Nice numbers...for somebody.

"The plight of American workers is all too real — and the Bush administration has shown an astonishing lack of concern," shows that the NYT actually exists in the same dimension but their ideas of addressing this amount to band aids. Creating a more progressive tax structure and ensuring that displaced workers don't lose affordable health care may be very laudable policy moves, but do exactly not squat to address job losses. There certainly are some factors that do not involve trade, decreasing union membership and insourced labor (illegal immigration) directly affect wages but the wages affected are still wages, not lost jobs. The loss of skilled labor jobs and manufacturing jobs to near serf labor nations forces workers into lower paying jobs or out of work entirely. Anyone willing to take even a glance at conditions in China must realize the there is no "fair" trade agreement possible with that nation that allows any American business to compete in the same product arena unless Americans are willing to live in a sewer at serf wages. I do not have a magic wand solution of my own, but looking in the wrong direction is scarcely going to generate useful ideas or policies.

Allowing the bottom to fall out of the labor wage base drags the rest of the middle and lower wage bases down creating a situation where work that was the step up out of poverty becomes poverty. But that is not the same thing as creating and maintaining good wage jobs. When the NYT boosterisms Trade even with a caveat about labor the smart thing to do is follow the money. The $1 Trillion has landed in whose pockets? Certainly not labor's.


Steve Culley said...

The real conflict is between globalists and Americans. You can sort them out by their votes on immigration. We had some democrats and some republicans who voted America's interests and those elites who would just as soon see our borders erased.
Fast Track Authority is next battle ground. Congress needs to take back its consitutional authority to make treaties. No more elites making deals in the dark

Chuck Butcher said...

Fast Track was an abrogation of Congressional responsibility and an obvious tool to ram junk down the citizenry's throat.

All that said, some real serious thinking need to be happening or our manufacturing capabilities will completely expire, and with them living wage blue collar jobs.

KISS said...

How are you going to take it back when CFR is made of members of both parties. Oh ya, that fine congressman Blumenaur was the deciding vote for Bush's secret Fast tract Trade Agreement. With Dimmos like him we are in a mess of trouble..don't expect anything from dimmos on this..anyone remember the master of this bullshit..? hint, his wife is in lead to be president.