Mind and Destiny

“I make no pretension to patriotism. So long as my voice can be heard ... I will hold up America to the lightning scorn of moral indignation. In doing this, I shall feel myself discharging the duty of a true patriot; for he is a lover of his country who rebukes and does not excuse its sins. It is righteousness that exalteth a nation while sin is a reproach to any people.”- Frederick Douglass

Location: Delhi, N.Y., United States

The author and his webmaster, summer of 1965.

Friday, July 01, 2016

Trade With China

President Obama negotiated a Trans-Pacific Partnership in order to open markets, protect workers, the environment, and advance America’s leadership in Asia.  That deal would cut 18,000 foreign taxes on products Made in America, and ensures that China doesn't set the rules.  Congress needs to approve that agreement, and give our next president the tools to enforce it.
One of the benefits of trade deals in a global economy is that Americans have been able to buy large, flat-screen TV’s for a couple hundred dollars.  Our agricultural sector and tech sector have done very well, while other sectors haven’t.
Some foreign countries are cheating by keeping American goods out of their markets, and unfairly subsidizing their businesses to undercut our businesses.  The worst violators don’t even have trade deals with us.
Obama has brought 22 trade cases against China to the attention of the World Trade Organization.  America has won every case that’s been decided.  Thousands of Americans are working today, because we’ve stopped the dumping of defective Chinese tires.
Foreign trade has been helping our country a lot more, than it has hurt.  Actually, most of the manufacturing jobs that we’ve lost over the past decade weren’t the result of trade deals.  They were the result of technology and automation that enables businesses to produce more with fewer workers.
In the past, an auto plant needed several thousand workers, but today they only need a thousand workers to produce the same number of cars, because robots and machines have replaced a lot of the work, that workers had previously done in factories.  The same is true for office workers.  When was the last time you dealt with a bank teller?  Instead, people are using ATM machines.
The Obama administration has filed 22 complaints with the World Trade Organization against China to combat unfair trade practices.  That’s nearly twice as many as the Bush administration.
Obama accused China of $1 billion in illegal subsidies for exports of cars and car parts.  He put a tariff on steel tubing that was being dumped by China.  That tariff led to a 700 million dollar steel mill being created in Youngstown, Ohio.  We’ll never put technology back in a box, but we must not cut ourselves off from the global supply chain.  The 4,500 new jobs in Youngstown are an example of the importance of participating in a global supply chain. 


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