Let the Protectionism Rise, With 18 Percent Unemployment Rate

Discussion in 'Politics' started by pal_of_poor, Sep 18, 2009.

  1. pal_of_poor
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    pal_of_poor VIP Member

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    WASHINGTON (AP) - Leaders of the world's 20 top economies vowed to resist protectionism last November and again in April as they charted a joint strategy for confronting the worst global downturn in generations. As they meet again, they'll get this progress report: Most of their economies are on the mend - and trade tensions and protectionism are on the rise.

    A U.S.-China spat over Chinese tires and American chicken exports is just the latest example of how hard it has been to live up to their lofty pledges. Nearly all 20 nations whose leaders meet next week in Pittsburgh have violated the no-protectionism pledges made earlier in Washington and London, according to reports from international monitoring groups.

    As economies escape the grips of recession, the pressure to work together appears to be lessening.

    National self-interest is reasserting itself. That includes a desire to protect battered home industries from overseas competition as governments look toward the day when they can dial back stimulus measures such as extra government spending and low interest rates.

    Also, participants are arguing over issues such as proposed limits on bankers' compensation, how far to go with international financial regulation and alarming recession-fueled budget deficits, especially in the U.S.

    Standing back from the cliff, the world leaders are shifting their focus.

    "The words are starting to heat up a little bit. I think they're starting to get a little frustrated that the urgency is being lost - that crisis feel," said Heather Conley, an assistant deputy secretary of state for Europe in the Bush administration and now a scholar at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

    Yet economists say pulling together is extremely important now to keep still-fragile recoveries from being derailed.

    "It is very important that, as they unwind, they don't do it in a haphazard fashion, that they think about it and work together so that everybody knows what everybody else is doing," said Colin Bradford, a former World Bank economist who is now a scholar on global finance at the Brookings Institution.

    "You've got a sequence of meetings going on, coordinated action instead of everybody shooting from the hip," Bradford said.

    In London in April, the leaders renewed a pledge they made in November to "refrain from raising new barriers to investment or to trade in goods and services (or) imposing new export restrictions." They said that pledge was good until the end of 2010.

    But the Geneva-based World Trade Organization issued a report this week that cited "continued slippage toward more trade restricting and distorting policies." It listed 91 new potentially protectionist measures by G-20 members just between the April summit in London and the end of August, 15 of them by the United States.

    Global Trade Alert, a trade watchdog group with ties to the World Bank, separately said at least 121 protectionist measures had been implemented by G-20 nations since November's gathering in Washington.

    "The protectionist juggernaut shows no sign of slowing down," the organization said in a report published Friday. "Almost every nation has been harmed by these measures." And, the report said, "Another six months of protectionist measures are in the pipeline already."

    Trade warfare of the 1930s is widely blamed for prolonging and expanding the Great Depression.

    President Barack Obama pledged to avoid "self-defeating protectionism" in continuing the effort to get the U.S. and other major world economies back on their feet. Still, he told a Wall Street audience on Monday, "no trading system will work if we fail to enforce our trade agreements."

    Steps taken by the United States widely seen by other nations as protectionist include "Buy American" provisions in the Obama administration's $787 billion stimulus package, restrictions keeping Mexican trucks off most U.S. roads, and provisions of auto bailouts requiring vehicles benefiting from the program to be built in the United States.

    China has funneled its extensive stimulus spending to Chinese-only companies and enterprises. Russia plans sweeping tariff increases. Japan is taking steps that will further restrict food imports. And South Africa is changing its purchasing rules to favor domestic producers.

    The U.S. continues to press its claim that the European countries subsidize Airbus, winning a preliminary ruling from a WTO panel earlier this month. European countries have counterclaimed that the Pentagon and NASA are effectively subsidizing rival aircraft manufacturer Boeing, with a ruling expected early next year.

    Mike Froman, a White House adviser on international economics, said there's no doubt that since the London meeting in April "the situation has changed dramatically. ... Then people thought we were perhaps on the edge of depression. And now I think we're debating the pace of recovery."

    Froman said Obama would emphasize that governments should make plans for winding down stimulus measures but it is still "too early to execute on those exit strategies."


    My Way (AP) - Leaders of the world's 20 top economies vowed to resist protectionism last November and again in April as they charted a joint strategy for confronting the worst global downturn in generations. As they meet again, they'll get this progress report: Most of their economies are on the mend - and trade tensions and protectionism are on the rise.

    A U.S.-China spat over Chinese tires and American chicken exports is just the latest example of how hard it has been to live up to their lofty pledges. Nearly all 20 nations whose leaders meet next week in Pittsburgh have violated the no-protectionism pledges made earlier in Washington and London, according to reports from international monitoring groups.

    As economies escape the grips of recession, the pressure to work together appears to be lessening.

    National self-interest is reasserting itself. That includes a desire to protect battered home industries from overseas competition as governments look toward the day when they can dial back stimulus measures such as extra government spending and low interest rates.

    Also, participants are arguing over issues such as proposed limits on bankers' compensation, how far to go with international financial regulation and alarming recession-fueled budget deficits, especially in the U.S.

    Standing back from the cliff, the world leaders are shifting their focus.

    "The words are starting to heat up a little bit. I think they're starting to get a little frustrated that the urgency is being lost - that crisis feel," said Heather Conley, an assistant deputy secretary of state for Europe in the Bush administration and now a scholar at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

    Yet economists say pulling together is extremely important now to keep still-fragile recoveries from being derailed.

    "It is very important that, as they unwind, they don't do it in a haphazard fashion, that they think about it and work together so that everybody knows what everybody else is doing," said Colin Bradford, a former World Bank economist who is now a scholar on global finance at the Brookings Institution.

    "You've got a sequence of meetings going on, coordinated action instead of everybody shooting from the hip," Bradford said.

    In London in April, the leaders renewed a pledge they made in November to "refrain from raising new barriers to investment or to trade in goods and services (or) imposing new export restrictions." They said that pledge was good until the end of 2010.

    But the Geneva-based World Trade Organization issued a report this week that cited "continued slippage toward more trade restricting and distorting policies." It listed 91 new potentially protectionist measures by G-20 members just between the April summit in London and the end of August, 15 of them by the United States.

    Global Trade Alert, a trade watchdog group with ties to the World Bank, separately said at least 121 protectionist measures had been implemented by G-20 nations since November's gathering in Washington.

    "The protectionist juggernaut shows no sign of slowing down," the organization said in a report published Friday. "Almost every nation has been harmed by these measures." And, the report said, "Another six months of protectionist measures are in the pipeline already."

    Trade warfare of the 1930s is widely blamed for prolonging and expanding the Great Depression.

    President Barack Obama pledged to avoid "self-defeating protectionism" in continuing the effort to get the U.S. and other major world economies back on their feet. Still, he told a Wall Street audience on Monday, "no trading system will work if we fail to enforce our trade agreements."

    Steps taken by the United States widely seen by other nations as protectionist include "Buy American" provisions in the Obama administration's $787 billion stimulus package, restrictions keeping Mexican trucks off most U.S. roads, and provisions of auto bailouts requiring vehicles benefiting from the program to be built in the United States.

    China has funneled its extensive stimulus spending to Chinese-only companies and enterprises. Russia plans sweeping tariff increases. Japan is taking steps that will further restrict food imports. And South Africa is changing its purchasing rules to favor domestic producers.

    The U.S. continues to press its claim that the European countries subsidize Airbus, winning a preliminary ruling from a WTO panel earlier this month. European countries have counterclaimed that the Pentagon and NASA are effectively subsidizing rival aircraft manufacturer Boeing, with a ruling expected early next year.

    Mike Froman, a White House adviser on international economics, said there's no doubt that since the London meeting in April "the situation has changed dramatically. ... Then people thought we were perhaps on the edge of depression. And now I think we're debating the pace of recovery."

    Froman said Obama would emphasize that governments should make plans for winding down stimulus measures but it is still "too early to execute on those exit strategies."


    My Way News - Protectionism rising despite G-20 vows on trade
     
  2. pal_of_poor
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    pal_of_poor VIP Member

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    I think to start off with, national self-interest has been here in the United States for some time now, all the way back to, and before Ross Perot was speaking of the “sucking sound,” from Mexico, and other countries, as we willingly gave away all those jobs that we really, really need now, with unofficial unemployment rates hovering at about 18 percent.

    Interesting in the G-20 they are concerned about “fragile economies being derailed,” but seem unaware of the fact that our economy looks pretty damned fragile just now. If you want a working plan for globalization in these third world countries, push utilities throughout to be installed, and then make sure employees get safety and minimum wage basics, so they can make enough to buy the products they make. Make globalization work in a way that yes, companies can produce products, for the country to which they move. This serves us, which would allow us to put tariffs on products coming in here, and serves them, as to allow them to make enough to buy things, thus instead of our rush to the bottom system, we’ll be lifting up other countries by our globalization.

    “Trade warfare of the 1930s is widely blamed for prolonging and expanding the Great Depression.”

    Yea, blamed by whom? I’m guessing right-wing writers, spawned by the cottage industry of writers commissioned by the massive number of right-wing stink-tanks, to demonize everything about FDR’s New Deal.”

    Like today, the depression occurred mostly because of loans on the margins, and an economy where the disparity between the wealthiest and the poorest became so large as to actually nearly exclude a huge chunk of the society from spending, or buying things. As always, buying is a primary driver of the economy, by 2/3rds. It is our major problem now, since there is an even larger gap between the poor and the rich now, and poverty is on the rise, up to 13.2 percent.

    Let us face it, globalization only works well in a system where the whole world is confined to the same safety, environmental, and labor standards. As it is practiced now, none of us does well, with the exception, of course, of the super rich. They’ve profited madly by the exploitation of poor standards in third world countries. The U.S. has lost their jobs, and many that have become employed in third world countries, make less than sustenance wages, work long days, with no days off, no safety conditions, or human requirements, no environmental standards.

    Economies work well when confined within the same set of conditions, as ours did before we began the slide in 1973. We all work under the same laws and conditions, and we get to negotiate to improve our working conditions, without the threat of uprooting the plant, and sending it elsewhere. With massive populations in the world, where we’ve got tons of slave-labor, truly paying them scarcely enough to put a little poor food in their mouths, and a nice cardboard box, we’ll never win that battle. We all need to come to the realization that as it is set up, we are destined to get worse, and worse, and don’t think in some way that it won’t hit you.
    If you run a business, you’ll continue to lose business.

    If you own a house, rents will go down, or your house will become unoccupied for longer periods than if we had a robust economy, with full employment.

    School and hospitals are inflating massively, compared to the normal rate of inflation.

    Crime can touch anyone. Who are you willing to risk for this crazy economic system.

    Tariffs make absolute sense, and the more the merrier. We need to plug all the holes we’ve punched in our economic bucket, and begin to refill the bucket of our economy with good jobs, and a system where we put American workers, and for that matter, foreign workers needs, ahead of corporations, and the top ten percent richest people who own 90 percent of the stock they proffer.
     
  3. Oddball
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    Oddball BANNED Supporting Member

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    Yeah....Nothing like raising taxes and making things more expensive to get the economy going and help the sainted poooooooooooor!!

    This economic populist dreck belongs in the humor section. :lol:
     
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2009
  4. Shogun
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    yea, heaven forbid we stop a hemorrhaging trade deficit. Free market capitalistas sure do have a hard time facing the failure of their pet economic theories.

    bring on the trade war.
     
  5. Oddball
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    Whatever.

    You've already clearly demonstrated that your knowledge of real economics, as opposed to the pretend monsters-under-the-bed populist swill you've filled your head with, is next to nil.
     
  6. Shogun
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    :lol:

    whatever, indeed. It's pretty funny that you claim such ivory tower knowledge of econ while your ship burns down around you.

    :thup:


    Mr. GREENSPAN: Flaw in the model that I perceived is a critical functioning structure that defines how the world works, so to speak.

    Rep. WAXMAN: In other words, you found that your view of the world, your ideology was not right. It was not working.

    Mr. GREENSPAN: How it - precisely. That's precisely the reason I was shocked

    Greenspan Admits Free Market Ideology Flawed : NPR
     
  7. The Rabbi
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    It is incredible to me that some people still believe that protectionism is a valid and helpful policy. The evidence against it is enormous. If it were wrong, E.Germany would have been an economic powerhouse.
    But when the wall fell E.Germany's factories were smoking ruins of outmoded production tools producing obsolete products at uncompetitive prices.
    That's what protectionism leads to.
    No one wants to see jobs go away (although the U.S. is the largest beneficiary of outsourcing by foreign companies). But that is far preferable to seeing us protect inefficient industries that can't compete.
     
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  8. Oddball
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    If protectionism worked, Pugeots and Citroens would be the greatest cars in the world....But they aren't and it's practically impossible to get parts for them, if you can find a mechanic to wok on the rattletraps, outside of France.
     
  9. Shogun
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    Your opinion is noted and summarily filed in the trash can.

    :thup:
     
  10. The Rabbi
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    Probably because you have no counter-argument and yet cannot accept that I am correct.
    Sad, really. A closed mind is a great thing to get wasted.
     

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