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Global Fair Trade
by Sartre
17 May 2003

Lower taxes, expanded high-paying employment and greater independence all seem like valid national economic objectives. But under current US economic policy, good paying jobs are the primary American export.

The Thinker

Do you view the world from the perspective of a globalist? If you consider yourself a progressive you may answer that the entire earth needs to be taken as a whole. But if you are a rational and reflective person, your reply should always be conditional. If we are talking about an impending collision with a deadly asteroid, a planetary response would be sensible. However, if the topic is world trade, a blanket universality of equivalence defies reasonable judgment.

The character of economic transactions have as a valid goal the fulfillment and satisfaction of human necessities and desires. If a need or want exists, the marketplace will seek to fill that demand. This principle crosses all cultural boundaries and economic systems. In the most rigid of economic models, restrictions or unavailability may result, but the attempt to satisfy basic requirements and cravings is a primary component of our common human nature.

Trade and commerce is fundamental to the existence, betterment and gratification of society. Economic activity generates the vitality and vigor that causes and achieves a functional community. There should be no question that the business of trade has the greatest potential to benefit all parties engaged in commercial activities. So what is the problem with a world system designed to promote free trade among nations?

That question is the one that the proponents of the World Trade Organization would like you to accept. However, it is a false proposition. At its focus is an assumption that countries are equal and that they have an objective which will serve the best interests of their inhabitants. The doctrine of free trade is based upon illusion, since the precision of the Adam Smith “invisible hand” demands that the market is realized through distinct decisions made by individual consumers. Choice is just as essential as profit is necessary to produce a viable economy.

Here again, the internationalist presents a fallacious design. The macro view that efficiency at the lowest possible production cost is the paramount goal violates the essential purpose of the business transaction. The customer may see immediate gain in huge discounted pricing but frequently overlooks that such value is temporary, and often ignores the significance in the loss to domestic manufacturing. The globalist preaches the doctrine of low prices while having the motivation to cut costs, especially those for labor. Invariably the amount of profit is determined by the extent and quality of the competition. When domestic enterprises are driven out of business, only those who moved off shore will do the selling.

Common sense and recent decades of experience prove beyond any doubt that good paying jobs are the primary American export. The WTO is based upon rules calculated to steer the world economy to accept unconstrained imports. Of course, this policy works only for the low cost producer. How that measure is achieved and at what cost or contortions it takes to reach that charge is disregarded. What matters is strictly the unfettered flow of cheap goods into the biggest and most consumer-oriented markets available. Such a system is pure heaven for the monopolist. Definitely, this is not the capitalism in the “Wealth of Nations,” and certainly doesn’t resemble the free enterprise that benefits all parties.

Most discussions about Free Trade are meant to deny the superiority of Fair Trade. Fairness in trade means true long term advantage to both the producers and the consumers. Domestic manufacturing cannot survive under the barrier of unlimited foreign dumping. But when native industry is shielded -- not from honest competition -- from contrived and manipulated emulation, real wealth creation becomes possible.

The method of enjoining tariffs on foreign products is central to ensure our national survival. The Globalists understand that tariffs are the answer to restoring economic independence. That is the reason that Free Trade is the cardinal goal of all internationalists. When the WTO and every other trade scheme exhort interdependence, they are condemning our society to third world subsistence. The inevitability of this reality is seen in every economic statistic and trade deficit report.

Average consumers may not be familiar with the economics of David Ricardo or the wisdom of Ludwig von Mises, but they all understand the Made in China label. By now even the most sanguine have experienced a dose of reality: a service economy can never maintain a free society. Americans are being relegated to menial jobs for minimum pay - all due to the Free Trade fraud. The facts are clear. Toyota can build and sell their cars in the USA, but Ford needs and deserves reciprocal access to the Japanese market. The key prerequisite is to demand domestic manufacturing for products sold. This primary objective can be augmented with sufficient tariffs for imports that will balance the retail price with that of domestic production. Revenue from such tariffs would offset internal consumer taxes.

"In its period of most rapid economic development, the half-century following the Civil War, the United States imposed import tariffs averaging around 40%, a level higher than those in almost all of today's developing economies. During the 19th and 20th centuries, German and Japanese economic development depended on managed trade, not free trade. Even the World Bank, in its 1993 report The East Asian Miracle, acknowledged as much for the Japanese postwar boom. South Korea and Taiwan, whose key growth periods came during the 1960s and 1970s, faced a world economy with far less capital mobility and engaged that world with managed trade policies - export subsidies, domestic-content requirements, import-export linkages, and restrictions of capital flows, including direct foreign investment."

Free Trade policies destroy the incentive to produce in America. Living wages paid from equitable profits is sound economics. You know this to be true. So do the globalists! Their objective is to diminish the autonomy of the United States and force the merging of the remaining operations into select conglomerates, under the control of an international cabal of billionaires. Central planners will scheme to replace sovereign and self sustaining economies, with approved suppliers operating under the Chinese paradigm of slave labor.

Fair Trade demands honest protection for home-made industry that creates the opportunity for citizens to be prosperous consumers. Only the deceiver will argue against this remedy. What is to be feared when tariffs preserve the ability to attain rewarding employment? If a choice was available to buy American-made quality products at the same price as those fashioned in alien sweat shops, wouldn’t you? Lower taxes, expanded high paid employment and greater independence all seem like valid national economic objectives.

Only the Free Trader will sucker you into subsidizing your own demise with bargain gadgets and shoddy junk. They will scam you with the trade advantage argument of a lower dollar value, as you grow weary in search of a decent job and the lower purchasing value of your money. Americans deserve real prosperity. Solely with the renunciation of WTO economics and the re-establishment of traditionally useful tariffs will the economy grow and flourish. Worldwide commerce will thrive when profits are spread in fair proportions creating new consumers, with the ability to buy our re-instituted quality exports. There is no reason to fear Fair Trade; its the only road to bona fide affluence.

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