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  • Free Trade Fact of the Day

    The rapid rise in the price of food staples like corn, wheat, soybeans, and rice has strained the ability of people in developing countries to feed their families. Hunger related unrest has broken out in Cameroon, Egypt, Haiti, and Somalia. Today, world leaders are meeting in Rome for a Summit on world hunger. A big part of the short and long term solution to the crisis: more free trade. ABC News reports:

    U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon told world leaders Tuesday …that nations must minimize export restrictions and import tariffs during the food price crisis and quickly resolve world trade talks.

    “Some countries have taken action by limiting exports or by imposing price controls,” Ban said. “They only distort markets and force prices even higher.”
    The increasing diversion of food and animal feed to produce biofuel, and sharply higher fuel costs have also helped to shoot prices upward, experts say.
    The United Nations is encouraging summit participants to start undoing a decades-long legacy of agricultural and trade policies that many blame for the failure of small farmers in poor countries to feed their own people.

    Posted in International [slideshow_deploy]

    2 Responses to Free Trade Fact of the Day

    1. Francis, Oregon says:

      Ban Ki-moon hits the point regarding biofuel effect on food prices. The environmentalist, global warming, carbon credit, wealth re-distribution crowd are causing this effect and conservatives better re-connect with the masses soon or lose this battle for sure.

      What Ki-moon neglects to mention, is the role that many corrupt "developing country" governments play in the price of food in their own countries. Theft of aid, corrupt leaders steal to sell on the black market or keep for themselves is a significant problem in third world countries. That problem will ever remain unitl they are dealt with by their own people.

    2. Henry, Washington D. says:

      On Free Trade, Globalization:

      So, looking at the above article, according to the Heritage Foundation, the solution to a problem seems to be to implement more of exactly what caused the problem in the first place. They state that, “A big part of the short and long term solution to the crisis [is]: more free trade.” What?! Right below this confident, agenda pushing, all-knowing statement about the necessity of more free trade is a brief description of some of the major causes of the current food crisis: “The United Nations is encouraging summit participants to start undoing a decades-long legacy of agricultural and trade policies that many blame for the failure of small farmers in poor countries to feed their own people.”

      Almost the exact thing the U.N. is identifying here is a consequence of free-trade agreements, which benefit Trans National Corporations above all else and force small farmers out of business and into the cities to look for new, more dependant means of subsistence. These forms of FTAs (“Free” Trade Agreements) are nothing more than manifestations of neocolonialism. Advantaging the (conglomerated financial interests) of the few at the expense of the many.

      And yet, the (possibly millions) of folks who read the Heritage foundation’s words and have read these “fact” of the day articles – if any of them are uninformed of the truth about this issue then they will come away from this article thinking that free trade actually does benefit small farmers and the food economy of developing countries. Since the heritage foundation deems it all right to mislead its readers, anyone reading one of their texts should exercise extreme discretion and question everything that the foundation presents to them as true or not.

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