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  • Guest Blogger: Rep. Erik Paulsen on Greater Free Trade Means More Jobs

    The government is spending hundreds of billions of taxpayer dollars attempting to stimulate the economy, but it’s clear these spending programs are not achieving the results we need. Instead, the economy continues to shed jobs. Unemployment figures released last week show U.S. unemployment reaching a 26-year high of 9.8 percent.

    Instead of putting Americans back to work, Congress is simply putting heavier burdens on taxpayers, while driving the country deeper into debt. In short, the current approach is not working. There is another approach to stimulating the economy – a proven method to increase prosperity, grow our economy and create jobs: expansion of free trade.

    Free trade is a proven stimulus. According to a Peterson Institute study, the average American household is about $9,000 per year richer as a result of the country’s integration with the world economy since World War II. Furthermore, if the world’s remaining barriers to trade and investment were to fall, global trade would add another $500 billion to domestic wealth creation each year. That’s $500 billion in economic stimulus per year without adding to our national deficit.

    American consumers only account for about five percent of the world’s population. We must make international markets more available to our exporters to help them grow.

    In 2008, export growth exceeded GDP growth. Without this strong growth in exports, there would have been no positive economic growth. Over the past few years, this growth helped offset some of the declines in the housing market.

    In my own district, there are countless businesses, small and large, that benefit from free trade. One is Bloomington-based Donaldson Incorporated, a leading manufacturer of air filtration systems and other industrial products. Prior to the recession, Donaldson was seeing record profit increases, driven in large part by its increased sales to customers in Europe, in Asia, and our neighbors here in North America.

    Those buyers were in places we’ve already worked to open to free trade. Donaldson used these earnings to grow their business and hire new employees here at home. Of course, like nearly every other business, they’ve faced serious challenges as the economy has struggled.

    Along with targeted tax relief and similar incentives, increasing trade opportunities would help companies like Donaldson and thousands of others weather the current economic downturn and provide opportunities for new growth.

    Unfortunately, there are consumers and markets across the globe that still cannot be accessed by American sellers because of high tariffs, quotas and other barriers to international trade. It’s time to knock down those barriers.

    We can start by supporting pending trade agreements with South Korea, Columbia and Panama currently before Congress. Doing so would open up markets for American products, stimulate the economy and also strengthen both democracy and free market principles in each of these nations. Opening the South Korean market alone would give U.S. businesses access to a market the size of our third largest trading partner, Mexico.

    However, we can go beyond free trade agreements alone. I am encouraged by the recent initiative announced by U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk aimed at helping small and medium –sized businesses in the U.S. increase their exports. In our global economy, it is not just large corporations who benefit from increased trade. Providing the entrepreneurs and small businesses responsible for about 70% of our nation’s job growth with access new markets is simply the smart thing to do.

    I have long advocated for increased trade and strong global relationships between the U.S. and nations abroad. I’ve visited India, China and several nations in Africa and the Middle East. In every country, free trade is essential for their own growth and prosperity, as well as the growth and vitality of the United States.

    It’s time for Congress to reevaluate the actions they’ve taken in recent months with regard to jobs and the economy. As we do that, we must seek to expand and encourage free trade wherever possible –as it is one important tool in growing jobs and increasing prosperity, both at home and abroad.

    The views expressed by guest bloggers on the Foundry do not necessarily reflect the views of the Heritage Foundation.

    Posted in Economics [slideshow_deploy]

    10 Responses to Guest Blogger: Rep. Erik Paulsen on Greater Free Trade Means More Jobs

    1. Tim Az says:

      There will be no more job creation in America until representatives like Paulson can begin to be honest with themselves and their constituents And understand why the left is doing everything in their power to financially destroy the American people. You have to win the election before you begin to institute policies that will allow for job creation. To win the election you must be truthful with yourself and the people. We already know the truth. We must hear it from those who want to be elected so we can trust that they understand exactly what must be done to return America to greatness. Anything less is just more of the status quoe. If you don't have the stomache to fight the left on the terms they have set for themselves than don't bother. We already enough placaters in the republican party.

    2. Louis L Cesar F Levy says:

      The Senator's assertions are right. What is needed however is a GLOBAL NATIONAL WAKE UP to what is REALLY HAPPENING : Most of our politicians transformed in TROJAN HORSES without the slightest idea of what they are doing. This almost NATIONAL HYPNOSIS, where the vast majority don't REALIZE the enormity of this Attack at home; worst than 9-11 and one of its true consequences. We need a NATIONAL DEHYPNOTISING so that the destroyers conscious or not are stopped. Until then not specific results can be expected. But don't ever think it won't happen; just start working towards it.

    3. Joe TN says:

      Eric, get your head out of you but. Fair trade, yes. Free trade, no. Look at the track record of the last so-called free trade agreements.

    4. Leon, Durango, CO says:

      Don't hold your breath waiting for free trade agreements (unless it is with Liberal/Socialist tyrants). The current Administration has no intention of creating American jobs with free trade nor any other sensible solution. I am exhausted by the outrages perped by Obama, for example stopping the drilling in Utah and Alaska. Rep. Paulsen is right that it would help out, but that means we will never see it. Now if somebody comes up with a way to ruin our economy, then the full weight of the Presidency will get behind it.

    5. Jerry from Chicago says:

      The $9,000 increase in average American income due to world trade may be real, but if it is, it has to be the result of what happened between 1945 and 1975, not since. During the 30 years following the end of WWII, if any country in the world wanted manufactured goods of any type, there was only one place to go, the U.S. IN that period, businesses grew as did thwages and benefits of American workers.

      By 1975, the price of oil tripled from previous levels, inflation took off like a rocket and by 1982 the Prime Rate was 22%; you couldn't get a fixed rate mortgage. Higher quality and more fuel efficient cars began flooding the American market, causing massive layoffs in the automotive industry, followed by layoffs in the steel industry and other auto supply industries. We were in stagflation. This continued until the Reagan years and reversed itself when Reagan cut taxes businesses began to expand and the stock market reached new highs.

      Since that time, American business has been outsourcing manufacturing jobs as fast as possible to capitalize on cheap foreign labor. What good is free trade if we have no products made in this country to export?

    6. Linda Carlsbad, CA says:

      I agree with Leon, if there is anything more this administration can do to ruin our country, they will be doing it! They are anti-American. They are for social justice, just not American justice. They have done everything to destroy our jobs, and continue to do it! What they don't understand, we are probably the most informed voters in 100 years. We will win in 2010!

    7. Savant Noir, Newport says:

      De-valuation of the dollar and the subsequent de-militarization of our defense is not an outcome of trade agreements, it is an outcome of a failed political system that thinks the policies of today will somehow fixed the failed policies of yesterday. Politicians are forever engaged in fixing the problems that they themselves have created.

      Although your premises are noble and sound, they are meaningless in today's political climate. Obama has not, nor will he ever, give one iota of attention to small business.

      He is the Anointed One, the hand picked and groomed Messiah who dances on the strings of his Globalist puppet masters. His mission is simple: "America must die, so it can be-reborn". The mission statement is outlined in the United Nations Agenda 21 Protocols, or, very nicely summarized in the mission statement of the Rockefeller Foundation.

      These Liberals and Globalists look at the world and sees it's injustices and seeks equity. America now has an agenda of Social, Economic, Judicial, Cultural, Religious, and Biological Equity. Ownership of private property is deemed as a social injustice. The accumulation of wealth is an injustice. Everything or anything that can give rise to the perception of someone having something more or better than someone else, is deemed abhorrent. "American greed must end", shout the Globalists. "It is not fair that someone has more than me", they proclaim. The answer to American greed is a global re-distribution of wealth. What I fail to understand is how is their desire to take from others considered noble? Is that not just their greed itching to be fed without even having to put forth the effort to earn it?

      For all the shortcomings of America, when you look at our front door, more people are lined up to enter our 'house' than any other nation in the world. America is sought out as a haven against poverty and oppression, a perceived land of opportunity and freedom. Where will we go when the entire globe is oppressed? What sanctuary exists once we all are forced to become homogeneous beings, devoid of personal ambition or any signature of our individuality?

      In the final analysis, we are all being manipulated by the Globalists. We will all pay the price as well. No system is ever going to be perfect, for man is an imperfect creature rife with human foible and folly. It is nonetheless obvious that the Capitalistic system, despite all it's many flaws, has done more to serve more people worldwide, than any other system. Capitalism is what has advanced mankind.

      The Globalists themselves obscure the most nefarious and greedy grab for power, wealth, and control behind a false mantra of nobility. Simplistically stated, the entire agenda has but a singular purpose: to end all private enterprise, re-distribute wealth, raise the buying power of the worlds population at the expense of those that have a perceived disproportionate amount of money, so that ALL people can be consumers of the multi-national corporations.

      For American's, the price of admission is their Freedom.

      (I digressed because response to the premise of the post is meaningless, so long as we have those in office that are hellbound on the destruction of America)

    8. DENNIS FLORIDA says:

      I seem to recall Catipiller laying off some of their workers,some months back. Last week i caught a story on one of the news channels about america maybe purchasing heavy equipment from China. has anyone heard this ?

    9. Pingback: Guest Commentator : Erik Paulsen Misses Free Trade Opportunity | Minnesota Political Blog - Change We Must Fight For

    10. Barbara15 says:

      ? A structure used for promoting liquidity in the municipal bond market is a random call feature used for bonds that fund small but long-lived projects. ,

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