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  • Free Trade: Key to Job Creation

    Trade critics charge that free trade damages U.S. firms and workers. It’s true that individuals can experience trade-related job loss.  Balanced against that, however,  must be the overall gains in U.S. employment and productivity that stem from an open trading environment.  Indeed, free trade fosters economic efficiency, which is the basis for dynamic growth and job creation.

    In a recent report entitled “Opening Markets, Creating Jobs: Estimated U.S. Employment Effects of Trade with FTA Partners,” the U.S. Chamber of Commerce points out that more than 17 million American jobs depend on trade with U.S. FTA partners, and in 2008 alone, over five million jobs were created by the boost in trade unleashed by the FTAs. Chamber President and CEO Tom Donohue appropriately remarked, “I defy anyone in town to name another budget-neutral government initiative that has generated anything like this number of jobs.”

    Unfortunately, in recent years, free trade has become a victim of special interest politics in the U.S. America’s competitiveness, credibility and leadership in global markets are at stake and American workers and firms will prosper more, even in a time of economic slowdown, if the U.S. continues its historical trend towards trade liberalization and openness. Regrettably, Congress, bowing to labor union pressure, has focused on demands for concessions from other nations. Such intransigence has a cost. While America merely talks about trade, the rest of the world actually moves forward with new trade pacts, which push U.S. firms towards the sidelines and take away opportunities for more job creation.

    Posted in International [slideshow_deploy]

    5 Responses to Free Trade: Key to Job Creation

    1. Jeff Semones, WV says:

      I keep hearing how great free trade is but every since the early 90's I have seen factory after factory close in my town. It was already difficult to find a job here, the young people have been moving away for years. I would say that at least half the factories in this area are now gone, moved overseas where its legal to work people for slave wages. This small town has lost at least 20 factories and thousands of high paying jobs. I am no bleeding heart liberal, in fact I am one of the most conservative people I know, I am a member of the tea party movement. I guarantee you I will vote against any politician who fails to protect American jobs or who continues to allow millions of illegal immigrants to invade our country and take our jobs.

    2. Lynn Bryant DeSpain says:

      Free Trade must first and foremost begin at home.

    3. David Donahoe says:

      I have supported you with many e-mails to Congress in fighting the healthcare bill, as well as with some of your other causes, and I appreciate your fighting the healthcare debacle. However I could write many pages about so called, "free trade", but I don't have enough time and you are representing Big Business so you are not going to change your position. I see your position and rhetoric on this as the same farce as with the Dems on healthcare. You represent one constituency and do not give any credence or validity to the other side of the issue, AND, you don't tell the truth, or certainly not the whole truth (same thing). Another thing that proponents of these one sided trade agreements do that is just like the Dems. that is, since they cannot deny and rebut the negatives of these agreements, and they don't want to bring the negatives to light by discussing them, they choose instead to attack their opponents with labels, like "protectionist". Protectionist? You mean like the Founders who financed the government with tariffs? Yes, you love the Founders except when it is not convenient — we see now with Greece and Europe what our government will do to us as a result of trade entanglements — we are bailing out Europe with our money (that we don't have) and we have no control over Europe's socialist policies that are bankrupting them. The American worker is paying for the Greek worker to have 6 weeks off — very cool! You do believe in the Constitution, Right? Where is the Constitutional clause about financing other countries debts?

      A short summary is this: There is no "free trade". If there were no tariffs on all goods the world would be in chaos — anarchy — and the definition of "free trade" is "no tariffs". So, all trade is "negotiated" and the one thing we can be sure of is that "Joe" (U.S. worker) has no say in the "negotiations". You railed against the Dems when healthcare was being passed in the middle of the night, but I'm sure you celebrated when NAFTA was passed in a similar night session to avoid public view and outrage (selective and hypocritical outrage regarding the same deplorable procedure by Congress — passing something against the will of the people in the middle of the night — NAFTA, U.S. taxpayers lost their jobs and careers as their jobs went to Mexico, and within a very short time the corrupt U.S. Congress chose to shaft the people who had lost their jobs by using our taxpayer money to bail out the corrupt Mexican government in the country where the good jobs had been sent. I guess a double shafting is a "charm" to the "free trade" crowd. The other thing we know for sure is that IF the leaders of the Chamber of Commerce, and/or the Congressmen/women themselves, and/or Talking Heads on the business channels, and/or conservative or liberal Talking Heads on radio and TV, were the ones who would lose their jobs/careers, and/or have their income reduced for many years, or for the rest of their lives, THEN such agreements WOULD NOT BE PASSED. It is only because their actions visit these results on hard working "regular citizens" that they are willing to rationalize some academic idiot's BS (supported by the Chamber) as to why some people mayl be hurt — but hey — it's unfortunate but no big deal (I have seen this callous opinion expressed many times by "intellectual elitiests" over the years in the brief moments that negative issues MAY have seen the light of day in propaganda sessions on news shows promoting "free trade" — a joke). Big Business buys the votes of Congress, then Congress abdicates it's Constitutional responsibility to negotiate trade agreements and uses "fast track" to avoid accountability, and then U S workers lose their careers with no say in the matter. It is done kind of like cops in a speed trap. That is, they don't displace enough people at one time to get the entire population in a frenzy, as they choose to move from one industry to another over time with their targeted displacement of good U.S. jobs. I am not opposed to trade agreements that a third party from another planet would read and consider a win/win – a fair agreement. That is NEVER the type of agreement the U.S. worker gets from Big Business , the Chamber, the Congress and Fast Track. Why not acknowledge the downside to "real people" (taxpayers with years of service and families) and announce trade changes at least 10 years in advance so people have time to change careers, be re-trained, etc. Still, many American dreams will likely be destroyed because the workers may be too old to change careers, yet too young to retire. The only thing we can be certain of is that the destoyed dreams and families won't be the dreams and families of Congress members, Chamber leaders, non real world academics/economists, nor the Talking Heads on radio and TV. The media almost NEVER includes well spoken opponents of these ONE SIDED, U. S worker shafting trade agreements. It is like being on the opposite side of the media's chosen side on Environmental issues — I have observed you don't like it when it comes to the Environmental propaganda. I am consistent and don't like it in both cases. In these agreements those with money and power choose the winners and losers, and the losers have no say and no power. You against that scenario on the healthcare issue, right? I do not like big unions for the same reason I don't like business that is too big to fail or big government (power corrupts in any organization — unions, business, gov't). FYI – I have two business degrees from two major universities and over 40 years in real estate finance, and my income is reflective of years of success in that business. I deplore leftist dogma and I'm engaged to the extent possible in defeating every leftist I can defeat. However, I also can't rolerate those who advocate and demand transparency on issues where it is to their benefit, and then practice the same art of half truths, propaganda, "the truth but only part of the truth", etc. that they condemn. I know you said new jobs will be created. The trade agreements are one sided against the American worker and the job results will be one sided as well. Some Americans will be winners, but too many will be losers and the losers had no voice. Is "Joe", with one kid starting college and another starting next year, and 25 years at the "plant" or "office" going to get one of those new jobs after his $25 per hour job goes to a foreign country and he has to work for $15 an hour until he retires? I know Joe doesn't concern you — you just put forth academe's BS rationalization, right (you know, people from the profession you typically oppose – and I typically agree). What do you think "Joe's" children will think about the American dream after seeing what happened to their dad? No need to worry about the individual, right? — It's too bad the consequences of these one sided, unfair, U.S worker shafting agreements are not visited upon those who impose said consequences on others and then trivialize the devastation on good people. There ARE ways to implement trade agreements, but it isn't the way our government has been doing it and we don't need more of it. The last time Bush tried it the American poople stood up (not the Unions) just as they stood up on health care, and they stopped the trade farce from expanding. Unless the process and the results change dramatically for the better, I will continue to support that position.

    4. James Capehart Taylo says:

      Your article states Free Trade is a boon to the American Economy. I am at a loss to understand how it is a boon to the American Worker. As the gentleman from WV stated all we see are the closings of American business, manufacturing and sevices. Now that Americans are losing their jobs and can't buy products the foreign markets are screaming because they aren't selling to us. Now for how free trade is benifitting other countries, its allowing them to market their products in The United States while restricting our products in theirs. Take China as an example. If an American company wants to sell their product in China, they must build a manufacturing facility in China. We have built many auto manufacturing facilities in Mexico. They pay the workers a fraction of what they pay American workers that the jobs were taken from, however the Mexican workers can't buy the product. Most everything that is being built over seas is targeted for the American consumer.

    5. Vicky, Idaho says:

      "Free Trade" is a sophisticated strategy for economic warfare on the American people and American business. It has destroyed our economy. High value technology jobs were exported and poverty (illegal and legal immigration) has been imported. Our collapsing economy is because the middle class was targeted. I hope someday for the American people to finally see through this fraud and to charge the promoters of it with high treason.

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