Friday, September 21, 2007

 

Rhetorical Question of the Day

When you think that China doesn’t protect its own workers, its own consumers and its own water quality, why would we expect them to protect ours? —Democratic Senator Sherrod Brown of Ohio as quoted by Alan Beattle in "US-Peru deal seen as ‘a breakthrough’"

The U.S. has apparently come up with a trade deal with Peru that is a "first." It includes provisions on worker rights and the environment. The Bush administration prefers a more "purist" approach to trade agreements that would omit the imposition of "onerous requirements" on the subject country. Bush & Co. will give away the store so long as their cronies benefit. But with a slightly Democratic Senate in place, they're afraid they can't get any more deals through Congress without making some concessions.

As for the Democrats, it remains to be seen whether there's more smoke than fire on these issues, but I like this kind of talk—

"The elite in this country, whether it is newspaper editors or economists from Yale or Princeton or Harvard, are gasping: that’s ‘protectionism’,” [Sen. Sherrod Brown] told the [Financial Times].

“A word that has always meant something good in our country, protecting children, jobs, the environment . . .  now has a bad connotation.” He is convinced that cheerleading globalisation has been a vote loser.

Look, the United States is the world's greatest consumer nation. Poor countries will sell their grandmothers to get access to this market. And that, my friends, used to be known as "bargaining power." Wouldn't it be nice, for once, to try using some kind of power other than military might?

Well, I've gotta run. Need to do a little shopping.

Related posts
Lie of the Day (6/20/05)
CAFTA will proceed; the workers be damned (6/30/05)
CAFTA passes in the night (7/28/05)
Another harm of globalization (12/28/06)
How do you spell "avarice"? M-c-D-o-n-a-l-d-s (8/7/07)

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