Two of the major causes of a crappy and declining US economy are the false promises of “free” trade and the reality of enviro-Nazism. These two politically correct but destructive policies, together, result in unsustainable trade deficits, loss of jobs, greater national indebtedness, higher interest payments and will lead to the eventual collapse of our economy.
The two articles below summarize these joint self-imposed curses on our country. Together they make it impossible for us to prosper and grow.
First, the enviro-Nazism article from The Blaze titled “Business ‘A Clear Overreach’: Gibson CEO Blasts Justice Department.” This article describes the strong-armed tactics of our government in seizing raw materials from the Gibson Guitar Company without any charges being filed. The Justice Department (aka Department of Injustice under Obama) says they are enforcing a US law that protects the environment of another country. Sources in that other country disagree.
Following that is the article from The Market Ticker titled “Free Trade = Free Financial Rapes.” This article explains the pitfalls of our persistent $40 to $50 billion annual trade imbalance that requires our nation to increase its indebtedness each year. Too many politicians have fallen into the trap of believing free trade is next to godliness when such beliefs are sinking our economy.
We must seek Presidential and Congressional candidates whose clear agenda is to eliminate these destructive legislative handcuffs on our economy.
Gibson Guitar Corp.’s chief slammed the U.S. government on Wednesday for sending armed agents to raid two Tennessee factories under a law aimed at curbing the illegal harvest of tropical hardwoods, reports Reuters.
“Armed people came in our factory … evacuated our employees, then seized half a million dollars of our goods without any charges having been filed,” Gibson CEO Henry Juszkiewicz told reporters and others at a Washington lunch.
“I think it’s a clear overreach,” he said.
Government agents seized a total of over $1 million worth of rosewood, ebony and finished guitars from Gibson factories in Memphis and Nashville in raids in 2009 and August of this year, Juszkiewicz told Reuters.
Gibson’s factories remain open “under great difficulty” because the raids took most of the company’s raw materials, the CEO said. In a Capitol Hill forum Wednesday, Juszkiewicz told Republican lawmakers the raids have so far cost the company more than $3 million in legal fees and manufacturing disruptions.
The price of their products will likely go up because of the financial hit they have taken.
Furthermore, the CEO cautioned that American jobs could be sent overseas as a result of the federal harassment.
“You know, there’s a very real possibility we will have to move at least some processing [jobs] overseas,” the Daily Caller reports Juszkiewicz saying. “I’m trying to avoid that. But you know, I have to do what the business requires, and that’s a very realistic possibility.”
The U.S. Justice Department declined on Wednesday to comment on the case but provided information on the Lacey Act, which aims to curb trafficking in wildlife, fish and plant products, including illegally obtained timber.
“By prohibiting trafficking in wood illegally harvested overseas, the Lacey Act prohibits companies from undercutting law-abiding U.S. wood products companies … by trading in artificially inexpensive raw materials that have been illegally harvested from foreign forests,” Justice and Interior department officials wrote in a letter.
Gibson Guitar uses a small fraction of the world’s tropical hardwoods, compared to that used for furniture and flooring, and because it uses so little it can use it sustainably, Juszkiewicz said.
“The issue here is not illegal logging or some conservation abuse,” he said. “The laws that are being identified by the Department of Justice have to do with protectionism by the country of origin, keeping work in that country and therefore not allowing something that isn’t that value-added to be exported.”
Gibson has filed suit in federal court in Nashville to recover the seized material, but that suit has been stayed while the investigation continues, reports Reuters.
Furthermore, the guitar manufacturer has hired a Washington law firm to lobby on its behalf.
The Tennessean reports that Crowley & Morley LLP will lobby against the Lacey Act, which federal officials are investigating Gibson of violating.
Gibson’s chief said the law should be changed.
“I believe in the intent of the law … but I do believe that the way it‘s currently written allows what’s happening to me to happen to other companies, and that’s wrong,” he said.
The U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, through the Department of Commerce, announced today that total August exports of $177.6 billion and imports of $223.2 billion resulted in a goods and services deficit of $45.6 billion, virtually unchanged from July, revised. August exports were $0.1 billion less than July exports of $177.7 billion. August imports were $0.1 billion less than July imports of $223.3 billion.
We are constantly told how "free trade" is good for America, and how it boosts our exports (and thus helps GDP - and employment.)
The truth is something else entirely. Indeed, at this point one can no longer claim this is a "mistake"; it's an intentional fraud that is pushed by multinational corporations and the politicians in their pockets. How can one realistically argue with this chart?
You might as well print that gap in red, for the blood of our workers (and monetary balance.) Or maybe yellow is accurate (you pick the pejorative that fits your particular worldview.)
When all is said and done this sort of utter crap requires the explicit "support" of the monetary authority (read: Bernanke) to be sustained. Trade deficits cannot be sustained otherwise, as the shift of capital causes a change in the relative value of currencies (in a floating fiat currency regime) that cuts off the ability to sustain the imbalance.
So what has The Fed and Congress done? Conspired to create credit to replace capital in the economy to the tune of nearly a half-trillion annually!
This in turn appears to make these trade deficits sustainable. But all credit comes with interest due, and there is no such thing as a free lunch in this regard. All we do is temporarily delay and compound the negative effects, shifting them to the nation's citizens.
Inflation-adjusted (that is, looking at purchasing power) wages have declined in the last decade... there's your consequences!
"Free trade" is misnamed - when you hear it, repeat back at the speaker "free financial rapes", because that's exactly what these policies are.