Why Isn’t Anyone Talking About Ending “Free Trade”?

As dueling deficit reduction plans compete for victory in Congress, I am left wondering why the real source of the hemorrhage in America’s economy is being ignored. Surely, anyone can see that the root cause of the country’s problems is “free trade”?

It’s the free traders who opened the door to let America’s jobs pour out. And “free trade” has deprived America of a key source of revenue.

Yet, President Obama is continuing the policies of the past, urging approval of more free-trade agreements.

And the Republicans, who are nothing more than a front for the global corporations, want to give more tax breaks to companies that sell in America and invest abroad.

Even Donald Trump can see that those “free trade” agreements are bogus. In his brief presidential pseudo campaign, Trump made the point that China imposes a 25 percent tariff on imports from the U.S., and America lets Chinese-made products into this market almost duty-free.

Who decided these trade deals would be good for America?

Why, the global corporations, of course. And the agreements have been good for many “American” corporations.

In the new “global” economy, companies producing goods abroad have access to the American market without paying for the privilege.

That adds up to huge profits, which the companies cunningly hide overseas to avoid paying U.S. taxes. And they invest those profits abroad, where wages are low and where environmental and safety laws are lax.

It’s no wonder Big Business dedicates huge sums to lobbying Congress. They don’t want lawmakers to change the tilted global playing field that’s making them so rich.

It doesn’t really matter which plan this cockeyed Congress finally chooses as a band-aid solution to the country’s economic woes.

The only bottom-line solution is to end the “free trade” charade, and bring the jobs home.

With millions of American workers unemployed, the government is deprived of the taxes (and Social Security contributions) they would be paying if they were working.

And with import taxes severely diminished, another key source of revenue is unavailable.

I think Congress should look at two ways to tackle the national debt: End the pointless wars and close most of the military bases around the world; and revise the absurd “free trade” policies that enrich other nations at America’s expense.

gwgraeme

I am a Jamaican-born writer who has lived and worked in Canada and the United States. I live in Lakeland, Florida with my wife, Sandra, our three cats and two dogs. I like to play golf and enjoy our garden, even though it's a lot of work. Since retiring from newspaper reporting I've written a few books. I also write a monthly column for Jamaicans.com

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