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Full steam ahead on Russia WTO debacle

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They haven’t learned yet that letting state capitalism countries into the WTO is a recipe for U.S. industry disaster.

From the U.S. Trade Rep newsletter today…

U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk Statement on Russia Trade Bill

June 12 – This morning, U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk welcomed the introduction in the Senate of a bill to terminate the application of the Jackson-Vanik amendment and authorize the President to extend permanent normal trade relations to Russia.

“We welcome the introduction of this bill as Russia is poised to join the World Trade Organization (WTO) this summer. Passing this bill will ensure that U.S. businesses, ranchers, farmers, and workers will not be at a disadvantage in the Russian market compared to their global competitors. We will continue to work with Congress so that Americans can reap the full benefits of Russia’s WTO membership.

CPA is a “stakeholder group” but they did not consult us.  USTR did consult stakeholders that helped advocate getting us the worst trade deficit in history.  Again, from the USTR self-promotional newsletter.

Included below are statements of support from a wide range of trade stakeholders:


Business Roundtable

Distilled Spirits Council

Emergency Committee for American Trade

General Electric

National Association of Manufacturers

National Center for APEC


U.S. Commerce Department

U.S. Council for International Business

U.S. Dairy Export Council

U.S.-Russia Business Council

We need to push back on this debacle.  We won’t have an economy left when these guys are done.

5 Responses to “Full steam ahead on Russia WTO debacle”

  1. Tom T. says:

    Sure, lets get into another China trade deal and sell another two trillion dollars of our economy to Russia (China will probably fund their most profitable ventures with their reserves looking for a home).

    Our U.S. Trade Representatives have a ton to answer for with China’s purchase of large swaths of our economy and that economic power being concentrated not into the hands of those producing the goods, but into the government’s hands, and yet they want to do another one of these deals?

    The USTR is acting like a snake oil sales traitor. Maybe we should rename him the Foreign Trade Representative appointed by our political leaders to rush head long into an Orwellian world of oligarchs controlling the population for their benefit.

    Just how many of these “free” trade WTO agreements are we going to get into that are sold by telling us that we will sell more to state controlled economies by allowing the rules of the game to favor the abuses of trade masquerading as “the market” or “free trade’s invisible hand”?

    Tom T.

  2. Jim Schollaert says:

    Russia is very unlikely to become an export platform for manufacturing imports to the U.S. Their exports are principally oil and raw materials, as well as some military equipment to the 3rd world. Russia is one of the few countries with whom we have long enjoyed a trade surplus in manufactured and agricultural goods. And nothing in their recent economic history suggests that they will become another Korea or China.

    • Tom T. says:

      Jim, I personally have no trouble with trade with Russia. It is the unbalanced trade that China has achieved that gets me worried with these WTO trade agreements. You may be totally right in the beginning, but setting up the same rules that allowed China to game the system and basically steal large swaths of our manufacturing base wasn’t envisioned at the time either.

      Trade isn’t necessarily bad. It is when the game of trade becomes a play toy of the oligarchs in society and not the people that its effects are warped. We are not doing anything of substance with China’s current position of this strategy and so why wouldn’t we expect countries like Russia to use their oil and natural resource wealth to do the same? Their oligarchs could put it together as well as China’s.

      I am totally not against trade. Trade is good until one side starts is acting like the white settlers and their beads to disenfranchise the less sophisticated and less powerful around them. The unstoppable conclusion seems to be in the rules first set up in the game. Isn’t that the lesson we should have learned from dealing with China? Politicians are notoriously incompetent when it comes to actually managing an economy as they view their job as solely setting up the rules once in the beginning and no further management. When those rules are gamed (as they rake in benefits from those gaming the economy through campaign propaganda and donations), there is no serious thought that the rules set up in the beginning are not working for the public’s good as the public’s good is being sold to another oligarch gaming the U.S. economy.

      What serious action have we had with China and their 2 trillion in earnings (not to mention market penetration) they have amassed by gaming the system for the communist party? Their currency manipulation does not allow for that 2 trillion to be translated into additional demand by consumers. It is just 2 trillion banked by the communist party and used strategically to make a puppet out of the U.S. politicians who have been duped into their scheme.

      Tom T.

    • Joe Brooks says:

      Jim, we actually have a pretty large trade deficit with Russia, roughly importing 3 to one. Their dumping of product in the US over the last 10 years includes; firearms, ammunition and optics.

      TOTAL 2011 8,286.1 34,619.0 -26,332.8

      • Jim Schollaert says:

        Joe, I stand corrected if we have a current trade deficit with Russia. I guess my point is that historically we have not had a large and chronic trade deficit with Russia or the Soviet Union. We would have done well to have forged a closer economic relationship with the Soviet Union as they were an enormous underpopulated country with vast and largely undeveloped natural resources, that would have made an excellent economic partner for us. The Soviet Union was keen to improve relations with us but we always rebuffed them over Cold War and Jewish emigration issues. They were in desperate need of our capital and technological prowess, not access to our manufactured goods market. Instead we brought them to their knees while Wall Street and our corporations transferred much of our national wealth and technological know-how to China in exchange for short term profits. And now China, as well as the oligarchs in Russia, are reaping the rewards of exploiting the resources of a prostrate Russian state.


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