Categorized | China, Politics

A Curve Ball for the Candidates As They Prepare To Debate China

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Reposted from Forbes

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An article by Eamonn Fingleton that appeared in Forbes Magazine opposed the contention posited in an article in CounterPunch.  The CounterPunch piece stated American manufacturing was not in decline and that the United States should not pester China on trade.  Fingleton’s article can be found here.

5 Responses to “A Curve Ball for the Candidates As They Prepare To Debate China”

  1. Mo says:

    If most of job loss was due to automation then more goods would say made in the USA. It’s just another excuse like Americans need more education and so forth. The real reason Washington refuses to to anything is because countries like China are a dumping ground for dollars. The US gets to export inflation and receive real goods in return even if it means the transfer of technology.

  2. Frank Shannon says:

    Mo’s first sentence is exactly right and is not argueable.

    The root problem on outsourcing is trade and tax policies that are outdated and working against America. Obama keeps talking about what he has done and what he has spoken about but the results haven’t changed and they won’t until policies are changed.

    last night, Romney focused on the policies that need to change and kept reminding the President that his results are not good.

  3. Tom T. says:

    We are focused on trade in this group but there is a larger problem that encompasses trade. We have developed a mentality that the lowest price should win based on consumer purchases. The problem with this theory is that it does not encompass all the information. I would not buy any item that I knew was coming out of what amounts to slave labor conditions, sweat shops or other outrageous production methods to get to the lowest cost. The problem is that we almost never given this information and we do not have a legal system or trade policies that would discriminate against these type of behaviors. We only get the product and its price. There is a huge asymmetry of information because it allows competitors on the retail level to have a competitive advantage in price. These price advantages are either captured by them in higher margins or lower prices which gains market share. The retailers couldn’t care less if their products came from sweatshop or unhealthy conditions. They want the lowest price to compete with others or increase their profit margins. There is no accountability and often no choice.

    As far as seafood, my family comes from a seafood background and I have shrimped in the Gulf of Mexico. I can taste the difference unless the shrimp were prepared with a lot of spices or other ingredients that mask the flavor. I will not buy or eat the orient originated fresh water shrimp. I think there should be NO question that this information should be included on the package and in letters big enough for people to read. Even then, most will not be informed enough to know there is a difference.

    By going with “efficiency” and the lowest price, we have excluded many of the real costs of products like labor abuse (Fox con), environmental problems (we all share even China’s coal plant air) or even dangerous chemicals in our food (because China or other countries do not have prohibitions against certain industrial chemicals used in production or processing) but all we get is the lowest price information and people who are profiting from it that want to keep it that way.

    We have compressed our economy with these outrageous tools of getting to the lowest price. It has squeezed profit margins so low that new businesses do not want to start up. There just isn’t any profit in it. We are destroying what was a working market economy.

    Tom T.

  4. Sorscher says:

    Productivity is going up. That could be automation, some recent increases are related to the recession, with fewer people doing the work of laid-off co-workers, but another factor is increased foreign content in what we still DO make. Trade statistics are notoriously weak in sorting out what was made abroad, then sold as “American.”

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