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Sending jobs abroad hurts the United States

Shoe workers see free-trade threat | July 31

Sending jobs abroad hurts U.S.

As Washington continues to encourage companies to take manufacturing jobs away from Americans and give them to people in other countries, the United States sinks deeper into a hole. We give away jobs that bring tax money to our own government and give the wealth to other countries. We then tell the companies they don't have to pay their full share of taxes. I just do not understand the thinking.

As the picture for working America dims, there seems to be no light. The tunnel just keeps collapsing in on us, but no one seems to care. I feel for these workers. They may lose their income and lose a sense of participating in a manufacturing of shoes that warrants respect for the shoes and the people who make them. Clothes, shoes, wallets — once made with pride in America, now gone. When will someone wake up and start the revolution to jump start the USA?

Christina Ennist, New Port Richey

Shoe workers see free-trade threat | July 31

America sells its soul for free trade

This article represents just another incidence of America selling its soul to free trade. America appears to be willing to drop its shoe tariff, shutter its last remaining shoe factories, and put 1,000 workers on unemployment all for cheaper sneakers from Vietnam.

Briefly, England was the world's industrial power in the mid 1840s. It attained that level of distinction arguably via mercantilism and protectionism. In 1846, England decided to discard protectionism in favor of free trade. Its industrial base was quickly devastated and overtaken by both the United States and Germany. For the next 50 years, its industrial base floundered as its trading partners continued to practice mercantilism and protectionism. Sound familiar?

This story also represents another incidence of why the heart and soul of free trade, that wonderful theory of comparative advantage, is simply wrong. One of the assumptions that comparative advantage makes is that the factors of production move easily between industries. Someone should tell those 1,000 "factors of production" that will be losing their jobs just how easily they will be able to move between industries. And tell the owners of those five facilities how easy it will be to move their buildings into other industries, because comparative advantage also says that we, as a developed nation, will always have higher opportunity costs that will push us into more retainable industries, or scale economy industries.

The president, in negotiating this free trade agreement (during a period of high unemployment), believes that this will help the United Stated by opening up Vietnam, and other Asian markets, for more computer exports from California.

Well, that sounds good, but just how many California computers might we sell to a country where the yearly per capita income is $1,168? And why would we further grow an existing trade imbalance with Vietnam? We already import $14.3 billion worth of goods from there, and send it only $3.7 billion worth of goods in return.

It appears to be another occasion where we just don't trust history, and end up making the same mistakes that have been made before. So in the name of globalism and free trade, let's just let Vietnam sell our soles back to us.

Alex Vann, Brooksville

Big Oil profits souring again July 29

Let's let Big Oil run things in D.C.

To placate those on both sides, I offer the following suggestion: Why not have Big Oil trade places with Congress?

Since the evil oil companies know how to make a profit, Washington would finally have a surplus. And for those who despise oil and profit, with Washington at the helm, Big Oil would lose money!

Win-win?

Kenn Sidorewich, Oldsmar

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Sending jobs abroad hurts the United States 08/06/11 [Last modified: Saturday, August 6, 2011 5:31am]

    

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