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Thread: 2012 Elections - Page 82







Post#2026 at 06-16-2011 05:07 AM by Brian Rush [at California joined Jul 2001 #posts 12,392]
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Quote Originally Posted by Exile 67' View Post
A smarter person would either know or quickly be able to conclude that the majority of us are both an individual and a social being vs simply being one or the other.
Someone smarter still would know that that is exactly what's being said.
"And what rough beast, its hour come round at last, slouches toward Bethlehem to be born?"

My blog: https://brianrushwriter.wordpress.com/

The Order Master (volume one of Refuge), a science fantasy. Amazon link: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00GZZWEAS
Smashwords link: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/382903







Post#2027 at 06-16-2011 08:34 AM by Marx & Lennon [at '47 cohort still lost in Falwelland joined Sep 2001 #posts 16,709]
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Quote Originally Posted by James50 View Post
It is impacted by the higher prices paid by its consumers. For every one person that is aided by protectionism in their jobs, there are ten who are hurt at the store. Low prices at Walmart keep the cost of living lower here. Raising prices for items which can be produced somewhere else at a lower cost makes the tariff producing country poorer.
This is an ideal case in search of a precedent. Yes, consumers might very well pay less, but they need low prices to partially offset their lower wages and salaries. The real question has to be, is this a net plus or minus. You argue the former, and many of us argue the latter. BTW, this is the same argument we see for lower taxes. It's easy to see the savings, but the gains from higher taxes are more subtle ... and I would argue, much greater.

Quote Originally Posted by James50 ...
Instead of thinking of the manufacturing sector (which is doing just fine in the US), think of the tariffs on sugar. That is the type of tariff you will get when the special interests have their way. It keeps our sugar prices artificially high while helping the special interests in LA. We also have high tariffs on ethanol which keep prices artificially high here. Protectionism is for losers.

James50
Tariffs are not a universal panacea. Making sweeping arguments either for or against defeats the purpose of tariffs in the first place: protection against predation. If sugar is a commodity that we should import, then tariffs should be low ... unless the off-shore producers are also using subsidies or currency manipulation to make their products unfairly dominant. In other words, we need to have them, but be smart about how we do it.

Right now, the Chinese have been so unfairly dominant that they can demand technology transfers as part of the deal. Even the most greedy business executive has to see that as a threat ... but short term gains seem to offset that. A typical CEO moves on or out in less than 10 years. They seem comfortable with the idea that they'll get theirs, and the rest of us can fend for ourselves ... which gets us back to the idea that we should not be solitary creatures if we want to survive longer than their tenure.
Marx: Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies.
Lennon: You either get tired fighting for peace, or you die.







Post#2028 at 06-16-2011 08:47 AM by Marx & Lennon [at '47 cohort still lost in Falwelland joined Sep 2001 #posts 16,709]
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Quote Originally Posted by Exile 67' View Post
A smarter person would either know or quickly be able to conclude that the majority of us are both an individual and a social being vs simply being one or the other. I don't know many Americans who would jump off a bridge or contribute to mass suicide because some leader told us too or a large group of leaders decided to set a greater example and actually do it themselves. BTW, as far as success is concerned, luck has very little to with most of it as well. I wasn't as lucky as Playdude or possibly yourself. I actually had to go out and do something, learn something, earn something, show something, proove something or actually impress people to earn and sustain my success.
FWIW, being a lemming is antithetical to being part of a productive society, but credit wher it's due. This may be your premier strawman of all time.
Marx: Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies.
Lennon: You either get tired fighting for peace, or you die.







Post#2029 at 06-16-2011 10:11 AM by Exile 67' [at joined Jan 2011 #posts 722]
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Quote Originally Posted by Brian Rush View Post
Someone smarter still would know that that is exactly what's being said.
Was it being said or argued?







Post#2030 at 06-16-2011 10:22 AM by pbrower2a [at "Michigrim" joined May 2005 #posts 15,014]
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Quote Originally Posted by Exile 67' View Post
A smarter person would either know or quickly be able to conclude that the majority of us are both an individual and a social being vs simply being one or the other. I don't know many Americans who would jump off a bridge or contribute to mass suicide because some leader told us to or a large group of leaders decided to set a greater example and actually do it themselves. BTW, as far as success is concerned, luck has very little to with most of it as well. I wasn't as lucky as Playdude or possibly yourself. I actually had to go out and do something, learn something, earn something, show something, prove something or actually impress people to earn and sustain my success.
First of all, anyone who can induce others to commit mass suicide without the certainty of a more horrific death has inordinate power over people as well as moral pathology in the extreme -- like Marshall Applewhite (Heaven's Gate), David Koresh, or Jim Jones (People's Temple). People jumping out of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory or the Twin Towers respond to an instinct to choose a less-horrific death.

Not all political pathologies romanticize death (Marxism-Leninism has no "72 virgins in Heaven" to offer), but it is beyond doubt that fascism recognizes martyrdom as an objective. A thug like Franco could support such a slogan as "i Viva la muerte!", and the infamous Horst-Wessel Lied of Nazi death squads culminates in

Kamaraden die Rotfront und Reaktion erschossen/ marschier'n im Geist in unseren Reihen mit!

(Comrades mowed down by Communists and monstrous others/ March on in spirit, ever in our ranks)

-- loose translation of horrible German prose.

And, yes, suicide bombers in or from the Arab world show an obvious parallel. How could anyone talk another person to walk into a marketplace or into a city bus to blast oneself and unsuspecting people into smithereens unless one is a criminal?

People of integrity recognize the reality of death and do not sugar-coat it even when the sacrifices are necessary of heroic. Contrast the Gettysburg Address, where Abraham Lincoln scrupulously enunciates the syllable dead even in the word dedicate, a word for which he could have easily found a facile substitute. Honest Abe could never offer assurances of a glorious afterlife, could never claim that Union troops continued marching alongside the survivors 'in spirit', and could never trivialize the horror of war. But Lincoln was no fascist. An honest person recognizes that even a necessary and heroic death is itself a tragedy -- a genuine loss to loved ones and to humanity as a whole.
Last edited by pbrower2a; 06-16-2011 at 06:10 PM.
The greatest evil is not now done in those sordid "dens of crime" (or) even in concentration camps and labour camps. In those we see its final result. But it is conceived and ordered... in clean, carpeted, warmed and well-lighted offices, by (those) who do not need to raise their voices. Hence, naturally enough, my symbol for Hell is something like the bureaucracy of a police state or the office of a thoroughly nasty business concern."


― C.S. Lewis, The Screwtape Letters







Post#2031 at 06-16-2011 10:45 AM by JDG 66 [at joined Aug 2010 #posts 2,106]
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Quote Originally Posted by pbrower2a View Post
the infamous Horst-Wessel Lied of Nazi death squads culminates in

Kamaraden die Rotfront und Reaktion erschossen/ marschier'n im Geist in unseren Reihen mit!

(Comrades mowed down by Communists and monstrous others/ March on in spirit, ever in our ranks)

-- loose translation of horrible German prose...
-Disingenous translation. That's: Comrades mown down by the Red Front (Communists) and Reactionaries...

Quote Originally Posted by pbrower2a View Post
-- loose translation of horrible German prose...
...but a catchy tune! Only Germans would create a murderous totalitarian political party, and then give that party a rather nifty beer drinking song.

Quote Originally Posted by Odin View Post
Read "The Wealth and Poverty of Nations" by David Landes, that's where I got my claim about protectionism from.
-Krugman, who so many Lefties currently cheerlead, got his Nobel Prize explaining the benefits of free trade.

The US debt scare:

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000...n_MIDDLESecond

But other Republicans and Wall Street insiders tell me that the possibility of a U.S. default on debt is close to zero... "Treasury is required to make the interest and principal payments, and will."

Mr. Toomey has proposed legislation that is designed to make sure that there will be no default. His bill would guarantee that if the debt ceiling is not extended, bondholders would be paid first from tax revenues collected each day. This would mean that other nonessential activities of government may not get funded until an agreement were reached on the debt ceiling.

Nevertheless, Democrats on Capitol Hill and in the White House who are arguing about how dangerous a default would be are also opposing Mr. Toomey's bill to ensure that this will never happen...







Post#2032 at 06-16-2011 11:16 AM by James50 [at Atlanta, GA US joined Feb 2010 #posts 3,605]
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Quote Originally Posted by Marx & Lennon View Post
This is an ideal case in search of a precedent.
Our most recent experience in tariffs was the Bush steel tariffs in 2002. They lasted about 1-1/2 years. It helped the steel workers but hurt the users of steel (autos, applicance, etc). More here. It has been proven over and over again that tariffs make us poorer. Same for import quotas. From time to time, there are cases of dumping and we have the WTO to deal with that.

The idea that raising protectionist barriers is the path to prosperity was tried in the 1930s as well. It did not work then, and it won't work now. It is unfortunate that the industrial unions who historically were pro free trade have changed to protectionist. If they are successful, it will only deepen our problems. The only way to prosperity is the hard path of innovation, productivity, and the markets.

James50
Last edited by James50; 06-16-2011 at 11:19 AM.
The whole modern world has divided itself into Conservatives and Progressives. The business of Progressives is to go on making mistakes. The business of the Conservatives is to prevent the mistakes from being corrected. - G.K. Chesterton







Post#2033 at 06-16-2011 11:30 AM by Brian Rush [at California joined Jul 2001 #posts 12,392]
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Quote Originally Posted by James50 View Post
It has been proven over and over again that tariffs make us poorer.
This is black-box thinking again. It has also been proven over and over again that tariffs make us richer. An understanding of how and why they do both can also tell us when to use them and when not to.
"And what rough beast, its hour come round at last, slouches toward Bethlehem to be born?"

My blog: https://brianrushwriter.wordpress.com/

The Order Master (volume one of Refuge), a science fantasy. Amazon link: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00GZZWEAS
Smashwords link: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/382903







Post#2034 at 06-16-2011 11:32 AM by James50 [at Atlanta, GA US joined Feb 2010 #posts 3,605]
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Here is USDA description of sugar quota program. Notice they protect the users of sugar who export. Its the US consumer who pays the bill.

If you want more of a very long history, look here.

"It's A Job-killing, Market-Distorting Monstrosity" say Senator Lugar.

James50
Last edited by James50; 06-16-2011 at 11:34 AM.
The whole modern world has divided itself into Conservatives and Progressives. The business of Progressives is to go on making mistakes. The business of the Conservatives is to prevent the mistakes from being corrected. - G.K. Chesterton







Post#2035 at 06-16-2011 11:35 AM by James50 [at Atlanta, GA US joined Feb 2010 #posts 3,605]
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Quote Originally Posted by Brian Rush View Post
This is black-box thinking again. It has also been proven over and over again that tariffs make us richer. An understanding of how and why they do both can also tell us when to use them and when not to.
Let's see. I have given two examples (steel and sugar). Where are your examples?

EDIT: Make that 3 examples including Smoot-Hawley.

James50
Last edited by James50; 06-16-2011 at 11:41 AM.
The whole modern world has divided itself into Conservatives and Progressives. The business of Progressives is to go on making mistakes. The business of the Conservatives is to prevent the mistakes from being corrected. - G.K. Chesterton







Post#2036 at 06-16-2011 11:41 AM by princeofcats67 [at joined Jan 2010 #posts 1,995]
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Quote Originally Posted by Exile 67' View Post
A smarter person would either know or quickly be able to conclude that the majority of us are both an individual and a social being vs simply being one or the other.
Quote Originally Posted by Brian Rush View Post
Someone smarter still would know that that is exactly what's being said.
Using the current Terminology of "Individual" vs "Social Being", which of these perceptions is dominant within an Individual? Is there a difference in how said perception is operationalized?

The way I see it, we have some options here. We may have an Individual that sees themselves only as an Individual or a Social Being. Let's put those two options aside at this time. What we are left with is 1)an Individual that recognizes their Individual-ness as primary, but also sees themselves as a Social Being. We also have 2) an Individual that recognizes their Social Being-ness as primary, but also recognizes themselves as an Individual.

Option 1 could generally be described as allowing for more Freedom of Choice(from the Individual, not the Environment per se; ie: Free Will), while option 2 could generally be described as allowing for more Societal Structural Stability(although I'd say that is only in perception and not in reality).

Since I believe myself to be a member of Option 1, I am most certainly biased. That said, I believe my Individually-minded Prophet Elders and like-minded Nomad Peers can understand my feeling that Option 2 is problematic i/r/t Freedom of Choice as we move deeper into an apparent 4T. Maintaining an apparent Structurally Stable "Top-Down" approach(as far as Operationalizing) is to what I am refering.

In regular language, if Individuals are not allowed to make the choice of sacrificing for the Society, we are left with...what?

This speaks to Exile67's comment:
Quote Originally Posted by Exile 67' View Post
I don't know many Americans who would jump off a bridge or contribute to mass suicide because some leader told us too or a large group of leaders decided to set a greater example and actually do it themselves.
I agree. Even if One is moved to support a Mission, what good is said Mission if Policy is not operationalized for Effectiveness and/or Sustainability. I believe the 2009 ARRA/"Stimulus" may qualify as a recent example; The Vietnam War may be another.

Prince

PS: I'm not being political here, currently.
Last edited by princeofcats67; 06-24-2011 at 08:41 AM. Reason: Smiley fix...Twice!
I Am A Child of God/Nature/The Universe
I Think Globally and Act Individually(and possibly, voluntarily join-together with Others)
I Pray for World Peace & I Choose Less-Just Say: "NO!, Thank You."







Post#2037 at 06-16-2011 12:09 PM by Brian Rush [at California joined Jul 2001 #posts 12,392]
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Quote Originally Posted by James50 View Post
Let's see. I have given two examples (steel and sugar). Where are your examples?
http://www.scribd.com/doc/6134226/Ta...-United-States

We have used tariffs many, many times, and of course we still do. As a source of revenue and a way to influence trade balances, it's a time-honored method. Saying "never" is as wrong-headed as saying "always" -- black-box thinking, as I said. You need to understand WHY. That's the only way you will be able to understand when -- and when not.

In general, tariffs function to protect fledgling, developing industries, or to offset foreign manipulative action. The Tariff of 1816 was a perfect example of both. The U.S. steel and textile industries were in their infancy, and might never have developed at all -- with very serious consequences for U.S. economic development in general -- if they had not been protected from competition with established British industries. Also, as the article states, Britain had amassed a huge stockpile of these goods which caused the price to plummet. Of course, the tariff was not popular in the South or among New England merchants; tariffs are not without consequences. But without it, America might never have been able to industrialize at all. And if you don't think that would have hurt our prosperity in the long run, well . . . what can I say? The same logic applies to the Tariff of 1824, but the Tariff of 1828 (known in your part of the country as the "Tariff of Abominations") was too much a blanket tariff and also set too high. In 1832, it was reduced to a more realistic rate and in 1833 reduced further. Read through the descriptions of other tariffs we have used historically; you can find good and bad examples. But as I said, it's not enough to find examples. You also have to understand what they mean, and why the good and bad results happened. Otherwise, you're going to take one or another wrong answer away.

In today's circumstances, a tariff that discourages our own companies from investing in cheap foreign labor would be highly desirable. This is different from previous tariffs in that its target is not foreign competition properly so called, but rather unscrupulous and destructive behavior by American industry that hollows out the global consumer market and results in a depressed global economy -- which, please note, we have. Rebuilding the middle class here and in other advanced economies is the key to restoring global prosperity. Of course, the same thing could be accomplished if we could somehow require American companies to pay foreign labor higher wages, but the U.S. government doesn't have that power. At least, not that I can see.
"And what rough beast, its hour come round at last, slouches toward Bethlehem to be born?"

My blog: https://brianrushwriter.wordpress.com/

The Order Master (volume one of Refuge), a science fantasy. Amazon link: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00GZZWEAS
Smashwords link: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/382903







Post#2038 at 06-16-2011 12:27 PM by playwrite [at NYC joined Jul 2005 #posts 10,443]
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Do the math

Quote Originally Posted by JDG 66 View Post
-
The US debt scare:

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000...n_MIDDLESecond

But other Republicans and Wall Street insiders tell me that the possibility of a U.S. default on debt is close to zero... "Treasury is required to make the interest and principal payments, and will."

Mr. Toomey has proposed legislation that is designed to make sure that there will be no default. His bill would guarantee that if the debt ceiling is not extended, bondholders would be paid first from tax revenues collected each day. This would mean that other nonessential activities of government may not get funded until an agreement were reached on the debt ceiling.

Nevertheless, Democrats on Capitol Hill and in the White House who are arguing about how dangerous a default would be are also opposing Mr. Toomey's bill to ensure that this will never happen...
From an expenditure standpoint, the federal government is a large insurance program with a large army and a consistent debt payer - EVERYTHING ELSE IS TRIVAL.

If Toomey gets his way and we let debt paying continuing, then we would have to take even more drastic cutoffs of expenditures on the insurance and the army elements. That means stopping Medicare/Medicaid/Social Security checks from going out and stopping checks going out to military employees (active/reserve/retired) and contractors.

Under such circumstances, I would make sure our guys in the field get what they need (that likely doesn't include actually getting paid) and to try to provide some level of subsistence to their dependents. From there, I'm not sure what else could be funded - the elderly or the sick.

One thing for sure, most Americans would likely put at the bottom of the list worrying about providing anything (money or health care) to inactive 40 year olds such as you.
"The Devil enters the prompter's box and the play is ready to start" - R. Service

Its not tax money. The banks have accounts with the Fed so, to lend to a bank, we simply use the computer to mark up the size of the account that they have with the Fed. Its much more akin to printing money. - B.Bernanke


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Post#2039 at 06-16-2011 01:20 PM by James50 [at Atlanta, GA US joined Feb 2010 #posts 3,605]
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This listing of tariffs stops in 1921. Is there another page somewhere? It is interesting to read through and see who the winners and losers were. And of course, that's my point. There are always some of both. Mainstream economists pretty much say today that it is almost always bad. (There I put in the "almost" qualifier that takes me out of the black and white thinking you accuse me of.)

One thing for sure, we may impose tariffs or import quotas here and there for particular valid reasons, but these actions are far from a panacea. The world is simply too well connected and integrated for a high tariff developed country to hold to a protectionist policy.

James50
The whole modern world has divided itself into Conservatives and Progressives. The business of Progressives is to go on making mistakes. The business of the Conservatives is to prevent the mistakes from being corrected. - G.K. Chesterton







Post#2040 at 06-16-2011 01:26 PM by James50 [at Atlanta, GA US joined Feb 2010 #posts 3,605]
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Quote Originally Posted by Brian Rush View Post
In today's circumstances, a tariff that discourages our own companies from investing in cheap foreign labor would be highly desirable. This is different from previous tariffs in that its target is not foreign competition properly so called, but rather unscrupulous and destructive behavior by American industry that hollows out the global consumer market and results in a depressed global economy -- which, please note, we have. Rebuilding the middle class here and in other advanced economies is the key to restoring global prosperity. Of course, the same thing could be accomplished if we could somehow require American companies to pay foreign labor higher wages, but the U.S. government doesn't have that power. At least, not that I can see.
Is offshoring behind US employment's current problems?

Two obvious questions: What jobs are we talking about, and what is the meaning of the differential in job growth? Is this a story of "offshoring"the shifting, if you will, of jobs to foreign locales for production that still fundamentally satisfies U.S. demand? Or is it more a reflection of the different pace of growth in foreign markets relative to U.S. markets?
James50
The whole modern world has divided itself into Conservatives and Progressives. The business of Progressives is to go on making mistakes. The business of the Conservatives is to prevent the mistakes from being corrected. - G.K. Chesterton







Post#2041 at 06-16-2011 01:39 PM by Marx & Lennon [at '47 cohort still lost in Falwelland joined Sep 2001 #posts 16,709]
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Quote Originally Posted by James50 View Post
Our most recent experience in tariffs was the Bush steel tariffs in 2002. They lasted about 1-1/2 years. It helped the steel workers but hurt the users of steel (autos, appliance, etc). More here. It has been proven over and over again that tariffs make us poorer. Same for import quotas. From time to time, there are cases of dumping and we have the WTO to deal with that.
Nothing happens in an instant. We need a steel industry for many reasons, including Defense. I can't judge this as a wise or foolish move, but the short term effects are less important than the long term costs and benefits.

Quote Originally Posted by James50 ...
The idea that raising protectionist barriers is the path to prosperity was tried in the 1930s as well. It did not work then, and it won't work now. It is unfortunate that the industrial unions who historically were pro free trade have changed to protectionist. If they are successful, it will only deepen our problems. The only way to prosperity is the hard path of innovation, productivity, and the markets.

James50
Remember, the US was a net exporter at the time. Now, we import. That's a huge difference.
Marx: Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies.
Lennon: You either get tired fighting for peace, or you die.







Post#2042 at 06-16-2011 01:49 PM by James50 [at Atlanta, GA US joined Feb 2010 #posts 3,605]
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Quote Originally Posted by Marx & Lennon View Post
Nothing happens in an instant. We need a steel industry for many reasons, including Defense. I can't judge this as a wise or foolish move, but the short term effects are less important than the long term costs and benefits.


Remember, the US was a net exporter at the time. Now, we import. That's a huge difference.
I would be careful about throwing exporters under the bus.

Exports $1.280 trillion f.o.b (2010)[1]

Export goods agricultural products (soybeans, fruit, corn) 9.2%, industrial supplies (organic chemicals) 26.8%, capital goods (transistors, aircraft, motor vehicle parts, computers, telecommunications equipment) 49.0%, consumer goods (automobiles, medicines) 15.0% (2009)

Main export partners Canada, 13.2%; Mexico, 8.3%; China, 4.3%; Japan, 3.3%. (2009)[6]

Imports $1.948 trillion c.i.f. (2010)[1]

Import goods agricultural products 4.9%, industrial supplies 32.9% (crude oil 8.2%), capital goods 30.4% (computers, telecommunications equipment, motor vehicle parts, office machines, electric power machinery), consumer goods 31.8% (automobiles, clothing, medicines, furniture, toys) (2009)

Main import partners
China, 15.4%; Canada, 11.6%; Mexico, 9.1%; Japan, 4.9%; Germany, 3.7%. (2009)[6]
here.

James50
The whole modern world has divided itself into Conservatives and Progressives. The business of Progressives is to go on making mistakes. The business of the Conservatives is to prevent the mistakes from being corrected. - G.K. Chesterton







Post#2043 at 06-16-2011 02:19 PM by Brian Rush [at California joined Jul 2001 #posts 12,392]
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Quote Originally Posted by James50 View Post
This listing of tariffs stops in 1921. Is there another page somewhere? It is interesting to read through and see who the winners and losers were. And of course, that's my point. There are always some of both. . . . One thing for sure, we may impose tariffs or import quotas here and there for particular valid reasons, but these actions are far from a panacea.
That's exactly what I'm saying, James. They're neither a panacea nor the devil's work. Either attitude is black-box thinking. Incidentally, the classic economic argument for free trade, comparative advantage as presented by David Ricardo, is premised on the idea that goods cross borders but capital does not. That isn't the circumstance we face today.

Free trade is indeed the way to go, provided the trading partners don't exhibit a gross imbalance in economic development. I would not want to see protectionist walls between the U.S. and Europe, for example. But between the U.S. and developing countries that lure American capital with dirt-cheap labor, yes. I would like to see that practice end.

Also, what I mean by "black box thinking" isn't the same as "black and white thinking." What I mean is the kind of thinking that ignores the nuts and bolts and mechanisms and whys and wherefores, and only looks at results. Treating the workings of the economy as a black box, in other words. That's asking to be confused.

The effects of tariffs aren't a black box. They're easily understood. They raise the price of imports of the goods and/or from the country where they are applied, thus discouraging them; also, because it's normal for a country that is the target of a tariff to impose tariffs of its own, it tends to reduce exports to that country and lower the price of exports as secondary effects. Overall, tariffs lower the quantity of trade between the nations where they are applied. Whether this is a good thing or a bad one depends on circumstances. Do we want more trade with the partner in question? If we do, then we want low tariffs or none. If not, then we want high tariffs or even an embargo.

Why would we want less trade with a given trading partner (other than for political reasons)? Well, there are several possible reasons. One is if we are trying to develop a fledgling industry and the trading partner has that industry in a mature state -- that's if capital doesn't cross borders, of course. Which was the case in the early 18th century. Free trade with Britain wouldn't have resulted in British steel companies building factories in the U.S. and developing that part of our industry for us, while laid-off British steelworkers howled. It would have resulted only in imports of British steel killing our fledgling industry. Since we wanted to industrialize, that was not a good thing. In the post-WWII decades, when U.S. industry was fully developed but before the economy globalized, we followed a free-trade policy with success. Capital was still not crossing borders on a large scale, so outsourcing wasn't a problem, but neither did we have fledgling industries that needed protection from foreign competitors. It was the right thing to do. It's all situational.

EDIT: Regarding your question posed above, the clear answer is "yes." You can see this if you ignore the yellow highlighting on the table you linked and think for yourself. U.S. multinationals dropped 1.9 million U.S. jobs in the decade before the recession, and added 2.36 million foreign jobs. There was some net global growth in employment, obviously, but the majority of increased foreign employment came at the cost of American jobs. Now, did the people who lost those jobs stay unemployed? In many cases no, but their replacement employment generally paid less than their old jobs did, and of course the foreigners who replaced them at their old jobs were paid MUCH less than they were. The net effect was a transfer of wealth from the middle class to the owner class, and a hollowing-out of the consumer market. This left the economy poised on an inadequate consumption base, and vulnerable to any financial trigger that came along, which of course it did. A healthier economy with a more egalitarian distribution of wealth would have weathered the collapse of the mortgage bond market without serious consequences. The economy we had, however, sank like a stone.
Last edited by Brian Rush; 06-16-2011 at 02:29 PM.
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Post#2044 at 06-16-2011 02:20 PM by Marx & Lennon [at '47 cohort still lost in Falwelland joined Sep 2001 #posts 16,709]
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Quote Originally Posted by James50 View Post
I would be careful about throwing exporters under the bus.

here.

James50
OK, but most of the countries on our export list are not countries we would hit with import tariffs. They are fair trade partners. On the other hand, I would impose them on China (known malefactor) and possibly Germany (with some export subsidy and import exclusion issues). There are others like South Korea that also work the system, but a mere threat may be all that's needed there.

There is no need to paint them all with the same brush. We need less Free Trade and more Fair Trade. If we don't start the process, who will?
Marx: Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies.
Lennon: You either get tired fighting for peace, or you die.







Post#2045 at 06-16-2011 02:28 PM by Marx & Lennon [at '47 cohort still lost in Falwelland joined Sep 2001 #posts 16,709]
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Quote Originally Posted by James50 View Post
Here is USDA description of sugar quota program. Notice they protect the users of sugar who export. Its the US consumer who pays the bill.

If you want more of a very long history, look here.

"It's A Job-killing, Market-Distorting Monstrosity" say Senator Lugar.

James50
I see far less strategic need for a native source of sugar than I do for steel. Both are arguably commodities, but the lack of domestic sources for many steel products has gotten to the point that we are beholden to foreigners for strategic supplies. Are you aware that we cannot build a typical nuclear pressure vessel using domestic steel? It's not the quality. We simply have no facilities to produce the large pieces ... especially the head.
Marx: Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies.
Lennon: You either get tired fighting for peace, or you die.







Post#2046 at 06-16-2011 02:30 PM by Marx & Lennon [at '47 cohort still lost in Falwelland joined Sep 2001 #posts 16,709]
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Quote Originally Posted by James50 View Post
Let's see. I have given two examples (steel and sugar). Where are your examples?

EDIT: Make that 3 examples including Smoot-Hawley.

James50
Smoot-Hawley was an example of door-slamming that is precisely the wrong way to use tariffs. I hope we know better than that.
Marx: Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies.
Lennon: You either get tired fighting for peace, or you die.







Post#2047 at 06-16-2011 04:19 PM by James50 [at Atlanta, GA US joined Feb 2010 #posts 3,605]
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Good to see this.

News Alert
from The Wall Street Journal

The Senate voted to repeal a $6 billion tax credit to ethanol producers, a move that could signal the end of some federal subsidies as part of an eventual budget and debt-ceiling compromise.
James50
The whole modern world has divided itself into Conservatives and Progressives. The business of Progressives is to go on making mistakes. The business of the Conservatives is to prevent the mistakes from being corrected. - G.K. Chesterton







Post#2048 at 06-16-2011 07:32 PM by pbrower2a [at "Michigrim" joined May 2005 #posts 15,014]
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Quote Originally Posted by James50 View Post
Our most recent experience in tariffs was the Bush steel tariffs in 2002. They lasted about 1-1/2 years. It helped the steel workers but hurt the users of steel (autos, applicance, etc). More here. It has been proven over and over again that tariffs make us poorer. Same for import quotas. From time to time, there are cases of dumping and we have the WTO to deal with that.

The idea that raising protectionist barriers is the path to prosperity was tried in the 1930s as well. It did not work then, and it won't work now. It is unfortunate that the industrial unions who historically were pro free trade have changed to protectionist. If they are successful, it will only deepen our problems. The only way to prosperity is the hard path of innovation, productivity, and the markets.

James50
The problem is with people exploiting bureaucratic power, market conditions over which they have considerable control, and political connections to enrich themselves at the expense of others. Such indicates that the 'free market' isn't quite so free due to monopolies and cartels, political cronyism, personal power, and perhaps outright corruption.

I am not going to deny that President George W. Bush didn't play politics with the economy. He did -- trying to use the economy to offer short term gains to potential voters who would be drawn to vote for him or his Party in the next election, only to do harm through those policies hidden at the time but likely to do great damage after he no longer had any chance or desire to maintain a political career. The same policies if used by a liberal would have been no less disastrous. Tariffs to win over the votes of steelworkers might be good short-term politics but bad economics. I have said enough about the real estate boom based on shabby lending and a consumption boom whose foundation was a rise in housing equity that tempted people to borrow against equity for luxuries (often imported!) Maybe he just wasn't as good at it, or he failed to realize the ill consequences.

Free trade is the consumer's best friend -- but it means nothing if one lacks the means of consumption.
The greatest evil is not now done in those sordid "dens of crime" (or) even in concentration camps and labour camps. In those we see its final result. But it is conceived and ordered... in clean, carpeted, warmed and well-lighted offices, by (those) who do not need to raise their voices. Hence, naturally enough, my symbol for Hell is something like the bureaucracy of a police state or the office of a thoroughly nasty business concern."


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Post#2049 at 06-16-2011 08:42 PM by KaiserD2 [at David Kaiser '47 joined Jul 2001 #posts 5,220]
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I believe that many of the industrial firms that shut down, such as steel mills, were still making profits--but not enough profit to satisfy the conglomerate that had bought them or their shareholders. So they closed. That is a huge problem--we have no sense of national responsibility, which is very strong in Germany and, I think, Japan. In those countries everyone knows industry and exports are critical.

James, when you say exports are doing well, isn't that all relative? I mean, they may be on an upward trend, but my impression is that they have been trending downward for a LONG time.

(This is my third attempt at posting this post. I kept getting the message that "the token has expired" and told to go back and reload. When that happens, you lose the post completely. It happened three times even though I followed instructions! This software sucks.]







Post#2050 at 06-16-2011 09:00 PM by The Grey Badger [at Albuquerque, NM joined Sep 2001 #posts 8,876]
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Quote Originally Posted by James50 View Post
Good to see this.

James50
Good! Those stupid subsidies were costing more than they gained, both in dollars and - less forgivably - in petroleum! Of which one of the heavier uses is fertilizer for the corn that's being grown to make ethanol to save petroleum....

Actually is pork to buy votes in the Corn Belt states and we all know it, which may mean the recession actually gives the politicians a valid reason to do what they want but couldn't afford to politically.

You think?

Anyway, hooray for the Senate!
How to spot a shill, by John Michael Greer: "What you watch for is (a) a brand new commenter who (b) has nothing to say about the topic under discussion but (c) trots out a smoothly written opinion piece that (d) hits all the standard talking points currently being used by a specific political or corporate interest, while (e) avoiding any other points anyone else has made on that subject."

"If the shoe fits..." The Grey Badger.
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