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Saturday, February 13, 2016

Free trade's fundamental flaw

It is little wonder that utopians of various flavors, from Communist to libertarian, are enamored of free trade. Because it now requires a utopian-level credulity to believe that free trade is a viable option in a fallen world.
When I was growing up we were taught in sixth grade that Democrats wanted “tariff for revenue only;” Republicans wanted protective tariff to keep manufacturing – and jobs – at home. Abraham Lincoln said of tariff, if he buys a shirt from England, he gets the shirt but the money leaves the country and pays wages to Englishmen; if he buys it from a US manufacturer, he has the shirt, and the money stays in America, paying American workers. This is, according to Ricardo, far too simple an analysis; but it appeals to reason. American goods may cost more without overseas competition, but the money and jobs stay/ cheaper goods are not always appealing to those who have no jobs to give then wages, and must rely in government to pay them for not working; and a sizeable number of “workers” resent being on the unemployment role and getting welfare aid.

The US establishment went to war in 1940, and suddenly produced tanks, rifles, airplanes, trucks, bandages, ammunition, cargo ships and battleships; when the American people rose up they drowned Germany and Japan in war materiel. The German war machine used animal drawn transport to supply much of the Wehrmacht; The United States turned the last cavalry regiments into mechanized units and the Red Ball Express that supplied Patton. I used mules to plow cotton fields during World War II; but our soldiers did not depend on mules for ammunition. If all our plants had been in Frankfurt instead of Detroit, the outcome might have been different.
It's not as if China is the enemy of the West or manufactures anything  militarily important, right?

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79 Comments:

Blogger Mr.MantraMan February 13, 2016 12:26 PM  

We send a bipartisan committee composed of Obama, Hillary, Cruz and iJeb to the Carrier plant in Indiana and maybe we can get some problems fixed after these worthies explain trade policy

OpenID bc64a9f8-765e-11e3-8683-000bcdcb2996 February 13, 2016 12:27 PM  

Unintended consequences....
If the need aises, the US NW has an astonishing supply of
partially refined raw materials for almost ANY manufacturing pursuit.
It's called landfills full of Chinese/SE Asian "durable goods".
Too bad the "good stuff", rare earth metals, lead, steel, etc. has been shipped off to (ie) China/Japan as "junk", for them to use first, and sell back as land fill fodder.
CaptDMO

OpenID bc64a9f8-765e-11e3-8683-000bcdcb2996 February 13, 2016 12:29 PM  

*sigh* NOW has an astonishing....
CaptDMO

Anonymous Susan February 13, 2016 12:33 PM  

Nate would even add to this great post that if The War were re-fought today, the South would win round 2 handily. All the heavy manufacturing is in the south right now as opposed to the union heavy north.

It isn't just the quality of goods anymore, it is the serious lack of manufacturing of any kind now in America. Its almost like the bankstas and Big Business are wanting it that way. Are they really that stupid, or do they have a serious death wish going on here?

Blogger kudzu bob February 13, 2016 12:48 PM  

@4

Are they really that stupid

Yes, I believe that they are.

Blogger Dexter February 13, 2016 12:49 PM  

@4,

It is a form of appeasement. The Establishment thinks "happy, rich China" will be our friend.

Blogger KenK February 13, 2016 1:06 PM  

Or they all get lynched. A win-win.

Blogger praetorian February 13, 2016 1:08 PM  

Just the efficient marketplace efficiently eliminating inefficient inefficiencies to compete in the competitive competition of the marketplace:

https://youtu.be/Y3ttxGMQOrYhttp://money.cnn.com/2016/02/12/news/companies/carrier-moving-jobs-mexico-youtube/index.html

https://youtu.be/Y3ttxGMQOrY

Globalist corporate profits don't stop at the Rio Grande.

¡Yo soy un Americano Nuevo Conservador spectacular!

Blogger Conan the Cimmerian February 13, 2016 1:15 PM  

It is little wonder that utopians of various flavors, from Communist to libertarian, are enamored of free trade. Because it now requires a utopian-level credulity to believe that free trade is a viable option in a fallen world.

Yes. It is this that disabused me of my anarcho-capitalist base point.

It is strange, in comparison with our corrupted, modern corporatism, I find it harder to argue against a homogeneous ethno-state promoting national socialism amongst itself.

Can't shake most of my free trade beliefs. However, is our current system better than an ethno-homogenous, nationalistic socialism?

Anonymous johnc February 13, 2016 1:16 PM  

I'm always amused at how Trump is able to frame this topic. He always starts by saying he's a believer. "I'm a free-trader. I believe in free trade. I love free trade." And then he goes on to say something that is decidedly not in line with free trade principles.

Whereas, e.g., Pat Buchanan would say something like, "Free trade is bad for America. I'm against free trade." Trump says, "I'm a free-trader. I'm a big believer in free trade. Now let's talk about that 35% tariff we're going to put on Mexico."

But the truth is, we don't really even have free trade. We have lobbyist trade. China can send their stuff here tariff-free, but the stuff we send over gets hit with a massive tariff. Same with Japan. They send all kinds of cars here; meanwhile truck exports to Japan are prohibited and other vehicles have tariffs.

So it's more like "free" trade for our trading "partners", and screwed trade for us. More of the same nonsense where America is sort of the world's bitch, whoring herself out to everyone at the behest of the lobbyists and special interests.

Blogger Gordon February 13, 2016 1:26 PM  

I remember back in the late 1980s as Walmart rolled across the upper Midwest, stores had big posters explaining how Walmart created 38 jobs in a factory in Oklahoma. Another poster claiming 44 jobs in Georgia. Then, about 1990, all of those posters vanished.

Walmart has had teams that would go to suppliers and show them how to build more efficiently, so the price could come down. Those teams changed to showing suppliers how to shift production to China.

Now those original posters are coming back. But it would probably be several PhDs' worth of economic research to figure out how much manufacturing Walmart caused to go to China.

I know someone from the comments here said that one only needed to spend some time in a Chinese factory to understand why they are not a long-term threat. I'd still like that comm enter to elaborate.

Blogger Gordon February 13, 2016 1:27 PM  

I remember back in the late 1980s as Walmart rolled across the upper Midwest, stores had big posters explaining how Walmart created 38 jobs in a factory in Oklahoma. Another poster claiming 44 jobs in Georgia. Then, about 1990, all of those posters vanished.

Walmart has had teams that would go to suppliers and show them how to build more efficiently, so the price could come down. Those teams changed to showing suppliers how to shift production to China.

Now those original posters are coming back. But it would probably be several PhDs' worth of economic research to figure out how much manufacturing Walmart caused to go to China.

I know someone from the comments here said that one only needed to spend some time in a Chinese factory to understand why they are not a long-term threat. I'd still like that comm enter to elaborate.

Anonymous #8601 Jean Valjean February 13, 2016 1:40 PM  

It's not as if China is the enemy of the West or manufactures anything militarily important, right?

China is arguably a bigger enemy of the West than Islam, yet I don't hear many complaints about Chinese immigration. Some cities on the West coast are approaching 10% Chinese and San Francisco is more like 20%.

This will not end well.

Blogger Anthony February 13, 2016 1:45 PM  

The academic economics establishment is beginning to notice.

Blogger Positive Dennis February 13, 2016 1:45 PM  

I don't think Trump is being disingenuous. What we have right now is not free trade, no true Scotsman could ever think so! http://www.prophecypodcast.com/journal/2013/6/12/deregulation-didnt-work.html

Blogger CM February 13, 2016 1:57 PM  

From Anthony's link:
Cheap imports are great. But people value work, and the ability to build some sort of reasonably predictable, stable economic future, more than they do cheap flat-panel televisions.

That quote has just brought so many things into focus for me on the subject of consumerism.

Anonymous Freestater February 13, 2016 2:12 PM  

"China is arguably a bigger enemy of the West than Islam,"

What? Exactly how many times has China violently Invaded the West?

Blogger CM February 13, 2016 2:17 PM  

What? Exactly how many times has China violently Invaded the West?

Well, traditionally the west has responded to acts of violence in a reciprocal manner and there is hope that the hibernating viking in western men will eventually be stirred enough to reclaim his birthright.

But "peaceful" war can mollycoddle us into complacence until we are all destitute.

Blogger RobertT February 13, 2016 2:17 PM  

We could save our oil industry by charging tariffs on imported oil. If the Saudis decimate it, we'll all be sorry. Farook the Saudis.

Anonymous Mr. Rational February 13, 2016 2:18 PM  

Freestater wrote:Exactly how many times has China violently Invaded the West?

Ask the Vietnamese and Malaysians.

Blogger The Observer February 13, 2016 2:30 PM  

What? Exactly how many times has China violently Invaded the West?

Each time the Chinese have overthrown their conquerors, it's never been through direct force.

Ask the Mongols and Manchus; lull, isolate, and when the conquerors are weak and decadent enough, turn on them.

Anonymous grey enlightenment February 13, 2016 2:38 PM  

IMHO, there is more to the augment than that. I don't think it's so cut and dry. Free trade is a two way street. Foreign manufacturing may take away American jobs, but foreigners also buy stuff and create jobs, helping Americans, too. Cheaper goods increases purchasing power and boosts living standards. http://www.cato.org/publications/trade-briefing-paper/blessings-free-trade

Also there is some evidence manufacturing jobs were already going away well-before NAFTA


http://greyenlightenment.com/the-free-trade-debate/



Blogger Noah B February 13, 2016 2:41 PM  

I find it astounding that Ricardo's ideas have been so influential. This problem seems trivially obvious, and should have been just as obvious two hundred years ago.

Anonymous #8601 Jean Valjean February 13, 2016 2:44 PM  

@17 Freestater

I did say "arguably" so I respect your opinion. In addition to some supportive arguments from other commentators above, here are two more:

1) Islam is very open about their intentions whereas the Chinese are sneaky bastards. I'd rather my enemy try to stab me in the heart than in the back.

2) The average Chinaman is smarter than the average Muslim.

Blogger 1337kestrel February 13, 2016 2:47 PM  

Free trade is always mutually beneficial between two rational actors, Vox. Surely you don't think that individual Walmart shoppers are irrational and shortsighted, and therefore Ricardo's Opinions don't apply to them?

A tariff approximately equal to average equity returns should be a clumsy, barbaric, yet somewhat effective way to impose rationality on the consumer, by ensuring that we only import things that cost less than our cost of production.

Blogger Doc Rampage February 13, 2016 2:47 PM  

Ricardo's argument proves that free movement of goods and money increases the overall wealth of all nations involved. What it does not prove is that

1. no one suffers from free trade
2. free trade does not harm a nation's security
3. anything else about the consequences of free trade.

You can agree with Ricardo's argument (and you should because it's logically compelling) without agreeing that therefore we should have free trade. The various pros and cons have to be weighed against each other.

OpenID sigbouncer February 13, 2016 2:48 PM  

Chalmers Johnson (RIP) has written some nice stuff on the myth of free trade.

http://www.truthdig.com/arts_culture/item/20080124_chalmers_johnson_on_the_myth_of_free_trade

Anonymous Freestater February 13, 2016 2:49 PM  

@24

I still fear China less, for all the sabre rattling of the Chinese Commies towards Taiwan and surrounding neighbors, the general populace are disarmed pussies compared to the average Muslim.

Anonymous TigerTail February 13, 2016 3:02 PM  

I'm sure that the ChiComs build military armaments to the level of all the pathetic sh*t they "free trade" our way.

Blogger YIH February 13, 2016 3:03 PM  

@Gordon:
I remember back in the late 1980s as Walmart rolled across the upper Midwest, stores had big posters explaining how Walmart created 38 jobs in a factory in Oklahoma. Another poster claiming 44 jobs in Georgia. Then, about 1990, all of those posters vanished.
When founder Sam Walton was alive Walmart was big on ''made in USA'' branding and advertising - mainly to distinguish itself from it's main competitors at the time, Zayre's/Ames and Kmart (which got itself nicknamed 'Koreamart' because much of it's stock was made there).
When Walton died ('92) and Walmart had pretty much snuffed Zayre's/Ames and was making serious inroads on Kmart's market share they quietly dropped the ''Made in USA'' campaign and soon became ''the great Wal-Mart of China''.
These so-called 'free trade' agreements seem to me like a poker game where the cards are marked and everyone at the table knows it. But one of those players pretend they aren't and play the game 'straight'. The rest of the players take full advantage of the marked cards. Guess who's losing?
Speaking of gambling, while I have no idea how sincere Trump is (I do have my doubts) I also know how and what made him famous. Look what's happened to Atlantic City - from slum, to slum with casinos, and now devolving back to slum. Granted, part of the problem is greater competition (from feather Indian casinos here and there) but also from the fact that fewer and fewer people have disposable income to blow at casinos (outside of Vegas, casinos are not a tourist attraction, so they live and die on money within a hour or two's drive away). That literally hurts Trump right in the pocketbook, so he does have some idea what *ahem* 'free trade' does.
Pat Buchanan understands the issue through and through, non Americans are not trustworthy in the least.
Trump sees it as ''it hurts me'' only.
Cuckservatives see 'free trade' the same way they see use of the military, to expand the Judeo-American Empire.
Trouble is, it's not unlike bennies to dindus/muzzies, they take the 'gibsmedat' and stick their hand out for more, neither grateful nor changing in any way - other than to have more of them making yet more demands.

Anonymous Anonymous February 13, 2016 3:09 PM  

Trade is not free if the two countries engaged in trading have a different concept of "free".

Blogger Sheila4g February 13, 2016 3:20 PM  

I took some basic econ classes at night via the Dept. of Agriculture prior to grad school, as I hadn't taken any econ as an undergrad. The guy was from the midwest somewhere, and all of the handful of students were people with jobs and college degrees. These were simple but not simplistic classes, and I did quite well.

The required econ courses at SAIS were the opposite, and I passed but not with top marks. Somehow, my then fledgling conservative mind knew something was missing in these complex diagrams and explanations.

Off topic: The RNC sends fundraising letter using Trump's name without his knowledge or consent, and gets called out by Trump. With all respect to Nate and Josh, how can one not love seeing the GOPe smacked down like this?

Anonymous John Steed February 13, 2016 3:31 PM  

@25 ``Surely you don`t think individual Walmart shoppers are irrational and short-sighted?`` What? You don`t remember the Big Chimp-Out a few years ago when their EBT cards stopped working?

Anonymous The OASF February 13, 2016 3:38 PM  

Well it looks like the establishment has come up with a solution for VD's deflation scensrio.

Enormous sales tax hikes. $20 tax per barrell of oil to start, then onwards and upwards!

Anonymous Partyboob February 13, 2016 3:46 PM  

@29 Untrue. The chinks make some good hardware. Up here in Canada a lot of the guns for sale on the civilian market are made in China and most are well made. Chinese copies of the SKS, M14 and M4 ripoffs, Remington 870 and Sig Sauer and 1911 clones. All solid stuff. They'd flood AKs if they could but the AK is illegal in Canada. Because it's famous and our Communist ruling class is scared of it.

Anonymous Jack Amok February 13, 2016 3:46 PM  

Ricardo's argument proves that free movement of goods and money increases the overall wealth of all nations involved.

Perhaps in the short term, but it's good to ponder the difference between the average and the median wealth of a country.

If Bob, Doug and Fred all make $50k a year before free trade, and then after free trade Bob makes $200k a year, Doug makes $10k and Fred is unemployed, the average wealth has gone up, but everything else good about the economy has gone in the toilet.

Anonymous Partyboob February 13, 2016 3:55 PM  

Freestater wrote:

What? Exactly how many times has China violently Invaded the West?


I've never been bit by a rattlesnake or mauled by a bear. Doesn't mean those animals can't if I let my guard down.

Also, you argue like a SJW. Libertarians and leftists, both mealy-mouthed, both lacking in upper body strength, both not able to counter argue without strawmans and snark. Piss off

Anonymous Adam February 13, 2016 4:09 PM  

A good mate of mine is working in China as project manager building two enormous semi-sub oil rigs.

He said he flew up this river and for over an hour all you could see was shipyards churning out material. As a student of history he immediately thought, this is the USA before Pearl Harbor.

Blogger So Meh February 13, 2016 4:19 PM  

in the 1990s, there was still economic memory of higher inflation 9rates) of the 1970s and early 1980s. Economists would talk about a trade policy with China helping slice/reduce 1% off the U.S. inflation rate. that talk is dead now. its back to a world of everyone vs. everyone. the video of the Carrier Air Conditioner layoffs speaks volumes.
http://www.usinflationcalculator.com/inflation/historical-inflation-rates/
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y3ttxGMQOrY

Blogger Michael February 13, 2016 4:25 PM  

Adam

Could you expand on what your friend saw? Was this something like blue water ships? Maybe military types?

Blogger Colonel Troll February 13, 2016 4:37 PM  

@10 +1

I think that free trade is misrepresented at best (people don't understand what is actually happening) and is an exercise of America giving away money.

I lived in Japan for 5 years. I mail ordered proper fitting tennis shoes from the USA and paid 40% tariff because there was a patch of leather on the shoe. I bought ‘made in Japan’ tools at the local store that looked fabulous. They were forged C-clamps that were so crisp in their finish they looked like machined pieces and cost only a few dollars. Same for some hard, steel files, very inexpensive for the quality I was getting. My interpretation was that the Japanese steel industry must have been subsidized for the local market.

Additionally, I befriended other foreign workers there and heard their stories. A story from Russia comes to mind where foreign made industrial kitchen equipment (think big name coffee shop) required a 100% tariff to import plus annual taxes on it until it was removed from the nation (about 10 years ago). The point being either to protect Russian manufacturing (if there was any kitchen equipment manufacturing in Russia) or at least pad the government coffers.

I think that most producers/nations would want access to the American markets, even if there were some percentage points on the cost. How would tariffs be so detrimental? The mountains of 'stuff' that is purchased cheaply from the big box stores are not all life's necessities. Standard of living increased? Sure, but I'd rather have a little less stuff, pay a little more, and know that some sizable portion of the 90+ million unemployed Americans were put back to 40-hr work week manufacturing jobs. I'm not saying I want to pay more tax so there can be more welfare handed out. I'm saying I'd pay a little more for 'made in USA' to put more Americans to work. It's actually hard to find such goods nowadays (basic hand tools, specifically).

What if the USA put the world on notice that each year the USA were adding 10% tariff on the import on anything that was not a raw material to American manufacturing until there was a 100% tariff? Foreign producers will improve quality and cut costs until they can be competitive one way or the other (it's either better or cheaper than what American workers make in a way that the consumer prefers). Meanwhile, the USA can pay off national debts with the proceeds.

BTW, I was in Japan to start up and run a manufacturing site next to an industrial customer because there was no buyer (i.e., manufacturer) in the USA. If there were manufacturers in the USA, we could have built our plants next to them and employed Americans. Free trade, indeed.

Blogger bob k. mando February 13, 2016 4:37 PM  

4. Susan February 13, 2016 12:33 PM
Are they really that stupid, or do they have a serious death wish going on here?



your critical error here is that you think of them as "American citizens".

they do not consider *themselves* such, they think of themselves as "citizens of the world".

then you consider the ridiculous percentage of them who hold Israeli passports ... and realize that for many of them, it's literally true.


to the banksta / MBA class, they will simply move somewhere else if/when the US goes down.

why should a Jew concern himself with the well being of a goy nation?

hello, Janet Yellen.




10. johnc February 13, 2016 1:16 PM
More of the same nonsense where America is sort of the world's bitch, whoring herself out to everyone at the behest of the lobbyists and special interests.



"I will shew unto thee the judgment of the great whore that sitteth upon many waters:
With whom the kings of the earth have committed fornication, and the inhabitants of the earth have been made drunk with the wine of her fornication.
...
And the kings of the earth, who have committed fornication and lived deliciously with her, shall bewail her, and lament for her, when they shall see the smoke of her burning,
...
And the merchants of the earth shall weep and mourn over her; for no man buyeth their merchandise any more:"



22. grey enlightenment February 13, 2016 2:38 PM
Also there is some evidence manufacturing jobs were already going away well-before NAFTA



well, no fucking shit. the off shoring of manufacturing was a central principle of the Communist Manifesto, published in 1850.

OF COURSE, there's going to be shift in manufacturing towards low price.

that's not the question.

the question is, did NAFTA grossly accelerate this or not?



22. grey enlightenment February 13, 2016 2:38 PM
Free trade is a two way street. Foreign manufacturing may take away American jobs, but foreigners also buy stuff and create jobs



what's the balance of trade, boy genius?



31. Anonymous February 13, 2016 3:09 PM
Trade is not free if the two countries engaged in trading have a different concept of "free".



trade cannot be free if one party uses slave labor.

Blogger YIH February 13, 2016 4:43 PM  

@Sheila:
The RNC sends fundraising letter using Trump's name without his knowledge or consent, and gets called out by Trump. With all respect to Nate and Josh, how can one not love seeing the GOPe smacked down like this?
Trump can really screw them, I checked, yes, his name is a registered trademark.
There are things you can do with copyrighted stuff you can't do with trademarks.
Did you notice all those ads the past three weeks that say something like ''Get your supplies for the big game here!''.
Yes, 'Super Bowl' is a registered trademark of the NFL. And they have and will sue.

Anonymous DissidentRight February 13, 2016 5:13 PM  

I'm thankful Vox made another post on this topic.

My understanding is that (in a free market)
1. real wages will increase to the marginal productivity of labor, simply because a difference means a competitor can capture those profits by increasing production.
2. Free trade with a poor nation effectively introduces a labor surplus to the wealthy nation, forcing the price of labor down.
3. However, even though the cost of production has fallen, prices don't fall because production is (yet) unchanged and price is linked to scarcity.
4. -> 1.
5. But there is a time lag between the labor surplus (reduced wages) and increased production (reduced prices), during which capitalists take the zero-sum difference from native workers in profits.
6. So it seems it is always in the self-interest of capitalists to promote free trade with poor nations (to keep native wages below marginal productivity) and always in the self-interest of workers to ban the same. Everyone gains except the native worker.
7. This is totally independent of ethnocultural difficulties.

Right/wrong?

Blogger Charlie Martel February 13, 2016 5:16 PM  

Scalia dead.

Place your bets please!

Blogger The Other Robot February 13, 2016 5:19 PM  

Scalia dead.

I see a black lesbian dwarf in the future of the SCOTUS.

I wonder if someone did it to ensure Obummer gets a pick.

Anonymous Kristol Burger February 13, 2016 5:28 PM  

I see a black lesbian dwarf in the future of the SCOTUS.

(((Tribal))) will make 4. Goin' for broke.

Anonymous Mr. Rational February 13, 2016 5:33 PM  

@46 Do the Repukes feel enough heat from the electorate to slow-walk hearings until after Obummer is out?

Anonymous Ain February 13, 2016 5:40 PM  

"Are they really that stupid, or do they have a serious death wish going on here?"

They see themselves as globalists. Enriching themselves at the expense of the US and the West in particular is just fine with them, and quite possibly working as intended.

Anonymous 5343 February 13, 2016 5:40 PM  

Do the Repukes feel enough heat from the electorate to slow-walk hearings until after Obummer is out?

He'll just appoint the black lesbian dwarf by executive order ...

Anonymous 5343 February 13, 2016 5:42 PM  

And the Repukes clearly don't feel heat from the electorate. They're still trying to ram Rubio, Kasich or Jeb! down their throats come hell or high water.

Blogger YIH February 13, 2016 5:44 PM  

This comment has been removed by the author.

Anonymous JamesD February 13, 2016 6:27 PM  

I'm surprised no one mentions Bastiat, and his proposal by the candle makers. Bastiat makes the correct statement that free trade is the most optimal policy. He is correct, but he left out a part: "for the system." You have to define the system. If the system is China-USA, then free trade optimizes the system. 2,000,000 workers lose their jobs, the USA loses capital, but China gains capital and 5,000,000 Chinese get jobs. The system is optimized, Bastiat is correct, but the USA gets screwed. It was a fatal flaw.

Blogger dc.sunsets February 13, 2016 6:30 PM  

@ Gordon, if my son who works for a major multinational manufacturer of big stuff is right, the stuff whose manufacturing packed up and went to China will come back, but the factories will be highly automated and entail little employment.

Anonymous JamesD February 13, 2016 6:32 PM  

Eliminate corporate income taxes and make up the lost revenue with a flat tariff on all imports.

Anonymous Jay Will February 13, 2016 6:41 PM  

What a horrible thought, that the great Jewish nation (what is free trade without the Jew?) is finally wiped out by destroying the only country that ever gave a shit about it. If American hegemony dies, then Israel dies. And thats why WW 3 has to happen, and why immivasion, and "evil Putin" is the future. Jew banking survives only through a major war, a democratic solution means complete loss of wealth for the ultimate parasite class. Millions will kill bankers and politicians - they need war, NOW. It is the Great Escape plan.

Yes yes goyim, kill each other for greater Israel!! For the chosen people! Whitey is being encouraged into another mass euro war. Don't lie to me Alt-right frauds, when the shit hits the fan you will coalesce behind a leader and put your racial differences to the side and fight the final war to punch the final nail in the white Euro coffin. There is no "white man" when your material life and safety are on the line, anything else is fuckin comic books. You would side with a US Muslim leader if it meant you and your own were safe.

As US hegemony dies, so does Israel. Therefore WW3 has to happen. The only way to save the Jew is to see another devastating Euro goyim war. Read Soros et al. These fucking lizards are salivating at the thought. Their media hydra heads spit venom at me every time I turn the telly on. It is no wonder that evil was wished on them before. But they are still winning, they are genius. A layer or two above, the same way we look down at animals. The TV is saturated with animalistic represnetations of the scum, me/you/. And it fucking works!!

My research has yielded a truth. Violence is at the heart of greater knowledge, not love, not caring, not fucking Gandhi. Even a godless universe is a universe driven by violence, every natural event that people love is a smashing, meandering waters that batter etc etc etc.

The great genius is teach those below you that violence is wrong, send it deep into their soul. The lowest animal of all is the weak and defenceless animal. This is why women hate weakness and will forgive evil. If I kill a thousand men tomorrow and have the look of conquest in my face, they will fuck me! If I look down and concede, they will laugh at me and if needed employ the conquesters face to punish me for snarking back.

Stawp poasting!!






Blogger Anthony February 13, 2016 7:14 PM  

Dissidentright - mostly correct except: labor productivity in the poorer country is, by definition, lower. Which complicates the benefit analyses. Also, the poorer country becomes a (small) new market for the rich country, which will add jobs in the rich country, though probably not many. Then there's the cost of transportation, which used to be high (and for some items still is), which added friction to the adjustments which trade causes.

Anonymous DissidentRight February 13, 2016 7:30 PM  

@56

Average labor productivity is by definition lower, but I think the particular guys working in an outsourced factory would be just as productive (given training, etc.) as the guys back home who lost their jobs. They're just paid a lot less because of the labor surplus.

Anonymous DJF February 13, 2016 8:17 PM  

1337kestrel writes

“”””Surely you don't think that individual Walmart shoppers are irrational and shortsighted””

Individual Walmart shoppers don’t make the decision on what is in the stores. They walk in and there are 7 types of fans for sales, 6 are made in China, 1 made in Vietnam. They walk into Kmart and there is also 7 types of fan available, 6 made in China and 1 made in Malaysia, they walk into Home Depot and there are 8 types of fans, 7 made in China, 1 made in Pakistan.

The people who make the decisions about what is in Wal-Mart are not the customers, it’s the management.

Just like it was not the customers who demanded that Carrier corp move to Mexico, it was the management, with a lot of help from Wall Street, financiers, and the banksters. If Carrier did not move then their stock would be downgraded, its management threatened with ouster.

Blogger Harold February 13, 2016 9:03 PM  

I would rather spend a few dollars extra and buy American made stuff that's higher quality, and in the particular case of clothing and shoes, fits right. I can do it with shoes- the San Antonio Shoe Company, and I do. But other clothing- simply not available.

As for appliances and stuff, Maytag was the last American company to move over the range microwave production overseas. Survey after survey showed that Americans would be willing and ready to spend $20. more to buy an American made OTR. Sale after sale of other manufacturers in stores and ever decreasing market share showed that the surveys lied.

My tractor is a Kubota, Japanese company, but for some reason, assembled in America. My other yard equipment is from DRPOWER, made in Vermont. Higher quality then anything in a big box. You pay more for it, but you get something that works as advertised.

Blogger Harold February 13, 2016 9:20 PM  

One thing about buying things, and getting the least price. If you're in maintenance and repair in a bureaucracy, you have to deal with bean counters, who may not see what you see. Things I've dealt with:
1/6 HP motors. $69. for a sleeve bearing motor, the bean counters choice. $79. for a ball bearing motor. 18 month life for the sleeve bearing motor, at which time you buy a new one and throw it away. 60 month lifetime for the ball bearing one, at which time you spend $10. for a new set of ball bearings, and get another 2 years, which you can do 2 or 3 times before it become un-repairable. Had to repeat the life cycle cost each time I got a new bean counter.

Very small V-belts. $0.79 from the approved vendor. $1.59 for a cogged belt from a more expensive vendor. 3 month lifetime for the cheap belt. On a fan unit. On the outside of a building. Which required getting on a ladder at least 2 times a year in snowy cold weather to change the damn thing. And a good part of the time it was already broken. Cogged belt. Replaced every summer in good weather. Once a year. Unless it went past 14 months, the belt was always intact.

I took a course once called "engineering economics". One of the things it EMPHASIZED was that every dollar spent to make something last longer then 20 years was wasted, because that dollar could be invested, and used to buy a new widget, road, building, or whatever. In real life, that dollar get's spent on something else, not invested. I read somewhere that if the first interstates had been built with 6" more concrete and asphalt, we wouldn't be replacing all the roadways now. Don't know how true that is, but it makes sense, to me, to overbuild permanent infrastructure. If you're building a road, you should build it to last, well, forever.

Blogger praetorian February 13, 2016 9:29 PM  

Eliminate corporate income taxes and make up the lost revenue with a flat tariff on all imports.

And/or treat cap-gains as income, and make dividends a deductible business expense. Basically treat companies like LLC pass-through entities, which is the right thing.

Companies would give "profits" to their "owners". Novel concept, isn't it?

Anonymous Millenium February 13, 2016 9:45 PM  

@4 You are supposing the banksters dont believe they can pick up at a moments notice and flee to their house in Israel, Switzerland, South America...

@10 Trump is very smart and a master at rhetoric. Free trade is a buzzword that the average person believes is unequivocally good though they don't understand it. If he said he was against free trade people would ignore him.

@17 Who said anything about violent invasion? The most successful invasions in history were non violent.

Free traders always argue disingenuously by starting with bullshit assumptions. In real life many governments subsidize industries. How can you have a level playing field in industry X if country A subsidizes the industry but country B does not?
Then you have 'externalities' that free traders define as irrelevant so they can refuse to confront them. Workers rights, environmental laws etc.
If non american country uses forced labor and dumps their waste in nearby drinking water they will be able to produce goods a lot cheaper than american country where you cannot chain your workers to a machine and force them to work 14 hours a day and are not free to dump your waste in the nearest river.

Anonymous Mr. Rational February 13, 2016 10:07 PM  

@54 That is precisely what happened at Generac.  Manufacturing came back to Wisconsin, but it's so automated that very few jobs came back with it.

Blogger Harold February 13, 2016 10:27 PM  

@64 Like Twinkies, after the strike bankrupted Hostess. Used to be 14 plants, 9,000 employees to produce them. Now, one plant, 500. Automation. Bringing you unemployment since, well, the original Luddites.
http://www.forbes.com/sites/stevenbertoni/2015/04/15/twinkie-billion-dollar-comeback-hostess-metropoulos-apollo-jhawar/#634de0bc2562

Anonymous Eric the Red February 13, 2016 10:28 PM  

@64...
Then the issue becomes:
- Where is the automated manufacturing equipment made?
- Where is the automated manufacturing equipment designed?

Everyone repeat after me, "Ceteris paribus, ceteris paribus, ceteris paribus..."

Blogger Gordon February 13, 2016 11:26 PM  

dc.sunsets wrote:@ Gordon, if my son who works for a major multinational manufacturer of big stuff is right, the stuff whose manufacturing packed up and went to China will come back, but the factories will be highly automated and entail little employment.

I used to work for a company that made electronic controls for off-road stuff like tractors and road-building equipment. Right about the time I left there was a project underway to bring the controls for outboard boat motors back from China. That was 17 years ago.

Blogger bob k. mando February 13, 2016 11:48 PM  

Crown Audio offshored manufacturing to China in the early 2000s, and kept the Elkhart facility for design and troubleshooting.

only problem was, some ~60% of the amps that came in from China had to be serviced before they could be sent out because they didn't meet spec or didn't work at all.

net profit on offshoring? pretty much didn't exist. but they'd already laid off a majority of the workforce and the offshoring was already a sunk cost.

thanks, Harmon Kardon!

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crown_International

Blogger bob k. mando February 13, 2016 11:56 PM  

61. Harold February 13, 2016 9:20 PM
If you're building a road, you should build it to last, well, forever.



i know concrete guys love to repeat this canard, but it's bullshit.

the problem isn't the total thickness, the problem is how many years can you get out of the top 1/2" before it starts to break up? because even the Rockies ( which are solid granite ) are breaking down and washing into the Pacific.

a road HAS to be smooth or traffic can't carry any speed over it. think about how aggravated you get when you're on a section of concrete highway what was poorly screeded and you get that roller coaster effect ...

it also has to be smooth or the heavy haul traffic ( a Class A tractor trailer can weigh 80k lbs without permitting for extra weight ) will destroy it in short order from load bounce.

so building a thick base is nice and all, but at a minimum you're going to have to resurface every x number of years.

Anonymous BGKB February 14, 2016 12:22 AM  

Trump says, "I'm a free-trader. I'm a big believer in free trade. Now let's talk about that 35% tariff we're going to put on Mexico."

I guess someone told him Free Trade is a 5000 page agreement with lots of crony set asides.

Chinese factory to understand why they are not a long-term threat.

It was not me but they have no health/safety standards, someone loses an arm they get replaced. No workers comp to pay, the guy is out of luck.

Exactly how many times has China violently Invaded the West?

Good thing we picked up a high level defector to tell us their nuke plans.
http://freebeacon.com/national-security/chinese-defector-reveals-beijings-secrets/
" defector from China has revealed some of the innermost secrets of the Chinese government and military, including details of its nuclear command and control system, according to American intelligence officials.Businessman Ling Wancheng "

If you're building a road, you should build it to last, well, forever

Roman roads lasted for ever because the population didn't increase as fast as after 1965, and no massive weights in basically the exact same spots like 18 wheeler tires in lanes.

Anonymous map February 14, 2016 12:36 AM  

The Wiiliams Sonoma company refuses to have any offshoring in China because IP theft.

Anonymous Mr. Rational February 14, 2016 6:29 AM  

@66  That's something that needs to be brought up about farm automation.  The machines which pick blueberries are designed, built and maintained by high-wage Americans, very unlike the low-wage stoop labor they replaced.  The robots which will shortly harvest our vegetables and fruit will be the same.  The Mexicans of the central valley of California can all go home.  Maybe they can get work at the factory that just left Indiana.

Blogger Eraser February 14, 2016 7:56 AM  

One thing missing from this discussion is "intellectual property". Like it or not, a lot of US exports nowadays is made of easy-to-copy stuff (the same is true for Western Europe) - software, games, movies, and high-value electronics and computer stuff which is hard to develop but easy to copy.

The US government puts a lot of effort to make other countries respect American IP. Those free-trade agreements usually have IP clauses in them. The deal is they get access to the American market and in turn agree to protect American IP. That deal would be basically off if the US would turn back on free trade.

Assuming free trade really harms US manufacturing industries, then the current free-trade position of the US sacrifices manufacturing to benefit technology and entertainment industries. Is is a good deal? I don't know, but it's definitely not a one-way street.

Blogger Anthony February 14, 2016 4:50 PM  

Dissidentright, not entirely. Plunking down an American factory in China or Vietnam our Thailand or India will not make the workers there as productive as they would be in the U.S. There's a lot of capital in the factory which makes is workers more productive, but there's a lot of societal capital in the U.S. which helps productivity, and there's a lot less if that in poor countries. In the U.S., you've got interstate highways and railroads to get your raw materials to the factory and your finished goods to market, you've got companies that can service all your equipment within easy reach, you've got reliable electricity, clean water, and governments that take a predictable amount in taxes, fees, etc. There's a lot less of those things in third-world countries, which makes even the fanciest factories Lee's productive than they'd be in the U.S. or Europe or Japan.

Smart governments will take the tax revenue transplant factories generate and use it to build that societal capital - it worked for Japan, South Korea, Ireland, Taiwan, and less so for Thailand, Malaysia, and China.

So free trade only benefits the poorer country if its government is reasonably smart and not too corrupt. Free trade with oil-importing nations hasn't helped Nigeria much, because the money has been squandered or stolen.

Blogger Were-Puppy February 14, 2016 8:47 PM  

@11 Gordon

I know someone from the comments here said that one only needed to spend some time in a Chinese factory to understand why they are not a long-term threat. I'd still like that comm enter to elaborate.
---

I don't know who the other poster was, but I've been in the belly of the beast. From what I understood, when Wally World expanded into China, they had to create a new position. That was then occupied by a communist party operative. So all those store decisions had to be approved by some commie stooge. I'm guessing that is what the other poster was talking about.

Blogger Were-Puppy February 14, 2016 8:54 PM  

@32 Sheila4g
Off topic: The RNC sends fundraising letter using Trump's name without his knowledge or consent, and gets called out by Trump. With all respect to Nate and Josh, how can one not love seeing the GOPe smacked down like this?
---
Rinse Pubis up to more shenanigans?

Blogger Dirk Manly February 15, 2016 3:52 AM  

If Trump is smart, he'll sue the RNC for fraud. To wit, the definition of fraud is "receiving monies on the basis of false statements." They are falsely claiming that Trump is involved in their fundraising drive, and that he wants people to donate to the RNC. All it takes is one Trump supporter to send a check to the RNC, and say that they did so due to the claim in the fundraising letter that Trump wants donations to go to the RNC.

Not only can it generate a fraud complaint, but also using the US Mail to commit a felony, and interstate criminal activity, as well.

Blogger Dirk Manly February 15, 2016 3:53 AM  

Ooops... not sue for fraud. Demand prosecution for fraud.

Anonymous A. Gassy Jones February 17, 2016 10:40 PM  

If McCurdle is second-guessing herself, free trade is doomed as a doctrine. She is among the most pig-headed libertarian innorami in god's creation. Watch her carefully over the next few years. From experience, I know that these intellectual shifts inevitably wash over into seemingly unrelated aspects of consciousness, including aesthetics and ethics. I expect her to condemn Ayn Rand, divorce her husband, and embrace D. Trump, whether he wins or not.

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