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View Diary: On Doing Better Than 50%, Or, Could More “Made In USA” Mean More Jobs? (49 comments)

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  •  Yes, it could. (1+ / 0-)
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    fake consultant

    Not just for government purchases, but in general.

    The winning ticket for Democrats in this budget environment, in addition to running against the rapaciousness of the GOP, is to make this election year a massive push for "Buy American."

    Every Democratic candidate should buy 100% of his or her campaign from American companies, and make that a central theme—"your campaign donations are going to American workers."

    Democrats in the House and Senate should introduce a bill requiring all product packaging to include some sort of country-of-origin marking and/or barcode, indicating to the consumer before he or she buys something whether or not it was made by fellow Americans, or made overseas for pennies on the dollar. Such a bill would cost very little, and would either (a) put Republicans on the wrong side (why shouldn't consumers have the right to know?) or (b) actually succeed, thus giving consumers more power to buy American.

    Every Democratic candidate should tell his or her constituents that there is something each and every one of them can do to help the economy today: Buy American.

    This is a winning issue for us, because it (a) has a strong populist message (buying American puts American workers to work!), (b) is strongly patriotic (how could you criticize a "buy American" message?), (c) actually would help the economy, (d) has a strong anti-Wall-Street message (they're cutting American jobs so their share prices go up?) and implicitly paints Wall Street and the corporates as unpatriotic, and (e) puts the blue-collar workers out in the front of our movement.

    •  Correction: (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      fake consultant

      "Every Democratic candidate should buy 100% of his or her campaign from American companies" should read "Every Democratic candidate should buy 100% of his or her campaign materials from American companies."

      The Preview button is my friend.

      •  so the catch here... (0+ / 0-)

        ...would be a "protectionism" argument.

        we haven't talked about it yet, but there is an issue of free trade to be considered, and you should expect that there will be those who point out that other countries could do the same thing, to the disadvantage of our exporters.

        some will say china already does it; i might be inclined to agree.

        "...this election has never been about me. it's about you."--barack obama

        by fake consultant on Mon Aug 15, 2011 at 09:08:52 AM PDT

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        •  I think we avoid "protectionism" under treaties... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          fake consultant

          ...as long as the government isn't materially supporting American industry.

          Campaigns buying exclusively American-made materials isn't a violation of those treaties; nor, I think, are country-of-origin labels that clearly spell out the origin of all products, or government urging Americans to buy American.

          Quite frankly, I think we should jettison those free-trade agreements entirely, but that's not likely to happen.

          •  country-of-origin labelling... (0+ / 0-)

            ...even if it's mandatory, has a legal foundation in customs enforcement, so i don't see a problem there.

            governments urging us to buy american might be an issue (is the money spent an illegal subsidy?), but the real problem might come when we get to preferences over lowest bidders.

            there are mechanisms by which you can work around some of this, but that's part of where we're going in part two.

            "...this election has never been about me. it's about you."--barack obama

            by fake consultant on Mon Aug 15, 2011 at 09:43:44 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

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