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View Diary: No immigration crisis, just a refugee one (117 comments)

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  •  2009-2014 (0+ / 0-)

    Obama has presided over NAFTA and CAFTA without changing them, though he campaigned on changing NAFTA. But during the campaign he was exposed for telling Canada he was lying about changing NAFTA to get elected.

    The refugees are fleeing the economic conditions, and the oppressive living conditions they express, that NAFTA/CAFTA implement. Along with the Drug War that is just another part of how the US defines daily life in Central America, as it has for centuries.

    If you don't understand how NAFTA/CAFTA cause US job losses and Latin American refugees then you should look into it more. Both the trade structures and the employment patters across their region have been the reality for decades now. The effect is cumulative.

    Obama was supposed to roll back that tide. That's why he campaigned on changing NAFTA: because enough Americans thought it should be changed. But he was lying. And he has more than doubled down: the Pacific and Atlantic trade deals are even worse, and totally secret. The differences aren't just volume of paperwork.

    What's lazy is blaming me, the messenger, for the mess the US is at the center of, at the hands of the government that Obama is at the top of.

    "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

    by DocGonzo on Thu Jul 24, 2014 at 08:34:10 AM PDT

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    •  Let's see, (1+ / 0-)
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      economic migration to the U.S. fell as a result of a recession that was not caused by manufacturing job losses (which is what opponents of NAFTA predicted), and where manufacturing was the first sector to recover.    

      The anti-trade deal case usually treats correlation and causation as the same, but here there's neither.  If you exclude oil, which was traded without import restrictions before NAFTA, the trade deficit with Mexico disappears.  Those low wage manufacturing jobs that were lost wound up in China, meanwhile Mexico's developed markets in auto parts and medical devices.   Now, industrial growth in Mexico and other Latin American countries has caused some social disruptions, but another way to describe the effect as "cumulative" is "attenuated." There has been too much change to say.  Of course, NAFTA/CAFTA aren't ever really about the deals themselves, they're just stand-ins for globalization more generally. Even those two bills are not the same -- CAFTA has too many exceptions for favored U.S. industries to be worth much.   Thus, it's valid for your to say something is both worse and secret at the same time, which is ordinarily a contradiction.  (Nevertheless, TPP isn't necessarily worse, unless you pretend that foreign countries don't pirate American IP, and negotiating positions during a negotiation wouldn't be expected to be public, so secret isn't the right word.) I'm not even sure it's a contradiction to support renegotiation but only to the extent one of the parties to the treaty -- the one that nobody ever objects to trading with -- agrees to renegotiate.  The media wanted a gotcha, and that's how Goolsbee's comments were spun.  

      I'm not blaming you for anything, actually.  It's not your responsibility to propose concrete or specific reforms that have a chance of passage.  If you see it as your job to shoehorn one argument into a different argument you prefer to have, you don't really disagree, now do you.  

      Difficult, difficult, lemon difficult.

      by Loge on Thu Jul 24, 2014 at 08:58:06 AM PDT

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      •  Secret Trade Deals and Lies (0+ / 0-)
        Nevertheless, TPP isn't necessarily worse, unless you pretend that foreign countries don't pirate American IP, and negotiating positions during a negotiation wouldn't be expected to be public, so secret isn't the right word.

        So let's see your defensese: TPP isn't really secret, because it's been exposed despite Obama's efforts, and it's OK when trade deals are secret. It's OK for Obama to campaign on  changing NAFTA but secretly tell Canada he won't.

        And I'm lazy for blaming trade agreements with favorable terms for anti-labor US corps for the conditions in the countries covered by them that sees years of mass exodus of its cheap labor to the US. But you're not blaming me for anything.

        If you believe any of that, and you evidently believe all of it, I'm not going to be able to post anything that will change your mind. And I'm not going to learn anything from such a debate either.


        "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

        by DocGonzo on Thu Jul 24, 2014 at 11:51:02 AM PDT

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        •  Not quite . . . (0+ / 0-)

          The diary builds on the premise that there isn't a current mass exodus of cheap labor into the U.S. at the moment.  Second, if there were, that's the opposite of what "favorable terms for anti-labor US corps" predicts.  Of course there have been winners and losers from trade deals, but not in the sense you are describing it.  For a job to be moved to one country as a result of a bilateral trade agreement, it would have to reappear in country number 2.  Under your analysis, trade between countries is like the interaction between matter and anti-matter.  There is a rate of immigration into the United States that rises and falls with the overall U.S. economy, which creates jobs that cannot be exported and which it cannot fill with native workers.  Depending on the state of the U.S. economy, there can be more, or fewer, and this has always been true since the war.   Meanwhile, the wages in the U.S. will be higher than both subsistence farming and factory work in Mexico (despite what NAFTA's hardcore opponents claimed), making economic migration attractive to able bodied adults.  How trade has made different segments of Mexican societies both better and worse off depends on how different types of Mexican jobs compare with each other.  I'd say Mexico's biggest problem is with corruption, though, to which a slight reduction in tariff rates is incidental.  

          Child migrants fleeing drug and gang violence is another matter - and here the U.S. plays a big role with drug consumption and arms export, but that's not your argument.  

          As to the words you feel the need to put in my mouth, first of all, I said you're lazy for your own lazy thinking, not for causing the child migrant crisis.  (You suggested I blamed you for this - i merely noted you didn't propose a constructive solution or even address the proposed constructive solutions of the person you're so fond of shitting on.)   I am also not endorsing the notion that it was ok for Obama to lie to Canada, i'm saying it's a superficial, conflict-driven description of what happened.  As to TPP, i'm suggesting secret/not secret is just a category mistake as to draft documents and pending negotiations, where it's also very difficult to judge the merits of parts in isolation and prematurely.   The text will be available to the senate for ratification when the senate is in a position to ratify or not.  The overall goal of harmonizing property rights and establishing uniform rules for trade in services among fairly advanced countries is, in my opinion, valid, but it can be done comparatively more or less well.  Increases in trade will continue with or without either this deal or the European one, and without more clear rules in place, negative effects of the status quo will continue, of which piracy is one.  This hurts jobs in the U.S. that export high-tech goods.  Nobody's in a position to know whether TPP achieves this goal as effectively as it could, consistent with other goals.  What TPP won't, however, do is cause migrants to come to the United States 15 years later, if the word cause is to have any limitation at all.  

          Difficult, difficult, lemon difficult.

          by Loge on Thu Jul 24, 2014 at 12:38:17 PM PDT

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