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Ah crap, here we go again...

The "free trade is the curse of Satan" argument going around is really getting old and is terribly uninformed.  Of course -- all those arguments are made on computers made offshore, y'know?

Can we at least be intellectually honest with each other when discussing these matters?

One begins to wonder.

Since when do we argue like republicans? This either or nonsense really needs to stop.

On today’s rec list is a diary from the site’s favorite economic writer. In this essay, the diarist suggests those of us who don’t like our current trade deals need to throw away everything we own made outside of the US.

Sigh.

The simple truth is there are very few trade abolitionists who aren’t hard core Republicans.

The simple truth is the concept of ‘Free Trade’ started off as a liberal idea, and deservedly so.

The simple truth is Republicans used to hate the idea of Free Trade as much as they hate Immigration, until they learned how to make billions off of the idea.

The simple truth is a good trade deal really can lift all economic boats, both here and abroad.

The simple truth is the trade deals we have today are not good trade deals. Unless you own a really big business selling foreign made products using incredibly cheap labor.

Today’s trade deals offer no protection to the consumer at home or to the workers abroad. There are many examples of companies setting up shop under a favorable trade deal, polluting the land and exploiting the local foreign worker, only to pull up stakes when the next ‘great deal’ comes along.

To frame our current trade agreements as the only option available unless you believe in completely closed borders is quite frankly intellectually dishonest.

There are other options.

There are better ways to do this.

Please, let’s not buy into the idea that the Republican Free Trade ideal is the only way to go.

With all due respect, can we discuss this like grownups?

Please?

Originally posted to Stranger in a strange land on Mon Nov 19, 2007 at 06:56 AM PST.

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