Skip to comments.Antiquated Law Preventing Foreign Naval Aid for Oil Spill Says CNBC’s Santelli, Heritage Foundation
Posted on 06/09/2010 2:20:33 PM PDT by Rufus2007
When a protectionist law is enacted and nearly a century later it is inhibiting a recovery from major ecological catastrophe, it's probably time to scrap it or at least temporarily waive it.
But instead a nearly century old provision known as the Jones Act of 1920 is wielding the wrath of unintended consequences. According to the Heritage Foundation, this protectionist measure was put in place to defend the American maritime industry, but is endangering far more jobs than it is protecting.
"The Jones Act, which is supposedly about protecting jobs, is actually killing jobs," Heritage co-authors James Dean and Claude Berube wrote in a June 8 The Foundry post. "The jobs of fishermen, people working in tourism and others who live along the Gulf Coast and earn a living there are being severely impacted. There are also additional private sector jobs which are NOT being created in the United States since the Jones Act effectively prices U.S. based companies out of the ability to be competitive on the competitive global market. As we strive to develop new technologies for a cleaner environment at sea, the Jones Act continues to hobble our own capabilities, sometimes with devastating results."
(Excerpt) Read more at newsbusters.org ...
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The timing of this is interesting for me, since I had to do some research on the Jones Act for my job a couple of months ago. Under the Jones Act, all cargo that is transported on ships between U.S. ports must be carried in U.S.-flag ships that are constructed in the United States and owned by U.S. companies. I think there may also be a U.S. crew requirement, too.
The Jones Act basically protects two U.S. industries (domestic maritime shipping and shipbuilding), but in the course of doing so it raises costs for shippers who rely on this type of domestic cargo movement.
Why is strict adherence to the law sacrosanct even when doing so permits an ecological disaster to continue when at the same time the law is ignored and purposely unenforced when doing so allows an invasion of our southern border permits a cultural disaster to continue. It seems to me that either the law is an ass or the government is an ass ..... maybe both.
> When a protectionist law is enacted and nearly a century later it is inhibiting a recovery from major ecological catastrophe, it’s probably time to scrap it or at least temporarily waive it.
It’s a good law and should be rigorously enforced. We do not need foreigners near our shores gathering intelligence under the guise of “helping”.
I'd also point out that the general theme of this article is misleading. The U.S. government has the authority to grant waivers from the Jones Act provisions to foreign companies or foreign-flag vessels in the case of emergencies like this. This was done in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina for ships transporting oil and natural gas, for example.
Every attempt at "protecting" American firms ends up hurting more than it helps.
It's worth noting that the Jones Act is really no different than the U.S. Department of Transportation "cabotage" regulations that deal with Canadian trucking companies. A truck from Canada can make a delivery into the U.S., and a Canadian truck can take a load from the U.S. back to Canada. But a Canadian truck is not permitted to pick up a load in the U.S. and deliver it to another place in the U.S.