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America will continue to bleed jobs

Posted on 02/01/2003 11:27:51 PM PST by FightingForFreedom

Wages will not equalize between U.S. and foreign countries for a very long time, if ever. The problem is supply differences. The 100 million or so American workers are vastly outnumbered by the potential number of Chinese, Indian, and other developing nation's manufacturing and knowledge workers. The standard of living differential is also too great. The balancing act for U.S. and multi-national businesses that are outsourcing our jobs is to make sure they don't kill the golden goose (the American consumer) before they've generated an even bigger goose to take to slaughter in China, India, and other targeted markets. Remember, producing cheaply means nothing if there's nobody to buy the products. And no one has been as well-trained as the American consumer to buy, buy, buy, no matter how much in debt one becomes! As a software engineer, I've seen this problem coming for at least 5 years now, but it was well masked by the artificial high-tech bubble through March 2000. I'm not sure that there is an answer at this point -- the genie is out of the bag, so to speak. Once one company in an industry has convinced the govt to open a market in one undesirable country or other, all other companies with which it competes are forced to do the same. Bottling up the genie is notoriously difficult.


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To: 1tin_soldier
It's called common sense...

If all you see on store shelves is "Made in China", how long do you think it will take? I assure you, it WILL take. The question becomes, "How long will it take?".

Do YOU honestly think that America will be a competitor when these high population countries do start buying? I don't think so. Common sense again...they don't need to buy American, because they have their own manufacturing now.

I would stop following the flock on this one and do a little free thinking. I am the most anti-union person you'll meet, but I can still see it...

JMHO

SR

101 posted on 02/02/2003 3:03:11 AM PST by sit-rep
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To: nopardons
I'm buying from the small selection that the few stores here sell. A relative sent me the BB&B sheets which fell apart. When I buy sheets, I buy American high-count 100% cotton. BTW, a friend and her husband bought a brand new high end washer and dryer from Sears (Kenmore) this past April, and a few weeks ago the $800 dryer burned up and almost caught their whole house on fire. They called Sears and told them what happened, and Sears would do nothing because the warrenty was only for 3 months. Kenmore appliances used to last years and years.

Others are having problems with phones as well. And I am one of those who tries to buy American whenever possible. There are some items, such as clothes, where Made in America (and not the Marianna Islands kind of "Made in America") is almost impossible to find anymore.

102 posted on 02/02/2003 3:19:11 AM PST by DBtoo
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To: NP-INCOMPLETE
When I was still working in the lab and other labs were having lay-offs right and left, one of the senior chemists told us all that we need to find an area where we are "special", where we have a skill that no one else has. We all looked at him with a blank stare. Well our lab ended up shut down too, and now I am doing something completely different.

At least I am lucky in that with my degree I am able to go into different fields. In fact I recently got a new job in a brand new field for me, it pays well, I like it very much, and I do feel very fortunate to have it.

103 posted on 02/02/2003 3:25:04 AM PST by DBtoo
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To: nopardons
The Soviet apartments were dreadful and crowded too.
104 posted on 02/02/2003 3:26:38 AM PST by DBtoo
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To: DBtoo
Get over what? My whole point is that our economy, stock market and the job market are faltering. I don't understand how you guys can think everything is so great. And I understand even less why people get angry over this topic. It's like becoming furious over a discussion of flu outbreaks or BAKING PANS.

I think 1tin_soldier and nopardons went to bed. Sure the economy is stinking right now if you have been laid off or salary downsized. If that is the case, you have a problem which posting to FR isn't going to solve.

105 posted on 02/02/2003 3:30:37 AM PST by EVO X
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To: Bella_Bru
People used to get by with a lot less back then, and I think as a whole Americans were happier and healthier. Now people want more "things" but have lost real connections with others. Image is everything now. I feel that started in the 80s.
106 posted on 02/02/2003 3:35:29 AM PST by DBtoo
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To: Bella_Bru
So tellers really are dying out! I haven't been back to civilization since June of 2001 when I went to my sister's wedding on the east coast. Where I live now, people don't have nearly as much, because there isn't much to buy and things are expensive here. But it's a small price to pay in my opinion, because the lifestyle is so different, and the people here are so friendly, close-knit and down to earth.

Superficial, materialistic types with big egos would never make it here because there is no one here to impress with that sort of behavior. People here have not lost their spirituality and many are very religious.

107 posted on 02/02/2003 3:43:48 AM PST by DBtoo
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To: DBtoo
People used to get by with a lot less back then, and I think as a whole Americans were happier and healthier. Now people want more "things" but have lost real connections with others. Image is everything now. I feel that started in the 80s.

People got by with lot less back then, because it wasn't AVAILABLE or very expensive. Sorry to yell.

108 posted on 02/02/2003 3:47:00 AM PST by EVO X
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To: Black Birch; nopardons
I can't understand why they think everything is just fine with our country and it's economy. It makes no sense to me. I guess they did go to bed; nopardons didn't even say goodnight, so goodnight to nopardons if you see this! You are quite the rascal!! But I like you.
109 posted on 02/02/2003 3:50:59 AM PST by DBtoo
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To: DBtoo
A live human to actually help you at the bank is fading fast. They get you when you go in to sign up for an account. "Well, if you take our ATM only service, you'll save $15.00 a month in fees". Great. So what happens when the ATM eats your card (happened to me last weekend) or screws up somehow? You have to go in, wait in line for 12 hours (then 2 tellers working are the slowest they can find) and then get charged a fee.

I switched to a credit union a year ago. No stupid fees, and I can get human assistance, if I need it.

110 posted on 02/02/2003 3:53:41 AM PST by Bella_Bru
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To: Black Birch
I'm getting used to being yelled at tonight!

But yeah, people did have a lot less as many things weren't invented yet. But they also had more time for each other so it's a trade-off.

111 posted on 02/02/2003 3:55:29 AM PST by DBtoo
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To: DBtoo
The economy is bad. Yes, people think they need more things than they used too. My parents didn't get an answering machine until 4 years ago. To quote my mom, "If it's that important, they'll call back.". They finally bought one because I moved to Cali and they wanted me to be able to leave a message if they were out.

But it's not the need/want thing alone. I moved away from Syracuse because the job market there NEVER recovered. GM took it's plant out, Miller closed it's plant in Fulton, Carrier is a shell of what it used to be, Chrysler's plant (where my dad works) has always been iffy, and when GE went from being GE to Martin-marrietta-Lockheed-whatever they are now, they cut a ton of jobs. And nothing, with the exception a behemoth mall, with minimum wage jobs, has filled in.

Out here, there are plenty of jobs, but the cost of living to pay ratio is completely out of whack.

112 posted on 02/02/2003 4:01:03 AM PST by Bella_Bru
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To: Torie
Which article did you read?
113 posted on 02/02/2003 4:01:32 AM PST by RWG
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To: Bella_Bru
I wouldn't like that at all. When I was working in Houston in early 90s, they still had tellers, but they also had ATM machines. My boyfriend at the time used the ATM for almost everything, but I was never comfortable with that. Plus people would get killed on a somewhat regular basis while drawing money out of the ATM machines there as the crime in Houston was horrible. But I'd rather go to a real person for my transactions. I wouldn't want my card swallowed by a machine either. So they made it so that if you want to use a teller they add on $15 or so!? That is frustrating.

We had Bank of Alaska here, but Well's Fargo took over the bank a few months ago. I hope things don't become like that here. Wells Fargo is the first chain business in this town.

114 posted on 02/02/2003 4:04:05 AM PST by DBtoo
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To: DBtoo
I can't understand why they think everything is just fine with our country and it's economy. It makes no sense to me.

I don't think they implied the economy was good. They were arguing against closing the borders and instituting tariffs as being a fix.

115 posted on 02/02/2003 4:16:05 AM PST by EVO X
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To: dpwiener
Ok software engineer be careful what you pray for. I have been noticing that much to most of shareware these days for both mac and windows is created by guys named boris or yang, do as much as any ms piece of crap but 100 times better, and cost less than a trip to fat land mcdonald's. Create an application better than publisher and almost equal to quark for $15.00US and we'll talk.
116 posted on 02/02/2003 4:20:53 AM PST by RWG
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To: FightingForFreedom
Suggested reading "Free to Choose" by Milton Friedman (Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1980)
117 posted on 02/02/2003 4:21:16 AM PST by The Raven
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To: Bella_Bru
Oddly enough there are plenty of jobs here too. I have looked at the Alaska job website to keep up with what jobs are opening, and I noticed that in the past couple of years wages here have gone down. Yet the cost of living has gone up and we pay lots of local taxes. The average cost of a house here is around $300,000, and that is for an average, decent 3 bedroom home. A really nice house is unaffordable for many. Even land here is very expensive because of the 1972 Native American settlement act. Also, just to fly to Anchorage from here is anywhere from $350-$500 dollars, depending on time of year. It costs the same for that one hour flight than it does to fly from Anchorage to most any city in the US.

But I love it here! It's also very safe, and beautiful too.

118 posted on 02/02/2003 4:24:03 AM PST by DBtoo
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To: Black Birch
Oh. All I know is I was accused of being a DEMocrat and a rice eater (?) I didn't realize how taboo this subject was. I still think all the immigration and moving so many industries overseas will hurt us bad in the long run.

Before we left Houston almost 4 years ago, I didn't need to work so I volunteered at the local animal shelter. Then I decided to get a part time job. Foleys, a department store, was hiring salespeople at the time. I applied for the job, and the woman told me I would be hired.... for $5.75 an hour!! The first thing that came out of my mouth was, "Is that even less than minimum wage?!" I told the woman no thanks and walked out. I didn't start working again until we moved here, and now I have the new job that I really like which pays well and where I can use my brain again.

119 posted on 02/02/2003 4:34:07 AM PST by DBtoo
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To: FightingForFreedom
I'm not sure that there is an answer at this point -- the genie is out of the bag, so to speak. Once one company in an industry has convinced the govt to open a market in one undesirable country or other, all other companies with which it competes are forced to do the same. Bottling up the genie is notoriously difficult.

Mixed metaphors mark one's work as incoherent.

120 posted on 02/02/2003 4:36:19 AM PST by metesky
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To: DBtoo
But yeah, people did have a lot less as many things weren't invented yet. But they also had more time for each other so it's a trade-off.

One of my great grandfathers had to farm by horse/mule. He didn't have much quality time with his family during the growing season.

121 posted on 02/02/2003 4:41:37 AM PST by EVO X
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To: 1tin_soldier
What is it with these anti-trade people?

No one is "anti-trade" - - many are anti-NAFTA, anti-GATT, anti-WTO, etc. They simply believe in "fair-trade." A system whereby we export factories and good jobs, and import cheap goods and cheap immigrant labor, is hardly "fair."

122 posted on 02/02/2003 4:46:42 AM PST by bimbo
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To: DBtoo
Pat Buchanan was so right on that issue.

Sadly, and unfortunately, Pat was the only 2000 candidate to raise the issue.

123 posted on 02/02/2003 4:51:22 AM PST by bimbo
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To: Black Birch
But why would they feel that way unless they would actually benefit from it? It's really not in the best interest of America to have all it's manufacturing and computer jobs and industries taken away to foreign countries for the cheaper labor. I know it all boils down to money, so I'm thinking the only people who would be for open borders would be those who would directly profit. Please excuse any spelling mistakes but it's late and I'm probably not making much sense anymore anyway.
124 posted on 02/02/2003 5:01:32 AM PST by DBtoo
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To: dpwiener
The more creative and entrepreneurial people there are everywhere in the world, and the more freedom and trade and production and technological advancements there are everywhere in the world, the better off everyone will be.

The problem with your statement is that this situation doesn't exist in a "freedom-oriented" situation. Quite the opposite - employment freedom is being diminished. While corporations are "free" to move their factories to India, American workers are "not free" to search for a job in India.

125 posted on 02/02/2003 5:01:38 AM PST by bimbo
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To: Torie
It makes a good deal more sense than your pedestrian attempt at comment.
126 posted on 02/02/2003 5:05:21 AM PST by em2vn
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To: FightingForFreedom
The balancing act for U.S. and multi-national businesses that are outsourcing our jobs is to make sure they don't kill the golden goose (the American consumer)

Multinational corporations are experts at slowly boiling American frogs in water...


BUMP

127 posted on 02/02/2003 5:08:09 AM PST by tm22721 (Those without a sword can still die upon it.)
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To: dpwiener
Alarmists such as yourself have been predicting gloom and disaster for America decade after decade, raising precisely the same fears as you raise. Yet decade after decade America's wealth and economic advantage over other, more socialistic nations continues to grow, because we have the most open society in the world and we don't try to seal ourselves off from low-wage competitors.

Completely short-sighted. Do you suppose that the standard of living in China, Mexico, and India are fixed? Do you have any idea what the GDP growth in China is and, furthermore, is predicted to be in the coming decade?

We are not, for the most part, competing with low-wage competitors. We've given them the markets and take advantage of the labor costs. Once China discovers its Henry Ford and more people in China can afford the widgets they create in their realms, then that advantage will begin to erode.

The beginnings are already evident. One only need look at where China is investing. Roads, buildings, power, wiring -- all of the infrastructure required to become a giant. This is not your grandfather's China. This is a China hell-bent on becoming the premier economic force in the world. I wouldn't bet against them over a 5 decade timeline.

128 posted on 02/02/2003 5:26:34 AM PST by Glenn
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To: tm22721
Multinational corporations are experts at slowly boiling American frogs in water...

MNCs are rationalizing (corp. euphemism for shutting down) complete departments and divisions of IT functions almost overnight. With steel and textile, capital machinery had to be moved and set up in a new plant. Now you simply take the latest db backup and you have instant development environment. This to me is why we are hearing and seeing a backlash. The frogs are feeling the burns.......
129 posted on 02/02/2003 5:27:41 AM PST by doosee
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To: DBtoo
Oh. All I know is I was accused of being a DEMocrat and a rice eater (?) I didn't realize how taboo this subject was. I still think all the immigration and moving so many industries overseas will hurt us bad in the long run.

Glad to hear you have a good paying job now. You were rewarded for your effort.

I don't buy into the notion that the economic pie is of a fixed size. The problem is when one looses a job, is finding a replacement. You either go where the jobs are, or you create a NEW one. I also don't buy into the America haters arguement that our consumption is taking away resources from third world counties. Those resources were useless until they had a purpose.

130 posted on 02/02/2003 5:35:20 AM PST by EVO X
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To: ETERNAL WARMING
It means people are trying to survive with minimum wage jobs, no benies.

What makes no sense about this goal of bringing so many wages down to $5.15 an hour is that then they qualify for food stamps, CHIPS and many other welfare benefits. What's they point of having more and more families half on welfare but working? That's not self-sufficiency.

131 posted on 02/02/2003 5:38:01 AM PST by FITZ
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To: DBtoo; nopardons; 1tin_soldier
Please excuse any spelling mistakes but it's late and I'm probably not making much sense anymore anyway.

I think nopardons and 1tin_soldier would attest to that :~)

132 posted on 02/02/2003 5:43:06 AM PST by EVO X
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To: Citizen of the Savage Nation
Automobiles, and Electronic commodities such as TV's and VCR's, accounted for some $370 Billion of a $411 Billion trade deficit

How much of that was paid in cash? People might have 3 televisions and feel they are very well off but in the past people could buy a house in 15 years, pay few taxes on it, buy a car in 2 years, many now have 5 year loans just on their cars. I don't see someone with a new car sitting in their driveway as being a wealthy person unless I know it's completely paid-for. People living in the red are not wealthy. We've redefined wealth to mean how many things you're paying for but it doesn't mean financial solvency at all anymore.

133 posted on 02/02/2003 5:44:22 AM PST by FITZ
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To: bimbo
No one is "anti-trade" - - many are anti-NAFTA, anti-GATT, anti-WTO, etc.

We were promised many good things from NAFTA and they didn't happen. Friday they began a big protest against NAFTA in Mexico because it's destroying many people in that country ---which is contrary to what we were told it would do. The stock market certainly doesn't show any benefits from all this globalism, our taxes haven't fallen because globalism helped so many get off welfare, Americans in many parts of the country are seeing falling wages ---which wasn't the promise they made.

134 posted on 02/02/2003 5:53:27 AM PST by FITZ
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To: Glenn
The beginnings are already evident. One only need look at where China is investing. Roads, buildings, power, wiring -- all of the infrastructure required to become a giant. This is not your grandfather's China. This is a China hell-bent on becoming the premier economic force in the world. I wouldn't bet against them over a 5 decade timeline.

The Chinese are slowly coming around to our way of thinking. I don't have a problem with the Chinese modernizing or any other country for that matter.

135 posted on 02/02/2003 5:57:07 AM PST by EVO X
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To: cryptical
Government intervention to protect code monkeys? I'm guessing that a large percentage of programming will move offshore in the next 10 years or so.

Companies are already solving the cultural and QA problems, and as a result programming costs are going to go down.

Have you thought ahead to what happens when all of the people in management in those companies have retired or been "let go"? Where will they find people who know anything about software development to manage their offshore development efforts?

Long term, you're talking about exporting an entire industry, along with the intellectual capital which runs it. That has implications for national security, among other things. Are you going to offshore your high-tech weapons development to China?

By the way, what exactly do you hyper free-traders think Americans ought to do for a living? We can't all run companies profiting by importing goods and services produced by $6,000-per-year slave labor in Asia. Somebody has to buy those goods and services. What should the rest of us do? We can't all be lawyers, insurance salesmen, and accountants. Fast food? Yeah, you're going to have to really hold down those programming costs to make your stuff affordable to people trying to support a family on McDonalds wages.

Maybe (think about this) if the government made it easier to employ Americans by reducing some of the regulatory and tax burdens, we might have a better climate for keeping Americans employed.

136 posted on 02/02/2003 6:12:45 AM PST by Campion
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To: Bella_Bru
Check again.

Spammer.

137 posted on 02/02/2003 6:22:09 AM PST by Windsong
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To: 1tin_soldier
Yup. It's easier than getting trousers that touch your shoes in a material other than polyester.

Just what is the alternative to a global competitive market? Show me a successful protected market. France? Sweden? Just what do the protectionists have in mind?
138 posted on 02/02/2003 6:32:26 AM PST by eno_
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To: eno_
Just what is the alternative to a global competitive market?

We don't have a "global competitive market". We have, in the US, an increasingly uncompetitive market. We're trying to compete with third-world countries where there are no environmental or workplace regulations (to name only two) to speak of, while keeping our own in place.

That can't work. Something's gotta give. In the absence of protectionism, what gives is that the jobs go overseas. Our standard of living drops as a penalty for our bad business climate; the standard of living in third-world countries rises.

139 posted on 02/02/2003 6:49:24 AM PST by Campion
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To: Torie
What I am saying is that it is inevitable that low value added jobs will be exported to the extent exportable.

I've explained this on this forum several times but instead of researching any subject people rely on the rhetoric of others they trust for their opinions.

140 posted on 02/02/2003 6:49:56 AM PST by Gramps
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To: FReethesheeples
i didn't see the marxist slant either.

but it was well masked by the artificial high-tech bubble through March 2000

this is a fact, and it was also masked by an administration that made the choice to deal in corruption at every turn whether it was with the chinese, in the boardrooms, or in dealings with other countries. the last administration encouraged sleazy business deals and their bureaucrats pushed hard and looked away when necessary.

it's been said here enough, clinton had great timing in the 90's but we'd be in some very very deep doodoo today if they were still calling the shots.

massive tax cuts, technology, a lower dollar and low interest rates will pull the economy back out eventually. but we've got to get rid of the COSTLY progressive socialist bias in industry, law, government and in the media. we can't afford any more ROBERT RUBINS, ENRONS or HILLARY CLINTONS.

141 posted on 02/02/2003 6:53:16 AM PST by alrea
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To: Campion
By the way, what exactly do you hyper free-traders think Americans ought to do for a living? We can't all run companies profiting by importing goods and services produced by $6,000-per-year slave labor in Asia. Somebody has to buy those goods and services. What should the rest of us do? We can't all be lawyers, insurance salesmen, and accountants. Fast food? Yeah, you're going to have to really hold down those programming costs to make your stuff affordable to people trying to support a family on McDonalds wages.

People still do support a family on McDonalds wages. They may have to work a second job and have the spouse work as well, but they do survive to work another day. When I go to a fast food joint, I don't get the impression that the employees don't want to be there or have major attitude problems.

142 posted on 02/02/2003 6:57:16 AM PST by EVO X
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To: Torie
If we insisted on doing all those low value added jobs ourselves, our real standard of living would decline. It is the law of comparative economic advantage.

Exactly.
And if it wasn't for many of these low cost imports, Americans would have less disposable income, which means less money going into other areas of our economy and a lower standard of living for all.
As you said, there are certain economic advantages to importing some products rather than producing them here.

143 posted on 02/02/2003 7:08:07 AM PST by Jorge
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To: Campion
That can't work. Something's gotta give. In the absence of protectionism, what gives is that the jobs go overseas. Our standard of living drops as a penalty for our bad business climate; the standard of living in third-world countries rises.

What is wrong with rising income in third world nations? They are not taking anything away from Americans. They are contributing to global output and harmony.

144 posted on 02/02/2003 7:22:29 AM PST by EVO X
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To: eno_
Just what do the protectionists have in mind?

Political power for whatever group they affiliate themselves with. It sure isn't prosperity, anyway.

145 posted on 02/02/2003 7:40:00 AM PST by 1tin_soldier
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To: 1tin_soldier
You got it. Even when you ask the direct question: "How is protectionism going to be better?" you get no response - because it won't be better. Protectionism will relegate us to the same also-ran status of Argentina and every other second-rate hole. There is no alternative except to improve out business climate to the point where we are the best place on Earth to make the most profitable stuff on Earth. Ask Mexican farmers if we can't compete in low-priced commodity items.
146 posted on 02/02/2003 8:14:05 AM PST by eno_
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To: Campion
...third-world countries where there are no environmental or workplace regulations...

Let's say you are right. Now, how is protectionism going to fix that? If we lack the political will to reform our tax and regulatory structures to where they are competitive, we lose. No way around that.

Some regulations add value, and middle class Chinese are already demanding breathable air and non-toxic water. Some regulations are stupid and put a drag on our economy. There is no way we can protect ourselves from our own bad decisions.

The Chinese are just like you are. They want the same things you want. If they have the stronger will to get what they want, they will be richer than you.

147 posted on 02/02/2003 8:23:33 AM PST by eno_
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To: bimbo
So then you would say that fairness doesn't come about from to traders each acting of their of free will and in their own self interest? You believe fairness is something that must be imposed. Lenin believes the same thing.
148 posted on 02/02/2003 8:30:30 AM PST by 1tin_soldier
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To: Black Birch
"They are not taking anything away from Americans."

Where have you been? Ask anyone working in IT or networking where the jobs are going. First it was just berry-picking and hotel room cleaning, then it was construction and blue-collar labor. Now the foreigners don't even have to break into our country to take our jobs away.

Scouts Out! Cavalry Ho!

149 posted on 02/02/2003 8:32:13 AM PST by wku man
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To: DBtoo
You are right about one thing; I am not an expert on economics! But I do know what I have read and witnessed.

And yet remain blissfully ignorant as to it's cause.

150 posted on 02/02/2003 8:35:23 AM PST by 1tin_soldier
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