Tuesday 21 December 2010

KORUS of Disapproval

Red Phillips writes:

According to a blog post by Doug Bandow, the United Auto Workers (UAW) supports the pending “free trade” deal with Korea. But according to Townhall the AFL-CIO opposes it. As does the IBEW which issued this release in opposition today. This just illustrates an inherent problem with all “free trade” deals of this sort. They are never truly free trade. They are always some iteration of managed trade, and interest groups often oppose or support them based on what’s in it or not in it for them. That the Korean “Free Trade” treaty is managed and not free trade is illustrated perfectly by this quote from the Bandow post:

(UAW President Bob) King said, “I’m very supportive of the agreement because it really protects UAW members. Pickup trucks and SUVS will have full 25% tariff until year seven, passenger vehicles have full protection until year five. It opens up the Korean market to 75,000 American cars a year and it has protections against import surges. The Korea Free Trade Agreement is one of the far best treaties for auto as far as I’ve seen.”

Free trade, even in theory, is a contentious subject on the right, especially the paleo right, but we should all agree, regardless of what we think about free trade in general, that this treaty ain’t it.

Where is the Democratic primary challenger who, among many other ways of reaching out both to populism and to the Old Right, will oppose KORUS, demanding to know for exactly which goods and services the American Republic is to be made dependent on, of all places at the present moment, the Korean Peninsula?

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