It seems like every day I hear about more lay-offs and bank failures in America. All of the news reporters, government experts, and economists seem surprised and congressional members want to showboat before the cameras by holding hearings, but former presidential candidate Ross Perot warned us in 1992 of the impact the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) would have on this country if it was passed.
Perot’s prediction of a “giant sucking sound” of American jobs heading south of the border became an unfortunate reality. From what I’ve read, Perot also predicted Mexican workers would be no better off with respect to real wages and benefits after NAFTA was signed also appear to be a reality.
After all the damage to the American economy caused by NAFTA, the knockout punch was delivered by a communist country given “most favored nation status” by the American government. China. China is historically our enemy, although not technically in open conflict, our beliefs in democracy, religion, human rights, and economics are very different. It amazes me that we do business with them at all, especially with all the lead and other poisons they ship to America in their products.
I hope our newly elected president makes an effort to stem the uneven balance of trade with countries like China. I am concerned, however, that everyone will start shouting about a trade war. It seems like every time someone tries to protect the American worker, special interests for foreign countries doing business here, start spending big money to stop the effort.
We didn’t have all of these bad mortgages before out-of-state banking became a reality. Sure, it was easy to get a home financed by telephone or your computer, but many people were able to purchase homes they could not afford. The lending institutions didn’t care if you could really make the payments, there were commissions and bonuses paid all the way up the financial ladder to the big lending corporations that asked for bail-out money. Now they want taxpayers to pay for their mistakes. As for the credit card companies asking for federal money, charge them twenty-eight per cent interest!
I think the most pragmatic approach to repairing our economy is to correct the huge trade imbalances by making sure all parties are playing fair when it comes to paying their workers. Ending huge tax incentives for runaway corporations moving overseas and imposing taxes on products entering this country from those former corporations might also help domestic manufacturers compete with foreign imports.
During the recent efforts by congress to pass the president’s new bail-out bill, not one Republican voted (in the house of representatives) for the bill. I cannot recall them feeling the same way about voting for all the billions being spent in Iraq to rebuild that country even when they announced an eighty-nine billion dollar surplus. Where were all their scruples then?
I still haven’t seen how the original bail-out money has helped. People are still losing their jobs, cars, and homes. What was all that money used for? I think there should be prison time for the heads of some corporations that accepted bail-out money under false pretenses.
Finally, I heard on CNN that for the past several years, the Bush administration has been trying to figure out how to covertly sabotage Iran’s nuclear program and ruin its economy. The answer was before them all the time. Put Bush in charge! Look how he ruined our economy!
Thanks again for allowing me to express my opinions.