Leftward March

More evidence that the left is more interested in the universal justice of free trade than the right:

China, despite having almost a billion more mouths to feed now and being far more dependent on foreign resources, is frightening not because of the prospect of its economic failure, but because of its success. You could smell panic over China's offer to buy Unocal.

Sadly, the prospect of hundreds of millions of people being lifted from abject poverty seems to alarm even leading Democrats in Congress, who claim to be driven by a standard of social justice. And many Republicans, who tend to trumpet the virtues of free trade when it involves the domination of world markets by U.S. businesses, are also raising the protectionist flag against the prospect of Chinese ownership of a single mid-size American-based oil company.

The signals we send to China have always been bizarrely mixed: Play in the capitalist ballpark but not so well that you become one of the big stars. It is a message that, as with the Japan-bashing of the 1980s, is at best paranoid and at worst racist. We in the West can be trusted with enormous economic power, but not the children of a lesser god.

Right on.

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The American current account

The American current account deficit is financed by central banks overseas, who buy our government securities and hold them to support the dollar. this reqires that the money be stolen from someone.

Huh? You're going to have to clarify that. What is getting stolen from whom?

You once thought you were an

You once thought you were an anarcho-capitalist? Wow.

Got a link to that thread? I'm curious to read what I wrote back then.

http://www.backwash.com/conte

http://www.backwash.com/contentboard.php?con_id=12751

here you are. It made me wanna bump the thread because I thought of so many better things to say- oh to be a foolish 19 year old again. It's also an NYUguy thread so prepare yourself for some fancy insubstantial rhetoric.

matt

the democrats have been the

the democrats have been the multinational business party since the new deal era (if not a bit before) so this isn’t exactly surprising. It’s certainly worth pointing out however, if only because it’s so widely misconstrued. Democrats spend less money (according to a fortune article) even when taking into account wartime spending, and have spent less on average for the lass 70 years or so. The republican free trade stuff is very much the stuff of rhetoric.

Clearly this is not what draws me to the democratic party, but it’s quite true.

By the way Micha, I was just rereading a debate we had 5 years ago on Backwash way back when you hated anarchism and I thought I was an anarchocapitalist. Things have changed, man.

-Matt

Why is it necessary to use

Why is it necessary to use the ad hominem style of saying that only the paranoid or the racist could be against free importation of goods from China? It wouldn't be because there are no rational arguments for failing to protect aginst the import of stolen goods, would it? The American current account deficit is financed by central banks overseas, who buy our government securities and hold them to support the dollar. this reqires that the money be stolen from someone. To receive stolen goods this way is unfree trade, and we need to limit it with the tools available. The enrichment of a dictatorship is not a decent policy goal. Using economic theories which assume capitalism, seems not quite appropriate for anarcholibertarians, as if there would be any economy to speak of in anarchy.

China’s actually got quite

China’s actually got quite a military

Million man swim! Seriously though, they are a good 20 years away from being a serious naval competitor to the US even by the Pentagon's own estimates.

Thanks, Micha. We need more

Thanks, Micha. We need more voices like Scheer. The recent epidemic of Sinophobia is as foolish as it is dangerous. Free markets free people. You want the Chinese to become a freer people while making us better off too, increase trade. You want to make everyone worse off and bring us closer to sparking off a pointless conflict, keep poking them in the eye. Also, do not underestimate the prospects of democracy in China. They're a bit closer than most people seem to realize.

And jeez, that's the first time I've ever seen the words "the wisdom of Richard M. Nixon" written in seriousness.

Well, I know better than to

Well, I know better than to try to prove a negative, but protectionism has hardly been the sole province of the right historically, and opposition to protectionism is hardly a reliable predictor of who's leftward and who isn't. In fact, I seem to recall a lot of advocacy of protectionism by leftists in labor unions throughout the 20th century.

As for "the only nation with the military power to implement or prevent a worldwide blockade of this or any other vital resource is the United States," I'm not sure that a) I believe that the US does have this ability, or b) that no other nation comes close to the US in this respect. China's actually got quite a military, though they haven't made high-profile use of it lately besides a few threatening gestures...

Upon examination, the

Upon examination, the national security argument against Chinese ownership is absurd. Access to oil is determined by the international market, and the only nation with the military power to implement or prevent a worldwide blockade of this or any other vital resource is the United States.

China may not be communist

China may not be communist communist anymore, but they are certainly brutal totalitarian freedom-haters freedom-haters. I don't mind a largely free but socialist country like even France owning Unocal, but having a genocidal expansionist sociopath state own it is another thing. I'm not against the Chinese ownership of Unocal on economic terms -- I'm against it on national security terms.

No true Scotsman,

No true Scotsman, Alex?

Scof,

China is hardly communist anymore, and "America" doesn't have oil resources; individual Americans do. Protectionism threatens the liberty and wellbeing of Chinese people far more than free trade does.

It's a bit silly to compare

It's a bit silly to compare China now with the Japan-bashing of the 80's. There's every reason in the world not to let some commie bastards get American oil resources. When the leadership changes to that which does not threat the liberty of its own people and of the world, then we can worry less about raising the protectionism flag.

If he's anti-protectionism

If he's anti-protectionism and acknowledging the benefits of Wal-Mart, then he's not really "of the left".

Common Dreams and Robert

Common Dreams and Robert Scheer, the author of the article, are of the left.

Um, wha? How is the Chinese

Um, wha? How is the Chinese government really of the left?

I mean, if this is what passes for the left then the left really *is* abhorrent, evil, and everything the coulterites would have us believe, despite (for one moment) being ever so slightly more free trade than the "right" (whom I suppose is the whole US, given that elected Democrats on a national level are still nearly root and branch against free trade)... :dizzy: