U.S. Trade Agreements Offshore Outsources Jobs so Congress Passes More of Them

We know bad trade deals have cost millions of American jobs. We have a jobs crisis with no growth in site. So, why in God's name would Congress pass more of the same? The South Korean trade deal has been analyzed to lose 159,000 jobs. The Panama trade agreement creates corporate tax havens that will be completely out of reach by the United States. Add in the Columbia trade deal and we've lost 214,000 jobs.

The U.S. Congress Joint Economic Committee held a hearing, aptly titled, Manufacturing in the USA: How U.S. Trade Policy Offshores Jobs. The title says it all, eh? Unfortunately the actual hearing didn't have the right economists who would show amply with statistics and facts, the overall hearing title is oh so true.

Contained within is the obligatory other side of multinational corporations, and the real agenda of this hearing is some token retraining for U.S. workers who will lose their jobs as a result of these bad trade deals.

Workers are not alone in wondering why our government sells us once again down the river on jobs. Small businesses, especially small U.S. manufacturers are asking the same question.

Beyond ForeclosureGate - It Gets Uglier

Michael Collins

The ForeclosureGate scandal poses a threat to Wall Street, the big banks, and the political establishment. If the public ever gets a complete picture of the personal, financial, and legal assault on citizens at their most vulnerable, the outrage will be endless. (Image)

Foreclosure practices lift the veil on a broader set of interlocking efforts to exploit those hardest hit by the endless economic hard times, citizens who become financially desperate due medical conditions. A 2007 study found that medical expenses or income losses related to medical crises among bankruptcy filers or family members triggered 62% of bankruptcies. There is no underground conspiracy. The facts are in plain sight.

Egyptians Revolt - Rubin's Folly and Labor Arbitrage

By Numerian

The forces of globalization are increasingly and in surprising places and ways under attack. Globalization did not happen by accident; it was the result of policies put in place by people with a particular agenda.

Matt Stoller, a former policy advisor to Rep. Alan Grayson, has posted this morning his insights into the Egyptian Revolution – insights that are quite different from the usual take on these events. They can be found here at the Naked Capitalism blog managed by Yves Smith.

Stoller dismisses the fanciful praise of social networks as a driving force behind the revolution – a story the mainstream media are plugging rigorously. He focuses instead on the participation of young men and women who labor anonymously in the new cheap-labor factory mills set up in Egypt under the direction of Gamal Mubarak, the president’s son and anointed successor. These are the workers who organized the first protests – who responded at great risk to the call for demonstrations, who continued to occupy Tahrir Square despite the provocations from the government, and whose focus on civil liberties was motivated by the repressive police tactics used by the government to enforce the discipline demanded by the mostly-foreign corporations that run the labor mills.

Deadbeats Bush and Gingrich Say "States Better Off Bankrupt"

Michael Collins


Not if a state owes you money!

Jeb Bush and Newt Gingrich just published an OpEd in the Los Angeles Times arguing that states would be wise to consider filing bankruptcy to relieve their financial troubles.  They cite three states, California, Illinois and New York, while failing to mention the angry elephant in the living room with similar problems, Texas.

Texas faces a $25 billion shortfall for a $95 billion two-year budget.  That equals California's 18-month deficit inherited by the recently inaugurated Governor Jerry Brown.

"So why haven't we heard more about Texas, one of the most important economy's in America? Well, it's because it doesn't fit the script. It's a pro-business, lean-spending, no-union state. You can't fit it into a nice storyline, so it's ignored," said Business Insider

Texas is a major inconvenience to Bush and Gingrich. They lay the financial problems at the door of unions and state employee pensions:

"The lucrative pay and benefits packages [read pensions] that government employee unions have received from obliging politicians over the years are perhaps the most significant hurdles for many states trying to restore fiscal health."  Jeb Bush, Newt Gingrich, January 27

President Obama Stimulus Package will not do that much

President Obama's stimulus plan will not work. He is focused on the big picture while ignoring the small ones the make our economy work. Only local value added economies work. Economies based primarily on making money on money rather than making things do not and are burning out. President Obama does not even mention the history of Free Trade failures. Free Trade and Globalization means centralization. This means all the good and bad are centralized. All the bad that was controllable in de-centralized ways are now out of control.

The cause of our economic crisis is primarily about Free Trade that moved our production of the things we use and eat to other parts of the planet. The crisis is about cheaper imports meaning cheaper wages, underemployment and unemployment.

The Evil Doers of the Financial Crisis

Many folks are asking what the hell is going on, how did we get here and who is responsible?

The Washington post has named names on what and who are responsible for this disaster.

The issue at hand was regulation of the derivatives market and Brooksley E. Born wanted to regulate it. This is 1998, the Clinton administration.

It seems Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan, Treasury Secretary Robert E. Rubin and Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Arthur Levitt Jr. didn't want any regulation on the growing shadow banking system called derivatives.

Bubbles, Tiny Bubbles - Bush's Real Economic Performance

The House of Representatives Democratic Caucus released the below summary table to the press. This economic summary on the major economic indicators of the last 7 years deserves reposting. That said, the title should read Corporate lobbyists policy and legislation, the real Economic performance. One must note that Democratic leadership is pushing for more bad trade deals, more guest worker Visas and enabling more offshore outsourcing as well. If you notice in the Presidential campaigns, a dramatic and much needed strategic change in trade, fiscal and labor policy is not discussed. One might get the token "labor and environmental standards" sound bytes without nary a question on the reality those cannot be enforced in other nations. Both administrations in the last 15 years had bubble economies, the dot con and now the housing bubble.

Lost your Job? Lost your House? Here's $300 Bucks!

Today we have a new economic stimulus plan revealed.

The $150 Billion dollar package consists of:

  • $300 to $1200 dollar one time June tax rebate - for anyone who earned at least $3000.00 in W2 type wages. Nothing mentioned about temporary 1099-misc. workers or small business owners who are hit the hardest often in a recession and cannot collect unemployment insurance
  • Allows Fannie Mae/Fannie Mac to buy out up to $626,000 dollar mortgages temporarily up for $416,000
  • Large businesses can take a 50% additional tax exemption on new capital expenditures

Americans are Producers, Not Consumers

Have you ever noticed that the only attention Americans get from this administration is when they stop shopping?

Bush announced a $145B Economic Stimulus plan that is in the form of tax rebates. He wants to put a whopping $800 dollars into the pocket of every single tax paying American.

Even Bruce Barltett, a former Bush administration member, said: