Paying the Piper: Reparations for “Free” Trade?

Hitting the nail on the head…

“Rather than allowing corporations to shift production to places which permit even more abuse of workers and the environment than are legal here, should we not be striving to improve conditions worldwide? […]

In what fantasy world is it fair to pay the son for losing his job by stealing his father’s well-earned pension, social security or health insurance, why not make the corporations pay for some of the economic damage we’re permitting them to do? Get something from them before making it that much easier for them to raise their profit margins. We’ve been allowing tax avoidance schemes for corporations and individuals for as long as we’ve had taxes. Stop making it easier for them and start making them take more responsibility for the consequences of their actions on the people and other natural resources they depend upon to make their fortunes. […]”

Rcooley123's Blog

Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) is designed to help workers adjust to having their jobs shipped abroad in the aftermath of a free trade agreement. Experience from previous free trade agreements (NAFTA is the most prominent among them) indicates that American jobs do, indeed, get relocated to countries which have lower labor standards. In other words, American workers are replaced by workers in other countries who are paid lower wages, under harsher working conditions and/or weaker workplace protections than workers here enjoy. TAA seeks to encourage ratification of the trade agreement ( in this instance, the Trans-Pacific Partnership or TPP) in Congress, by ameliorating the negative consequences of the job losses among workers here. The idea to aid in their transition by giving them training, education or other assistance in the new and improved American economy.

As things stand now, both Houses of Congress have sent the President a bill granting…

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  1. The problem, as I see it, is that these trade deals are solely for the benefit of the multinationals. We have to some how disengage their influence from governments.
    The global approach is the hight of folly – just look at what is happening to Greece and how it affects the world markets. Big is not better. These trade deals turn all countries into branch plant economies that are unstable and ruled by the whimsy of CEO’s.
    Leslie

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