Archive for January, 2017

Nonunion: Dead and Dying

In New York City “Nonunion contractors make up 90 percent of the construction companies listed in OSHA’s “Severe Violator Enforcement Program” for New York, a list of recalcitrant employers that have endangered workers with “indifference to their occupational safety and health obligations through willful, repeat or failure-to-abate violations.”

Union workers are safer because they are better trained and know they will be protected if they refuse to work under dangerous conditions.

 https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/16/opinion/2-years-31-dead-construction-workers-new-york-can-do-better.html?action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=opinion-c-col-left-region&region=opinion-c-col-left-region&WT.nav=opinion-c-col-left-region&_r=0

Its time to concentrate on and shame Nonunion customers and contractors..

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OREOS

 

Under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) American companies did not move to Mexico to make and sell their product to Mexicans. American companies became foreign companies to sell their goods to Americans at a fabulous profit and destroy any competition remaining in America.

In the 1990s when centrist Democrat President Bill Clinton was mulling over his proposed North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) which was designed to benefit American companies, he and his fellow politicians put together a few favorable and unfavorable hypothetical economic scenarios concerning NAFTA. Most important to Clinton and his Wall Street bred economists was the hypothetical that international trade value would increase dramatically under NAFTA. Which they agreed among themselves was a great thing for America, democracy and world trade.

All of North America, they said, would prosper under NAFTA. Mexican and Canadian companies would be able to sell their goods to the U.S. tariff free and U.S. companies would be able to sell our goods back. They correctly promoted the hypothetical where the dollar trade value between the NAFTA neighbors of Mexico, Canada and the United States would quadruple in a generation. They also had a correct hypothetical that NAFTA would have certain economic costs. The powers to be knew that low Mexican wages and tariff free goods from Mexico bound for the U.S. would result in a loss of hypothetical U.S. jobs. On balance Clinton and Wall Street chalked up those lost jobs as a cost politicians would be willing to pay. In effect our politicians on behalf of American workers said our workers would be willing to pay the price in the name of NAFTA. But as it turned out only American workers paid the price. The politicians paid no price – until the Presidential election of 2016.

After NAFTA, what was once robust American free trade among the 50 United States was gutted and swapped out for robust international free trade with Mexico. Even the cookie maker Oreo moved its manufacturing and jobs to Mexico.

Thus began our modern rust belt ruins, millions of lost jobs across America’s industrial landscape, a blind middle class rage against our political class and Donald Trump’s journey to be the next President of the U.S.

On January 11,2017, in response to those old NAFTA hypotheticals, President-elect Donald Trump said the following: “There will be a major border tax on these companies that are leaving and getting away with murder…If our politicians had what it takes they would’ve done it years ago. You’ve got a lot of places you can move. I don’t care, as long as it’s within the United States.”

In response to Trump’s warnings, politicians and Wall Street economists are suddenly constructing brand new NAFTA hypotheticals. American companies in Mexico and their American politicians are suddenly concerned about Trump’s idea of once again promoting and re-growing free trade within the 50 United States. Sweet.

Will Oreo come home? Or do Mexicans like Oreos? In the meantime, “Well done Donald!

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