Tuesday, August 09, 2005

CAFTA and right wing anti-capitalism

CAFTA (Central American Free Trade Agreement) should be an add-on to the NAFTA. It is essential to finally destroy the limits on free trade by eradicating trade barriers and trade tolls, another form of extortion by the government.

However, many so-called Conservatives are opposing this by citing blatant left-wing lies: This will lead to massive out-sourcing, this will lead to the end of US farming and so on.
Those people who always said they will defend the ideals of capitalism and individualism are suddenly opposed to free trade, when free trade starts to be de-nationalized and objective rather than a subjective wealth-creator[2].

They claim that CAFTA will lead to an EU-style central bureaucracy and a common currency. However, this is not true as long as the politicians don't make it come true. European free trade agreements worked for a long time in favor of a minimalist union that only cares about no-borders, no-tolls and unlimited work among the EU members. The socialist EU could only be created by the appeasement of national states to the suprastate. It was a development that derived from socialist policy for a long time.

In fact, it is a racist approach to claim that CAFTA only hurts people. It might hurt the US for a couple of years until it will finally give way to economic growth.

Again we have here the old nationalist arguments against free trade and capitalism:

""CAFTA will be a market for 'turnaround' exports-products shipped south for assembly and then final sale in the U.S.- particularly textiles and semiconductors. Fabric will be sent to the region, stitched into final apparel and home furnishing products, and shipped right back to the United States. That's not traditional job-creating exports at all. Rather than servicing new foreign markets, these 'exports' serve the same domestic market U.S.-based factories once supplied. The only difference: American workers are removed from the equation. Due to Central American turnaround trade that currently exists, the U.S. trade deficit with CAFTA-6 countries rose nearly 60 percent from 1997-2004.""

None of this arguments could examplify for an capitalist or originally conservative point of view. They are all statist and protectionist and show a true ignorance of free trade and capitalism. Out-sourcing often doesn't destroy jobs, because for one job sent to Brasil, there will be at least one job (however different in nature) in the USA. Of course, there would be a moment of transition until the US economy adopted to the new circumstances, but in the end it would be in favor of everyone.
The moral and ethical tragedy of the failure of this bill is the arrogance that keeps third world countries from their path to wealth and out of poverty.
I grant that the way this bill was introduced and bought with favors (accumulating to the said billions of dollar) and that it was far from perfect, but it was a step in the right direction.

However, there is one issue that speaks in favor of contra-arguments: The way the bill was passed.

Ron Paul has said it explicitly and I have commented on it often. However, he leaves aside the morality of the bill, he is quite demonizing on the way the bill was passed. In my opinion, he was right to do so, considering the bribery involved[2].

Now, the people of the US not only have to pay for it, but also get a bill that is virtually not good for anything. The democratic discussion and rearrangement of the bill has been by-passed for the sake of a lot of dollars and more socialism than was necessary[3].


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