A truly disturbing bit of economic news has come from Obama’s new trade representative Ron Kirk. He has stated that it is the intention of the Obama Adm. to go ahead with the trade deals brokered by the Bush Adm. with Panama, Korea and Columbia. They also intend to revive talks with the WTO that broke down last July over agricultural commodities. Remember not being able to buy rice? That’s what you get with "free trade".
Obama and Kirk are making all the usual vague promises about protecting American workers. Apparently everything Obama said during the campaign about protecting American workers from these destructive "free" trade deals has now been "out sourced".
To recover from their lost decade; Japan quietly rebuilt its domestic industries. Japan’s government does have a huge debt load even compared to the US, but the difference is that their debt is entirely investments from their retirees. Japan doesn’t owe trillions to China and Saudi Arabia. Japan’s standard of living continues to improve as ours declines. Japan protects its economy from "free trade"; China, India and Europe do as well.
We cannot trade our way out of the mess we are in; we cannot live on a service economy (giving each other haircuts); we cannot rebuild by padding the balance sheets of insolvent banks. We need to make the things we use or accept a third world standard of living.