Friday, August 1, 2008

Bikinis & Slave Labor

POLITIX - Reposted from Edwardian HDQ Site
MANHATTAN (August 1, 2008)

Now that your attention has been commanded, jot this down: Obama (and Clinto dis so as well) has expressed his support for and intention to for vote the Peru FTA. Edwards supports Smart Trade rather than NAFTA-style extension of so-called "free trade" agreements.

"The problem is that these [FTA] deals ... are primarily about protecting the rights of capital. You can never hope to enforce labor rights (or for that matter environmental protections) under a regime that is focused on profit first, and community second. It will not happen. And all the statements to the contrary are just rubbish. Why we would pretend that labor rights can be enforced as an after-thought, as a secondary issue, in countries around the world - when we can't even enforce basic labor rights here (such as safety and health regulations) because they are subject to politics and the free reign of the so-called 'free market' - exposes the true fallacy of so-called 'free trade.'" - Jonathan Tasini (Clinton's primary opponent for the New York Senate seat)
Tasini's latest HuffPo article points out that even model (pun intended) deals such as Jordan use exploitable "imported" labor from Bangladesh. "Victoria's Secret, Slave Labor And So-Called "Free Trade" LINK

Edwards advocates for Smart Trade: "Globalization, technological change and outdated labor and workplace laws have fundamentally changed our economy and redistributed the benefits of economic growth upwards. Equally fundamental change is needed to ensure our economy once again rewards work."

Hillary Clinton tried in the last debate to laugh off the NAFTA fiasco but roughly 20 million Americans in 1992 not only thought that Ross Perot was correct but voted their convictions. Remember that "giant sucking sound" represented millions of jobs that have been lost. Those 20 million are independent swing voters that a Democratic winner will need.

Roughly ten percent (estimated two million) of those voters have since been job losers due to outsourcing or trade-related displacement. That's ten percent of Perot's vote total versus the entire American workforce of 150 million losing roughly five million jobs or 3.3 percent. Those voters knew who they were and their vulnerability. Present projections for outsourcing or trade-related displacements range from 15 to 20 million. YOU know who you are and your vulnerability.

Harry Truman said it correctly for all time: "Don't vote for me. Vote for yourselves!" ///

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