[indymediapr] Libre comercio: la gran mentira
carmelo_ruiz en yahoo.com
Mie Oct 31 07:28:52 PDT 2007
New Research: Win-Win from "Free Trade" is a Big Lie
By Todd Tucker, Eyes on Trade
Two groundbreaking new papers looking at our failed
trade policy’s negative impact on American wages and inequality have
been written by economist Josh Bivens and quietly released by the
Economic Policy Institute (EPI). These papers brilliantly summarize
half a century of economics research into the topic, and make
fascinating projections of future increases in inequality if current
trends continue. The papers expose what has been hidden in plain view:
our trade policy is putting substantial downward pressure of all U.S.
workers, yet policymakers are trying to push more NAFTA-style trade
policy to Peru and beyond despite mounting evidence that it is bad for
Among the important conclusions of the paper, paraphrased by yours truly:
most important negative impact of our trade policy is not the
displacement of concentrated groups of workers in manufacturing, but
rather the holding down of wages of 70 percent of the population -
including those workers whose jobs have not been and/or cannot be
offshored. This analysis takes into account the impact of savings from
cheaper imported products, and is a NET effect.
burden from trade policy-induced inequality now outweighs the burden
from income taxes for the average American family. Specifically, the
costs from current globalization policies for the median family have
risen to $2,135 a year, while income tax costs are by comparison only
$1,495. So if you’re concerned about high middle class taxes, you
should be doubly concerned about our trade policy.
current projections by mainstream economists of the number of
offshorable service-sector jobs hold over the next 10-20 years, our
trade policy could erase almost all of the wage gains made since 1979
for workers without a four-year college degree (70 percent of the
workforce). Trade adjustment assistance — now being debated in Congress
— would replace less than 0.2% of the potential income loss to domestic
workers in this scenario. Yet, this is the only significant policy
response to globalization being discussed on Capitol Hill, and it
excludes the majority of workers harmed by our trade policy.
much of this negative wage impact was already known by the early 1990s
(in fact, since the 1940s), when policymakers were debating NAFTA and
the WTO. Estimates produced by mainstream economists found that trade
could account for 10-40% of the total rise in inequality that occurred
in the 1980s and early 1990s. Many who were advocating for
more-of-the-same trade policy often pointed out that trade did not
account for a majority of the rise in inequality. But as the paper
points out, it was still widely considered to be the largest single
factor. (The paper notes: "This is true but uncomforting; a significant
minority of a very large number is still a large number. To put it
another way, if I threw myself into a chasm that was ’only’ a fifth as
deep as the Grand Canyon, I’d still be dead.") In any case, the impact
is shown to be much larger since NAFTA and the WTO went into effect
over a decade ago.
anytime a pundit or politician invokes the notion that our trade policy
is a "win-win" proposal, they are at worst lying or misleading the
public, and at best equating the considerable gains going to the top
end of the income distribution with a scenario where the gains are
widely shared (something that has not happened, and could not happen
without massive tax increases on the wealthy and government
redistribution of a magnitude that is not being at all discussed by
leading presidential candidates of either party).
Vale más cualquier quimera
que un trozo de tela triste.
- JORGE DREXLER
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