01/24/2011 03:14 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Free Trade Killed the Great American Job Machine; Mainstream Economists Mystified

Here's a fascinating article by an intelligent economist, Jim Tankersly, apparently a perfectly nice fellow, puzzling over the "big mystery" of why the U.S. economy has lost so many jobs and isn't creating any more to replace them. It is rife with phrases like:

"Even now, no one really knows why."

"a critical mystery bedeviling a nation struggling to crawl out of near-double-digit unemployment"

"If we can't figure out why, we may be doomed to a future that feels like a long jobless recovery, no matter how fast our economy grows."

"It's the trillion-dollar question,"

"That's not really what's supposed to happen."

And yet this article gives only the most cursory nod to what is increasingly obvious: free trade killed the Great American Job Machine.