Conventional wisdom usually does not link trade to programs and policies that address poverty. We need to unpack this conventional wisdom and explore how improving key aspects of trade link to development, using as an example how U.S.-Africa trade policies can unlock Africa's economic potential in agriculture.
With progressive voice Sen. Elizabeth Warren helping lead the fast track/TPP opposition, and possible candidates Bernie Sanders and Martin O'Malley joining in opposition, it's time for Hillary Clinton to tell people where she stands on fast track and TPP. Will she join with working people and the 99 percent, or will she bend to the D.C./Wall Street crowd?
The legitimate force that drives trade agreements is companies' need for predictability and stability in order to invest beyond the borders of their home country. Everyone can support that. But where trade agreements go wrong is in secret negotiations, with virtually zero democratic input or accountability
A key section of the secret Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement has been leaked to the public. The New York Times has a major story on the contents of the leaked chapter, and it's as bad as many of us feared. Now we know why the corporations and the Obama administration want the TPP kept secret from the public until it's too late to stop it.
I wrote to my senator, Chuck Schumer (D-New York), about a critical issue and actually received a response. In my letter I had registered particular concern about the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal and plans to "fast track" its implementation, two of several issues on which I wanted his input.
The ongoing trade deficit has transferred trillions of dollars out of our economy. It has cost us millions of jobs, tens of thousands of factories and entire industries. As it continues, it is costing us our ability to make a living as a country -- except for our financial sector. This has made a very few people unimaginably wealthy, but it has made the rest of us, and the country, poorer.
The Congressional Progressive Caucus has released "Principles for Trade," showing that there could be an alternative to the TPP, a global strategy designed to benefit workers, not investors, and serve the nation's interests, not the special interests of global companies and banks. The CPC seeks more trade, but on terms that will strengthen, not sabotage, working families.
What does the sudden appreciation of the Swiss franc mean for the Eurozone? Will Russia's financial distress spill over to its neighbors? How those questions are answered will affect some of the world's richest countries -- the likes of France, Germany, and Italy. Usually ignored, it will also affect some of the poorest.
Obama's proposals towards "middle-class economics" and the recently released Economic Report of the President for 2015 highlight just how close the two countries are in their thinking about these issues and on how to make economic policies work more equitably for everyone. And yet, rather than coming together, the distance between the two countries has widened.