Our leaders are no more serious about human rights in China than they are about such conditions in oil-rich Saudi Arabia, for the simple reason that we need what those nations have more than they need us.
Let's take a look at a speech recently given by Gene Sperling, Director of the National Economic Council. It's a good metric of whether the administration "gets it" on manufacturing, and gives a fairly clear picture of the evolution of its thinking.
Mr. Obama is using flimsy and misleading numbers to justify his anti-oil and gas energy policy, and his mega-billion dollar subsidies for "green energy" and "green jobs." So perhaps it's time for him to pivot to another basic necessity, like chocolate.
Bringing democratic reform to Russia will require concerted effort by the United States, our allies, NGOs, and the Russian people. Opening Russia's market under WTO rules can play a useful role in this effort.
U.S. trade policy needs to be based on what is good for the U.S. economy and U.S. job growth. And Congress needs to recognize that in an ever more globalized world, using trade as a political instrument to fight yesterday's wars is at best self defeating.
Trade policies are not a sexy business. Customs, anti-dumping, subsidies are just some of the concepts international investors are trying to avoid. Yet, recent weeks reminded all of us that trade can make headlines.
Many articles on the subject of money talk about different ways to invest the money. Few of the pieces, however, address the key issue underlying any allocation which may be keeping investors up at night.
When we allow companies to just import stuff that is made by exploited workers in countries where people do not have a say, we are granting not-having-a-say an advantage over having a say. We make democracy a competitive disadvantage.
The story of organized labor has been a story of working people banding together to confront concentrated wealth and power. Unions have been fighting to get decent wages, benefits, better working conditions, on-the-job safety and respect. Now the rest of us are learning that this is our fight, too.