Focus on 'Free Trade' Policy, not Migrants

Paul Craig Roberts argues in the subscriber edition of CounterPunch that declines in pay and availability of USA employment can be best explained by ‘free trade’ policies that encourage export of middle-class work. We offer some excerpts, beginning with another indication of suppressed public information–gm

“If outsourcing jobs offshore is good for U.S. employment, why won’t the U.S. Department of Commerce release the 200-page, $335,000 study of the impact of the offshoring of U.S. high-tech jobs? Republican political appointees reduced the 200-page report to 12 pages of public relations hype and refuse to allow the Technology Administration experts who wrote the report to testify before Congress.
Democrats on the House Science Committee are unable to pry the study out of the hands of Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez. On March 29, 2006, Republicans on the House Science Committee
voted down a resolution designed to force the Commerce Department to release the study to Congress. Obviously, the facts don’t fit the Bush regime’s globalization hype.”


American economists, some from incompetence
and some from being bought and paid for, described globalization as a “win-win” development. It was supposed to work like this: The U.S. would lose market share in tradable manufactured goods and make up the job and economic loss with highly educated knowledge workers. The win for America would be lower-priced manufactured goods and a white-collar work force. The win for China would be manufacturing jobs that would bring economic development to that country.

It did not work out this way, as Morgan
Stanley’s Stephen Roach, formerly a cheerleader for globalization, recently admitted. It has become apparent that job creation and real wages in the developed economies are seriously lagging behind emtheir historical norms as offshore outsourcing
displaces the “new economy” jobs in “software programming, engineering, design, and the medical profession, as well as a broad array of professionals in the legal, accounting, actuarial, consulting,
and financial services industries”.

The real state of the U.S. job market is revealed by a Chicago Sun-Times report on January 26, 2006, that 25,000 people applied for 325 jobs at a new Chicago Wal-Mart. According to the BLS payroll jobs data, over the past half-decade (January 2001 – January 2006, the data series available at time of writing) the U.S. economy created 1,050,000 net new private sector jobs and 1,009,000 net new government jobs for a total five-year figure of 2,059,000. That is seven million jobs short of keeping up with population growth, definitely a serious job shortfall.

The BLS payroll jobs data contradict the hype from business organizations, such as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, that offshore outsourcing is good for America. CounterPunch subscriber edition Vol. 13, No. 13

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