Saturday, January 3, 2009

Turning, turning

Here's one from Bloomberg, on "Obama Team Reviewing ‘Buy American’ Plank in Stimulus"
Jan. 2 (Bloomberg) -- President-elect Barack Obama’s advisers are looking at including a “buy American” provision in the economic-stimulus legislation that the incoming administration has made its first priority.
“We are reviewing the buy American proposal and we are committed to a plan that will save or create 3 million jobs, including jobs in manufacturing,” said Jen Psaki, a spokeswoman for Obama’s transition team.

I love Barack but increasingly hear protectionist undertones in his messages. It actually started early in the presidential campaign.
Each country has to watch out for number one. That's not my beef.
But I think the world has not done enough reminding the US government (and its big power allies) that, not too very long ago they told us little people from the third world that nationalism was a dirty thing, a relic and hindrance to progress.
They told us a lot of things, didn't they? And twisted our arms and actually imposed sanctions when we dragged our feet on the path to globalization and liberalization.
Now... we got the US and friends nationalizing banks and other big firms (even as media seems to be burying the fact that many of these scams would never have happened if US regulators didn't allow so many of its rich and famous to launder funds -- read AIG and those offshore insurance havens; ditto for Maadoff-- so much for compliance watchlists).
In the late 90's, Asians heard the sermon: Let your greedy, secretive, ponderous, crony cabals drown in the swirling floods of history! Now, the powerful are saying: Shoot, we can't let them drown; it'll be the end of the world! (Because of globalization, thank you :)
Just a few years back, the developed nations were kicking down the doors of our industries, forcing many to their knees at the altar of "competitiveness." Soon after, our liberal friends were calling for a boycott of Walmart because of its cheap goods from China.
I'm not proposing to turn back the clock. But I do urge all the little folks out there to make some dents in the arrogance of the world's rulers.
It may be futile to dream of an apology Then again, it'll never come if no one demands for one.

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