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Tilting at Windmills

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December 8, 2006
By: Kevin Drum

POPULISM....Via David Sirota, here's an excerpt from a short Mother Jones interview with incoming Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown:

MJ: Any interest in being Vice President?

SB: No. But anybody that runs for the president will have to go through Ohio, literally and figuratively. The Democrats need to nominate somebody that will be an economic populist, that will stand up for the middle class, that doesn't just want to increase the minimum wage but somebody that will work to put the government on the side of working families. And that means different trade policy, standing up to the drug industry, taking on the oil industry. It means showing that the Democratic Party is a progressive, populist party.

That sounded very much like a gauntlet being thrown down in front of....Hillary Clinton? Is she listening?

Kevin Drum 2:13 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (55)

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Naw, Hillary's battling Obama in the "No -- I'm the charmed Ivy League lawyer!" contest. But Sherrod is right...economic populism will be a key for 2008, which is why John Edwards should not be counted out as a potential candidate.

Posted by: Vincent on December 8, 2006 at 2:22 PM | PERMALINK

Nice to see someone saying things that need to be said. Read the whole interview at the link Kev provided.

Posted by: grape_crush on December 8, 2006 at 2:23 PM | PERMALINK

Kevin Drum: That sounded very much like a gauntlet being thrown down in front of....Hillary Clinton? Is she listening?

I doubt it. Keep Hillary in the Senate. I'm sick of hereditary presidencies anyway.

different trade policy

Sounds like a gauntlet to a lot of Democrats, including Kevin Drum.

Too many D's are stuck in the 90's Clinton/DLC "free trade good" mantra. Actually, free trade might be good. When do we get some? This Chinese currency protection sucks. Check the trade deficit lately?

Posted by: alex on December 8, 2006 at 2:25 PM | PERMALINK

And that means different trade policy, standing up to the drug industry, taking on the oil industry. It means showing that the Democratic Party is a progressive, populist party.

Nonsense. The Democrats need to nominate a business friendly sensible centrist like Joe Lieberman who will spur the entrepreneurial spirit of the American people and help create jobs in America. Class warfare rhetoric doesn't create jobs. It prevents jobs from being created. The liberal class warfare will only cause the wealthy to stop investing in America and therefore cause our economy to be in tatters hurting working class Americans the most.

Posted by: Al on December 8, 2006 at 2:29 PM | PERMALINK

I'm not a fan of Sherrod Brown, but he's never been a subtle politician or one to send different signals depending on something as vague as Presidential nomination politics this early in the campaign. What he's quoted as saying here he would have said at any time in the last ten years.

Posted by: Zathras on December 8, 2006 at 2:32 PM | PERMALINK

Al,

Where's the link I'm supposed to click?

Class warfare, huh? Isn't that what the Republicans have been waging on the working class for 12 years now?

Posted by: bigcat on December 8, 2006 at 2:40 PM | PERMALINK

Hilary hasn't said a thing on the two issues of greatest importance to me: Iraq, and the problems of our declining middle/working class, free vs fair trade, etc.

So why should I have any interest in her as a candidate.

Posted by: dissent on December 8, 2006 at 2:41 PM | PERMALINK

Kerry?

Hell no.

Listen - I appreciate that Kerry is a War Hero and all (War on Terror - remember? He took down BCCI, so he fired the opening shots in the War on Terror back in the early 1990's) - but people wanted CHANGE in 2004, and Kerry was too wishy-washy, too establishmentarian. That is one reason why he did not fare well. There was a sense that the DNC and the Liberal Northeast rammed Kerry in as the candidate - when Democratic Voters across the nation were in more of a Kucinich-mood. Out of the tepid field of primary candidates in 04, who was most likely to be able to beat Bush? I don't know - probably Dean before the Scream (and he had already been pushed aside before that incident).

But the bottom line is - Kerry betrayed us in 04. He said he'd fight. He finished the race with a lot of left over cash. He rolled over for the Swift Boaters. And he did not dispute the results. He let us all down.

Dems kept the sentiment of voting for change in 06 - and we got it. But going back and giving Kerry another chance in 08 is probably out of the question.

Then again, if it's a choice between him, or Hillary, or Obama in 08, I'd choose Kerry. Edwards is looking better now. I wish Dean would run.

On the other hand, it may all be moot, because if Bush keeps this crap up, we may have President Pelosi in 07.

Posted by: Extradite Rumsfeld on December 8, 2006 at 2:47 PM | PERMALINK

dissent: So why should I have any interest in her as a candidate.

As discussed on a previous thread, she's better than skunk road kill.

Posted by: alex on December 8, 2006 at 2:49 PM | PERMALINK

Class warfare, huh? Isn't that what the Republicans have been waging on the working class for 12 years now?

It's only class warfare when we do it. When they do it, it's called free market economics. Not sure why... in a really free market most of those turds would shrivel like dogshit in the desert sun.

Posted by: thersites on December 8, 2006 at 2:51 PM | PERMALINK

As the second richest man in America told us, there has been class warfare for decades now and his class has won.

Posted by: freelunch on December 8, 2006 at 2:55 PM | PERMALINK

I say the Dems should run nobody for 08 let the repugs drown in Iraq for another four years,You will not see a R president for forty years after that.

Posted by: Thomas2.0 on December 8, 2006 at 3:08 PM | PERMALINK

Seems to me the only people who want Hillary to run are Bill, her consultants & any Republican hack with a mircophone. I've yet to speak with any Democrat who is either enthused by her potential candidacy or thinks she can win the general if she were able to secure the nomination. And that is a big "if." To the extent that middle class Americans are tired of being the ones squeezed by economic policies that shrink their piece of the pie, I think Brown is probably right. The candidate which can speak to those concerns and offer policies that take those concerns dead on would appear to have the best chance to gain traction in 2008. Who that is at this point is anyone's guess...I just don't think a lot of people think that person is Hillary Clinton.
Security will of course play a large issue but again the candidate that offers a different set of solutions has the inside track. Clearly the Bush policies are a complete & utter failure. Less safe while also giving up more of our basic rights to be less safe. The slogan for the past six years could easily be the worst of both worlds.

Posted by: Nathan64 on December 8, 2006 at 3:18 PM | PERMALINK

Being an economic populist also means pushing back the government employees union and their benefits, which we cannot afford.

How are the Dems going to do that?

Probably not, and it is more likely some branch of the Republicans will hail the populist banner.

Posted by: Matt on December 8, 2006 at 3:44 PM | PERMALINK

Nonsense. The Democrats need to nominate a business friendly sensible centrist like Joe Lieberman who will spur the entrepreneurial spirit of the American people and help create jobs in America. Class warfare rhetoric doesn't create jobs. It prevents jobs from being created. The liberal class warfare will only cause the wealthy to stop investing in America and therefore cause our economy to be in tatters hurting working class Americans the most.

Stupid is as stupid says. If the Dem policies are so anti-entrepreneurial, why do we have so many successful entrepreneurs in California? Palm, Treo, Apple? You might have heard of one or two of these Al, and you might ask yourself how they ever managed to succeed in a state that has some of the most progressive (or in your parlance, anti-business) policies and legislation in the Union.

You know even a stopped watch is right twice a day, but I don't think you're right twice a year.

Posted by: cyntax on December 8, 2006 at 3:50 PM | PERMALINK

Populism? It sounds almost like an endorsement for Lou Dobbs. Excuse me for a second as I need to wash my mouth out with soap.

Posted by: pgl on December 8, 2006 at 4:02 PM | PERMALINK

I`ll believe there is actual change going to happen when Dennis Kucinich is labeled "middle of the road" (he is) & not a moment earlier. What "We the people..." are suffereing through is more of the same old "rich is right" crap.

Oh when will the populace actually perceive reality ?

It can`t be too soon.

"...economics runs around trying to figure out how people rationalized what they just did." - Stirling Newberry

Posted by: daCascadian on December 8, 2006 at 4:04 PM | PERMALINK

Thomas2.0 on December 8, 2006 at 3:08 PM:

I say the Dems should run nobody for 08 let the repugs drown in Iraq for another four years..

Bad idea..Spectacularly bad idea..Practically redlining the 'bad-idea-o-meter'.

Why? Thirty-five reasons this month, as of December 6th.

Overall, the number of US troop deaths is trending upward, punctuated with sharp spikes.

Posted by: grape_crush on December 8, 2006 at 4:06 PM | PERMALINK

That sounded very much like a gauntlet being thrown down in front of....Hillary Clinton? Is she listening? Kevin Drum

I am sure at least one of Hillary's netroots people heard the challenge loud and clear. That person will have to file a report. Once the report is examined by the high level strategists to determine its significance probably after an extended focus group meeting, they will be able to decide if a response is necessary. If so they will turn the shaping of the response over to the consutlants. Once they have shaped a measured and balanced response that will not offend the finance people and will pass additional focus group testing, one of Hillary's handlers will respond indirectly via a planted news story in a pre-packaged and completely tested manner intended to reassure without offending anybody.

Most of the people I talk too want a real president, not a new brand of detergent.

I was talking to my bookkeeper a while ago. She is a bed rock Republican. She agrees with me, a life long Democrat, that the American people are yearning for somebody authentic who isn't owned lock, stock and barrel by the corporate elites and isn't sold like just another Madison Avenue product.

Posted by: Ron Byers on December 8, 2006 at 4:17 PM | PERMALINK

Grapecrush ,My point exactly,Who would be dumb enough to vote for a Republican ater this mess.Wait till we get control of Congress,We get to see all the hidden paper work.I can't wait to see who was in the Cheney energy meeting,that will be interesting indeedy.

Posted by: Thomas2.0 on December 8, 2006 at 4:33 PM | PERMALINK

Wait till we get control of Congress

Time to return to the present.

Posted by: Disputo on December 8, 2006 at 4:52 PM | PERMALINK

also means pushing back the government employees union and their benefits, which we cannot afford.

Huh?

Or buy a few less cruise missiles
Or build a few less bridges to nowhere in Alaska
Or tax some of the money sitting in bank accounts of those who haven't earned it [Hello Paris]

Stupid Fuck

Posted by: Determined to Strike on December 8, 2006 at 5:17 PM | PERMALINK

daCascadian wrote: I'll believe there is actual change going to happen when Dennis Kucinich is labeled "middle of the road" (he is) & not a moment earlier.

Amen. (I was a Kuninich supporter in 2004.)

Meanwhile, militaristic corporatists like John Kerry and Hillary Clinton are billed as "far left".

Kinda makes ya wanna puke.

Posted by: SecularAnimist on December 8, 2006 at 5:37 PM | PERMALINK

I agree with the first comment -- John Edwards gets the coveted Kotsko endorsement.

Obama doesn't seem to me to offer anything really distinctive.

Posted by: Adam Kotsko on December 8, 2006 at 6:04 PM | PERMALINK

Rumor has it Lou Dobbs will be the Dem nominee in 08.

And lets just stop crying about Chinese currency maniuplation. The Chinese have trade DEFICITS with most of their trading partners outside of the US, suggesting that the imbalance is due to American consumerism and not entirely the fault of the Chinese Central Bank.

Besides, the Chinese wouldn't be able to buy $15b in gov. bonds a month if the Feds hadn't embarked on a ridiculous ir easing policy that left an enormous asset bubble from which debtors could shield their exposure. Get a clue.

Posted by: Beachwood on December 8, 2006 at 6:06 PM | PERMALINK

Does it matter who the Democrats nominate? Even if that person is not an economic populist, would be Republican choice be a better choice? What Republican is going to promote a different trade policy or stand up to the drug and/or oil industry?

Posted by: brio on December 8, 2006 at 6:14 PM | PERMALINK

If either party would nominate a candidate that has never taken money from corporations, special interest groups or corporate lobbyists then I'd get excited.

As it is, the argument devolves to the extent to which any particular candidate is owned.

Posted by: Dennis on December 8, 2006 at 6:26 PM | PERMALINK

Maybe one of you folks can help me. Is there any meaningful difference between "populism" and "fascism by the majority"?

Posted by: coyote on December 8, 2006 at 6:41 PM | PERMALINK

Beachwood: Rumor has it Lou Dobbs will be the Dem nominee in 08.

Rumor also has it that the Illuminati run the world.

And lets just stop crying about Chinese currency maniuplation. The Chinese have trade DEFICITS with most of their trading partners outside of the US

There's a singularly irrelevant factoid. The thing that counts is China's overall trade balance, which is large and has been growing rapidly for years (despite the miniscule revaluation of the yuan).

Posted by: alex on December 8, 2006 at 6:41 PM | PERMALINK

coyote: Is there any meaningful difference between "populism" and "fascism by the majority"?

Yes. In this country it's called the Constitution.

Posted by: alex on December 8, 2006 at 6:44 PM | PERMALINK

Cool, Alex. I am a big Constitution fan. However, in a country where the government tells restaurants what food it can and can't serve, that steps in to set product pricing (I presume that's what he wants for drugs and oil), the steps in to set employees wages, I am confused as to whether the Constitution I read in school is still in force any more.

Populism, in practice, is about using the full force of the government to impose the majority's will on minorities when free association and exchange don't yield the outcome the majority wants. And that, boys and girls, is fascism. Just because you support what the government is trying to achieve doesn't make it any less so.

Posted by: Coyote on December 8, 2006 at 6:57 PM | PERMALINK

Coyote: a country where the government tells restaurants what food it can and can't serve

Agreed. Some people like botulism. Let the market decide.

I am confused as to whether the Constitution I read in school is still in force any more.

It's not. See, for example, that Habeas Corpus stuff in Article I, Section 9.

Posted by: alex on December 8, 2006 at 7:02 PM | PERMALINK

However, in a country where the government tells restaurants what food it can and can't serve, that steps in to set product pricing (I presume that's what he wants for drugs and oil), the steps in to set employees wages, I am confused as to whether the Constitution I read in school is still in force any more.

My guess is that you have never read the USConst, or else you might have noticed the Interstate Commerce Clause.

Posted by: Disputo on December 8, 2006 at 7:02 PM | PERMALINK

Disputo: My guess is that you have never read the USConst, or else you might have noticed the Interstate Commerce Clause.

Come on, everybody knows that was proto-Marxism.

Posted by: alex on December 8, 2006 at 7:06 PM | PERMALINK

History lesson for Alex:

The misguided conventional assumption is that a lower exchange rate of the dollar will reduce the US trade deficit, despite clear historical data showing that past revaluations of the Japanese yen and the German mark had not reduced US trade deficits with these major trade partners in the long run.

Posted by: Beachwood on December 8, 2006 at 7:08 PM | PERMALINK

Beachwood: The misguided conventional assumption is that a lower exchange rate of the dollar will reduce the US trade deficit, despite clear historical data showing that past revaluations of the Japanese yen and the German mark had not reduced US trade deficits

You mean like the Plaza Accord? Let's see, from 1985 to 1989 the dollar dropped 40%, and the current account deficit dropped from 4%/GDP to 0.5%. Nope, guess it doesn't work.

with these major trade partners

You're still making the same mistake. Bilateral deficits are factoids. The overall deficit is what matters.

in the long run

You mean when we're all dead? Fortunately I can't speak to that yet, but here's a hint. There is no magic exchange rate that works for all time. BTW, the BoJ still holds about $1T.

Of course, if you think that the conventional wisdom is misguided because price doesn't matter, then I've got a lot of things I'd like to sell you.

Posted by: alex on December 8, 2006 at 7:22 PM | PERMALINK

If you want to do something about America's trade imbalance with China, lobby your congressmen. Their nationalism prevents American corporations from exporting high end technology that would help ease the imbalance. Hard to do during the flag waving contest, otherwise known as "when Congress is in session."

Posted by: Beachwood on December 8, 2006 at 7:22 PM | PERMALINK

Currency reevaluation as a way to make US goods more competitive never works in the long run. All it does is encourage US corps to continue making shit. See esp. the US auto industry.

Posted by: Disputo on December 8, 2006 at 7:23 PM | PERMALINK

Beachwood: If you want to do something about America's trade imbalance with China, lobby your congressmen. Their nationalism prevents American corporations from exporting high end technology that would help ease the imbalance.

Hmmm. How much did giving them neutron bomb technology reduce the trade deficit?

Of course we could also talk to them about silly things like eliminating their 30% tariff on cars and car parts.

Posted by: alex on December 8, 2006 at 7:27 PM | PERMALINK

Alex,

Your characterization of the Plaza Accord is either disingenuous or misinformed. While the 1985 Plaza Accord to devalue the dollar by negotiation shrank the trade gap temporarily, a lower dollar enabled the US economy to grow faster than those of its trading partners, and by 1991 the US trade deficit began rising again.

Posted by: Beachwood on December 8, 2006 at 7:39 PM | PERMALINK

Alex: Of course we could also talk to them about silly things like eliminating their 30% tariff on cars and car parts.

Sure thing, I'll call Premier Hu right now. Meanwhile, would you mind calling up dubya and have him remove American tariffs on steel and lumber?

Posted by: Beachwood on December 8, 2006 at 7:42 PM | PERMALINK

Disputo: Currency reevaluation as a way to make US goods more competitive never works in the long run.

There is no long run. That term belies the tendency of neoclassical economics to view the inherently dynamic phenomena of economics in terms of the static notion of equilibrium. In plain language, it don't mean shit because things are always changing.

All it does is encourage US corps to continue making shit. See esp. the US auto industry.

No, the "US" auto industry (by which I presume you mean the big 2.5) is a special, albeit important, special case. There are many products where US quality is excellent. See for example, semiconductors, aircraft, even (back when we made them) clothes. I hate the "US" auto industry because its crappy quality gave a bad reputation to all US products.

If, however, by "US" auto industry you mean cars and car parts made in America, it's another story. My 80% American made Toyota is great, and my wife's 85% model is also quite good. And those figures are total value added in USA, not just final assembly.

Posted by: alex on December 8, 2006 at 7:45 PM | PERMALINK

There is no long run. That term belies the tendency of neoclassical economics to view the inherently dynamic phenomena of economics in terms of the static notion of equilibrium. In plain language, it don't mean shit because things are always changing.

*sigh* That's precisely why currency reevaluation does not work in the long run, because things are not static. Please, in the future, do not impute your own prejudices onto what I write -- just read it.

Posted by: Disputo on December 8, 2006 at 7:52 PM | PERMALINK

The argument isn't the quality of American goods (or lack thereof), its simply the gigantic wage disparity. A Chinese employee has similar levels of productivity to an American employee at roughly 1/20 of the wage. That's the core issue.

Posted by: Beachwood on December 8, 2006 at 7:53 PM | PERMALINK

There is no long run. That term belies the tendency of neoclassical economics to view the inherently dynamic phenomena of economics in terms of the static notion of equilibrium. In plain language, it don't mean shit because things are always changing.

Are you high? Seriously.

You claim at once:

1) China needs to revalue their currency to a predefined level.

2) There is no equilibrium, which doesn't square with the logic behind seeking a predetermined exchange rate.

Posted by: Beachwood on December 8, 2006 at 8:04 PM | PERMALINK

Beachwood: While the 1985 Plaza Accord to devalue the dollar by negotiation shrank the trade gap temporarily [emphasis added]

Not to get as bad as it was until 1999.

a lower dollar enabled the US economy to grow faster than those of its trading partners

Ooh, that's terrible. Wouldn't want that now, would we.

and by 1991 the US trade deficit began rising again

Sumbitch, you mean it wasn't the solution to end all solutions? Imagine that, it's only 21 years later and we gotta do something else? Next I'll have to call FDR and tell him to disband the CCC.

Posted by: alex on December 8, 2006 at 8:05 PM | PERMALINK

Beachwood: Sure thing, I'll call Premier Hu right now.

I appreciate that.

would you mind calling up dubya and have him remove American tariffs on steel and lumber?

Kinda late. The steel tariffs were lifted in 2003, after having been in effect since ... 2002.

The lumber tariffs (which only apply to certain Canadian softwoods) are now a whopping 11%.

Meanwhile, China, which crows about its "competitive" car and car parts industry, still has a 30% tariff. Wonder why?

Posted by: alex on December 8, 2006 at 8:19 PM | PERMALINK

Beachwood: You claim at once: 1) China needs to revalue their currency to a predefined level.

Please cite where I said "predefined" or "predetermined". Hint: that's a trick, as I never said any such thing. In fact, it's China's insistence on keeping the yuan at a predetermined rate (disregarding their laughably narrow trading band) that causes these problems. We live in a world of floating exchange rates, except for a few countries that play games.

There is no equilibrium, which doesn't square with the logic behind seeking a predetermined exchange rate.

Again, the predetermined exchange rate is precisely what I'm complaining about. You are also confusing averaged approximate balance (for one particular variable) with overall static equilibrium.

Are you high? Can you read? Seriously.

Posted by: alex on December 8, 2006 at 8:33 PM | PERMALINK

Disputo: That's precisely why currency reevaluation does not work in the long run, because things are not static.

That's why we have floating exchange rates. Except China. A managed revaluation was necessary in 1985 because of the BoJ's previous intervention (buying shiploads of dollars - a form of gov't intervention that kept the exchange rates from adjusting). Now, China is doing the same thing. The fixed exchange rate adds insult to injury.

BTW, do you have any better suggestions than revaluation?

Please, in the future, do not impute your own prejudices onto what I write -- just read it.

I apologize for the rant about my pet peeve (equilibrium analysis in economics), but my basic point stands. The term "long run" doesn't mean much. How long is it? 10 years, 100, 1000? Nothing works forever.

Posted by: alex on December 8, 2006 at 8:42 PM | PERMALINK

I hope the gauntlet slaps her in the face and knocks her down completely. I do not want her to run, be our nominee or, heaven forbid, be president.
She is a anyway the wind blows, inside the beltway, living in bubble, political machine stiff and boring to listen to. Can you imagine listening to a state of the union given by her??? shudder.

Posted by: vwcat on December 8, 2006 at 9:59 PM | PERMALINK

Alex,

I somewhat resent the fact that you think the Chinese are somehow stealing from or cheating you.
I tend to think that the Chinese deserve everything that that's coming their way, both good and bad.

I wonder if you've ever been to China yourself? I'm not Chinese, but I was lucky enough to spend a couple of weeks there and I was blown away. It seemed everyone had something to sell, some service to provide. You might find that annoying, but it was refreshing in the sense that it wasn't fake or contrived, like American commerce can be. Rather, it was vibrant, creative and at all times in good faith.

You're never going to sell anyone on the idea that the trade deficit can be explained away by the exchange rate. Nobody's going to by that. What they'll tell you is that the wage disparities are enormous in relation to the disparty in exchange rates by a multiple of 20 or more. Sadly, that means those jobs the Chinese now do are never coming back here.

Posted by: Beachwood on December 8, 2006 at 10:07 PM | PERMALINK

I don't want Hillary to run for the simple reason I can't bear to hear one more word about Vince Foster, cattle futures or Whitewater or I will lose my freakin' mind. Of course, the right wing slimechuckers will dutifully trot out those discredited myths at the first sign that she may be be in contention for the Democratic nomination.

Aaarghhh!!!!

Posted by: The Conservative Deflator on December 8, 2006 at 10:09 PM | PERMALINK

Beachwood: I noticed much the same thing when I was in Beijing in 1996 for the International Women's Conference - what the hell? I was in the neighborhood.

(An aside: Hillary was a keynote at the conference and I looked at my friend and said "she's running for something.")

Posted by: Global Citizen on December 8, 2006 at 10:17 PM | PERMALINK

Beachwood: I somewhat resent the fact that you think the Chinese are somehow stealing from or cheating you.

Where did I say that "the Chinese" are doing any such thing? I'm talking about Chinese gov't policy. And since their gov't is authoritarian and un-democratic, I certainly can't blame the people.

Moreover, I can't even blame the Chinese gov't for trying to play the game to their favor. That's their job. Unfortunately the US gov't doesn't see it as its job. That's what pisses me off. It's not the Chinese govt's fault that we're dumb enough to screw ourselves.

I was lucky enough to spend a couple of weeks there and I was blown away. It seemed everyone had something to sell, some service to provide. You might find that annoying, but it was refreshing in the sense that it wasn't fake or contrived, like American commerce can be. Rather, it was vibrant, creative and at all times in good faith.

Wow. Glad to hear it's a nice place. Maybe I'll visit. Of what relevance is that to this discussion?

You're never going to sell anyone on the idea that the trade deficit can be explained away by the exchange rate.

Ah, so you are of the "price doesn't matter" school of thought. Have I got some stuff to sell you!

BTW, if price doesn't matter, why doesn't the Chinese gov't drop its tariffs and subsidies, or even (gasp) float their currency? Maybe they don't agree with you.

Nobody's going to by that.

Of course not, except perhaps Paul Volcker, Martin Feldstein, et al, and anybody else who thinks that price does matter, or who looks at the historical evidence.

What they'll tell you is that the wage disparities are enormous in relation to the disparty in exchange rates by a multiple of 20 or more.

Of course you haven't taken into account the all important matter of labor productivity, which is much higher in the US.

Sadly, that means those jobs the Chinese now do are never coming back here.

Ah, so the Chinese will be content to forever sell us things, and loan us the money to do it with? Very nice of them. Also unprecedented in history.

You've already listed lots of popular fables about trade, all of which I've rebutted. Is this argument now reduced to "they're nice people and they work cheap"?

Posted by: alex on December 8, 2006 at 11:03 PM | PERMALINK

I read the comments.

From what I hear the posters saying, Hillary is not the populist we want. Pelosi sounds more like what we want.

Voters will choose the populist Republican as soon as Democratic special interest enter the arena, which they are doing as we speak.

Dems underestimate this force. The average citizen will choose a debt based government over a Dem special interest government. It is up to Pelosi to keep the focus on pay-as-you go, as soon as she stops once to protects some special group, then bingo, the average citizen goes right back to Republicans.

Right now, it looks like the first thing Dems are doing is abandoning paygo.

Posted by: Matt on December 9, 2006 at 2:29 PM | PERMALINK




 

 

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