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Elizabeth Warren plans to put an end to Wall Street control of the Democratic Party if she becomes president. The first place she would begin is with international trade policies, drawing sharp contrasts with Wall Street puppet’s Barack Obama, Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton in the process, along with Democratic Party Wall Street Senator Ron Wyden and dozens of other Democrats in political office.

Wyden has long been one of the architects of the growing income and wealth inequality in the United States over the last thirty years. He has continuously championed the exporting of tens of millions of American jobs on behalf of Wall Street investment banks and corporate bigwigs. The difference between the old higher U.S. wages and the new much less third world wages goes straight into the already fat wallets of the billionaires. My ex-wife calls Wyden, accurately as it turns out, a RepubliCon on all economic matters.

As for Warren, her plans include nine issues every nation would have to meet before negotiating a trade deal with the United States. Those standards include upholding and enforcing the labor rights laid out by the International Labour Organization, eliminating all domestic fossil fuel subsidies, fulfilling commitments from the Paris Climate Agreement, not running afoul of the State Department’s Country Reports on Human Rights, and not being on the Treasury Department’s monitoring list for manipulative currency practices. Warren’s requirements would apply not only to new trade deals but to existing treaties that Warren pledges to renegotiate.

Naturally, RepubliCons and Corporate/Wall Street Democrats, such as Wyden, will be opposed to Warren’s standards. So are the billionaires, Wall Street investors, and the so-called news media they control. Their only standard is to redistribute income and wealth from the 99 to the 1 percent even if the world burns.

Taken together, Warren’s mandates would fundamentally change American trade policy, potentially excluding many countries that would see the requirements as too onerous for the parasitic elites who control those governments, and who want to continue the maldistribution of income and wealth that existing trade agreements have been negotiated to bring about.

“For decades, big multinational corporations have bought and lobbied their way into dictating America’s trade policy,” Warren wrote, calling the policies across Republican and Democratic administrations a “failed trade agenda.”

“Trade can be a powerful tool to help working families but our failed pro-corporate agenda has used trade to harm American workers and the environment. My plan represents a new approach to trade — one that uses America’s leverage to boost American workers and raise the standard of living across the globe.”

In effect, Warren aims to reverse the income and wealth stolen from 99 percent of Americans and given to the billionaires by Wyden, Clinton, Obama, and the entire RepubliCon Party.

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Wall Street Democrats, such as Wall Street-owned president’s Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, as well as Wall Street’s senator’s Hillary Rodham Clinton and Ron Wyden, have led the way toward trade deals that have exported tens of millions of US jobs overseas, with the difference between the old higher US paying jobs and the new lower paying US jobs going directly into the pockets of the rich via higher corporate earnings, rising share prices and surging dividends.

These income redistribution scams are the primary reason income and wealth inequality have grown so lopsided in favor of the billionaires over the previous 35 years or so. Most of the Republican Party have stood right behind the Clinton’s, Wyden and Obama on these income redistribution scams. 86 percent of Republican voters understand these trade scams are intended to export US jobs, compared to 52 percent of Democratic voters. So the Republican leadership is happy to negotiate with the Wall Street DNC Democrats to take the lead on these trade scams. In fact, the two sides have worked together to create the income and wealth inequality in which we now suffer. That’s why Donald Trump is president.

So how do the Democrats get out of being blamed for exporting tens of millions of jobs and creating such massive income and wealth inequality? They lie and spread these lies using a number of corporate news outlets and fake academic studies that come from real universities.

When Barack Obama became president, and for a few years afterward, the US failed to create any net jobs. And so members of the Democratic Party came up with the ingenious lie; automation killed the jobs. Since then the economy has created twelve million new jobs, and you will notice automation hasn’t killed those jobs. Nor has automation killed the tens of millions of US jobs that have been exported to China, Vietnam, Mexico and elsewhere.

I’ve written about this Democratic Party lie many times.

Now in a new report, economists Lawrence Mishel and Josh Bivens of the Economic Policy Institute challenge the Democratic Party lie that the pace of automation is accelerating and that the use of robots will lead to much higher unemployment and greater inequality. They also point out that there is not one shred of evidence in any study showing that technology and automation are killing more jobs than they are creating. The authors argue that if automation actually led to higher overall joblessness, the United States would have seen consistently increasing unemployment over the last 70 years. That didn’t happen because technology and its offshoot called automation actually create more jobs than they displace.

Likewise, if automation were indeed surging and leading to joblessness in recent years, we would not have been able to reduce the unemployment rate from 10 percent in 2010 to under 4.3 percent now. The authors encourage policymakers to focus on the immediate need to create good jobs and robust wage growth—instead of getting worked up about a hypothetical “robot apocalypse.”

The imbalance of political power between the 1 and the 99 percent are the current reason why income and wealth inequality has grown over the last 3 1/2 decades.

For more information, click on the report at “The Zombie Robot Argument Lurches On; There is no evidence that automation leads to joblessness and or Inequality–Economic Policy Institute

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Get ready to fight once more against Wall Street. President Obama plans to introduce the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) after the elections. The TPP is a massive income and political power redistribution scam falsely marketed by its Wall Street supporters as a trade agreement. Elizabeth Swager of Citizen’s Trade Campaign is organizing an effort to defeat Obama’s scheme. Below is her letter and how you can help defeat this Wall Street plot.

Dear Fair Trade Supporters:

The White House has given every indication that they still plan to introduce the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) in Congress next month during the Lame Duck session. The corporations behind the TPP power grab understand that 2016 is their best shot of ever getting the pact approved, so, unfortunately, they’re going all-in on this and a mighty struggle will be upon us very soon.

The good news is that, if we each do our part, we can defeat this thing. Here are some easy ways you can help…

Please Join the National Call-In Days Against the TPP. A broad coalition of online, labor, environmental, consumer and other groups will be participating in the National Call-In Days Against the TPP from November 15 – 17. Last month, nearly 100 groups joined together to generate tens of thousands of calls into Congress against the TPP. With your help, we’re going to top that effort the first week of the Lame Duck session. We need you to please…

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Sign up to participate in the Call-In Days by clicking here, and we’ll make sure you receive template email blasts, tollfree numbers, click-to-call tools and unbranded memes that will make you’re participation easy. Each group is asked to send at least one email out to their supporters about the TPP on whatever day of their choosing on November 15, 16 or 17. Sign up to participate in the Thunderclap about the Call-In Days by clicking here.

Thunderclap is an online tool through which you can authorize your Facebook and Twitter account to automatically post one message about the Call-In Days on November 15th. If enough people sign up, we’ll reach millions of Americans through social media that day. You can do this on behalf of your group and as an individual. You just need to be on Facebook, Twitter or Tumblr.

Other Ways to Make a Difference:

A number of groups are flying and bussing in members from throughout the country to participate in a National Lobby Day Against the TPP in Washington, DC on Wednesday, November 30th. If you can personally make it — or your organization can send even just one or two supporters — let’s coordinate!

While we can’t fund people’s travel, we may be able to identify home stays and carpooling options, and we’ll definitely keep you in the loop about a planned morning breakfast briefing, an afternoon press event and rally, and a free Rock Against the TPP concert in DC with 1,500 of your new closest friends that evening. Please let us know you’re interested by clicking here.

Can’t make it to DC? No problem. Have you checked in with your U.S. Representative about his or her TPP position recently? This is perhaps the most important thing each of us can do right now. Members of Congress are back home, in-district now through the election, and we need each and every one of them to commit to oppose the TPP. Please either meet with them, call them or attend one of their public events and ask them: “Will you commit to oppose the TPP before the election?”

Please share any updates on your outreach and conversations you have with me, so that we can track each members’ position closely. This whole thing could come down to just a handful of votes, so every conversation matters.

The TPP’s chances of passage this year are too close for comfort, but, by working together, I’m confident we can win. The Call-In Days are one incredibly easy way to make a real contribution.

In solidarity,
Elizabeth Swager
Citizens Trade Campaign

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A new poll by the Pew Research Center show that 80 percent of US citizens believe that trade agreements have cost the United States jobs. According to the poll:

“The public sees threats to jobs coming from several directions: Eight-in-ten adults say increased outsourcing of jobs to other countries hurts American workers, and roughly the same share (77%) say having more foreign-made products sold in the U.S. has been harmful. Significant shares also cite increased use of contract or temporary workers (57%) and declines in union membership (49%) as trends that are hurting, rather than helping, workers. At the same time, global markets for U.S.-made products are seen as helpful for workers by 68% of adults. And seven-in-ten say the rise of the internet and email has been a net positive.”

The poll suggests the US public is not fooled by these trade scams that redistribute income from working folks to the rich. And they’re spot on.

According an Economic Policy Institute Study shows that over 2 million US jobs were exported to the eleven nations participating in the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) in 2015. That doesn’t count China, since it is not a part of the as of yet not approved TPP.

The U.S. trade deficit with China was $365.7 billion in 2015, or about double what it was with the TPP nations. This is a new record, up slightly from last year’s record of $343 billion. Counting the trade deficit with China suggests US companies exported at least 4 million more jobs in 2015, for a total of over 6 million jobs in 2015.

At least one study suggested US corporations have exported 26 million jobs since 2000. The EPI study for jobs loss in 2015 coupled with the US trade deficit with China suggests this is very likely, and perhaps even understates the job loss numbers.

That’s why Americans have wised up to these income redistribution scams falsely marketed as trade agreements. They may not know the exact number of jobs lost, but given that the current economic expansion is the weakest since the Great Depression, most people can see and feel that something has gone terribly wrong with the US economy.

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After the Ford Motor Company announced it was exporting thousands of US jobs to Mexico, where it will manufacture all of its small cars, Presidential candidate Donald Trump has forcefully argued that, if elected president, he would slap a 35 percent tax on Ford’s small cars coming into the United States from Mexico. That tax is called a tariff and critics are in an uproar over such a proposal.

According to CNN, “It would immediately make Ford cars more expensive for Americans.” This was dead wrong and intended to distract you from other answers.

Let’s get one thing straight. If the US imposed a 35 percent tariff on Ford’s Mexican made vehicles it wouldn’t make their vehicles more expensive.

Instead, it would force Ford to keep those jobs in the United States and pay middle class wages. That tariff would also do another thing the corporate propaganda machine doesn’t want you to know about.

Ford CEO Mark Fields told investors, “Over the next two to three years, we will have migrated all of our small car production to Mexico and out of the United States.” Notice Fields told investors what they should expect.

Moving small car production to Mexico was a sales pitch to entice investors into purchasing Ford shares in sufficient numbers to prop up the sliding share price. The announcement failed in its objective to appease large institutional investors such as JP Morgan/Chase and a variety of hedge funds.

So moving small car production to Mexico is pointless since it failed to achieve its goal before the first US job was ever exported.

A tariff on these Mexican made Ford vehicles would keep the jobs in the United States and have no impact on Ford’s share price. In addition, this tariff would help in some small way in the battle against income and wealth inequality that has taken place since tens of millions of US jobs have been exported.

The difference between the old higher US wages and the new lower Mexican wages would go straight into the pockets of rich shareholders via rising Ford profits and higher dividends. In this case, it is a unlikely Ford’s exporting jobs south will impact its already crummy share price. Ford is simply a bad investment.

The tariff is the way to go.

Besides, what’s an economy for? Is it for having shared prosperity for everybody, or for just making super rich people wealthier while impoverishing everybody else?

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Email from Arthur Stamolis of Citizens Fair Trade

Dear John,

The biggest challenge we’re facing in the fight to stop the anti-democratic Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement is that too many people still don’t know what it is.

That’s a real problem. And corporate lobbyists are hoping to exploit it to quietly rush the TPP through Congress this Fall. Fortunately, we’ve got a secret weapon to help sound the alarm: the Rock Against the TPP roadshow.

Shows are coming up this week in Seattle (Friday) and Portland (Saturday). Can you come to one? Click here for details.

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We’re teaming up with an awesome group of musicians and celebrities like legendary guitarist Tom Morello (of Rage Against the Machine, Prophets of Rage, and Audioslave), Talib Kweli, Anti-Flag, Downtown Boys, comedian Hari Kondabolu and actress Evangeline Lilly, to organize a nationwide roadshow featuring high profile speakers and performers coming together to educate the public about the grave threat the TPP poses to our most basic rights.

Through a series of large-scale educational concert events, protests, and teach-ins, we’ll reach huge numbers of people who have never heard of the TPP before, and ignite a mass movement to stop it in its tracks.

The tour is coming to the Northwest this weekend, and we need to make sure the events are huge. Click here to RSVP!

Here are all the details for this weekend’s shows:

Seattle Rock Against the TPP Concert
Fri, August 19th, 2016. 6pm – midnight
@ Showbox SoDo,
1700 1st Ave S, Seattle, WA
All ages. Wheelchair accessible.
FREE! RSVP required, click here.

Seattle line-up includes: Hip-hop icon Talib Kweli, Golden Globe nominated actress Evangeline Lilly, comedian Hari Kondabolu, Anti-Flag (acoustic), Downtown Boys, Danbert Nobacon of Chumbawamba, Makana, Sihasin, Bell’s Roar, Evan Greer, Taina Asili, and more. Plus lots of information and ways to get involved in the fight to stop the TPP. Invite your friends on Facebook here.

Portland Rock Against the TPP Concert
Sat, August 20th, 2016. 5pm – midnight
@ Director Park
815 SW Park Avenue, Portland, OR
All ages. Wheelchair accessible.
FREE! RSVP required, click here.

Portland line-up includes: Punk legends Anti-Flag (acoustic), Golden Globe nominated actress Evangeline Lilly, comedian Hari Kondabolu, Downtown Boys, Danbert Nobacon of Chumbawamba, Makana, Sihasin, Bell’s Roar, Evan Greer, Taina Asili, and more. Plus lots of information and ways to get involved in the fight to stop the TPP. Invite your friends on Facebook here.

The TPP is a legally binding deal between 12 governments, including the U.S., that was negotiated in total secrecy with hundreds of corporate lobbyists helping draft the text. If ratified, it would be the largest backroom deal of its kind in history, and it poses a grave threat to good paying jobs, the environment, internet freedom, food safety, and our basic democratic process.

As Tom Morello says, “Corporate lobbyists want to sneak the TPP through Congress quietly; that means it’s time for us to get loud.”

Click here to join us at Rock Against the TPP in Pacific Northwest!

Thanks for all you do,

Arthur Stamoulis, Executive Director
CITIZENS TRADE CAMPAIGN
Online: citizenstrade.org
Twitter: @citizenstrade

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'America's Biggest Export, Our Jobs!!'

‘America’s Biggest Export, Our Jobs!!’

The corporate news media, more accurately described as a propaganda machine, is on the move in an effort to derail the campaign of Bernie Sanders.

Below is an op-ed in the March 20, 2016 Oregonian newspaper. The Oregonian is a charter member of the corporate brainwashing machine. They used an op-ed written by economics professor Kimberly Clausing of Reed College.

The professor uses the economic fairy tales of free trade to point out the errors of those who are against the Trans Pacific Partnership, and other trade agreements, which are nothing more than scams to redistribute income and wealth from the 99 to the 1 percent. In Italics I show how she aims to mislead. The professor’s point of view is supported by the editors of the Oregonian, otherwise they would have offered a counter argument to the professor’s claims. So here it goes.

By Kimberly Clausing

“Candidates on both ends of the political spectrum, the far-left Bernie Sanders and the extreme Donald Trump, have displayed skepticism and even outright hostility regarding the influence of foreign competition on the U.S. economy.”

When was the last time you purchased an I-phone or a Dell computer made by a Chinese company? When was the last time anybody purchased something by a Chinese company? How about hardly ever? Much, and perhaps most, of Chinese exports to the USA are made by US corporations producing their products in China. The “foreign competition” isn’t with China. That “foreign competition” US companies face is US companies manufacturing stuff in China. The US trade deficit with China does not exist, at least not in total. In reality, the so-called trade deficit with China is largely a US trade deficit with US corporations that have shifted production from the US to China, and then exported their Chinese made products to the USA. Stunningly, the professor does not know this, but her ignorance is serving Wall Street and the rest of the 1 percent by brainwashing us to reality. 

The professor went on:

“Both Sanders and Trump have vowed to tear up existing trade agreements, table new international initiatives and make tougher deals with China.”

As pointed out above, Clausing is clueless about what she writes, but Bernie Sanders is not. Sanders understands that the primary export product of the US is US jobs. I don’t know what Trump understands about these deals, but it is clear that the editors of the Oregonian newspaper, as well as the New York Times, the Washington Post, the New York Post, the Wall Street Journal, CNN, ABC, Foxnews, MNSBC, and others, don’t want you to know this reality.

The Professor goes on and on:

“While both candidates are responding to very real voter concerns regarding wage stagnation and income inequality, they are proposing destructive solutions that will cause more harm than good for Americans, including Oregon’s workers and consumers.”

Clausing doesn’t understand that all those millions upon millions of US jobs in China, Pakistan, Malaysia, Vietnam, Mexico, and elsewhere, are depriving many US citizens of employment. Trade treaties paved the legal road to ship those jobs overseas, or create them there rather than here. One corporation alone, Nike, accounts for approximately one million jobs overseas. About 250,000 of those are in China, and another roughly 350,000 are in Vietnam. That’s just one US corporation, meaning tens of millions of US jobs are overseas exploiting lower wages, as well as lesser environmental and legal rights of workers.

“Let’s be clear,” Clausing wrote. “American workers have had a tough several decades. Aside from a period in the 1990s, wages have been nearly stagnant in recent years. And while economic growth in the United States does well in comparison with other rich countries, gains in gross domestic product (GDP) have increased incomes at the top of the income distribution far more than in the bottom 80 percent.”

Clausing’s got it correct there, but then she puts in the typical propaganda below. 

“Workers, and voters, are understandably frustrated. But many factors other than trade play a role in these economic outcomes.”

Trade is likely the biggest factor causing this frustration, and by a wide margin. Just look at all of those tens of millions of US jobs that have been exported, thanks to these trade agreements, but then Clausing steps into her own bullshit on her next paragraph.

“Foremost, technological change has revolutionized production processes, with computers displacing workers in many sectors. We no longer need secretaries to type our work or bank tellers to hand us cash. Assembly lines are more automated than ever before. Yet no one is suggesting that we throw away our computers to get these jobs back, because computers are useful in countless ways in our daily lives. And computers augment what skilled workers can produce and earn. The maker of a software application, the designer of an aircraft engine and the analyst of data are all more productive than they would be without computers to aid them.”

Economists have been warning for over two centuries that technology growth will lead to higher rates of unemployment, but that has never happened, then or now. Clausing, in the paragraph above, doesn’t understand reality, just obscure theory that isn’t based in reality. Technology wipes out jobs, and that’s true, but it typically creates far more jobs than it eliminates. Let’s take one example.

The National Cash Register Corporation (NCR), whose stock is traded on Wall Street, has been a US company since 1888. The company used to manufacture cash registers in the United States.Those jobs are long gone.

Nowadays, NCR manufactures its retail and restaurant self-checkout machines in China (which are officially called “Retail and Restaurant Point of Sale hardware and software,” on the company’s website). NCR is the largest manufacturer in the world of ATM machines, and almost all of them are made in China, and well, maybe they’re all still made there. A few years back, NCR announced that a tiny number of jobs manufacturing ATM’s might be brought back to the USA, but there is no evidence that I’ve been able to find to suggest this has come to pass. So it’s likely that all of NCR’s ATM machines are still made in China. NCR also manufactures Airport Self-Service Kiosks and a bunch of other items in China. In fact, everything it produces (with the possible exception of that small number of ATMs) are manufactured in China).

According to its website, NCR manufactures, “POS Terminals, POS Software, POS Printers, Fuel Controller, Back Office Software, Self Checkout.” Under the travel category, “Common Use Self-Service, Airport Kiosk, Hotel Check-In, Car Rental Software, Bus Check-In.” If this was fifty years ago, before the World Trade Organization, before all the free trade treaties, all of the company’s jobs would be in the United States.

NCR has more employees now than ever in its history, and this is especially true when you count the use of contractors and their employees in China. The technology produced by NCR has created more jobs than the old cash register business thirty years ago. Thousands of jobs were wiped out, but hundreds of thousands and perhaps millions more jobs have been created with the new technology.

Technology did not put those jobs in China. Low wages did, and the demands of its stock price did. The ability to produce massive amounts of pollution did. The ability to use an essential slave labor force six to seven days a week, and up to sixteen hours per day and without overtime pay, put those jobs in China. But something else paved the way to export those jobs; trade agreements.

“Trade, like computers, creates both winners and losers. Unfortunately, the workers that would have made the imported goods may be harmed.”

The professor should have added, because their jobs will be exported.

“But workers in export industries benefit greatly, and consumers benefit from price reductions on virtually every product they consume.”

The professor is way off base on this one, perhaps because she lacks real life experience. I have a friend named Sloan. He is a contractor who builds homes. He used to purchase his ceramic tiles from a company that manufactured them in the USA. Then one day he realized the company was now making them in China, and the price they charged him was the same.

“Increased foreign competition prevents domestic firms from wielding undue market power.”

Just look at the political markets and you’ll see who owns what. Wall Street investment firms own the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Koch Brothers own Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, and you can go on and on, but the professor shows total ignorance.

“Economic growth abroad makes more stable societies and alleviates world poverty.”

Tell this to the folks in Vietnam. They’re not allowed to unionize, their air is totally polluted, and they live in a total police state. Poverty is difficult to determine, and sometimes it’s a matter of opinion. But if the rich are getting richer, then the rest of us must be getting more poor.

Close, mutually beneficial economic ties between countries build peaceful relationships and reduce needless antagonism among nations. And addressing global policy problems like climate change will require an international community that is more interested in building bridges than walls.

I agree with the professor above, but that’s part of her propaganda about how everything is wonderful with trade agreements.

“Indeed, the country as a whole benefits from trade.”

Trade agreements have largely created the income and wealth inequality we have here in the USA, so the professor is way off base here. The rich primarily benefit from the scams that redistribute income from the 99 to the 1 percent and that are marketed as trade agreements. The difference between the old higher US wages and the new lower overseas wages goes straight into the pockets of the rich via higher corporate profits, rising dividends and soaring share prices. The job losers get unemployment insurance if they’re lucky. So no, the country as a whole has not benefited from international trade, but the rich as a whole has.

I could go on and on with Professor Clausing’s propaganda op-ed on behalf of the 1 percent, but by now you should see the difference between the reality of trade agreements, and the theory offered by the professor.

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