Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Nafta
Old 03-01-2008, 02:49 PM   #1
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
mickeyd's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: South Texas~29N/98W
Posts: 5,884
Nafta

When I was watching the debate on TV this week between Sen. Obama and Sen. Clinton from Cleveland, Ohio they seemed to be quite concerned about the negative aspects of NAFTA. I came away from that debate with a feeling that I really felt uninformed because I had no idea that NAFTA was hurting so many folks.

After doing a bit of reading, it seems that I was not that misinformed after all. Both candidates probably know better than to bring up the subject here in Texas where this trade agreement seems to be better understood by the locals as they have been closer to the subject.

NAFTA did not begin shifting jobs from the USA to Mexico since it's passage 15 years ago under President Clinton. U.S. companies were setting up production sharing operations in Mexico back in the 60's. Mexico opened its economy and joined the rest of the world's trading system (including trademark and patent protection rules) in the 90's. NAFTA mearly codified what was already going on between US, Canadian, and Mexican companies. The way I see it, without NAFTA, this would have still continued. So why be so upset at NAFTA?

Maybe I have it wrong. If I am wrong, can someone here set me straight?
__________________

__________________
Part-Owner of Texas

Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read. Groucho Marx

In dire need of: faster horses, younger woman, older whiskey, more money.
mickeyd is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 03-01-2008, 04:36 PM   #2
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 5,072
Not sure of all of the details.

But! If your job was displaced because of moving the operation to Mx, you are probably not seeing the benefit of NAFTA. Whether or not NAFTA was the culprit.

I am sure that NAFTA removed some of the red-tape and lowered tariffs.

North American Free Trade Agreement - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
__________________

__________________
chinaco is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-01-2008, 04:44 PM   #3
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
youbet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Chicago
Posts: 9,965
Quote:
Originally Posted by mickeyd View Post
So why be so upset at NAFTA?
NAFTA enhanced the profitability of moving jobs/operations/business to Mexico, but did not start the process. NAFTA also simplified the process.

Would outsourcing to Mexico have occured without NAFTA? I think so, but to a smaller extent. That's why business, including the Megacorp I toiled for, worked and lobbied so hard to make NAFTA happen and profited extensively from it.

Some Americans have financially benefitted from NAFTA. Some have been devastated. The government recognized this and has provided some special compensation and programs for displaced workers who meet specific requirements.
__________________
"I wasn't born blue blood. I was born blue-collar." John Wort Hannam
youbet is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-01-2008, 11:54 PM   #4
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 13,291
It is interesting that people complain that a trade treaty was the cause of their job being moved....

What treaty was signed that made all the companies move a lot of their operations to India?

What about all the jobs in China? And Japan way back when before they had a meltdown?

The companies will go where they have a competitive advantage... yes, a free trade agreement might make it a bit easier, but they probably would have gone anyhow...
__________________
Texas Proud is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-02-2008, 12:46 AM   #5
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Brat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Portland, Oregon
Posts: 5,914
My take:
A lot of the jobs lost in the north central states were the result of corporate miss-management in the auto industry. US executives drove their customers into the hands of others. Foreign manufacturers set up plants in the south central states and proceeded to increase market share.

In addition, many of the manufacturing facilities in the US were constructed in response to WWII. Facilities constructed abroad after WWII were much more efficient. Advantage: new producers.

In large part NAFTA and the removal of import barriers caused garment production to leave the USA. That industrial change was very disruptive for those involved. But, these were not high-wage jobs.

It is really hard for US workers to accuse their executives of incompetence and fleecing their employers with huge severance packages, but they should.
__________________
Duck bjorn.
Brat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-02-2008, 04:39 AM   #6
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 5,072
During the last 60 years, the US enjoyed being the dominant player since Western Europe and Japan was bombed out and had to rebuild. Also because USSR (Russia and others) and China were virtually closed off with very weak economies.

It is a new time. We are going to have to figure out how to stay on top in this new world. I believe NAFTA is important, but there is some short-term pain with job adjustments.

Part of the problem is that US business people (CEO and Board) would sell their grandmothers for a short-term profit.

One very huge problem we have right now is energy. Why send our dollars to our enemies? We desperately need an energy program to keep money at home. Ethanol and nuclear program could help. We should probably figure out how to use our coal resources in an environmentally friendly way.

Energy could spur a huge industry in the US.

It is too bad that Ronald Reagan shutdown Carter's energy program. We would be almost 30 years ahead of where we are today.
__________________
chinaco is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-02-2008, 07:33 AM   #7
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 2,119
It is too bad that Ronald Reagan shutdown Carter's energy program. We would be almost 30 years ahead of where we are today.

Oh Oh Oh... Wait, Reagan you are badmouthing Reagan Tisk Tisk... You will be tarred and feathered and giving Carter props is well Nice that is Nice..
__________________
newguy88 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-02-2008, 07:48 AM   #8
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 5,072
Quote:
Originally Posted by newguy888 View Post
It is too bad that Ronald Reagan shutdown Carter's energy program. We would be almost 30 years ahead of where we are today.

Oh Oh Oh... Wait, Reagan you are badmouthing Reagan Tisk Tisk... You will be tarred and feathered and giving Carter props is well Nice that is Nice..

I call it the way I see it. Reagan is popular amongst ultra conservatives. For the rest of us he was so so. He made a few good moves and some bad moves. This particular one was not good. He wanted that money for other political reasons. The DOE is looking at some of the same programs proposed by Carter back then. Of course, the DOE is looking at others energy alternatives also.

I will also add that his VP (GHB) likely influenced the decision and of course he was unbiased.
__________________
chinaco is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-02-2008, 09:38 AM   #9
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Midpack's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Chicagoland
Posts: 11,983
Quote:
Originally Posted by chinaco View Post
Part of the problem is that US business people (CEO and Board) would sell their grandmothers for a short-term profit. Wouldn't have anything to do with investors (all of us) expectations would it? "We get what we deserve.

One very huge problem we have right now is energy. Why send our dollars to our enemies? We desperately need an energy program to keep money at home. Ethanol and nuclear program could help. We should probably figure out how to use our coal resources in an environmentally friendly way. Agreed, except ethanol (corn based as least) is not a cost effective answer or solution - shamefully politically convenient.

Energy could spur a huge industry in the US.
Comments
__________________
No one agrees with other people's opinions; they merely agree with their own opinions -- expressed by somebody else. Sydney Tremayne
Retired Jun 2011 at age 57

Target AA: 60% equity funds / 35% bond funds / 5% cash
Target WR: Approx 2.5% Approx 20% SI (secure income, SS only)
Midpack is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-02-2008, 11:54 AM   #10
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
youbet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Chicago
Posts: 9,965
Interesting comments. And all surprisingly in agreement that NAFTA greased the skids, so to speak, of outsourcing to Mexico but was not solely responsible. Much of the outsourcing would have occured anyway for the various reasons stated above.

OP's question, which we've all been skirting around, was "So why be so upset at NAFTA?" I think the reason labor and working class Dems in general don't like NAFTA is that they would have preferred some protectionist policies that protected their jobs rather than policies which, to some extent and in some cases, enhanced the profitability and ease of moving the jobs. They saw Clinton's pushing NAFTA as a betrayal of the ideology they elected a Dem president for.

In all practicality, I doubt NAFTA had all that much impact on outsourcing, but it did symbolically represent a Dem president supporting outsourcing which would be a disapointment to many labor and working class Dems.
__________________
"I wasn't born blue blood. I was born blue-collar." John Wort Hannam
youbet is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-02-2008, 04:15 PM   #11
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 13,291
Yes... there were some negative impacts to the agreement as listed....

BUT, nobody is saying about the 'good' that happened.... we are able to sell items cheaper as THEIR protectionism has been reduced or eliminated...

And as someone pointed out today on one of the talk shows, the Canadians said go ahead and opt out... we will sell our oil sands to the Chinese... and from what they said, there is as much or more oil up there than in Saudi Arabia...

So.... when all is said and done... is it 'good' or 'bad'... or just the same....
__________________
Texas Proud is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-02-2008, 04:37 PM   #12
Dryer sheet aficionado
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by Texas Proud View Post
And as someone pointed out today on one of the talk shows, the Canadians said go ahead and opt out... we will sell our oil sands to the Chinese... and from what they said, there is as much or more oil up there than in Saudi Arabia...

True, the oil sand deposits in Alberta are huge, to the tune of (according to Wikipedia) 174 billion recoverable barrels per the Canadian government at the "current price". This is out of 1.7-2.5 trillion barrels total. Very impressive.

Oil shale is another petroleum option and in that case, there is estimated to be 2.8 to 3.3 trillion barrels worldwide - with 62% of that in the United States in the Green River basin in Colorado, Utah and Wyoming. An equally impressive number.

However, the Canadian oil sands are producing ~1.2 million barrels a day (as of 2006 numbers) and they hope to increase that to ~5 million barrels a day by 2020. So that's 1.2 million out of the worlds ~85 million barrel a day consumption. And oil shale is still largely on the books as a research and development effort.

So the oil is there - you have to wonder - how much of the $40 billion in profit Exxon Mobil earned last year was spent trying to figure out how to profitably extract oil shale in the western US - when 70% of that oil shale is on land owned by you and me - via the Federal government...If the government wants to talk about an energy independent country - this is one place for the "moon shot" research money to pour into...
__________________
prgsdw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-02-2008, 04:42 PM   #13
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 2,020
OT, but I was just reading in my latest Sci Am about switchgrass. Regarding a 5-year study of yield per hectare, the magazine said "If processed by appropriate biorefineries (now being built), the yields would have delivered 540 percent more energy than was used to produce them, compared with at most 25 percent moer energy returned by corn-based ethanol."

Even if the claim ends up being overstated, it does lend some promise and credence to ethanol. Couple that with attempts to extract ethanol from corn silage and corn feed destined for livestock and I'm starting to think it could be viable.

This ethanol craze is really making it tough to find some land at a reasonable price around here though.
__________________
Marquette is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-02-2008, 09:56 PM   #14
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
youbet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Chicago
Posts: 9,965
Quote:
Originally Posted by Texas Proud View Post
And as someone pointed out today on one of the talk shows, the Canadians said go ahead and opt out... we will sell our oil sands to the Chinese... and from what they said, there is as much or more oil up there than in Saudi Arabia...

...
Actually, the Canadians will sell their oil sands based pretroleum to the highest bidder be that the USA, Chinese or whoever, with or without NAFTA. The highest bid will determine the market price and those willing to pay it will get the oil. I don't believe for a minute the Canadians would sell to us a penny below the price they could get elsewhere, regardless of trade agreements.
__________________
"I wasn't born blue blood. I was born blue-collar." John Wort Hannam
youbet is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-03-2008, 12:12 AM   #15
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 13,291
Quote:
Originally Posted by youbet View Post
Actually, the Canadians will sell their oil sands based pretroleum to the highest bidder be that the USA, Chinese or whoever, with or without NAFTA. The highest bid will determine the market price and those willing to pay it will get the oil. I don't believe for a minute the Canadians would sell to us a penny below the price they could get elsewhere, regardless of trade agreements.

True... I was just stating what someone said on TV....

But... does anybody know the benefits that we have gotten from NAFTA?
__________________
Texas Proud is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-03-2008, 05:03 AM   #16
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 5,072
Quote:
Originally Posted by youbet View Post
Actually, the Canadians will sell their oil sands based pretroleum to the highest bidder be that the USA, Chinese or whoever, with or without NAFTA. The highest bid will determine the market price and those willing to pay it will get the oil. I don't believe for a minute the Canadians would sell to us a penny below the price they could get elsewhere, regardless of trade agreements.
Good point. We are not getting a reduced rate. But I am not sure about how tariffs play into it.

However, Oil could be excluded from tariff.

The NAFTA concern is about Mx not Ca.

Putting up too many protectionist policies would not be good for the US. But we can begin driving a harder bargain on trade negotiations.

Until we fix this energy problem, we are scr3wed. A comprehensive energy program in this country would put many people back to work. Especially if it came from renewable sources.

Energy is another weakness of the Republican platform. They tend to be the party for status quo (big oil refiners).

I keep talking like this and I am going to talk myself into voting for a Dem.
__________________
chinaco is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-03-2008, 07:20 AM   #17
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 13,291
Quote:
Originally Posted by Texas Proud View Post
True... I was just stating what someone said on TV....

But... does anybody know the benefits that we have gotten from NAFTA?

OK... will do my own searching....

● U.S. exports to Canada and Mexico grew from US$134.3 billion (US$46.5 billion to Mexico and US$87.8 billion to Canada) to US$250.6 billion (US$105.4 and US$145.3 billion respectively).

USTR - NAFTA: A Decade of Success

And from another source...

"
Though U.S. investment in Mexico has increased, American cash hasn't exactly been gushing southward. In the past four years, America's direct manufacturing investment in Mexico has averaged $1.9 billion a year, a fraction of the $200 billion invested annually in our domestic manufacturing capacity. In fact, U.S. companies invest far more each year in other high-wage, high-standard economies, such as those of Western Europe and Canada, than they do in such developing countries as Mexico."

After 10 Years, NAFTA Continues to Pay Dividends

Soooo... where is all the 'bad' that has come from NAFTA? It seems more like a 'non event' that something bad... and if it is a 'non event', why get out when it would cost us in political points... and if it is 'good' then even more reason not to get out.
__________________
Texas Proud is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-05-2008, 04:32 PM   #18
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
donheff's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 8,650
Quote:
Originally Posted by youbet View Post
OP's question, which we've all been skirting around, was "So why be so upset at NAFTA?" I think the reason labor and working class Dems in general don't like NAFTA is that they would have preferred some protectionist policies that protected their jobs rather than policies which, to some extent and in some cases, enhanced the profitability and ease of moving the jobs. They saw Clinton's pushing NAFTA as a betrayal of the ideology they elected a Dem president for.

In all practicality, I doubt NAFTA had all that much impact on outsourcing, but it did symbolically represent a Dem president supporting outsourcing which would be a disapointment to many labor and working class Dems.
I think that is about right. And, though I love them both, I suspect Obama and Clinton (Hilary) don't really give a rat's as about "dealing" with supposed NAFTA problems. They are just courting labor votes - not that there is anything wrong with that
__________________
Every man is, or hopes to be, an Idler. -- Samuel Johnson
donheff is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03-05-2008, 05:36 PM   #19
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
clifp's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 7,451
The reality that Democratic politicians (and protectionist folks like Buchannan) don't talk about is that high paying blue collar manufacturing didn't get outsourced to Mexico, or India, or China. For the most part these jobs simply disappeared. They are gone and are never coming back.

The country that lost the most manufacturing jobs this century is China, by far.
The world needs less people to make cars, TVs, blue jeans etc than it did a decade ago. Just like at the beginning of the 20th century the world needed less farmers than it did the late 1800s. But pandering gets more votes.
__________________
clifp is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-05-2008, 09:55 PM   #20
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
youbet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Chicago
Posts: 9,965
Quote:
Originally Posted by donheff View Post
I suspect Obama and Clinton (Hilary) don't really give a rat's as about "dealing" with supposed NAFTA problems. They are just courting labor votes - not that there is anything wrong with that
Of course they don't.......

I do give Hillary and her handlers a lot of credit for how they've been able to associate her with Bill's initiatives that are viewed favorably and disassociating her with those that aren't. Really running the obstacle course nimbly! She was there experiencing everything with Bill and therefore is now able to "answer the phone when it rings at 3:00 AM." But when courting Ohio labor/blue collar votes, "hey, NAFTA was Bill's program. I was serving tea and biscuits to the ladies at the quilting bee......."

Obama really wasn't there, but he still recommeds changes to NAFTA, at least he does so to ears that want to hear that it will be changed!

Whatever the voters want to hear......... Our politicians in action!
__________________

__________________
"I wasn't born blue blood. I was born blue-collar." John Wort Hannam
youbet is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


 

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 07:12 AM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.