Worried about French protectionism? Look at the US!

October 11, 2007

I’ve been bashing French protectionism all along. But as good Frenchwoman I will now do some US “bashing”….In Europe, one can say that individual member states’ protectionist impulses are tempered in Brussels and the liberal interests of other member states. But who can stop the US government? Maybe the sense of statehood of political advisors? Or an undestanding that if the US wants to continue leading the world protectionism is certainly not the right policy to embrace since that means a straight road to economic decline. So here a few morceaux choisis:

Republicans:

In the WSJ, found on Greg Mankiw’s site:

By a nearly two-to-one margin, Republican voters believe free trade is bad for the U.S. economy, a shift in opinion that mirrors Democratic views and suggests trade deals could face high hurdles under a new president.

At a seminar held yesterday by the libertarian think tank Centre for the New Europe on the current online gambling case in the WTO won by Antigua and Barbuda, I learned that the US are now trying to pull out of the express committment in the WTO to allow cross-border supply of gambling services.

Democrats:

Hillary Clinton announced she would consider revising NAFTA if she comes to power. The FT reports:

Hillary Clinton, frontrunner for the Democratic party’s presidential nomination, yesterday said that all US trade agreements should be evaluated every five years and, if necessary, amended.

The process should start with the North America Free Trade Agreement, which was the signature trade pact of her husband, Bill Clinton, when he was president.

And as we know, the Democrats have been delaying the ratification of the bilateral agreements with Peru, Colombia, Korea, etc…

Here is an excellent analysis, again from the FT.

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