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Why US Multinationals Oppose Trump and Favor Clinton
Raymond Richman, 7/3/2016

Apple’s CEO, Tim Cook, announced that Apple would not contribute to the costs of the Republican convention in Cleveland this year as it has done in past conventions.  Apple is a corporation incorporated in the.US but almost all of its products are produced in China. It is a Chinese company much more than it is an American company. And so are many other “U.S.” multinationals, including a number of high-tech companies like Hewlett-Packard. Hundreds of major American corporations have shipped millions of jobs overseas, according to an analysis of Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) filings made to the U.S. Department of Labor's Employment and Training Administration on behalf of the displaced workers. According to a report on CNN, over 900 US corporations are producing products abroad, a "who’s who" of American manufacturing firms. 

Given that the presumptive Republican candidate for President, Donald Trump has announced his intention to balance trade with China and re-negotiate all USA trade treaties to assure that trade becomes more balanced, Trump has incurred the opposition of companies that produce all or some of their products abroad and their spokesman, the US Chamber of Commerce.  The latter in its propaganda lauds the advantages of  U.S. exports and does not mention the disadvantages of U.S. imports which exceed the former by several hundred of billions per year causing the loss of millions of American manufacturing jobs. US multinationals account for a substantial share of manufactured goods  exports to the US, so it is not at all surprising that these companies should prefer a tweedledee candidate to Hillary’s tweedledum candidacy, lest a tariff be imposed on their exports to the U.S..

U.S. policies contributed to the growth of China as the number two manufacturing power. Pres. Richard Nixon normalized relations with China in 1972. On 24 January 1980 Congress passed a trade agreement conferring Most Favored Nation (MFN) status on China.  Despite this move, China’s MFN trade status (which was not granted permanently) created new legal and political impediments to Sino-American trade relations which were not removed until 2001, when China joined the WTO, whose rules prohibit members from imposing trade restrictions on other members except when they are experiencing chronic trade deficits. 

Growth in the U.S. goods trade deficit with China between 2001 and 2013 eliminated or displaced 3.2 million U.S. jobs, according to a study by EPI Director of Trade and Manufacturing Policy Research Robert E. Scott. Trade with China has caused job loss in all 50 states and the District of Columbia, including all but one congressional district. About two-thirds of jobs lost, or 2.4 million, were in manufacturing. The U.S. Bureau of the Census reported that American companies abroad and US subsidiaries of foreign corporations trade accounted for about 50.9 percent ($1,178.7 billion) of total consumption imports ($2,314.0 billion) in 2014. Republican and Democratic presidents Pres. Bill Clinton and George Bush did not concern themselves with the trade deficits’ disastrous consequences for American manufacturing workers and the US. Economy tanked as a result, no doubt contributing to the popularity of Trump’s candidacy.

The US. has concluded  trade Agreements with the following nations and groups of nations:  Australia,  Dominican Republic-Central America, Chile, Colombia, Israel, Jordan, S. Korea, Morocco,  the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), Oman, Panama, Peru, and Singapore. The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, and  and the Trans-Pacific Partnership are pending. A General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade culminated in 1994 with the establishment of the World Trade Organization (WTO), an international bureaucracy whose authority supercedes the Constitution. It ordered the U.S. last year to end its requirement for the labeling of country of origin on meat imported from abroad and Congress obediently repealed the labeling requirement.

Clearly, Apple and hundreds of other multi-national have reason to oppose Trump and prefer Clinton. But  millions of American workers comprising the working and middle-class have cause to prefer Trump to Clinton. No wonder so many Republican leaders oppose Trump; the traditional Republican leadership owes its allegiance to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce not to the American people. 

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Comment by Ron V, 7/10/2016:

Your article is indeed unequivocally true! The recent GDP data is 0 .8% and then tweaked up to a very dismal 1.1%, all of which are directly contributed to the issues that your article addressed.

    Since the Clintons enacted NAFT in 1994 our economy has been in a steady perpetual decline. The decline then accelerated,  under Obama and if it isn’t repaired very soon, the outcome will spell DISASTOR!  Can one remember the game show “Jeopardy”? First a category was chosen by the opponent, then a question was asked; in this case the category is “economics” and the question is; What two major factors will cause a developed country, to become  transitioned into a third world country? And the answer is ; what is socialism and a service economy.  We all know about socialism and the consequences of what has happened to many countries when they run out of other people’s money, their economies collapse and they declare bankruptcy. Now to expand on the second segment of the question, what is a service economy? “America is a service economy”. Since NAFTA, our country has lost millions of manufacturing jobs, and to top that off, many of our apathetic congressional members want to enact the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) bill, which will result in tens of thousands of more job losses. In a service economy most American workers perform services from financial to health care. Small to moderate size businesses service all of our daily personal and household needs. All we do is “market and sell all goods manufactured in foreign countries”!  Soon we will in effect, become a Third World Economy! We are unable to support even our current standard of living with lower incomes, or even see any improvements in our quality of life.

>>> The bottom line is, almost all private businesses cannot  pay  wages that can support our workers of today, much less an entire country! They are struggling just to survive and our brilliant leaders can only come up with a job killing minimum wage increase. These issues should have been  addressed  decades ago! As fertilizer in soil is essential for growth, manufacturing jobs in our country are essential for the growth of our economy!     

Response to this comment by Raymond Richman, 7/11/2016:
Dear Ron V: You are right on all counts. I hope it is not too late to arrest the decline of the US economy. But Congressmen and Senators are preoccupied with getting re-elected and avoided tackling the country's most serious problems. And our chosen leaders -- Clinton, Bush, and Obama -- were economic idiots. Ray


Comment by Bruce Bishop, 7/12/2016:

Service jobs pay less than half of what manufacturing jobs pay because service jobs add little value.  Manufacturing pays more because manufacturing adds significant value to raw materials.  For example, $2,000 worth of raw material becomes a $20,000 automobile through the addition of labor.  Manufacturing is often hot, dirty, noisy, boring, even dangerous.  These are all factors that push up manufacturing wages, while service jobs are usually in air conditioned enviromnents, with lesser physical demands, but, more interesting because of customer interraction.  People who prefer pleasant working conditions often opt for the relative comfort of service or retail jobs.  People whose priimary objective is to make as much money as possible opt for jobs in manufactruring, construction or mining.  Thanks to NAFTA and the WTO, those high paying manufacturing jobs have mostly been offshored to China.

Response to this comment by Ron V, 7/13/2016:
     Bruce, your comments are with much merit. I myself was involved in industry for many years in the cryogenic field, with air separation plants and while I did not obtain wealth, I did take care of my family. I however, did find that while I was a plant manager, I did find it very interesting as there were always problems to solve in-order to maintain optimum operating  efficiencies etc..  One must not forget that Mr. Richman’s  valid concerns with the US multinationals are with many key factors t in-order to repair our very fractured economy. They must invest in America. During WWII and the industrial revolution,  American workers  all came together with untold innovations.   As  Mr. Richman pointed out, the multinationals would just as well leave the trade agreements as they are.  There is however,  one major problem with their way of thinking. First, they complain about being competitive, while they are the ones that created and nurtured  the competition. Second , as the multinationals left the US, so went the R&D and innovation which we no longer have. Research and development brings innovation, and innovation brings on the job training with higher wages. With that said, Henry Ford once was asked by his peers, why he paid his workers so well and he simply replied, because they buy my cars. 


Comment by M, 7/14/2016:

Politics and politicians are the problem. At the Local, State, Federal level, a handful of corrupt pols prevent meaningful reform (Looking at you Paul Ryan R- WI).

Thus, No solutions will be attempted (I.E) renegotiate bad trade deals, enforce existing laws on illegal immigration, reform out of control New Deal/Great Society programs like Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid. (And the boneheaded Affordable Care Act.)

Gutting the USA's industrial base, combined with open borders Illegal Immigration means voter anger will be directed to rubber stamping the EASY solution. Socialism! Chavismo! I want it. Give it to me. NOW! 

(San Francisco=Sanctuary City) What other country allows an expensive tourist trap to set the national immigration policy?

In this election year, who is running an election campaign based on making incremental changes to address anything resembling the problems your books & blog have documented these past 7 years. (Besides Donald Trump)??

 

Response to this comment by Ron V, 7/14/2016:
Brovo, We must collabortivley work together, to stop the lunacy that our congressional so-called leaders have implimented upon our country. The new buzz word in the news media today is; “the establishment”. Who created this word? It of course, was Donald Trump (like him or not), that brought up all of the issues that Americans want to see corrected. In the 2010 and 2014 elections, we the coherent Americans, gave the House and Senate to the Republican Party and what did they do? NOTHING! Trump has turned on the lights for all Americans to see, exposing this apathetic party. Now they are terrified that if he gets in the door, their ice-cream cones will all turn into crap! When he turned on the lights for all to see, all of the roaches that they are, went scurrying for cover. That is what roaches do!!




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