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Posts Tagged ‘Trade’
May 25th, 2018 at 8:50 am
Stephen Moore: Trade Deals Must Protect Intellectual Property Rights
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CFIF recently highlighted the importance of strengthening intellectual property rights as part of ongoing trade negotiations in a piece entitled “Intellectual Property:  NAFTA Renegotiation Priority #1.” Days later, Senator Pat Toomey (R – Pennsylvania) echoed that call in his Wall Street Journal commentary.

This week, celebrated economist Stephen Moore added his voice in a brilliant commentary entitled “Trade Deals Must Protect Intellectual Property Rights”:

American investments, ingenuity and entrepreneurship have made intellectual property one of our nation’s most important assets.  IP-intensive industries, including software, biotechnology and entertainment, now support nearly one-third of all U.S. jobs.  But too often, our foreign trading partners take unfair advantage of our IP innovations to enrich themselves at our expense.”

Moore proceeds to highlight the pharmaceutical sector as one particularly abused by foreign governments, and notes the enormous cost of IP theft to the U.S. economy by nations like China, then stresses the ominous danger if we fail to act:

Intellectual property is every bit as vital to our economy – if not more so – than steel or aluminum.    America leads the world in computer software;  drugs;  artificial intelligence;  patents;  trademarks;  and music, entertainment and other creative industries.  But how long can that last when competitor nations are ripping off our entrepreneurial companies to the tune of half a trillion dollars a year?”

It’s an excellent piece worth the read, and a welcome call from someone to whom the White House listens.

December 19th, 2017 at 6:16 am
CFIF Joins Coalition Urging Strong IP Protections for Any Renegotiated NAFTA Deal
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In a letter sent to Ambassador Robert E. Lighthizer, United States Trade Representative, the Center for Individual Freedom joined with a coalition of 25 organizations to urge strong intellectual property protections for any renegotiated NAFTA deal.

The letter, which was organized by the American Conservative Union, can be read by clicking here.

April 22nd, 2015 at 11:20 am
Conservatives Urge Passage of Trade Promotion Authority
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The Center for Individual Freedom yesterday joined a coalition of 20 free market, taxpayer advocacy, and limited government grassroots and public policy organizations on a letter urging Congress to pass Trade Promotion Authority (TPA).

TPA is a necessary step to get Congress moving on a long-stalled trade agenda,” the letter reads. “Without it, there is little hope that this Congress will make any progress on advancing free trade, a conservative public policy goal which all our organizations support.”

Read the full letter here.

October 16th, 2012 at 6:01 pm
5 Points Romney Should Make in Tonight’s Debate

The Heritage Foundation tees up five issues that so far haven’t been mentioned in the Romney-Obama or Ryan-Biden matchups:

1)      Welfare Reform

2)      Trade

3)      Medicaid

4)      Federal Spending and Debt

5)      American-Produced Energy

Each of these is not only critical to American prosperity, but also conveniently is attached to a disastrous policy decision by the Obama Administration.

This summer Obama’s HHS gutted the work requirement for receiving welfare checks that was the hallmark of the mid-1990’s reform.

The President and his fellow liberals in Congress held hostage free trade agreements negotiated by the Bush Administration as a favor to labor unions, and in the process damaged our international standing.

Obamacare is scheduled to hit Medicaid doctors with a 19 percent pay cut starting in 2014.

This is the fourth consecutive year of $1 trillion budget deficits presided over by President Obama, and there is no indication the incumbent will do anything differently if reelected.

As for domestic energy production, Obama’s rejection of the Keystone XL pipeline angered not only consumers paying high gasoline prices, but also the unionized labor that stood to benefit from short- and long-term job creation.

Mitt Romney should look for ways to insert these failures of leadership into his answers during tonight’s townhall debate with Barack Obama.  People need to be reminded that the President’s kneejerk liberalism is bankrupting the country.

May 4th, 2010 at 7:51 pm
Does China’s Currency Manipulation Matter?
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That was the topic taken up by two of the nation’s finest economic journalists over the weekend.

Newsweek’s Robert Samuelson, one of the few legitimate talents left on that particular sinking ship, says yes:

… What’s missing [to promote a global economic rebalancing] is a sizable revaluation of China’s currency, the renminbi. Fred Bergsten of the Peterson Institute thinks the renminbi may be 40 percent undervalued against the dollar. This gives China’s exports a huge advantage and underpins its trade surpluses. Other Asian countries fear altering their currencies if China doesn’t change first. “They’ll lose ground to China,” notes Hensley. The European Union, Brazil and India all feel threatened by the renminbi. President Obama wants U.S. exports to double in five years. That’s probably unrealistic, but it’s impossible if the renminbi isn’t revalued.

Samuelson is rarely deserving of a public refutation, but gets one (though it’s not targeted at him) from a recent column by the always-insightful Steve Forbes, who lays the China hysteria to rest:

… A decade and a half ago China fixed the yuan to the dollar. If there had been any mistake in the exchange rate it would have been flushed out in trade patterns fairly quickly. Again, to simplify: If you sell a bottle of wine for four loaves of bread but suddenly notice you’re getting only two loaves, you’ll adjust your price pretty quickly to ensure you’ll get those four loaves again.

 By fixing the yuan to the dollar Beijing outsourced its monetary policy to the Federal Reserve. And for this “manipulation” Washington politicians and policymakers are in a lather of outrage. This fixing of a measure of value has enormously facilitated commerce–and thus prosperity. During the last 15 years U.S. exports to China have increased 650%, China’s exports to the U.S. almost 670%.

As I noted in my criticism of Obama’s exports fetish in this year’s State of the Union, a focus on so-called “trade deficits” is meaningless. Forbes gives an excellent explanation:

The notion that a trade deficit or surplus indicates anything about an economy’s health is also mistaken. The U.S. has had a trade deficit with the rest of the world for some 350 years out of the 400-plus since Jamestown was settled in 1607. Focusing on deficits and surpluses ignores equally important flows of capital, as well as the phenomenon of supply chains and the intracompany trade that crosses borders.

Americans will survive Beijing’s economic policies intact. Whether we can say the same about Washington’s is another question altogether.

September 23rd, 2009 at 10:20 am
Time to Speak Up on Obama Trade War
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Hello.  Good morning.  We need to use this opportunity for an urgent message to American business, large and small (and even tiny), to American agricultural interests, large and small, regardless of crop, if you are or are trying to sell overseas or buy overseas.

Your president is in the process of starting a trade war with the Chinese over imported tires.  He is doing this on behalf of a union, no big news on that.  It is, as most protectionist acts in the global village, silly and ill-advised.  In this case, the potential upside is infinitesimal and the downside, in an unusually fragile economy, similar unto the scariest Halloween movie in which victims are picked randomly and abruptly for slaughter.

You may not be paying attention now, but you better.  Trade wars cannot be contained.  Trade wars cannot be limited to the original countries involved.  Trade wars cannot be limited to specific products or commodities. You wanna talk political triangulation?  Trade wars involve hyperdextrangulation squared. 

The problem with trade wars you ignore is that one day you wake up to learn you have become collateral damage, through no fault of your own, never did one thing wrong in or to any country involved.  Doesn’t matter.  That’s what collateral damage is.  You don’t want to become collateral damage.  You don’t want to explain to your employees and farm workers and families and children that you are collateral damage.

You have three choices.  The first is to call the president and tell him to stop this nonsense before it gets out of hand.  The second is to write the president and tell him to stop this nonsense before it gets out of hand.  The third is to do nothing and play foreign trade roulette.  You do not want to take the third option.

Trust us.  We know.  We once, shall we say, had some proximity to advising on targets for collateral damage in other countries.