In the US, it’s Presidential campaign time … again. This time for the November 2020 balloting.
Candidates are jockeying for attention, contributions and eyeballs. Debates abound: winners and losers are emerging.
There is a lot of drama … again.
But now reference is being made to a previous campaign in 1992 when there was a viable 3rd Party Candidate: H. Ross Perot. He garnered 18.9 percent of all votes for the presidency that year; (but he captured no electoral votes).
Ross Perot died this week. 🙁
The theme of his campaign was that the US signed very Bad Trade Deals and that “sound you hear is all the jobs being sucked dry and sent to Mexico”.
He was right!
America did make Bad Trade Deals, NAFTA in particular. Jobs did leave … for Mexico. The angst over this historicity allowed for the emergence of another bad American phenomena: Donald Trump.
These are not our words … alone. See this news-editorial here:
Title: Ross Perot — the father of Trump
The contrast between the quietude of Perot’s last aging years and the blaring trumpets of his 20th-century business and political career is so stark it takes some effort now to recall how large this cocksure Texas bantam once loomed.
A touch of exaggeration is standard in obituaries, but it doesn’t take much in Perot’s case. He was a secular prophet who in his time anticipated and personified the disruptive currents of the present.
Whether that’s a compliment, of course, depends on what you think of the present. But for people who on occasion (perhaps several times a week) respond to the news in the Trump era by thinking to themselves, I can’t believe this is happening, Perot’s story is a useful reminder that norm-shattering, cult-of-personality politics is not an exclusively recent phenomenon.
A quarter-century before Donald Trump, Perot was a brash, can-do showman who expressed contempt for politics as usual and promised voters who shared his disdain that the path to national greatness was to send an autocratic businessman with a touch of jingo to the White House to kick ass in Washington.
Perot said cozy, insider self-dealing had corrupted Washington and was screwing over average Americans, and he complained that free-trade agreements such as NAFTA were raw deals for workers and the economy. This message from 1992 is a linear ancestor of the one that echoes to some degree in both parties and vaulted Trump to the presidency in 2016.
He also said budget deficits of some $250 billion annually would bankrupt the country, a message that sounds quaint at a time of trillion-dollar deficits that even onetime fiscal hawks no longer are especially agitated about.
Read the full article at: https://news.yahoo.com/ross-perot-father-trump-004715960.html
In another campaign for another year – 2016 – similar declarations were made by candidate Bernie Sanders. (He is running for President again in 2020). This commentary published a blog then relating this Bad Trade Deal advocacy. It is only apropos to Encore that blog from April 9, 2016 again here-now:
Go Lean Commentary – An Ode to Detroit – Good Luck on Trade!
It’s now time to say “goodbye and good luck” to the City of Detroit with these passing words, lessons and advice …
A commonly accepted economic principle declares that “Voluntary Trade Creates Wealth”.
Really? The City of Detroit, Michigan seems to have not “gotten the memo”.
The actual principle is summarized in the book Go Lean … Caribbean (Page 21) as follows:
Voluntary Trade Creates Wealth – People specialize in the production of certain goods and services because they expect to gain from it. People trade what they produce with other people when they think they can gain something from the exchange. Some benefits of voluntary trade include higher standards of living and broader choices of goods and services.
Detroit is branded the Motor City or Motown for being the capital of the American Automotive industry, (all the Big 3 car-makers – General Motors, Ford and Chrysler – are based in this metropolitan area). From a trade perspective, automobiles are among the most successful American exports. According to this simple logic – trade creates wealth and Detroit is home to one of America’s best trade products – there should be win-win for all stakeholders in the vertical automotive industry, including the local communities. Right?
Not quite! This is NOT the reality.
This article below, just in time for the US presidential elections – posted on March 8, 2016 – and the arrival of the main candidates for the Democratic and Republican nominations, reveal the truth of life in today’s Detroit … and the dire consequence of free trade:
The City of Detroit has gone from one of the country’s richest in the 1960s to one of the poorest [today].
The once-thriving automotive hub is pocked by blighted homes and crime and has more children living in extreme poverty than any of the nation’s 50 largest cities. Manufacturing job losses devastated neighboring communities, sowing more than 20 years of resentment among white, working-class Democrats over the North American Free Trade Agreement.
Source: MSN Social Media Site; (posted 03-08-2016; retrieved April 9, 2016) .
The publishers of the Go Lean book have been in Detroit to “observe and report” on the turn-around and rebirth of the once-great-but-now-distressed city and its nearby communities; (we have also considered the dysfunction of Flint and the promise of Ann Arbor). There have been so many lessons to learn from Michigan: good, bad and ugly. Consider this sample here conveyed in previous blogs/commentaries:
|http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=7601||Beware of Vulture Capitalists|
|http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=7268||Detroit giving schools their ‘Worst Shot’|
|http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=7235||Flint, Michigan – A Cautionary Tale|
|http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=6965||Secrecy, corruption and ‘conflicts of interest’ pervade state governments|
|http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=6609||Before and After Photos Showing Detroit’s Riverfront Transformation|
|http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=6269||Education & Economics: Welcome to Detroit, Mr. President|
|http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=6022||Caribbean Diaspora in Detroit … Celebrating Heritage|
|http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=5597||The Dire Strait of Unions and Collective Bargaining|
|http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=5055||A Lesson from an Empowering Family in Detroit|
|http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=4913||Ann Arbor: Model for ‘Start-up’ Cities|
|http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=4476||De-icing Detroit’s Winter Roads: Impetuous & Short Term|
|http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=3713||NEXUS: Facilitating Detroit-Windsor Cross-Border Commerce|
|http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=3326||M-1 Rail: Alternative Motion in the Motor City|
|http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=3311||Detroit to exit historic bankruptcy|
|http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=3164||Michigan Unemployment – Then and Now|
|http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=2480||A Lesson in History: Community Ethos of WW II|
|http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=1656||Blue is the New Green – Managing Michigan’s Water Resources|
|http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=970||JP Morgan Chase’s $100 million Detroit investment – Not just for the Press|
The full news article from the MSN Social Media Site is embedded here, retrieved from – http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/michigan-a-critical-showdown-for-sanders-to-mount-comeback/ar-BBqsehO?li=BBnb7Kz&ocid=ieslice:
Title: Michigan ‘a critical showdown’ for Sanders to mount comeback
By: Heidi M. Przybyla
The Midwestern industrial state, which holds its primary Tuesday [(March 8, 2016)], is the ideal audience for Sanders’ campaign message about “unfair” trade agreements, income inequality and a “rigged economy.”
“This is ground zero for trade,” said Rep. Debbie Dingell, D-Mich. “People are frustrated. It’s been almost 15 years, and they’re not better off than they were,” said the first-term Democrat, who is backing Clinton.
Yet Clinton has consistently led in polls — a Monmouth University Poll out Monday showed her up 13 points. “If he can’t win in Michigan, where can he win besides these small caucus states?” said Susan Demas, publisher of Inside Michigan Politics, a political analysis newsletter. Sanders campaign manager Jeff Weaver is calling Michigan “a critical showdown.”
Mississippi also holds a primary on Tuesday, and Clinton is favored there.
The city of Detroit has gone from one of the country’s richest in the 1960s to one of the poorest. The once-thriving automotive hub is pocked by blighted homes and crime and has more children living in extreme poverty than any of the nation’s 50 largest cities. Manufacturing job losses devastated neighboring communities, sowing more than 20 years of resentment among white, working-class Democrats over the North American Free Trade Agreement.
Sanders is hitting Clinton hard on the trade issue, including a recent ad picturing abandoned homes and factories. NAFTA was championed by her husband, former president Bill Clinton, though the former first lady is trying to distance herself from a number of those policies.
Michigan could expose some of Clinton’s longer-term vulnerabilities. Some of the state’s most powerful unions, including the Teamsters, the AFL-CIO and the United Auto Workers, traditional Democratic allies, haven’t endorsed a candidate. Many union rank-and-file backed her husband in 1992 and 1996 but are now supporting Sanders or Republican front-runner Donald Trump.
“She’s also competing with Donald Trump, who’s made this a strong issue and not backed down on the currency trade issue,” said Dingell. “There’s a lot of pent-up anger, and Donald Trump let’s them release it,” she said.
Sanders may be indirectly helping Trump. At campaign rallies, he has repeatedly slammed Clinton on trade, listing it as a key area where they disagree. Sanders says he led opposition to NAFTA and permanent normal trade relations with China, which he says resulted in the loss of millions of middle-class jobs and “a race to the bottom.” His campaign, in a March 3 news release, dubbed Clinton the “outsourcer-in-chief.”
Clinton has been trying to distance herself from the 1990s-era policy. In the Flint debate, she tried to distinguish her record from that of her husband’s. As a senator, she voted against a Central American trade agreement, the only multinational pact that came before her, she said. More recently, she’s come out against the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
Nearing closer to the nomination, Clinton has begun to discuss the role Sanders would need to play in unifying the party. During a town hall forum Monday in Grand Rapids, she talked extensively about how she encouraged her voters to back Barack Obama in 2008.
“I had a lot of passionate supporters who did not feel like they wanted to support then-Sen. Obama. I worked as hard as I could. I nominated him at the convention. I made the case, because he and I shared a lot of the same views,” she said.
“We have differences, but those differences pale in comparison to what we see going on with the Republicans right now,” said Clinton.
Clinton’s supporters acknowledge a Michigan loss is unlikely to deter Sanders. Several testy exchanges in the Flint debate highlighted festering tensions between the two, and Sanders is flush with campaign donations to keep him going.
“I think Hillary Clinton will win Michigan,” said Dingell. “But I think Sen. Sanders plans on staying in this race for a while.”
Contributing writer: Nicole Gaudiano
News Update: Senator Bernie Sanders won the Michigan Democratic primary.
There is a strong current against free trade deals in big industrial cities in the American north. At this juncture (April 9, 2016), Bernie Sanders has won the last 7 state primaries with his “unfair trade” message:
But chances are, these trade agreements will not disappear, even under a new president – to be elected later this year. (Listen to the related AUDIO podcast in the Appendix below).
These free trade agreements are ratified treaties with other countries that are not so easily dismantled. Plus, the US business interest has proven to be formidable in their obstructionism to radical changes to their status quo.
The Go Lean movement asserts that there is a Crony-Capitalistic influence in the US that creates a societal defect for forging change. In this case, trade deals like NAFTA allow big corporations to shift labor costs to alternate locales with lower payroll costs. This commentary has related that the money motivation with this strategy may be too much to overcome in the America of 2016.
Good luck to Detroit.
Hope and Change? Not here, not now.
The book Go Lean… Caribbean urges Caribbean citizens not to be swayed by the false perception of refuge in America. The grass is NOT greener on this side.
Yes, the status quo in the overall US is better than the status quo in the Caribbean, but change is afoot. This movement – book and blogs – posits that it is easier to reform and transform the Caribbean member-states than to attempt to change America. The Go Lean book serves as a roadmap for the introduction and implementation of the technocratic Caribbean Union Trade Federation (CU). This represents a confederation of the 30 member-states of the Caribbean region, including the US Territories (2): Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands); the French Territories (5); 6 Dutch Territories constituted as 1 member; British Overseas Territories (5) and independent states and Republics (17).
This CU/Go Lean roadmap extols a priority of trade in the execution of its prime directives. Economic stability and progress is fundamental to forging an elevated society. As observed in Detroit, dysfunction in a community’s economic engine, brings about dysfunction in other facets of societal life. This explains why Detroit is also plagued with rampant crime. (During the course of the Go Lean movement’s observing-and-reporting on Detroit, there were some acute criminal activities, like the one case where a mother was adjudicated for killing and storing 2 dead children in her kitchen freezer). Likewise, the City has been plagued with one instance after another of ineffectual governance or municipal corruption. (A recent ex-Mayor – Kwame Kilpatrick – lingers in federal prison on federal corruption convictions). This is why the CU prime directives feature economics, security and governance, as defined by these 3 statements here:
- Optimize the Caribbean economic engines of the region to grow the GDP of the economy to $800 billion and create 2.2 million new jobs.
- Establish a security apparatus to protect the resultant economic engines in the Caribbean.
- Improve Caribbean governance – including municipal, state and federal administrations – to support these engines.
The Go Lean roadmap seeks to reform the Caribbean, not the City of Detroit nor America. The roadmap opens with the call for the consolidation of trade negotiation for the region – treating everyone as equals. This point is echoed early, and often, in the book, commencing with these opening pronouncements in the Declaration of Interdependence (Pages 11 – 14), as follows:
viii. Whereas the population size is too small to foster good negotiations for products and commodities from international vendors, the Federation must allow the unification of the region as one purchasing agent, thereby garnering better terms and discounts.
xi. Whereas all men are entitled to the benefits of good governance in a free society, “new guards” must be enacted to dissuade the emergence of incompetence, corruption, nepotism and cronyism at the peril of the people’s best interest. The Federation must guarantee the executions of a social contract between government and the governed.
xvi. Whereas security of our homeland is inextricably linked to prosperity of the homeland, the economic and security interest of the region needs to be aligned under the same governance. Since economic crimes … can imperil the functioning of the wheels of commerce for all the citizenry, the accedence of this Federation must equip the security apparatus with the tools and techniques for predictive and proactive interdictions.
xxiv. Whereas a free market economy can be induced and spurred for continuous progress, the Federation must install the controls to better manage aspects of the economy: jobs, inflation, savings rate, investments and other economic principles. Thereby attracting direct foreign investment because of the stability and vibrancy of our economy.
xxx. Whereas the effects of globalization can be felt in every aspect of Caribbean life, from the acquisition of food and clothing, to the ubiquity of ICT, the region cannot only consume, it is imperative that our lands also produce and add to the international community, even if doing so requires some sacrifice and subsidy.
The Go Lean roadmap therefore constitutes a change for the Caribbean. This provides the tools/techniques to bring immediate elevation to the region to benefit one and all member-states. The book details the community ethos to forge such change; plus the executions of the following strategies, tactics, implementations and advocacies to make the changes permanent:
|Community Ethos – Deferred Gratification||Page 21|
|Community Ethos – Economic Systems Influence Individual Choices||Page 21|
|Community Ethos – Voluntary Trade Creates Wealth||Page 21|
|Community Ethos – Lean Operations||Page 24|
|Community Ethos – Return on Investments||Page 24|
|Community Ethos – Cooperatives||Page 24|
|Community Ethos – Ways to Improve Negotiations||Page 30|
|Community Ethos – Impact the Greater Good||Page 37|
|Strategy – Unified Region in a Single Market Economy||Page 45|
|Strategy – Customers – The Business Community||Page 47|
|Strategy – Agents of Change – Globalization||Page 57|
|Tactical – Confederating a Permanent Union||Page 63|
|Tactical – Fostering a Technocracy||Page 64|
|Tactical – Growth Approach – Trade and Globalization||Page 70|
|Tactical – Separation of Powers – Interstate Commerce Admin||Page 79|
|Tactical – Separation of Powers – Office of Trade Negotiations||Page 80|
|Implementation – Ways to Pay for Change||Page 101|
|Implementation – Foreign Policy Initiatives at Start-up||Page 102|
|Implementation – Ways to Deliver||Page 109|
|Implementation – Trade Mission Office Objectives||Page 116|
|Planning – Ways to Improve Trade||Page 128|
|Planning – Ways to Improve Interstate Commerce||Page 129|
|Planning – Lessons Learned from Detroit||Page 140|
|Advocacy – Ways to Grow the Economy||Page 151|
|Advocacy – Ways to Create Job||Page 152|
|Advocacy – Ways to Improve Housing – Lesson from Detroit to raze Dilapidated housing||Page 161|
|Advocacy – Ways to Improve Governance||Page 168|
|Advocacy – Ways to Improve Local Government||Page 169|
|Advocacy – Ways to Better Manage the Social Contract||Page 170|
|Advocacy – Ways to Foster Cooperatives||Page 176|
|Advocacy – Ways to Impact Main Street||Page 201|
The issues in this commentary are important for the development of Caribbean region. There is the need to fully participate in trade agreements; it is the only way to fully compete in a globalized marketplace. But there is the need for a new regulatory regime for the Caribbean market, as free market dynamics are normally based on supply-and-demand. The Caribbean member-states, with their small population and market-sizes have not been able to compete with the voluminous demand nor voluminous supply of some of the bigger countries (i.e. China, India, EU, the US, etc). The consolidated CU market would be different … and better!
The Go Lean book is a detailed turn-by-turn, step-by-step roadmap for how to lean-in to a new trade regime. We now urge everyone in the region – all stakeholders: citizens, visitors, direct foreign investors, trading-partners, business establishments – to lean-in to this roadmap. With this plan, we would have reason to believe in “Hope and Change” for the Caribbean region, for it to be a better place to live, work and play.
So as we move onto another American locale (Miami) for final preparation for an eventual repatriation, here’s our advice to the Caribbean Diaspora living in Detroit: Go home and help with this Go Lean roadmap to elevate the Caribbean …
… and to the people of Detroit, we say: Good luck. We invite you too, to come and visit us in the Caribbean … often. 🙂
Download the book Go Lean…Caribbean now!
APPENDIX – AUDIO Podcast: Free Trade On The Campaign Trail – http://www.npr.org/podcasts/510053/on-point-with-tom-ashbrook#
Posted March 8, 2016 – From Trump to Sanders, free trade is getting a thumping on the campaign trail. Could, would the United States really turn it around? Plus: inspecting stalled millennial wage growth.