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Obama's "Buy American" clause stirring global concern

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posted on Feb, 2 2009 @ 04:28 PM
Its a little late to say buy American! What I do not understand is how we can let GM send 1 billion of the bail out money over to there plant in Brazil. This does not help the US economy......just GM's well being!!

[edit on 2-2-2009 by Cloudsinthesky]

posted on Feb, 2 2009 @ 04:42 PM
I agree one hundred percent with only America clause, America's economic downfall is partly due to America addiction to foreign goods, while allowing the industrial base of the nation to go oversea.

American steel is one of the last staples left in the nation and we produce the best darn steel in the world.

And as for jobs, they need to force companies to stop giving away workers visa to outsource Americas work force.

If the company can not provide a valid reason why he needs a foreign worker to replace an American born then fine them to hell, then if the leave the nation fine them twice to hell.

The stimulus is to stimulate Americas economy and its work force, not to boost every other nations economy because we have trade rules.

The hell with them, is our tax payer money, get it!!!!!!!!!

posted on Feb, 2 2009 @ 06:48 PM
Ok, so what about the resources that America can not self-produce or supply on it's own and to it's own?

What about natural resources?

I applaud the mentality and sense of purpose of the clause, but is it realistic beyond steel supply?

posted on Feb, 2 2009 @ 06:50 PM

Originally posted by projectvxn
reply to post by sos37

Don't confuse free-trade with free-markets.
Free markets have controls free trade does not. The free market enforces monopoly laws, tariffs imports and fosters competition here in the US by offering competitive wages, better products, and consistent growth.

Free-trade is a cost cutting profit mechanism that is actually anti-free market as huge monopolies, regional, national, and global corner markets, stifle competition and by design wages and production(which go hand in hand in a true free-market system).

Never confuse the two. The fascist elite in this country have done a good job of confusing the meaning behind both concepts. But they are not created equal.

The sad truth regarding the American free market capitalism system is that there is no such thing. The free market in the USA has never been free and fair and never will be. As long as government allows lobbying, which is nothing but bribery, corporate wealth and power will corrupt it. It's true that this system was safeguarded with legislation to prevent monopolies and keep the playing field level, but that is an illusion. The biggest problem caused by slimy politicians adjusting and relaxing regulations is that they are not relaxed for everyone. The little guy must play by the rules at all times while the big money players do not. This is unfair and destructive to long term economic growth. Not free market!

One example of the cause and effect from this is the story of the 93 year old man that froze to death in Michigan recently. DTE Energy company has monopolized natural gas and electricity in Michigan. In this area they are the only choice available for these services and have no competitors to adjust pricing. This alone is dangerous and inflated costs will always result. For an old man on a fixed income, enormous increases in utility costs may be impossible to maintain? Letting the inmates run the penitentiary may have been enough to condemn this man to death? This is unacceptable and proof it's not free market!

In 2001 this was combined with the Bush administrations relaxed oversight and regulatory policies that were installed early in his term. The end result left fair pricing for consumers in Michigan solely at the mercy of this single mega corporations discretion. Unfortunately, this was taken advantage of immediately by DTE Energy and costs for these utilities doubled. Shortly after doubling they were increased 20%. The following cold season after that saw another increase of 10%. I was informed just yesterday by them that we are to get another increase of 50% very soon? Not free market!

To put this in perspective I'll show how this effected me personally, which directly caused the closing and bankruptcy of my 20 year business. I, until recently, had a successful, well respected Collision/Custom Auto Body & Paint facility in metro Detroit, Mi.. My electricity costs doubled and my heating costs went from averaging $12000 - $15000 annually to $40000 - $55000. My telephone service was never more than $90 monthly for years then suddenly never less than $400? Water and sewer services are to drastically increase within the year as well. These inflated utility costs alone have bankrupted my company after 20 years of good business. While my small business must conform to our free market system, DTE Energy and others like it most certainly do not. Not free market!

Insurance companies are the other factor crippling my industry. They have been successfully Lobbying Washington for years suppressing labor rates and gaining advantages in every area possible to increase their profits. Allstate went as far as starting their own chain of repair facilities. This is collusion and it is a serious crime in free market capitalism. It's also a crime in Americas version, but only to offenders unable to afford it. Judges and politicians only whore themselves out for large sums of cash. Only 15 or so years ago the hourly rate for auto body and paint repairs equaled that of mechanical repairs at $18 per hour. Today these rates are $34 and $80 respectively. Mechanics rate of $80 has increased normally and is on par with most other lines of work. Body and paint on the other hand has obviously been suppressed. Big insurance companies, without a doubt, have paid our politicians well for this advantage. But like anything else, someone has to take the hit, and in this case, it was the small repairers and the shops they work in. Not free market!

This is only one tiny example that proves, unquestionably, that free markets do not exist and the playing field is not level. To add insult to injury they even allow these huge corps. to avoid taxation by operating outside of our borders. Escaping all the inflated utility and tax burdens that small companies cannot. Americas political power goes even further by conditioning entire countries, like Indonesia, to provide the most profitable conditions possible for their corporate masters. Demanding foreign governments to legislate loose labor laws that severely abuse and enslave their citizens, children included. Then bring their overpriced product back to the USA to be consumed by the very same people taking up their slack! Not free market!

By allowing this injustice to big business, even buying American products only is no guarantee that those products are aiding Americas economy? Profiting in America must be allowed to everyone at an equal cost to the profiteers. Years ago American companies manufacturing and operating off shore was not even a consideration. To do so was anything but lucrative due to the expensive costs provided by a much stricter set of rules. At that time our lawmakers were interested in our own protection and enrichment. That is what made this country! Closest we ever came to free market!

My opinion is that America has been infiltrated and broken into little pieces by foreigners posing as Americans. These greedy politicians that kneel and worship the corporate giants are not American at all. We have been duped and our once great country is being stolen right under our noses by foreign demons. Slowly infiltrating at every level while easily distracting the modern American that's so far removed from the possibility. Only we are to blame for this and all will eventually agree once denial can no longer hide it.

posted on Feb, 2 2009 @ 08:24 PM

Originally posted by helpmefindtheway
Ok, so what about the resources that America can not self-produce or supply on it's own and to it's own?

What about natural resources?

I applaud the mentality and sense of purpose of the clause, but is it realistic beyond steel supply?

What resource are you speaking of? The US has some of the largest natural resources in the world.

Natural resources:

coal, copper, lead, molybdenum, phosphates, uranium, bauxite, gold, iron, mercury, nickel, potash, silver, tungsten, zinc, petroleum, natural gas, timber.

We use to make virtually everything this country needed to sustain itself until we did not listen to Eisenhower's warning. We have been taken over by corporate fascist who seek profit(greed) over their own country. Many of the reasons we have seen our manufacturing leave this country is due to the fact that they seek cheap labor and virtually no environmental oversites.They can pollute and don't have to worry about the expensive environmental procedures. In other words they could care less about killing us and their own children and just care about themselves and what they can have now. It is sickening.

[edit on 2/2/2009 by CaptGizmo]

posted on Feb, 2 2009 @ 08:38 PM
reply to post by ConservativeJack

Remeber you said that when this plan goes through and the G20 nations stop trading with America. I have heard rumbling around Canada that if this bill goes through they plan to start exporting a majority of thier items to other countries such as China, Russia, and the UK.

Personally imho I do know why America is doing what thier doing and I agree with them do an extent. But Obama should not be so quick to turn his back on the rest of the world. This free world market is very much America's baby and even though times are tough in America, it's tough everywhere. If everyone starts acting in the way Obama is the world will start to revert back to thier old ways of mistrust and hate on a global scale. I do agree that the global market in it's presen state has really hurt the globe, but instead of just shutting the dorr how about finding other ways to fix the problem.

If this plan goes through as suggested I can see America becoming unhappy very soon. Imagine if Canada just decided to shut down all those nice Oil and gas pipe lines that head south of our border and instead head oversea. Or if china decides to stop ALL exports to America.

I know America has an emmense stockpile of Oil to get at, problem is according to what ive heard it will take 5 to 10 years to start to see the benfit of those untapped wells. If America shuts down thier trade and really pissed people off what are they planning on using to rebuild while they try and recreate an infustructure?

From what I can tell Obama expects comapnies to Buy only American and leave the rest of the world high and dry, but still expects the world to trade with them what they need and can't get on thier own just yet.

Hyppcrytical in my eyes. But thats just my 2C. Canada will be fine either way. China has been trying to get in on our exports for a while now. Perhaps America doing this will actually help our economy. If Obama doesn't want our imports there are plenty of countries who do.

edited for inproper spelling and general stupidness :p

[edit on 2/2/0909 by Trayen11]

posted on Feb, 2 2009 @ 11:35 PM
reply to post by Trayen11

You sound as if many countries seem to want to blackmail us then because that sure sounds like what Canada is threatening to do. If that is the case then the US could quite easily cut off food shipments to many...then see who is unhappy when bellies start grumbling. I am not liking some of the tone I am hearing from some of our so called friends in the world. All because we are trying to bring back one piece of manufacturing to our country which is our right to do.

posted on Feb, 3 2009 @ 12:11 AM
A lot of people talk about America's addiction to this or that, a love of imports, etc., as if they actually knew what the hell they were talking about. They are referrring to corporate America as if it were representative of the real America, and they can't seem to distinguish between the two.

Corporate America is addicted to those things because they increase profits for the few, and allow for unsafe production practices that further increase profits.

I go out of my way to buy from small stores, and try to buy American where I can, paying a bit more. Most people I know try to buy American, but corporate America hates employing their fellow citizens and make it very difficult to do so.

While I think it's too late to help the US, I support any requirement that employs Americans above foreigners. I feel for them, but this is MY country, MY tax dollars, and not a penny should be spent elsewhere until those countries pay a fair wage to their workers so that the working field is level.

posted on Feb, 3 2009 @ 07:37 AM
reply to post by Trayen11

And I can not wait for that to happen, can you imagine all the small businesses that will boom when the big walyland, I mean wal mart no longer can get their cheap sweat shop goods from china?

This is the way to go and if the rest of the world stop trading with the US so beat it.

While America small businesses and local trade starts to boom again small shops will stat opening with items made in the US alone, profits will stay in the US it will not go into busting somebody's nation's economy.


posted on Feb, 3 2009 @ 08:55 AM
reply to post by CaptGizmo

I think you miss understand my stance on this. I said in my post I have no problem with America doing what they want to do. In fact I consider it a smart move. My post was more directed to the person i was replying to. And his attitude, give the finger to the rest of the world. Alls I was trying to relay is that countries will do what they have to do to survive as well. Enposing tarrifs or dropping trade all together to another country is not blackmail. It's survival, why should the rest of the world go down when the states close the door on trade?

I see many posts here about how the States should flip the finger to the rest of the world and concentrate on themselves. And thats all well in good, its your choice as a soverign nation to do that. But all im saying is it could come at a hefty price. Everyoen here knows the way governments work, they are all like 3rd graders fighting in a schhol yard.

Do I personally think it's right for countries to empose tarrifs or block trade on America just because they want to rebuild thier infastructure?

No I don't. But am I observant enough to see what could happen? Yes

Alls I was trying to convey was the other side of the issue here, don't shoot the messanger. I have seen alot of "screw the world we dont need them" type replys in this thread, I was merley offering a counter balance to that.

P.S. I have already sent letters to my local PM and numerous phone calls trying to find out why the hell Canada would completey end trade relations with the states anyway. As far as I can tell the major part of the "Buy America" notion has to do mostly with steele.

Threating like most countries are doing over one aspect of trade realtions is kinda retarded in my eyes. Now if America did go completely self reliant and said they were not going to import anything except maybe oil and wood so they could survive until time comes when thier infastructure could enable them to get that on thier own, I would have a bit of an issue with and could possible see some countries wanting to switch major trading partners.

posted on Feb, 3 2009 @ 09:27 AM
reply to post by Trayen11

If you are good with history you remember that Americas was the provider of good to the rest of the world for a few decades after the great depression and the two world wars.

We were self reliance, solvent and wealthy.

Then the rest of the world wanted a piece of the wealth, the free trades laws became into play, the NAFTA, WTO and these laws and pacts rob America from their supremacy, it allowed businesses to outsource with not penalties, to insource still with not penalties and to exploit cheap labor and lack of human rights in countries that were willing enough to allow that for profits.

Corporate America started to profit no only with the slave work oversea but with the disintegration of Americas work force and industrial base, Financial institutions pushed the credit loans, consumer loans and morgage loans with disregard of the ability of the consumers to pay back, all nothing more than a monopoly were the big institutions all profited from.

Then America started to sell out its institutions to any foreign entity that could afford a piece of the pie.

We became a nation of consumers on credit and debt

The result of all this, the economic melt down you see now.

Yes America can not forget its partners across the sea and on its borders, but what we are facing right now is an emergency our government can not longer work by itself without the benefactors and buyers of our debt across the sea we are no longer a solvent nation.

We are now a bankrupt superpower because at least we still have our military might.

posted on Feb, 3 2009 @ 10:32 AM
The "Buy American" clause is the only thing is this proposed bailout bill that makes any sense. Ensuring raw materials used in rebuilding the infrastructure is American is the only way to get any of the money back to the citizens. If other countries want to stop trading with us because we are putting ourselves first to try and deal with this issue right now, well so be it. I'm sure these nations won't shy away and decide to stop trading with the US on other items.
Also - this only covers infrastructure projects covered by the bailout. It does not cover private construction jobs that don't fall under the bailout guidelines. There will still be Canadian steel being imported, just not for the bailout jobs.


posted on Feb, 3 2009 @ 10:59 AM
Protectionism during a recession is a bad idea.
Protectionism during a deep recession like this one is a terrible idea.

In the 1930s the severe recession of 1929-1931 was turned into the depression of 1931-1933 because of protectionism. Every historian knows that. Every economist learns it in school. This is well-known by Geithner and even better-known by Larry Summers and Paul Volcker. They are the three members of the Obama economic troika

Fast track to depression? That's what history says.

Want more links?

Watch the bill shapeshift as it proceeds. Buy American will become Buy North American and then water down to nothing at all in the details and fine print.

The last thing anyone needs at this time is a global trade war because many of the foods we eat and the products we use now come from elsewhere. Stop the trade and they will stop buying American goods throwing more people out of work.

If The walls go up, there'd better already be a working system to replace world trade. Steel products for American restructuring is only 1 issue, but soon can become many more as foreign countries respond in retaliation.

Like a snowball rolling downhill, this can only get bigger and bigger.

posted on Feb, 3 2009 @ 11:09 AM
This is not as new as you may think.

In the construction biz, there have been "Buy American" clauses in the specs for all Federal jobs for as long as I can remember (at least 20 years). Granted, my area of knowledge comes from military related work, but I asked around to our estimators and they all say that the Buy American clause is a regular feature of all federal project specs.

posted on Feb, 3 2009 @ 11:41 AM

You sound as if many countries seem to want to blackmail us then because that sure sounds like what Canada is threatening to do. If that is the case then the US could quite easily cut off food shipments to many...then see who is unhappy when bellies start grumbling. I am not liking some of the tone I am hearing from some of our so called friends in the world. All because we are trying to bring back one piece of manufacturing to our country which is our right to do.

As a Canadian, I am aware of how this protectionism will affect my country. The relationship between Canada and the US has been a reasonably good one for both sides thus far. However, I'm not sure if you are aware of some of Canada's exports to your country. Besides "softwood" used in the manufacture of a lot of your homes, we are one of the largest exporters of fresh water to the US. We also grow much of our own food, so that wont be much of a problem for us.

If Canada were really interested in "blackmailing" the USA, we would only need to shut off the taps, and you would very quickly come around to a reasonable point of view. It is only because of the existing trade deals that this cannot occur. So really, wouldn't it be a far better idea to find a way to co exist as all of us are in the same boat these days. If the HUGE corporations would cut the average person some slack, none of us would be in this situation. Lets put the real blame where it belongs.

Thanks for reading

posted on Feb, 3 2009 @ 12:01 PM
reply to post by v3_exceed

In my opinion playing the blame game is not going to get anyone out of this mess. And drawing lines between countries is not smart either. I love Canada but we also need to come to a realization. We need the US just as much as they need us. This superiority complex people have is only going to make this terrible situation that much worse.

Allthough i dont agree with an all out protectionism type ideal, I do believe some of what is being purposed is fine. America does need to rebuild thier infrastructure. it is thier right to do so. If the countries that are going to be hurt are not smart enough to find other buyers and choose to just bitch and cry, then it's thier own fault. And threatening to halt all trade with america is not an answer either.

Countries need to help each other through this mess, and pointing fingers at america or shutting off taps, be it water or oil is not a good way to go about things. It could come back to bite Canada in the ass as well.

Harper is just pissed he can stick his nose up Bush's ass anymore.

posted on Feb, 3 2009 @ 12:12 PM
reply to post by Lug

Learn what the bad policies of this organizations has done to America

Still I blame America's govenment for allowing this to go that far.

Learn the Truth About Disastrous "Free Trade" Agreements: WTO | Value Added Tax | NAFTA | North American Union.

The WTO is a biased undemocratic international organization of 140 nations that limits America's ability to act in its best interest. In it America has not larger vote than Granada, By singning the World Trade Organization agreement, the Congress agreed to concde a majort part of the U.S. sovereignity and usurp its democratic legislative processes, including:

Coform U.S. laws, regulations and administrative procedures to the WTO agreetment.

Subject all U.S. federal, state, and local laws and practices that affect the trade to internatina review by WTO.

Allow any WTO member to challenge any U.S. law, federal, state, or local, as trade impeding barrier.

Take all trade disputes to the WTO judiciary.

Give the WTO final jurisdiction over all trade disputes.

Agree that the porceedings of WTO judical panels be secret, NO APPEALS EXISTS OUTSIDE OFTHE WTO.

Empower the WTO to enforce its ruling by imposing fines on the U.S> until we cmplay.

The rights of America are subservient to the will of the WTO. Those who signed this lengthy agreement did not read the fine print or did not have the Interest of America in mind.

Why because this was done with the help of lobbyist in America that their only purposed in the corrupted minds was to profits at the expenses of America's sovereignity.

If any American in this boards agree to giving away America's sovereignity to 140 other nations in the world then you just sided with congress or may I said whatever congress was catering too at the time.

The VAT TAX, Destroying America's Ability to compete

America cannot compete in Global Markets because of the Value Added Tax (VAT). This tax exclusively and unfairly increases the cost for American exports and subsidezes foreign exporters for their goods entering our country.

Foreign governments collects VAT Tax rebates of $218.2 billion while American producers were taxed $122.4 billion in 2006, it contributed to a staggering trade deficit ofmore than 4708.5 billion in 2007

Anybody that voted for this type of agreetment in congress is nothing more than traitors to our nations well being.

The truth about NAFTA

NAFTA has destroyed manufacturing in the U.S. and caused the nations's best companies to leave.

Imagine that Congress enacted for the state of California alone a special law that:

Dropped the minimum wage to 50 cents an hour.

Exempted employers from child labor laws.

Expanded the work week.

Reduced health and work place safety laws.

Banned unions and gave california exporters full, duty free access to the rest of the states.

Isn't this ridiculous? well this exactly what NAFTA did for Mexico to the detriment of all America, no U.S> manufacturing can compete with these conditions.

The future and fate of our country depend on the immediate resolution of this issue.

No wonder America in order to compete will have to bend to the rest of the world and become a third world country no even a developing one but downgrade completely in order to compete.

This what our congress support.To make matters worst President Obama is surrounding himself for the traitors that during the Clinton adminstration supported this horrible agreetment.

The last one and not short of another traitorous act is the NORTH AMERICA UNION, this one will strip America from its soverignity completely.

No patriot in America shoul allow this to happen.


posted on Feb, 3 2009 @ 12:19 PM
reply to post by marg6043

Good post.

The problem is that you'll find the popular opinion in Canada is just as negative about NAFTA. It's those people who actually are involved in trade that keep saying it's a good thing. I remember Brian Mulroony singing "Irish Eyes are Smiling" with Ronald Reagan while Canadians cringed.

The Canadian Ambassador to the USA speaks up.

"If either of our governments were to introduce new barriers or preferences at this time, we would load increased costs and burdens onto businesses, cause delay (and) disrupt and distort the way businesses have organized themselves in our two countries," the ambassador wrote.

This would "decrease North American competitiveness, thereby killing jobs rather than creating them."

The Canadian political leaders chime in.

In Ottawa, Liberal Leader Michael Ignatieff said "thousands of Canadians' jobs and billions of dollars of exports" are at risk.


International Trade Minister Stockwell Day indicated that the Harper government is pulling out all the stops in its campaign in Washington to head off the protectionist measures.


Liberal foreign affairs critic Bob Rae said the Harper government has to do more to ward off the U.S. protectionist push.


NDP Leader Jack Layton said Canada should react by bringing in its own procurement preferences for Canadian companies.

(Link same as above)

On a related issues... more from the Liberal leader Ignatieff;

"We don't need to talk about threats, but they need to understand, and this will be a message I will pass to the president, that we're a force to be reckoned with," Ignatieff told Global Television's Focus Ontario. "We're the United States' largest energy supplier, not just oil, but also hydro; and they've got to understand that, if they want energy security, they shouldn't start putting up barriers to our goods and services, and that quid pro quo has to be clearly understood by the incoming administration."

Is America really wanting to get into a trade war with Canada?

Now, add to that the combined frustrations of all the other trading partners around the world and you can see how protectionism can get dicey. Japan, the Europeans, Australia, Great Britain (to mention only a few) will ALL be determined to stop any such measures.

fixed BB Code

[edit on 3-2-2009 by Lug]

posted on Feb, 3 2009 @ 12:24 PM
reply to post by Lug

Just look at the millions of jobs that US has lost since NAFTA came to be.

That alone should be enough to show the Canadian people to fight this with everything they can find.

America is in big trouble and when a country is run by traitors, corruption and greed look at where America is today.

posted on Feb, 3 2009 @ 12:29 PM

Originally posted by Trayen11
reply to post by v3_exceed

In my opinion playing the blame game is not going to get anyone out of this mess. And drawing lines between countries is not smart either. I love Canada but we also need to come to a realization. We need the US just as much as they need us. This superiority complex people have is only going to make this terrible situation that much worse.

Although I have to agree with you, when I say lay the blame where it belongs, I am referring to the uber large companies, squeezing out the little guys.
For instance, in Western Canada, we have a large saturation of Telus for telco needs. When they came in it was touted better service, faster response etc. Well, any client of theirs can tell you this really isn't the case.

What this large mega company has been doing, is offering free services in the effort of squeezing out people that provide competing services. Sure the services that are being offered for free suck, but their free right. The eventual outcome of this strategy can only be the removal of any competition, then increasing the price of the once free service once you have been inducted into having no other choice.

Similar to the previous post regarding utility costs bankrupting his body shop, it's the mega companies that need to be controlled and monopolies removed or I fear that one day soon, things will be far far worse.


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