Thursday, April 3, 2014

Now the government admits trade deals cause decline in living standards

Trade deals like NAFTA, CAFTA and the incipient TPP send manufacturing jobs overseas, lower our standard of living and create security vulnerabilities, according to the government.

The admission was made in a report by the Defense Science Board, a group of government-appointed civilians who advise the U.S. Defense Department on technical and scientific matters.

Richard McCormack at Manufacturing & Technology News reported:
For the first time perhaps ever, a U.S.-government report has stated that the shift of American manufacturing overseas is causing a decline in Americans' standard of living...According to the Pentagon's Defense Science Board, that assertion is in dispute. And the situation of offshore outsourcing of manufacturing is leading to much greater strategic consequences for the U.S. economy and its military. 
"Offshoring of manufacturing capabilities resulted from capital inducements such as wage structures, tax rates, weaker environmental regulations or enforcement or available resources," notes the DSB. "These shifts are causing lower standards of living as a result of the loss of fabrication facilities, and are further exacerbated by subsequent losses in underlying technology, such as the migration of supporting design and testing capabilities. Recent financial, political and economic crises have created significant uncertainty regarding continued sustainability of the current innovation system that feeds the defense technology base."
As one commenter pointed out:
Some say that cheap goods from China saves the average family $3,000 per year. I would argue that the shift of manufacturing to China is costing the average family $30,000 in lost wages. 
Read the whole report here.