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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 2/9/16

Corporate-Managed Trade Deals Screw the US

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Reprinted from Smirking Chimp

Barack Obama - TPP Legacy
Barack Obama - TPP Legacy
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The New Hampshire primary is today, and differences between Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton couldn't be clearer, especially when it comes to so-called free trade.

While Secretary Clinton's views on corporate-managed trade have changed a lot over the years, Senator Sanders' haven't.

He opposes and has opposed every single one of the so-called free trade deals we've entered into since the 1980s.

He also now says that he would reject the Trans-Pacific Partnership, or TPP, if elected president.

This is a big deal, and yet another sign that a Sanders presidency would do wonders for working Americans.

Even so, the corporate media will probably still paint it as a dangerously radical move; an example of how Sanders is just too far out of the mainstream to be a viable candidate.

But here's the thing: The idea that we can undo or reject bad so-called free trade agreements isn't that radical.

It's actually pretty mainstream, or at least used to be.

In fact, back in 2008 even Clinton said she would consider opting out of NAFTA if, as president, she couldn't renegotiate better terms for US workers and the environment.

Clinton was right then, and if she came out and said that today she'd still be right.

The fact is that so-called free trade has been a complete and utter disaster, both for US workers and the US economy.

NAFTA alone has led to the loss of at least 1 million jobs, a 12.2 percent decline in wages for working Americans, and an almost $200-billion-and-growing trade deficit with Mexico and Canada.

The onset of Permanent Normal Trade Relations with China, meanwhile, has led to another massive trade deficit and, according to the Economic Policy Institute, killed off 3.2 million jobs.

Newer so-called free trade deals have been just as disastrous. According to another study by the Economic Policy Institute, the US-Korea Free Trade Agreement that President Obama signed us onto back in 2012 has led to a loss of at least 75,000 jobs and created a trade deficit that's hovered in the tens of billions of dollars.

None of this is an accident. "Free trade" has always been a scam.

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Thom Hartmann is a Project Censored Award-winning New York Times best-selling author, and host of a nationally syndicated daily progressive talk program on the Air America Radio Network, live noon-3 PM ET. His most recent books are "The Last Hours of Ancient Sunlight," "Unequal Protection: The Rise of Corporate Dominance and the Theft of Human Rights," "We The People," "What Would Jefferson Do?," "Screwed: The Undeclared War Against the Middle (more...)

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