Does Dennis Kucinich have a viable economic plan for America? Or does he simply promise the coveted goods with no actual means for delivery? I support the latter premise, but to be fair, let’s examine the Kucinich plan for economic stability and universal health care.
1. Pull out of NAFTA immediately. Structure new agreements that would require these countries to comply with U.S. work standards, increase wages to workers, and employ new environmental standards prior to further trading.
Pros – retain American jobs and stop future U.S. Companies from moving or outsourcing jobs to Canada and Mexico. New agreements would level the compensation and work standards.
Cons- Canada and Mexico would see this as a breech of an important agreement that had previously benefited those countries immensely. Canada provides the greatest amount of our nearly 75% of oil import and Mexico is the second largest provider. China could certainly use the oil along with countless other emerging economies. Turn about is fair play. Such a plan is based on the U.S. imposing our will on other governments, such as Bush is doing in Iraq.
2. Pull out of the WTO immediately. Same restructuring mandates as NAFTA prior to further trade. Tell China, India, Korea, Japan, etc. that they either comply with our wishes, or there will be no trade.
Pros – same as a withdrawal from NAFTA.
Cons—Same as NAFTA with the added issue that Japan, China, India and others hold massive amounts of our debt which I believe would be triggered immediately by our withdrawal from the WTO.
Supplies of global resources are being taxed as it is, I believe that the Asians countries, rather than bow to U.S. demands, would organize along with Russia and India and cut us off from future trading and the current $3 billion per day that these countries currently loan the U.S. to finance of our economy.
3. Raise minimum wage to no less than $8.00 per hour, require our trading partners to pay a living wage.
Pros—Increase the living standards of those citizens working at entry level and low skilled employment. Raise the living standards for the workers of our trading partners.
Cons—The U.S. is currently one of the highest cost countries in the world in which to do business. Raising the cost of doing business in the U.S. will result in a reduction of job formation as fewer export opportunities avail themselves.
The low cost global providers have no incentive to voluntarily increase their costs in an effort to assist the U.S. at the expense of curtailing their own economic growth; quite to the contrary. The U.S. represents just 4.8% of global population. As these emerging economies grow, the U.S. with our massive per-capita consumption will be far more of a problem than a benefit.
4. Put some 2 Million people to work for the Federal Government in WPA initiated programs. The cost of the various programs would be borne by the creation of debt instruments issued by the Federal Government.
Pros—Employment would be established for those workers displaced by the world trade agreements and declining U.S. exports. Roads, bridges, schools and other public infrastructure would be improved.
Cons—It would be necessary to continually increase the National Debt to fund these programs. Taxation on those not working in the expanded role of government would need to be drastically increased.
The creation of these debt instruments without sound backing other than additional taxation on the citizens of the already largest debtor nation on earth, would further debase our weak currency and certainly trigger hyper-inflation.