Free Trade

"...a recent study from the Pew Research Center disclosing... "45% of Americans believe little or nothing of what they read in their daily newspapers...

The role devised by the Times for itself was to be the credible organ of capitalism ("newspaper of record"), with reports and editorials premised on the belief that US capitalism can produce a just society in which all can enjoy the fruits of their labor in peaceful harmony with their environment and the rest of the planet.

"The evidence is in. The case is proved a million different ways. American capitalism can't do that. It's produced an unjust society run by a tiny slice of obscenely rich people (including those controlling the New York Times) with a vested and irreversible interest in permanent war and planetary destruction" (Alexander Cockburn. "Join the 14 percent club! We won!" The Nation, May 30, 2005: 8).

"The European Union and the United States are paying out billions of pounds in secret subsidies to their farmers as they exploit every available loophole to avoid real concessions to the developing world in the current round of global trade talks, Oxfam said last week.

"In a report designed to put pressure on rich western countries in the build-up to next month's G8 summit at Gleneagles, the campaign group accused Washington and Brussels of using creative accounting and the "Enronization" of their accounts to continue with their protectionist regimes...

"Oxfam said, however, that the US and the EU were using the rules of the World Trade Organization to disguise the real level of their payments to farmers. The US was paying 200 times more in export support than it declared, while the EU was paying four time more...

"Oxfam says rich countries have been redefining rather than reducing subsidies at the WTO. As a result, overall farm support in developed countries has not changed since 1986, and still stands at more than $250bn a year in real terms" (Larry Elliott. "Oxfam accuses West of concealing farm subsidies." Guardian Weekly, June 24, 2005: 31).

"..."free trade" is just another euphemism for the same old corporate exploitation, expropriation, and domination. Indeed, "free trader" is now a curse word in Latin countries, and an anti-globalization movement is sweeping the region" (Jim Hightower. "Free Enterprise Socialism." Texas Observer, July 8 2005: 15).

Colby Glass, MLIS