Jul 05, 2010
They have a tin ear. Obvious opportunities to increase jobs in our weak economy have been ignored. The ag industry and, in fact, all of our export companies have been complaining that President Obama hasn’t been doing anything to increase our exports – other than talk about it. He did predict that he would double exports in the next 5 years. The Washington Post called Ron Kirk, our U.S. Trade Ambassador, “the most underemployed man in Washington.”
Well, finally it looks like the President is beginning to hear the call from the country for action. The Administration has acknowledged that Europe and Canada are near completion of new trade agreements with South Korea.
This is what the White House is saying now. “We stand to lose 30 billion dollars in exports. We must take the initiative to avoid putting U.S. jobs and growth at risk.” How long have we been screaming this message from the rafters?
In addition, South Korea is not the only trade opportunity at risk. Our exports are on the decline with Colombia. The national Pork Producers Council predicts that “the U.S. will be completely out of the Colombian pork market within 10 years because Canada has a Free Trade Advantage.” Yes, Canada just completed an FTA with Colombia. We negotiated a trade agreement with Colombia four years ago but it has never been submitted to the Congress for a vote of approval. We’re losing out. Is it too late? I don’t know, but we have a lot of catching up to do.
This Administration and their Congressional friends are so afraid of the labor union lobby that they are frozen in place. Maybe it is about time they started to realize that they will lose even more political support if they continue to ignore rural America and business.
In closing, I would encourage you to access my website which archives my radio commentaries dating back 10 years and will go back 20 years when complete. Check on what I said back then. Go to www.johnblockreports.com
Until next week, I am John Block in Washington.