Global race to the bottom.

Global race to the bottom.

Clinton, while signing the NAFTA bill into law on December 8, 1993, stated that ;

“NAFTA means jobs. American jobs, and good-paying American jobs. If I didn’t believe that, I wouldn’t support this agreement.”  The agreement went into effect on January 1, 1994.

In travelling through the Carolinas I was made aware by the locals of the devastating effect of the NAFTA agreement on the textile industry, which instead of creating jobs, lost jobs. Initially to Mexico, from where they were exported to South Korea, and then to sweat shops in the Pacific and China, resulting in all the remaining textile jobs in the US to be severely devalued. It did not just result in job losses, but entire companies debunked, equipment and all, to places like Guatemala. In the Carolinas, this was seen as a continuation of the ‘race to the bottom’.

Not quite the outcome that Bush and Clinton were promising.


“The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is a trade agreement among twelve Pacific Rim countries concerning a variety of matters of economic policy, which was reached on 5 October 2015 after 7 years of negotiations.” wikipedia

The TPP will supersede NAFTA and slew of other international trade agreements, internal environmental agreements and human rights agreements.

The TPP event on 5 October 2015 was a world changer, and yet seems to get very little airtime.

Do you think the TPP will speed up the ‘race to the bottom’ or create new opportunities?

Using the past as a measure of success. Are we putting the cart before the horse in trying to create international agreements for economic trade and economy, before we have created international agreements of humane values and goals?

The ratification of the TPP should be a major point of discussion in the run up to the 2016 elections, are you hearing enough about this from your candidates?

A quote from Félix Peña

“ Going forward, the main concern arises from a situation that is possible to see today and that would result from the cumulative effects of two opposing trends: on the one hand, the proliferation of mega-preferential agreements, which in fact turn into a sort of network of private clubs and, therefore, discriminatory against non-members; on the other hand, the weakening and irrelevance of the multilateral WTO system. In this sense, the results of the December Ministerial Conference of Nairobi take on greater significance, in the light of the eventual enactment of the TPP. These are two trends that, in their eventual contradiction, need to be regarded in a perspective which goes beyond the limited economic and international trade level. On the contrary, they require to be viewed, both by analysts and by protagonists, in terms of their effects on the exhaustion of the world order that emerged at the end of the Second World War, and the attempts to replace it with a new global governance.


I am not sure of the credentials of this website, but the history of the North Carolina textile industry seems to be well presented, in an easy to read fashion. So I include it here.

Extracts from an extensive Wikipedia entry.

In 2013, Nobel Memorial prize-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz warned that based on leaked drafts of the TPP, it presented “grave risks” and “serves the interests of the wealthiest.”[18][117] Organised labour in the U.S. argued that the trade deal would largely benefit corporations at the expense of workers in the manufacturing and service industries.[118] The Economic Policy Institute and the Center for Economic and Policy Research argued that the TPP could result in further job losses and declining wages.[119][120]

In 2014, Noam Chomsky warned that the TPP is “designed to carry forward the neoliberal project to maximise profit and domination, and to set the working people in the world in competition with one another so as to lower wages to increase insecurity.”[121] Senator Bernie Sanders (IVT), who opposes fast track, stated that trade agreements like the TPP “have ended up devastating working families and enriching large corporations.”[122] Another Nobel Memorial Prize-winning economist, Paul Krugman, reported, “… I’ll be undismayed and even a bit relieved if the T.P.P. just fades away”, and said that “… there isn’t a compelling case for this deal, from either a global or a national point of view.” Krugman also noted the absence of “anything like a political consensus in favor, abroad or at home.”[123] Economist Robert Reich contends that the TPP is a “Trojan horse in a global race to the bottom, giving big corporations and Wall Street banks a way to eliminate any and all laws and regulations that get in the way of their profits.”[124][125]


Share this:

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox

Join other followers: