Obama's tire trade order could clip Oregon jobs
President Barack Obama probably didn't ignite a full-blown trade war this week when he ordered steeper U.S. tariffs on Chinese tires, but his decision set off justifiable alarm bells on both sides of the Pacific.
On the campaign trail last year, Obama occasionally sounded a little too protectionist for our liking. He showed no such inclination in his appearances in Oregon, where international trade is hugely important, but rather in states like Ohio and Pennsylvania, where manufacturing is king.
For every U.S. job saved in a tire plant, jobs will be lost at chicken processing plants and auto parts factories if China retaliates. A trade war has no winners, and the entire worldwide economy could suffer if it happens as nations begin to pull out of the global recession.
Here in Oregon and other Western states, Obama's decision is not good news. Bend-based Les Schwab Tire Centers, a major importer of tire from China, says the higher tariffs will mean higher prices for U.S. consumers and job losses for tire sales and maintenance workers.
We all outsource. Most of us have decided that it's more cost and time effective to outsource our food production to the grocery store rather than grow and raise our own.
If your skills lie in computer programming it makes much more sense for you to trade your time and labor for dollars which you can then exchange for food at the local market. (with some left over)
Your 40 hours a week writing code gets you more than if you spent 40 hours on the farm. The free market allows individuals (and countries) to find their skills to get the most bang for their buck.
I can hear Theordore's whiny voice now... but Lars...