Check out the photograph at the top of this linked story. Bush is flanked on either side and holding hands with Japanese Prime Minister Taro Aso and South Korean President Lee Myung-bak at the meeting of APEC leaders in Lima, Peru yesterday, November 22nd. This photo captures perfectly the root cause of our economic melt-down, the leaders of two of the most parasitic economies in the world standing hand-in-hand with the leader of their “host” economy. And everyone is all smiles. Bush is all smiles because he’s clueless about the global trade welfare state that he supports on the backs of working Americans and is just happy to be fawned-over and well-fed. Aso and Myung-bak are all smiles because the leader of the host economy upon which they feed is all too willing to keep the blood flowing.
U.S. President George W. Bush, Chinese President Hu Jintao, Japanese Prime Minister Taro Aso and other members of the 21-nation Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation group, or APEC, said they would refrain from raising trade barriers over the next 12 months.
… Bush joined APEC peers in rejecting protectionism even if economies worsen.
Isn’t this the very definition of madness, to keep doing the same thing while expecting different results? Of course, how could we expect anything else from Bush when his economic team of Paulson and Bernanke never utter a peep of protest about the trade deficit?
But not everyone is happy.
Before the group met, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Mexican President Felipe Calderon blamed the United States for starting the crisis and called for better banking regulations.
“Our closest neighbor and largest trading partner is the epicenter of the financial earthquake and global slowdown,” Harper said in a speech to business leaders.
Calderon said structural problems in the global economy were allowed to fester before spiraling out of control.
Of course, Calderon’s protests are a bit like a parasite complaining that the blood of its host tastes funny. Mexico never complained while they racked up huge trade surpluses with the U.S. year after year. But now that the parasitic economies like Mexico have sickened the host, all of a sudden it’s our fault. Well, in a way it is our fault, in the same way it’s an owner’s fault for not giving his dog a flea bath, allowing it to be sickened by the parasites. Our government is the owner of our economy and it has kept the flea powder of tariffs on the shelf for far too long.
We’ll be fortunate to survive another two months of Bush. Obama seems like a very smart man. Is he smart enough to understand the role of the trade deficit in bankrupting the nation? If he is, does he also have the guts to do something about it? He’ d better, while the nearly lifeless carcass of our economy still has an ounce of blood left.