Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Border zealots seize on protectionist sentiment

The economic downturn has brought the usual protectionist currents. Unfortunately, border crossings become even more entangled with these sentiments. The CBC reports of one such ugly occurrence. The US administration must take the firehose to this anti-growth protectionist pandering and douse it before the wheels of trade grind down. This is not good news for the prospect of recovery.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

The ugly head of protectionism

Not surprisingly, the Mexican government has not taken kindly to the U.S. administration's decision to violate the terms of NAFTA. It has retaliated with new trade tariffs. President Obama is lacking the necessary spine to ward off the protectionist lobby in his party. This is not surprising. It is also a harbinger of fractured trade relations. The headwinds are going to be great.

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Mexico needs US might

The war on drugs in Mexico should be an important policy focus of the US administration. Bret Stephens of the Wall Street Journal dismisses the argument that the battle against drug cartels cannot be won unless there is a change in social and political acceptance of drug use in the United States. That shift in policy is highly unlikely. He posits the only real world solution is to outspend the adversaries - to make the might of justice and order far greater than that of lawlessness and chaos. That is what the U.S. has done to succeed when it engages in war. North Americans have a stake in the political stability of Mexico. A failed state there would be disastrous. For that reason, the US and Mexico should work together to provide a military solution to the drug war. The might of the military is needed to defeat the entrenched drug lords with vast sums of money at their disposal.

President Calderon may not be politically open to US intervention in the border regions, but an argument is there to permit it.