Social Unrest And Trade Policy

Those who know me know I make connections between many of America’s myriad problems and our trade deficit.

Most Americans agree that a lack of well-paying jobs and economic despair leads to social unrest.  Our decades-old trade deficit has been sending these jobs overseas for decades.  When we send our high-skilled manufacturing jobs to foreign nations, those high-skilled laborers are forced to find less skilled work.  This process is repeated down the economic ladder.  With low-skilled foreign workers competing for those jobs, the working poor are squeezed from both sides and pushed into unemployment, idleness and despair.

I had planned to write on this for some time but hadn’t gathered my thoughts, yet.  Orioles COO John Angelos beat me to it with this statement on recent events in Baltimore:

Speaking only for myself, (I believe) the principle of peaceful, non-violent protest and the observance of the rule of law are of utmost importance in any society.  Dr. King, Gandhi, Mandela and all great opposition leaders throughout history have always preached this precept. Further, it is critical that in any democracy, investigation must be completed and due process must be honored before any government or police members are judged responsible.

That said, my greater source of personal concern, outrage and sympathy beyond this particular case is focused neither upon one night’s property damage nor upon the acts, but is focused rather upon the past four-decade period during which an American political elite have shipped middle class and working class jobs away from Baltimore and cities and towns around the U.S. to third-world dictatorships like China and others, plunged tens of millions of good, hard-working Americans into economic devastation, and then followed that action around the nation by diminishing every American’s civil rights protections in order to control an unfairly impoverished population living under an ever-declining standard of living and suffering at the butt end of an ever-more militarized and aggressive surveillance state.

The innocent working families of all backgrounds whose lives and dreams have been cut short by excessive violence, surveillance, and other abuses of the Bill of Rights by government pay the true price, and ultimate price, and one that far exceeds the importance of any kids’ game played tonight, or ever, at Camden Yards. We need to keep in mind people are suffering and dying around the U.S., and while we are thankful no one was injured at Camden Yards, there is a far bigger picture for poor Americans in Baltimore and everywhere who don’t have jobs and are losing economic civil and legal rights, and this makes inconvenience at a ballgame irrelevant in light of the needless suffering government is inflicting upon ordinary Americans.

If a baseball executive, who has no direct involvement, understands why trade policy matters, you would think our political leaders, who are responsible for this devastation would have a clue.  Either they don’t or they don’t care enough to act.  This lack of action creates desperation and leads to violence in major cities.

It’s time for the “Washington Cartel” to be pushed aside and elect leaders who aren’t owned by the cartel and are willing to take action to stop the economic devastation.

Frank Shannon served in the U.S. Army, was an engineering/operations manager for AT&T for 27 years, was the owner of a small manufacturing business for 23 years, served as Colorado Chair of the Coalition for a Prosperous America and moved to Mesquite in 2013.

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