How and Why Free Trade, Economic Populism and the Class War Has Transcended US Party Politics

Economic Populism set to transform the 2016 election

Today's Super Tuesday #3 primary vote is poised to be the most important to date. The gulf between the two major parties is galactic in size on most issues, but one - free trade - stands out as something both sides agree on. As yesterday's excellent article 'What’s The Problem With Free Trade' explains "There are those who say any increase in trade is good. But if you close a factory here and lay off the workers, open the factory “there” to make the same things the factory here used to make, bring those things into the country to sell in the same outlets, you have just 'increased trade' because now those goods cross a border. Supporters of free trade are having a harder and harder time convincing American workers this is good for them."

As i see it the free trade scam is the lid on the pot that's creating the steam we're seeing explode in America. Both the Sanders and Trump arguments in this area are nearly identical yet the pressure created isn't creating the working class unity that it should because the elites have the levers of power [media, debt, monetary policy, police state control and religion etc]] and use those levers to pander to fear as well as mis-inform the citizens. Meanwhile the pressure builds and the victims - all of us non-elites - swirl and bubble...it's a classic case of divide and conquer and it's working. The people wanting to lash out at the Trump rallies [and everywhere else] are all victims lashing out at other victims who are in reality just like them [with perhaps slightly different pigmentation, biology or religious belief etc].

Bernie Sanders continues to gain momentum with his economic populism arguments. Last week just before Sanders' Michigan upset Dan Cantor, national director of the Working Families Party, said when announcing they endorsed Sanders: “The Beltway elite may never have really understood why job-killing trade deals are such a big deal. “But the people of Michigan surely do, and Bernie Sanders does too.”

Yesterday, on the eve of the all important Ohio vote, Amalgamated Transit Union International President Larry Hanley said in making the announcement that the ATU officially endorsed Sanders for president and putting this year's presidential election in historic context, "This is no ordinary time in U.S. history and our nation is crying out for a leader who owes nothing to the corporate interests responsible for undermining the American middle class. Our executive board recognizes what’s at stake in this election and have made the bold decision of endorsing Bernie Sanders for President. Bernie is right for working people and right for America."

Hopefully the Sanders' message of economic populism that transcended demographics in Michigan will carry the day in Ohio, illinois and Missouri as well. Hillary Clinton has built up a 200-ish lead in elected delegates over the last two weeks but she mostly is only winning and getting her delegates from the southern states, which the Democrats won’t win in a general election. i think that is really troubling because in Nov. it's the swing states, where Sanders shines, that will decide who wins the White House.

The fact that the message - Free Trade is a globalized corporate weapon, whereas, Fair Trade is the people's and planet's defense against the elites - is the common rallying cry of both the Republican and Democratic hopefuls proves to me that it transcends politics and is part of the greater class war, a real war that transcends the artificial divisions, be they, race, gender, religious beliefs, geography etc. that are used by the elites to make people blind to that reality.


Reading List:

Free Trade - the Rich's Global Corporate Weapon, Fair Trade - the People's and Gaia's Defense

In 2016, let's hope for better trade agreements - and the death of TPP by Joseph Stiglitz

How investors use trade agreements to undermine climate action

And Just Like That, "Free Trade" Pact Trounces US Law

'US trade deals have cost America 5 million manufacturing jobs since 2000'