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The Forum > Article Comments > Why governments have failed on global trading > Comments

Why governments have failed on global trading : Comments

By Richard Stanton, published 8/9/2006

Western governments have been less than honest with their citizens about Doha.

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The first point that strikes me is that population times resource use has a finite end. Economists believe or behave as though believing that resources are limitless each limiting factor being replaced, using technology, by another. Technology combined with practice admittedly making positive effects, but not answering the question of future finality.
Currently competition, the market place, will assign who receives what. True?
Or do we have the social factor of retaining power. Perhaps abrogated to some becoming non persons by definition. Bit like the poor who should do better if they tried. Economics is all?
Nations will compete devising systems, changing with time, of production and use of resources such that all is in use, labour, capital, resources.
Labour is still increasing, on a world scale though total rate of population increase is slowing. Some items of resources are declining, arable land with increasing desertification, salting (for which the payers are left suffering, such is competition), water so that war as in parts of the middle east already causes war, the extreme of competition but destructive. The share of incoming energy from the sun is increasingly being appropriated for humans. Maybe does not matter. I do not think the services of nature, substantial, have been analysed in terms of continuance, excepting heating and pollution, and these only slowly entering the balance sheets of world trade.
So presumably competition will be more about appropriation of resource than natural advantage. So the WTO and all other such might just as well resile from any pretence, hardly credible anyway, of fairer distribution, of a larger whole.
Governments far from being more transparent for their stakeholders (what a term, so human!) operate more and more by spin, rather like the world of commerce.
The 1920ís again? God will provide!
It is hoped!
Posted by untutored mind, Friday, 8 September 2006 6:46:08 PM
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If it is possible to do the maths to send man to the moon, it is possible to do the maths that say how many people (and probably of all living species) that the planet can sustain well and therefore what the division of resources per capita should be.

As the rich will not let go of their 'grabbed' gains, expect more conflict as they make up ever more stories about why we are all enemies rather than brothers and sisters. Christ was right, it will be eaiser for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. Even then he understood that the planet has finite resources and there were those who would promote their own welfare above that of others - to the point of them living in largesse and excess whilst others suffered. So far away are we yet from truely civilised living.

This is a great article and explains clearly how the very few 'wealthy/powerful' people there are in the world carve out a future for themelves - at the expense of every one else - still, they'll kill the planet doing so - so even they will lose in the end.

Wake up everyone - grabbing large amounts of wealth for oneself is not intelligent behaviour - it is symply ruthless.

Imagine if everyone had succeeded realising the great American dream - where would all the resources and land come from to sustain such a world view - and who would do all the everyday jobs that need to be done? This is a dream for a VERY few ruthless people and EVERYBODY's nightmare.
Posted by K£vin, Friday, 8 September 2006 9:24:57 PM
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From my point of view ,all this Globalistion BS has been about the power of the multi-national corporations having absolute power.

With China and India now consuming the world's energy and resources,so will the living standards of the west dramatically fall.

Now,we cannot cry foul,when our own bleeding heart mentality wants us to help the world's poor at any cost.Our world's pop will soon be treble that of the 1970's,and all we hear about is charity for the poor,instead of notions of contraception.The West brought better food technology an medicine to fight disease,yet no education in the form of responsibility for their actions.

With China giving nuclear resources to Iran to bring about a power imbalance in the Middle East,and the Bush debacle that could leave the US impotent interms of sound decisions,we are not in for an easy ride.

The West are saddled with decades of affluence,thus weakness that seeks compromise to maintain the easy status quo,are not ready to fight for freedoms we take for granted.

I think the era of enlightenment and freedom has come to a close.We have too many people with fewer resources and ever diminishing countries that believe in democracy.China our new world power,is totally autocratic,the Muslims, an emerging power are likewise,only more perverse,and the self flagelating West are in self destruction mode,ready to be rolled by any bully boy.
Posted by Arjay, Friday, 8 September 2006 10:50:41 PM
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Oh Arjay, I thought Mr Stanton was guilty of regurgitating undigested right-think cliches, but you take the cake. Of course Howard will continue to swear blind that the free trade bride (EU & USA) is still on its way to the low tariff alter - but then he promised no GST too! Hookers too just keep telling the same lies, and on past experience it'll take aussies 5-10 years to notice they've been fleeced, yes we are that slow; e.g. a very few Laborites are starting to admit that maybe Keating deregulating all the banks wasn't such a hot idea. Duh.

Trade has never been about helping the poor or spreading democracy (its too hilarious, people really still say such things?!?), its about securing the maximum supply of resources at the lowest cost, and if some military shock and awe, or baksheesh, or hookers and X is required, thats just the price of business for hyper-consuming parasitic nations like ours. Free trade/neoliberalism was just capitalism stumbling over Leibigs Law of the minimum, save the freedom and democracy hooey for the repletes still dangling from consumer capitalisms teat.

Arjay, you confuse freedoms with irresponsibility and ecocide - Australians daily point to India and China as forcing resource supply shortages, even as we consume more each year and get fatter and fatter. Sickening.
Kevin, have no prob with your spelling but you don't make alot of sense.
Untutored mind, you read like a comment-bot.
Posted by Liam, Friday, 8 September 2006 11:54:33 PM
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Liam makes a lot of generalisations,but there is no substance nor strings of logic that joins his assertions to a single focal point.

Sure multi-nationals trot the globe looking for cheap labour and low tax reigemes,however it was argued that these forces would bring an end to poverty.My argument was simple,the world will not support the fast approaching nine billion people to anywhere near or lving standards.Merely observing masses of obese people in Australia is no indicator to the saving capacity nor the quality of life in terms of lower hours of work,which to me,is a real wealth indicator.

Young people these days are hard pressed to find the deposit for a house in our capital cities.With the burden of taxes,over regulation and fear of litigation,employers are loathe to take on anyone who even looks suspect.

The quality of life in terms of jobs,wages,crime etc was far better 35yrs ago and taxation driven by visions of the socialist utopia has just created huge bureauracies that strangle motivation.

Economically we will continue to bleed to death,with unrealistic visions of competing with third world economies with their boundless supplies of cheap labour.

We have great faith in our seemingly limitless resources to sell to the world,yet our balance of payments deficit continues to accelerate.Something is seriously amiss.
Posted by Arjay, Saturday, 9 September 2006 11:27:55 PM
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Liam what is a comment bot?
Posted by untutored mind, Sunday, 10 September 2006 8:52:37 AM
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