Over the past 20 years so much has changed in this country. Major deregulation of banking and trade laws have removed restrictions on corporate monopolies. Now commercial banks have merged with securities brokers and insurance giants, and during the bailout chaos, smaller companies and countless individuals were forced into bankruptcy. The perfect climate for the recipients of bailout funds to buy up the losers forfeit for pennies on the dollar.
The US signed into the North American Free Trade Agreement [12/17/1992], the World Trade Organization [1/1/1995], and many similar pacts in the effort to promote world peace, end poverty, and build a stronger global economy.
What the WTO can do:
1) cut living costs and raise living standards
2) settle disputes and reduce trade tensions
3) stimulate economic growth and employment
4) cut the cost of doing business internationally
5) encourage good governance
6) help countries develop
7) give the weak a stronger voice
8) support the environment and health
9) contribute to peace and stability
10) be effective without hitting the headlines
Regardless of the idealism that was used to spew rhetoric to the masses, using high-powered marketing strategies, that these world-changing decisions were being made to make the world a better place for everyone, the core fact is that any law can be manipulated and used to promote self interest.
Since the late 1970s, large corporations have been setting up operations in developing countries, bringing jobs and new resources like water works, power stations, roads and highways. These improvements have brought career opportunities to countries that truly value higher education but had little to offer new scholars.
During the past two decades, since this new trade system was launched, many corporations have been exploiting developing countries, where environmental protection laws are not yet fully established, human and labor protection laws are thinly written, and compensation standards are very low.
The table below represents the tsunami-effect that these changes have had on the US job market, as nearly 19 Million jobs [the number of jobs lost, not counting the replacement, crappy jobs that workers went in desparation] were eliminated or moved to developing countries between 2007 and 2014. While the calculating methods of the BLS reports vary, these numbers were carefully extracted from the Census Bureau and the Bureau of Labor Statistics websites.
These figures paint a very harsh picture that is much more accurate to reality than the numbers being trumpeted on news media. Take all of this into account the next time you sit down in front of the TV, and remember the billions of dollars being spent to market the major political elections. Every time we buy something from the big-boy corporations, their lobbyists spend those profits on the big-boy’s own best interests.
It’s time to return to farming in small communities, but with better technology, science, and with less harm to the eco-systems around us. When I hear the word farming, the image of a man with a round belly wearing dirty overalls used to pop up in my mind. But now I see a much more pleasant picture.
Imagine a leisure resort community where people live sustainably, but with all the usual comforts of home, and more. A place where healthy, happy people join together in celebration of the beauty and goodness of life. Far from the urine soaked streets of the city where the growing homeless population now reside, where drug dealers and gun toting gangs run amuck. Imagine a community where, when you forget to lock your front door, you can sleep like a happy baby, knowing that there are no monsters waiting to jump out of the closet.
The joy and peace of mind in knowing that you are stewarding this beautiful land, protecting it from the horrors of profit-mad corporations, and of knowing that your food is clean and healthy, are priceless. These comforts must be worth more than some crummy little paycheck that keeps shrinking with inflation and new taxes everywhere you look.
The table shows a job increase of about 250,000 between 2007 and 2014, while the total Civilain, non-instution population, over age 16 and under 64 is 203 million, the over age 65 population is 44 million. What a crock! Look at the numbers.
The difference between 2007 and 2014 is the labor force participation rate. Over 7 million civilians, under the age of 65, have left the labor force, meaning they are no longer receiving unemployment insurance income and longer longer applying for phantom job openings.
Just think about these carefully researched figures next time you sit down in front of the TV, especially as election year approaches. And remember that while politicians may be swayed by Super-Pac $$$$, what we buy and how we choose to live is what truly drives the markets. We don’t have to Occupy Wall Street if we stop buying their crap, working like slaves, and gambling on their sneaky investment traps!