ARC's 1st Law: As a "progressive" online discussion grows longer, the probability of a nefarious reference to Karl Rove approaches one

Friday, July 29, 2005

The Democratic Party = Isolationist at the core

This is a GREAT editorial in the Wall Street Journal. Get a subscription if you don't have one...

Here's the relevent stats:

Free-trade votes in the House, by party

Nafta, 1993
GOP = 132
Dem = 102

China MFN, 1997
GOP = 147
Dem = 112

Trade Promotion Authority, 2001 (FastTrack)
GOP = 194
Dem = 21

CAFTA, 2005
GOP = 202
Dem = 15

Trading Places
July 29, 2005
Another negative political note is the declining support among Democrats for open trade. The White House had to deliver 202 House Republicans to pass Cafta, 217-215, because only 15 Democrats bucked their party leadership to vote yes. Not a single Democrat from California or Oregon voted aye, and only one (Norm Dicks) from Washington -- all states that benefit enormously from exports.

Cafta represents a new trade low for House Democrats, who delivered 102 votes for Nafta as recently as 1993, and 112 votes for most-favored-nation treatment for China in 1997. The nearby table shows the voting trend for both parties, with Republicans becoming more free trade and Democrats more protectionist.

Some of this reflects changing control of the White House, with Democrats less willing to risk the wrath of the AFL-CIO without Presidential cover. But it's still unfortunate because trade politics since the 1930s has tended to be more regional than partisan. The economic isolationism that used to reside on the political right has now migrated to the left. This Democratic turn against trade is dangerous because it means that one of our major political parties is rejecting America's leadership role in the global economy. Bill Clinton's New Democratic Party, R.I.P.

And not only are the Dems now isolationist economically, they're isolationist when it comes to the role of the US in the world. They're unwilling to stand up for the inalienable rights of all people, such as the right of people to act like idiots (e.g. like this), outside of the US. Their unwillingness to do so is caused by the following factors:
  1. Republican in the White House
  2. multi-culturalism in extremis
  3. knee-jerk belief that the US can only be a force for evil
  4. fear that an influential US will lead to further spread of free market capitalism

Just my $0.02...

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler