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uil: free trade should be valued above protectionism ld format please

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/6/2011 Category: Economics
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,543 times Debate No: 15153
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (9)
Votes (1)





"Trade barriers are chiefly injurious to the countries imposing them." John Stuart Mill
I agree with this quote and say yes having trade barriers in our country wouldn't help our economy or our country's well being so yes we should absolutely value Free trade over protectionism my value for this debate is our country's welfare and my criterion for this debate is Free Trade. And I will prove that free trade upholds our country's welfare through two points the economy and history of protectionism.

Protectionism: an advocate of government economic protection for domestic producers through restrictions on foreign competitors.

Free Trade: trade based on the unrestricted international exchange of goods with tariffs used only as a source of revenue.

Welfare: the state of doing well especially in respect to good fortune, happiness, well-being, or prosperity

Tariff: a schedule of duties imposed by a government on imported or in some countries exported goods

Import: to bring (as merchandise) into a place or country from another country

Export: to carry or send (as a commodity) to some other place (as another country)

All as defined by Merriam Webster dictionary.

The economy

In today's world the biggest concern on everyone's mind is the economy. Jobs, taxes, and the gigantic national debt.

Sub point a jobs
According to the bureau of labor statistics as of march 4 2011 the unemployment rate was 8.9% Protectionist laws raise taxes (tariffs) on imported goods and/or impose limits (quotas) on the amount of goods governments permit to enter into a country. ISIL or international society for individual liberty. Those protectionist laws increase the cost of goods as well as the cost of doing business, and when we raise the cost of business then were lowering the amount of jobs that can be created. According to the department of labor protectionism destroys 8 jobs in the general economy for every one saved in the protected industry.

Sub point b gigantic national debt.
According to the national debt clock as of march 6 we are currently 14 trillion 215 million 572 thousand dollars in debt. This is the highest debt the country has ever seen. Though many believe that protectionism will lower debt when we truly think about it wont. In the previous sub point I stated that protectionism would raise taxes on imported goods and considering we get a large percentage of our goods from foreign countries. According to the CIA world fact book we import agricultural products 4.9%, industrial supplies 32.9% (crude oil 8.2%), capital goods 30.4% (computers, telecommunications equipment, motor vehicle parts, office machines, electric power machinery), consumer goods 31.8% (automobiles, clothing, medicines, furniture, toys). Japanese consumers pay five times the world price for rice because of import restrictions protecting Japanese farmers, Also according to ISIL. If we paid 5 times more for our imports what would that do for our national debt.

Those who don't know history are destined to repeat it.Edmund Burke There are several instances in the past where protectionism was valued above free trade that had disastrous affects this will help prove that free trade helps our country's welfare.

Europe suffered from almost non-stop wars during the 17th and 18th centuries, when restrictive trade policy (mercantilism) was the rule; rival governments fought each other to expand their empires and to exploit captive markets.

British tariffs provoked the American colonists to revolution, and later the Northern-dominated US government imposed restrictions on Southern cotton exports – a major factor leading to the American Civil War.

In the late 19th Century, after a half century of general free trade (which brought a half-century of peace), short-sighted politicians throughout Europe again began erecting trade barriers. Hostilities built up until they eventually exploded into World War I.

In 1930, facing only a mild recession, US President Hoover ignored warning pleas in a petition by 1028 prominent economists and signed the notorious Smoot-Hawley Act, which raised some tariffs to 100% levels. Within a year, over 25 other governments had retaliated by passing similar laws. The result? World trade came to a grinding halt, and the entire world was plunged into the "Great Depression" for the rest of the decade. The depression in turn led to World War II.

Free trade is important to our country and the world.

We currently have free trade, and some may say that it is time for a change, that the economy is in bad shape ect… but if we were to take a free trade economy and have protectionism laws then what good would it do? Raise prices, taxes, the national debt and even unemployment rates. Yes right now our economy is bad however if we were to increase our exports like President Obama says in the new York times Feb. 2 2011 he expects to double our exports then free trade would create jobs, lower the national debt and even help our relationship with foreign countries. History has shown that it is not beneficial to value protectionism over free trade so because of our economy and history I must say that free trade does uphold our countries welfare and you must vote in affirmation that we should value free trade above protectionism "Trade barriers are chiefly injurious to the countries imposing them." Then why impose them.


Your arguments extend no further than the hypothetical practice problems from ECON101 my Freshman year of college. My teacher would always get mad at me for interjecting during lectures, and saying, "yeah, but...".
All macro-economic policies and economic models are based on trade in a vacuum, and have no true merit in the real world. Even the founders of these economic models wrote in their book's preface that, "I obviously do not wish for people to take these models at face value and as absolute fact, but more as a starting point for further analysis using unaccounted for catalysts and variables".

I'm sorry, but it is hard to take your points seriously, when they are applied with such a narrow point of view, with no relation to the actual sources of the issues.

Rebuttal Points: Jobs
- Number one employer in 27 of 50 US states: Walmart
- This is a direct result of free trade, cheap labor, and importing sub-par products. The working conditions at Walmart are absolutely abhorrent, with constant collective-civil cases being brought against them. Sure, we have lower prices, but we are sacrificing product quality and good jobs. Also, allowing corporations to take advantage of cheap labor overseas, but reside in America results in the squashing of infant industries and destroys 'Mom & Pop' stores. Small business' account for over 90% of the jobs in the United States, so allowing corporations to continue their unabated domination will just squash the jobs which create the middle class. No middle class = no economic stability.
- Your arguments do not account for unfair labor and regulations, which countries like China and Japan take advantage of to produce products at an incredibly reduced price. Examples of this are: Nike, Walmart, and Toyota.
- Even if there is an increase in the costs of goods, it won't matter if we have more people employed from small to medium sized businesses which keeps jobs here, instead of outsourcing them.
- Allowing for free trade will force our industries to meet oversea's competitiveness, by sacrificing minimum wages, benefits, and healthcare.

Rebuttal Points: National Debt
- First, your point about Japanese rice. That is solely from the tariffs China has sanctioned on Japan for political reasons. "If China imported just 20% of it's rice needs, the world price would go up 500%" (Mankiwe Economics). China has a virtual monopoly on rice. There are incredibly few industries with the same demand which rice has, with the utter lack of competition. This is an anomalous example, and certainly is not the norm.
- The national debt comes from superfluous and irresponsible government spending, not from the incredibly minute aspect of taxes on imported goods. This is like comparing a fly to an elephant.
- If anything, the national debt was exacerbated by free-trade policies, which allow corporations to use cheap foreign labor while still staying in the United States tax-free. Walmart and Nike are perfect examples of this. Nike uses cheap Malaysian labor to produce their shoes for pennies on the dollar, yet still charge the full inflated price with no tax consequences from the US. They also face no further penalties for their income taxes, which effects the national debt by not contributing to items such as Social Security or Medicare.
- Our economic world today cannot be compared to early 1900's, because of the factors stemming from globalization. Never before have companies been able to outsource jobs so easily; a direct result of free trade.

Rebuttal Point: History
- Europe during 17th and 18th century: Tariffs were merely a way to instigate other countries into war, and economics were not a considered factor whatsoever. Countries just wanted other countries to make the wrong move, so they had an excuse to attack. They were purely political.
- British colonists: Tariffs, again were an incredibly minuscule component of the uprising. Please read the entire history of the conflict before you try to attribute the American Revolution to taxes on their tea.
- Civil War: So are you saying the North should not have tariffed the South for using slave labor? This is pretty similar to the cheap foreign labor being used today; same idea.
- Great Depression: There wasn't a "mild recession" up until our utilization of European tariffs. Stock Market crash, run on the banks, and lack of company hiring, and an unprecedented divide between rich and poor were the real catalysts in the crisis.
- WW2: HAHAHAHAHHAHAHA, that literally made me laugh out loud. I think German's desire for complete ethnic cleansing, belligerent attacking of surrounding countries, and genocide were A LITTLE bigger factors for the war than the depression.

Further Points:
- National Debt is not fixed by extra trade. It is fixed by altering corporate tax rates, reducing wasteful government spending, altering social security, and cutting our military spending.
- I propose we implement "Fair Trade", where we trade only with countries who have similar regulations and laws on the labor industry.
- There is an unprecedented divide between rich and poor. Allowing for further corporate rule over the country will just exacerbate this, and ultimately lead to revolution. Every revolution starts out of economic necessity; i.e. a lower class which is growing and worsening.
- If we wish to compete in a free trade environment, stripping our min. wages, benefits, and healthcare will be inevitable realities.
Debate Round No. 1


Amethist17 forfeited this round.


Well, no rebuttal.
I appreciate my opponents spunk, but her arguments are debunked during any upper level macro-economics class. Add in any qualifier, such as unfair labor and regulations, and free trade just simply does not hold up.
Debate Round No. 2


Amethist17 forfeited this round.


Intellectual_Perplexion forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
9 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 9 records.
Posted by Amethist17 5 years ago
1 thing though have u gone to walmart 99% of the products are made in forigen countries tht helps my point
Posted by Amethist17 5 years ago
oh totaly sorry my internet got shut off :{ par forgot to pay bill suckish huh
Posted by Intellectual_Perplexion 5 years ago
What do you mean Cobo?
Posted by Cobo 5 years ago
What happened to the value criterion?!?!
Posted by Amethist17 5 years ago
but let me say this if you look deep enough into history all wars all battles all disagreement started over money and trade its what this world evolves around. its like one of those clowns on a ball spinning the plates to keep everything spinning you have to have balance. without balance the plates fall.
Posted by Amethist17 5 years ago
make ur arguement im not going to argue on here that would be pointless
Posted by Intellectual_Perplexion 5 years ago
Before I rebuttal... are you serious?
How is one supposed to respond to such an asinine statement that WW1, WW2, Civil War, and The Great Depression were all the result of trade barriers? It's just simply not true.
Posted by Cobo 5 years ago
What's the criterion?
Posted by Amethist17 5 years ago
id rly like if this was in ld format
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Cobo 5 years ago
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Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: Even Though IP did not use a value Criterion. Pro did not point it out and Con Agruments were better.