: :The WTO is an entity that fosters free trade between nations, lowering tariff barriers and otherwise making the conduct of business a far more simple affair.
: By trying to eliminate things which raise labour costs; tariffs that ensure the big foreign countries can't flood the local market with mass-produced imports and deprive the local producers of a living. Environmental standards which raise production costs. Health laws that protect the workforce. And so forth.
DC: Tariffs are not helpful to the poor, but baneful. They hinder development, and foster top-heavy authoritarian states with the proceeds. In Japan, for example, high tariffs ensure that food prices are kept artificially high, to the detriment of consumers. Even more restrictive trade barriers in nations like Vietnam virtually strangle business investment. In regards to "environmental standards", this legislation supports a large left-wing bureaucracy, and does little of any true merit towards improving the environment. The hack science that supports quasi-issues such as "the Ice Age/Global Warming" scam is a perfect case in point.
Simply put, these tariffs support wealthy populist bureaucrats, and those who cash in on this meal ticket are screaming bloody murder. Meanwhile, NAFTA begins to improve conditions in Mexico. And so on.
: Doc, do you remember what happened when the British Empire tried to bolster up a multinational company by abolishing import tariffs on their product (tea) at the expense of the local traders? The locals dumped the tea into Boston Harbour. Your country probably wouldn't exist in its current form without it.
: Are you now going to condemn the Boston Tea Party as damage to property carried out in the name of protectionists?
DC: Gee. In my ignorance, I was of the opinion that the Boston Tea Party was caused by a tax on tea, ostentatiously necessary to support various social programs being conducted on the colonist’s behalf by the Crown (the garrisons in place to protect the settlers on the frontier from Indian attacks, for one). There also seemed to be a small complaint about restrictive export tariffs imposed by Great Britain in regards to non-British buyers of colonial goods being an issue. Mr. Franklin, a press agent at the time, did offer some good advice to his employers in this regard. Unfortunately, it was not heeded - of course.
: :It has, however, run afoul of the elite of the Left, making unfavorable rulings against representatives of that political sect and, to the present date, successfully resisting infiltration by that body. Thus it, like the Catholic Church and other similarly "resistant" political entities, must be destroyed.
: "When I get food to the poor, I am called a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, I am called a Communist".
DC: Again, my ignorance. It was my impression that people who blow up businesses, shoot up the populance, and collect revolutionary taxes in the name of the proletarian utopia to come "Communists". For example, I’ve noticed that the Vietnamese seem to invade their neighbors with relative efficiency, yet seem disinclined to make concerned inquiries as in regards to the poor of same.
In any case, you will not find me calling you a "saint". Not until I found out where you were getting it, or whether your motives were to coax the poor so supplied into a state of helpless dependence on your largesse. It’s been done before, you see (the "food politics" of Ethiopia is a prime example).
: : Apparently, the present techniques authorized are apparently the circus of protest and 'civil disobedience', along with smear campaigns in the media. If these tactics fail, perhaps some terrorist actions by the more actively violent elements of this group (Greenpeace, perhaps) might be sanctioned.
: You *really* believe that Greenpeace are terrorists?!
: Even by your standards, that's pretty mind-bending ignorance, Doc.
: Greenpeace International (or "Imperial Greenpeace" as they're more commonly known) is a multinational multimillion dollar group of people somehow convinced that they can reform industry into a load of fluffy faintly-green corporates. The last time they did anything really radical was in about 1980; their only useful function is that they do at least keep the general public aware of green issues.
: And if you're talking "terrorism", examine the activities of oil companies worldwide; which are more than happy to use helicopter gunships against unarmed peaceful protestors (as Chevron did in Nigeria) or death squads against opponents (as BP do in Colombia).
In regards to Greenpeace, it was my impression that they were in the habit of ramming ships. Have I made a mistake in this regard?
DC: As to corporate entities - what one finds is that, as the rule of law is discarded in favor of "revolutionary action", common rules of civility and decency rapidly disintegrate. What I’ve heard is that many corporate entities are in the habit of hiring their own private mercenaries. The old South African based EO is a prime example of one such mercenary "temp" agency. Now, considering an environment where the very ownership of industrial plant built by these corporations is under question (and, frequently, under fire), just how would you expect the various companies to react?
All it subsequently takes is the use of the civilian populance as a shield and a justification by the Communist activists. The common methodology is to assassinate local leaders, blow up industrial targets, rob banks, and otherwise provoke a reaction from the entity under attack. Then, they try to bring the resultant "reaction" down upon the citizenry. This is used to justify further violent action, more "reactions", and so on.
After the revolution, of course, it is a simple matter to terrify the civilians into meek submission. This is, in my apparently poor judgement, the "modus operandi" of such movements thus far. Do I err?
: : Ghandhi was a master of these techniques, using them to sell the dubious proposition that rulership by a domestic clique of authoritarians was preferable to the far more efficient (and less partial) dominion exercized by Great Britain. His own hatred of the British rivaled that of Hitler; in any case, the actions of Herr Fuhrer during the Battle of Britain might explain the support of that Indian guru for the leader of the Nazis.
: Exactly which planet do you live on, Doc?
DC: I was under the impression that this particular planet is called "Earth" by the residents. I might be wrong; I’ve heard tell that it is, in fact, a lady called Gaia. She reputedly is not fond of businesses, or of people. Which would seem to naturally follow, I suppose. She is also said to be "ill", although I have as of yet not deduced whether her malady is of a physical or mental nature.
: Gandhiji was not fond of the British; but he was not fond of the Nazis either; and the vast majority of the Free India movement supported the British in the Second World War. The group of independence fighters (the INA) who allied with the Japanese were led by Subhas Chandra Bose; a Bengali; and half of the INA division at Kohima were killed along with 70,000 Japanese by the British 4th and 7th Indian Divisions. Try improving your Indian history a bit.
DC: The Indians supported the British because they liked them. You are correct in stating that a large number of Indians supported the British in their war against the Axis. This seems strange behavior for a people supposedly under the oppressive dominance of a conqueror, but what do I know.
In any case, Ghandhi made some rather interesting comments in regards to Mr. Hitler, mainly during the Russo-German Pact period. I believe the most famous was made sometime in 1940; I’ll see if I can find it for you. This period would, I believe, also encompass an operation known as the "Battle of Britain".
: Gandhi was *non-violent*; the Nazis were not. The followers of Nehru and Gandhi were against violence and terrorism and refused to support the Nazis.
: "We do not approach the problem with a view to taking advantage of Britain's difficulties.... I should like India to play her full part and throw all her resources into the struggle for a new order."
: (Nehru, speaking in Rangoon in 1939)
: "There was no intention", he said, "that the Congress should harass the British Government in its present plight." (Patel, also 1939)
: "For me, even if I stand alone, there is no participation in the war even if the Government should surrender the whole control to the Congress." (M.K. Gandhi, 1938)
DC: My opinion on the matter is that Mr. Ghandhi’s tactics were simply that. He could not hope to win a war against the British, nor even hope to defeat those Indians who felt a loyalty to the Crown. As to the other players involved, political conditions dictated their respective stances.
In any case, the ‘independence’ of India was arrived at in the same manner as the ‘lease-lapsing’ of Hong-Kong: a ticklish political situation was avoided via clever diplomacy, and cold-blooded pragmatism. The respective elites prospered; it seems that only the average citizens have suffered from the respective deals made. Were India and Pakistan to engage in a nuclear war, they would fare even more poorly.
This sort of divisiveness and ethnic hatred was well known to Mr. Ghandhi, whose main concern dealt with other issues, and who had apparently little interest in whatever violence might be unleashed by his activism (insulated, of course, by his personal commitment to non-violence). I believe his comment on the issue was that, "At least the problems of India would be Indian problems", or words to that effect. And so they are, to the grateful relief of the British.
: In actual fact, the Congress at street level was more actively loyal than many of the British administrators;
: "In the U.P. the ministers seemed willing to give full co-operation in prosecution of the war, while in Madras the Governor had to restrain Rajagopalachari, on the outbreak of hostilities, from detaining all Germans and seizing their bank balances, `whereupon he commented that the English seemed to want to wage war according to High Court rules'." (S.Gopal, 1939)
: "In Bombay, Kher and his colleagues assured Governor Lumley of their support for Britain. "Not only that, Munshi had expressed a desire to participate more actively in the war effort" and he became Chairman of the War Committee, while a Cabinet Sub-Committee was formed with Kher, Munshi and another minister.
: In Bombay, Kher had assured the Governor for many months that he would always keep the latter posted on developments and even when resignation had to be implemented it would be done `in a dignified and amicable manner'."
: Mahadev Desai wrote to G.D.Birla, "...Bapu (Gandhi's nickname) alone is capable of holding back the tide of the civil disobedience movement and this he is already doing and will continue to do so till the very last." While regretting that his "views in regard to unconditional co-operation are not shared by the country", the prophet of non-violence went on declaiming that "this war may be used to end all wars".
: - If Gandhi had wanted the British out of India, he would have been able to achieve it by keeping quiet; in fact, he repeatedly spoke out in defence of the English; he was very fond of England and was moved to tears at the possible destruction of the Houses of Parliament and Westminster Abbey when informed of war by Lord Linlithgow.
DC: Again, I base my own opinion on his commentary. My understanding of Ghandhi’s personal opinions, of course, are no way meant to be a commentary on those of the Indians - except for a specific member of that set, of course.
: Don't they teach you international history in the U.S., Doc?
: No wonder you lot have a lower literacy rate than we Europeans do.
DC: What international history I have learned came from independant study. The last ‘International Issues" course dealt solely with the need for the U.S. to unilaterally disarm its nuclear arsenal. Jonathan Schnell’s Fate of the Earth was a required reading. Literally nothing else was said about any other country - in regards to the course content, no other nation existed except as a potentially innocent target of U.S. sponsored mass nuclear genocide. The final grade was based on one’s participation in a protest against a nuclear sub launch.
I received an F.
: : Thus, my personal action in this regard is to support the WTO, and to otherwise ignore the various issues presented. Thus, hopefully, I defuse the dual goals of the Left in this regard - to 'spotlight' a group that defies their interests, and to ensure that whatever subsequent publicity is generated in regards to this entity is negative (presumably, as "punishment" for their recalcitrance).
: OK, so where do you stand with regard to bananas?
: As you should know, the West Indian banana industry has kept going through favourable tariffs with Europe; which enabled them to compete with Chiquita, despite Chiquita's control of 90% of the banana market.
: Chiquita complained to the WTO that this was against free trade, and that the West Indians would have to stop being subsidized; the US agreed, and Europe disagreed. The US duly imposed $500 million of economic sanctions on the EU to try and make it stop the subsidies; which it has done; causing the marked decline of the West Indian banana industry and thus the West Indian economy; since bananas were their staple agricultural crop.
: Deprived of their main cash crop's profitability, the West Indies is having to resort to the other thing it grows very well; narcotics. Narcotics are a two-edged sword to a country; they are highly profitable, but the production is controlled by some highly unpleasant people; and the effects of narcotics on society (especially cocaine and heroin) are pretty destructive. A society which produces large amounts of narcotics rapidly divides into the very rich drug lords and the peons who have to work for them; an unjust and exploitative system. That's where the West Indies is heading, thanks to the WTO.
: And since the Indies are on the US's doorstep, the US is going to provide a big fat market for any narcs the Indies produce.
: So, thanks to Chiquita's donations to Clinton and protests to the WTO, the economy and social cohesion of the West Indies is going downhill fast and the US streets are being flooded with cheap drugs. Way to go, Chiquita.
: Are you defending this?
Well done. You prove my point.
Drugs are proliferating in South America, but hardly in response to actions by the WTO. For similar reasons, marijuana production on Midwest farms is skyrocketing, in an industry supposedly notorious for federally sponsored "corporate welfare". Point is, drug sales are extremely lucrative, a pointnot lost amongst the various guerrilla groups in Columbia and Peru (in the latter, the "Shining Path" comes to mind). However, this obvious market dynamic is merely incidental, given the opportunity to link the support of free trade and the WTO with crack addicts, and EU tariffs and subsidies (again, what would be named, were the U.S. government to conduct this policy, "corporate welfare") with the fight against drugs.
How noble of you.
Just how stupid do you think I am, anyway?
Dr. "Buffoonery" Cruel
P.S. By the way - I’m against monopolies. If Chiquita is involved in one, they should be prosecuted under the Sherman Anti-Trust Act, which is after all what the legislation is for. The long period of cheap and ready access I have managed to maintain in regards to bananas would seem to indicate this to be otherwise, of course.