President Obama has been making the case for new trade deals, and he’s right to do so, Heritage expert Ted Bromund explains. But his argument for trade deals, based on a vision of American decline, is entirely wrongheaded.
For the first time, a U.S. president is making the case for trade agreements by arguing that we’re in decline …
There’s just enough sense in this idea to make it dangerous. It’s true that, as the rest of the world grows, the U.S. and European share of the pie will likely shrink. But if the president is right that China will someday be so powerful that it can write the global rules of trade on its own, a new U.S. trade agreement is a pitiful response …
The chances are that Obama is wrong. China’s economic growth is slowing, and even the United States at the peak of its relative strength — after 1945 — didn’t have the power to write the rules of trade on its own.
This vision runs the risk that future trade deals will restrict commerce and impose new burdens on free enterprise. But “new trade agreements that focus on imposing even more rules aren’t the answer,” Bromund argues. “They’re the problem. They’re also not free trade.”
New trade agreements should be about getting government out of the way and creating future opportunities.
Do you think America needs to loosen restrictions on free enterprise?