So, Protect Some , But Let Others Have To Compete —Canada’s Leaders’ Double Standard

Our dairy, egg and poultry producers don’t want to compete. Our politicians agree

Opinion: Supply management is merely another way for the federal parties to buy off Quebec voters, which is what they seem to expect

National Post

June 20, 2018

By Morris W. Dorosh

Few if any lobby and pressure groups in Canadian history have had as many politicians in their pocket at one time as the supply management community. Under unprecedented assault for their monopolistic and import-eliminating features, the dairy and poultry boards have all parties foursquare behind them.

The Liberal party is beholden to rural Quebec voters, where the marketing board system makes families who milk 50 cows affluent. The affinity of Liberals and French residents of the Quebec backwoods predates Confederation, except for times when separatism is in cyclical ascent. Supply management is merely another way to buy off Quebec voters, which is what they seem to expect.

But why do the NDP and Conservative parties support this system with such passionate fervour?

Supply management is not free enterprise or entrepreneurship, so how does it fit with the philosophy of an allegedly conservative party? The marketing board system is labour unionism transferred into the country, except that no labour union has unilateral government sanction to do as it pleases. It does not have the support of all Conservative members, but woe unto him who disrespects the party line. Quebec Conservative MP Maxime Bernier, who may be the only conservative in the Conservative caucus, was expelled from Scheer’s shadow cabinet last week after posting on his website the chapter of his forthcoming book that criticizes supply management. He lost to Scheer at last year’s Conservative leadership convention by such a microscopic margin that there should have been a recount or another vote, and in the book Bernier describes how Quebec and Ontario dairy farmers took out impromptu Conservative party memberships specifically to vote against him.

It is the expected thing to find incoherence in the New Democratic Party. But supply management is a point on which official party policy literally sides with the rich against the poor. There are 12,000 dairy farmers in Canada economically sheltered by the marketing boards and around 12 million consumers with sub-middle-class incomes, including 4.8 million living below the official poverty line. The Canada West Foundation estimates that dairy and chicken purchases for an average Canadian household cost $600 a year more than the average American household. This $50-a-month burden falls hardest on those with the lowest incomes, advocating for whom is assumed to be the reason that the NDP exists. The NDP places millionaire dairy farmers in the same class as union labourers. Dairy farms that have hired labour must be the only class of employers that the NDP is not sworn to victimize.

Dairy and chicken purchases for an average Canadian household cost $600 a year more than the average American household

It would be another matter if the supply management system were a template that could be applied across the whole economy and society. But it can’t, not in a market economy or a free society.

Supply-management farmers are on an artificial island of prosperity unavailable to any other. It is not accidental that the supply-management principle has not been applied to any new sector in at least 65 years. The dairy and poultry people found that surrendering the right to produce in exchange for the right to set their own prices was a great bargain, especially as the value of quotas that confer the right to produce exploded.

So the entire Canadian political establishment stands, like Horatius at the bridge, ready to fight to the death any foreign attacker of this rotten system. All the politicians (except apparently Bernier) are so pledged to the marketing board system that it can only be concluded that a trade agreement such as a renewed NAFTA would be rejected if it required dismantling of the supply-management monopoly. The milk-and-feather lobby expects nothing less and as far as it is concerned the 99 per cent of the non-supply-managed economy can go to hell.

The milk-and-feather lobby expects nothing less and as far as it is concerned the 99 per cent of the non-supply-managed economy can go to hell

Just before the G7 meeting, Trudeau visited a Quebec dairy farm where some farmers had gathered, claiming his stalwart defence of supply management as the reason for the tweet attacks from Trump. However the farmers eventually jeered the prime minister for reportedly offering to be “flexible” on dairy tariffs. The minimum position of the milk lobby is that there is to be no change whatever.

The milk-egg-chicken cartel wants us to believe that it cannot compete with producers in other countries, while Canadian grain, oilseed, cattle hog and other farmers are exposed to world prices all the time. The impression it leaves, as the monopoly attracts rare general media attention, is that dairy and poultry farmers do not feel like competing with anyone. As long as the entire political establishment is with them, why should they?

Morris W. Dorosh is publisher of AGRIWEEK, a newsletter for agribusiness executives published in Winnipeg since 1967.

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Your Kidding——Germany Willing To Take Away 10% Car Tariff ?

You know ,perhaps hard ball works sometimes. Or at least moves the other side to some action.

Take the case of Germany . Not so principled as one thinks one sees from a distance. Of course, anyone looking at Germnay’s ties to Turkey or Russia will know right a way what I mean.

Well just the threat of the US imposing 25% car tariffs on Germany cars and car parts has got the Germans attention.

The German Ambassador to the US has been talking to the German Auto Companies and the Wall Street Journal reports that these Compamies and even the German Government are willing to scrap their 10% tariff on US imports of cars into their country for scrapping all tariffs , US/German , on cars and parts.

Of course, there is ‘devils in the details’ , not the least of which is that the EU must approve and that means France as well. And there is the matter of trucks etc.

But the point here is that obviously on cars the Germans are very vulnerable given they have a higher tariff on their cars going to the US than vice versa.

And hence you can see how ‘hard ball’ can get the parties engaged.

I wonder has this happened like this in the past?

Here is part of the WSJ story:

‘BERLIN—When the U.S. ambassador to Germany, Richard Grenell, returns to Washington for consultation with the administration Wednesday, he will be carrying a peace offering for President Donald Trump from Germany’s leading auto makers.

Their proposal, people familiar with the situation say, is simple: Abandon all import tariffs for cars between the European Union and the U.S.

That would mean scrapping the EU’s 10% tax on auto imports from the U.S. and other countries and the 2.5% duty on auto imports in the U.S. As a prerequisite, the Europeans want Mr. Trump’s threat of imposing a 25% border tax on European auto imports off the table.

Over the past few weeks, Mr. Grenell has held closed-door meetings with the chiefs of all major German automotive companies, including bilateral meetings with the CEOs of Daimler AG , BMW AG and Volkswagen AG , which operate plants in the U.S. Overall, Germany’s auto makers and suppliers provide 116,500 jobs in the U.S., according to the Association of German Automotive Manufacturers.

During these talks, which the ambassador initiated, the managers said they would back the scrapping of all import tariffs on trans-Atlantic trade in automotive products as the keystone of a broader deal covering industrial goods. The German government is on board and Mr. Grenell promised to support the idea, according to U.S. and German officials.————————————————————‘

Bravo! The US Has Withdrawn From the UN Fake Human Rights Council

About time.

The hypocrisy of this UN Council is beyond comprehension . It has members that have a history of human rights abuses. As UN Ambassdor Haley said announcing its Country’s withdrawal : ‘Just recently the Council approved the membership of the Democratic Republic of Congo even after it was revealed that many graves have been discovered identifying the cruel disappearance of many citizens of that country. The Council has refused to hold hearings on the human rights abuses occurring in Venezuela , a member of the Council. ‘

But the greatest hypocrisy has been the scores of resolutions passed by the Council critical of Israel’s human rights ——over 50% of all resolutions issued by the Council over ten years . More than double the number of Assad’s Syria. Israel is scored as the only democracy in the Middle East by many independent organizations yet has more resolutions than all the countries bordering Israel.

It was time to act . Talk is over.

Freedom House Scores on Freedom -7 worst—1 Best -Israel and Neighbours

Jordan 5/6 Partly Free

Syria 7/7 Not Free

West Bank 6/7 Not Free

Egypt 6/7 Not Free

Israel 2/7 Free

The UN Human Rights Council (HRC), comprised of 47 UN member states, holds three sessions a year, in March, June and September. Below are statistics for its first 10 years since its establishment, from June 2006 to June 2016, on the HRC’s treatment of Israel.

In 2016, at the 31st and 32nd sessions of the HRC, 5 out of 12 condemnatory country-specific resolutions (or 42%) exclusively targeted Israel.
• In 2015, at the 28th, 29th and 30th sessions of the HRC, 5 out of 14 condemnatory country-specific resolutions (or 36%) exclusively targeted Israel.
• In 2014, at the 25th, 26th and 27th sessions of the HRC, 6 out of 14 condemnatory country-specific resolutions (or 43%) exclusively targeted Israel.
• In 2013, at the 22nd, 23rd and 24th sessions of the HRC, 6 out of 15 condemnatory country-specific resolutions (or 40%) exclusively targeted Israel.
• In 2012, at the 19th, 20th and 21st sessions of the HRC, 5 out of 16 condemnatory country-specific resolutions (or 31%) exclusively targeted Israel.
• In 2011, at the 16th, 17th and 18th sessions of the HRC, 6 out of 15 condemnatory country-specific resolutions (or 40%) exclusively targeted Israel.
• In 2010, at the 13th, 14th and 15th sessions of the HRC, 8 out of 11 condemnatory country-specific resolutions (or 73%) exclusively targeted Israel.
• In its third year, from June 2008 to Dec 2009, 8 out of 14 condemnatory country-specific resolutions (or 57%) exclusively targeted Israel.
• In its second year, from June 2007 to May 2008, 10 out of 15 condemnatory resolutions exclusively targeted Israel.
• In its first year, from June 2006 to May 2007, 9 out of 9  condemnatory resolutions exclusively targeted Israel.

From its creation in June 2006 through June 2016, the UNHRC over one decade adopted 135 resolutions criticizing countries; 68 out of those 135 have been against Israel (more than 50%).

Moody’s View On Gobal Trade , Post Tariffs

Global Trade

The tariffs announced on Friday by the US (Aaa stable) on $50 billion of Chinese goods and China’s (A1 stable) retaliation of tariffs on $50 billion of US goods will have a negative impact that is much broader than implied by the negative effects on trade flows for the goods and sectors targeted by the tariffs.

In particular, amid rising tensions between the US and its other trading partners, these latest actions set the stage for additional protectionist measures, raising the prospect of broader challenges to the global trade regime. Moreover, chances for a lasting agreement between the US and China on trade and technology transfers are more remote than earlier this year, when China reportedly agreed to buy $70 billion of agricultural and energy products if the US dropped its pursuit of tariffs or other restrictions.

The US and China are the world’s two largest economies, accounting for a sizable share of global trade investment and financial activity. According to data from the International Monetary Fund, the US accounts for around 13.6% of global imports of goods and China for about 10.4%, the two largest country shares globally. Therefore, and given the global integration of manufacturing supply chains and international links between financial markets, the credit effect of the US and Chinese actions will reverberate across firms and sectors in many countries.

Over the next several months, expectations of tit-for-tat tariffs will generate more volatility in global financial markets. If trade policy uncertainty and financial market volatility also weaken consumer and corporate sentiment, the second-order impact of tariff increases would be to dampen currently robust global growth momentum.

Tariffs of $34 billion will be implemented immediately, with a further $16 billion considered for later implementation. The tariffs on both sides apply to particular products within broad sector categories. More than 1,100 items targeted by the US tariffs include technology related goods from sectors like robotics, aviation, industrial machinery and autos. More than 650 items targeted by Chinese tariffs include goods from agriculture, autos, aquatics, chemicals, medical equipment and energy.

Given the very large size of both economies (with 2017 GDP of $19.4 trillion for the US and $12.2 trillion for China), tariffs on $50 billion in traded goods do not have a meaningful direct effect on growth in either country.

Nonetheless, firms that produce or use the products targeted by the tariffs will feel the effect. The direct impact on exporters will depend on whether the goods are price-sensitive or not, and whether they can find alternative markets for them. The impact on firms that use targeted products as inputs will depend on whether the goods can be sourced from other suppliers. States and local regions that have a concentration of sectors targeted by tariffs could also suffer.

The tariffs may raise the price of the targeted products in the importing country and depress prices elsewhere, including in the exporting country. Whether they impact overall inflation will depend on the conjuncture of several different factors. The tariffs may also lead to inefficient allocation of resources and overproduction in some sectors.

US and Chinese tariffs set stage for broader challenges to global trade regime,
market uncertainty

Finally, A European Who Gets That Trump Has A Point.

What Trump Gets Right About Europe

By Jochen Bittner

Mr. Bittner is a political editor for the weekly newspaper Die Zeit and a contributing opinion writer.

June 19, 2018

HAMBURG, Germany —

Most people can agree that international affairs should not be conducted by tweet — especially when the tweeter in question is Donald Trump. Among other reasons, it’s easy to dismiss the president’s mercurial rage and flagrant insults as little more than temper tantrums.

But that’s a mistake. Mr. Trump’s anger at America’s allies embodies, however unpleasantly, a not unreasonable point of view, and one that the rest of the world ignores at its peril: The global world order is unbalanced and inequitable. And unless something is done to correct it soon, it will collapse, with or without the president’s tweets.

While the West happily built the liberal order over the past 70 years, with Europe at its center, the Americans had the continent’s back. In turn, as it unravels, America feels this loss of balance the hardest — it has always spent the most money and manpower to keep the system working.

The Europeans have basically been free riders on the voyage, spending almost nothing on defense, and instead building vast social welfare systems at home and robust, well-protected export industries abroad. Rather than lash back at Mr. Trump, they would do better to ask how we got to this place, and how to get out.

The European Union, as an institution, is one of the prime drivers of this inequity. At the Group of 7, for example, the constituent countries are described as all equals. But in reality, the union puts a thumb on the scales in its members’ favor: It is a highly integrated, well-protected free-trade area that gives a huge leg up to, say, German car manufacturers while essentially punishing American companies who want to trade in the region.

The eurozone offers a similar unfair advantage. If it were not for the euro, Germany would long ago have had to appreciate its currency in line with its enormous export surplus.

Sure, eurozone membership makes imports to Germany more expensive than they would be under the deutschemark; wage restraint has also helped maintain the competitiveness of German machinery. But how can the very same politicians and journalists who defended the euro bailout payments during the financial crisis, arguing that Germany profited disproportionately from the common currency, now go berserk when Mr. Trump makes exactly this point?

German manufacturers also have the advantage of operating in a common market with huge wage gaps. Bulgaria, one of the poorest member states, has a per capita gross domestic product roughly equal to that of Gabon, while even in Slovakia, Poland and Hungary — three relative success stories among the recent entrants to the union — that same measure is still roughly a third of what it is in Germany. Under the European Union, German manufacturers can assemble their cars in low-wage countries and export them without worrying about tariffs or other trade barriers. If your plant sits in Detroit, you might find the president’s anger over this fact persuasive.
EDITORS’ PICKS

Mr. Trump is not the first president to complain about the unfair burden sharing within NATO. He’s merely the first president not just to talk tough, but to get tough.

Indeed, while his actions are shocking, the Europeans cannot say they are surprised. The warnings from the Obama administration that America’s indulgence might eventually cease had been plenty. Yet Europeans didn’t care much. All those German politicians who oppose raising military spending from a meager 1.3 percent of gross domestic product should try to explain to American students why their European peers enjoy free universities and health care, while they leave it up to others to cover for the West’s military infrastructure.

Europe’s unfair trade advantage is not the only challenge to the liberal world order. In retrospect, allowing China into the World Trade Organization — one of that order’s crowning achievements — was a huge mistake.

When the door was opened, in 2001, many in the West believed that a growing Chinese middle class, enriched by and engaged with the world economy, would eventually claim voice and suffrage, thereby democratizing China. The opposite has happened. China, which has grown wealthy in part by stealing intellectual property from the West, is turning into an online-era dictatorship, while still denying reciprocity in investment and trade relations.

Is this how you behave as a privileged member of the world’s business club? China’s unchecked abuse of the global free-trade regime makes a mockery of the very idea that the world can operate according to a rules-based order. Again, while many in the West have talked the talk about taking on China, only Mr. Trump has actually done something about it.

Mr. Trump’s tariffs against Europe are patently illegal, and Europe should retaliate. But simply punishing the makers of motorcycles, blue jeans and bourbon whiskey doesn’t solve any of the problems festering beneath the skin of the liberal world order. Europe needs to understand what is driving Mr. Trump’s anger and cooperate with Washington to fix the imbalances in the system.

That’s easy to say in theory, but can Europe work with Mr. Trump in practice? Maybe not. But there’s no real choice. And there’s a good chance for success if Europe engages Mr. Trump by his New York tycoon soul — he needs to be convinced that he’s getting a good deal. And right now, it’s easy to see why he thinks otherwise.

Final Nail In American Civil Liberties Union

The final nail in the ACLU’s coffin

BY ALAN M. DERSHOWITZ

‘The director of the American Civil Liberties Union has now acknowledged what should have been obvious to everybody over the past several years: The ACLU is no longer a neutral defender of everyone’s civil liberties. It has morphed into a hyper-partisan, hard-left political advocacy group. The final nail in its coffin was the announcement that, for the first time in its history, the ACLU would become involved in partisan electoral politics, supporting candidates, referenda and other agenda-driven political goals.

The headline in the June 8 edition of the New Yorker tells it all: “The ACLU is getting involved in elections — and reinventing itself for the Trump era.” The article continues: “In this midterm year, however, as progressive groups have mushroomed and grown more active, and as liberal billionaires such as Howard Schultz and Tom Steyer have begun to imagine themselves as political heroes and eye presidential runs, the ACLU, itself newly flush, has begun to move in step with the times. For the first time in its history, the ACLU is taking an active role in elections. The group has plans to spend more than 25 million dollars on races and ballot initiatives by Election Day, in November.”

Since its establishment nearly 100 years ago, the ACLU has been, in the words of the New Yorker, “fastidiously nonpartisan, so prudish about any alliance with any political power that its leadership, in the 1980s and 90s, declined even to give awards to likeminded legislators for fear that it might give the wrong impression.” I know, because I served on its national board in the early days of my own career.
In those days, the board consisted of individuals who were deeply committed to core civil liberties, especially freedom of speech, opposition to prosecutorial overreach and political equality. Its board members included Republicans and Democrats, conservatives and liberals, right wingers and left wingers, all of whom supported neutral civil liberties. The key test in those days was what I have come to call “the shoe on the other foot” test: Would you vote the same way if the shoe were on the other foot, that is, if the party labels were switched?

Today, the ACLU wears only one shoe, and it is on its left foot. Its color is blue. The only dispute is whether it supports the progressive wing of the Democratic Party or its more centrist wing. There is little doubt that most board members today support the progressive wing, though some think that even that wing is not sufficiently left. There is no longer any room in the ACLU for true conservatives who are deeply committed to neutral civil liberties. The litmus test is support for hard-left policies.

To be sure, the ACLU will still occasionally take a high profile case involving a Nazi or Klan member who has been denied freedom of speech, though there are now some on the board who would oppose supporting such right-wing extremists. But the core mission of the ACLU — and its financial priority — is to promote its left-wing agenda in litigation, in public commentary and, now, in elections. If you want to know the reason for this shift, just follow the money. ACLU contributors, including some of its most generous contributors, are strong anti-Trump zealots who believe that the end (getting rid of Trump) justifies any means (including denying Trump and his associates core civil liberties and due process).

Anthony Romero, the current radical leftist who directs the ACLU, refers to those of us who favor the ACLU traditional mission as “the old guard.” The leading critic of the ACLU’s newfound partisan mission is Romero’s predecessor, Ira Glasser, who was the executive director of the ACLU from 1978 until 2001. Glasser believes that this transformation in the way the ACLU has operated since 1920 “has the capacity to destroy the organization as it has always existed.”

Glasser points out that some of the greatest violations of civil liberties throughout history have come from “progressive politicians, such as President Franklin D. Roosevelt who interned 110,000 Japanese-American citizens.” He worries, and I worry, that when the ACLU supports parties and partisan agendas, it will become less willing to criticize those it has supported when they violate civil liberties.

The presidency of Donald Trump has introduced a new dynamic. Trump himself has denied fundamental civil liberties by his immigration policies, his attitude and actions regarding the press, and his calls for criminal investigations of his political enemies. The ACLU will criticize those actions, as it should. But the president has also pushed the ACLU further to the left and into partisan politics. Trump is so despised by ACLU contributors that they have increased their contributions, but also demand the ACLU be on the forefront of ending his presidency, either through impeachment, criminal prosecution or electoral defeat.

The move of the ACLU to the far left reflects an even more dangerous and more general trend in the United States: The right is moving further right, the left is moving further left, and the center is shrinking. The center-left is losing its influence in organizations like the ACLU, and the center-right is losing its influence in conservative organizations.

America has always thrived at the center and has always suffered when extremes gain power. The ACLU’s move from neutral protector of civil liberties to partisan advocate of liberal politics is both a symptom and consequence of this change. If America is to remain strong, its major institutions must move closer to the center and reject the extremes of both sides. If the ACLU does not return to its core values, a new organization must be created to champion those values.’

Alan M. Dershowitz is the Felix Frankfurter Professor of Law, Emeritus, at Harvard Law School. He is the author of “Trumped Up: How Criminalizing Politics is Dangerous to Democracy” and “The Case Against BDS: Why Singling Out Israel for Boycott is Anti-Semitic and Anti-Peace.” You can follow him on Twitter @AlanDersh and on Facebook @AlanMDershowitz.

More Political Corectness At Harvard —

The College Fix reports:

Harvard teaching hospital to take down portraits of prestigious white male doctors

A teaching hospital of Harvard Medical School will take down portraits of prestigious white male doctors that adorn a venerable amphitheater and scatter them throughout the grounds in a new diversity and inclusion effort.

Of the 31 various doctors and department heads that have their paintings hung in the Louis Bornstein Family Amphitheater at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, all are men, 30 are white, and one is Chinese. They’ve been described as “pioneers of medicine,” and getting a portrait hung there is something great to aspire to, according to the white male doctor who most recently had his image installed, Dr. Ron Walls, founding chair of the Department of Emergency Medicine.

But apparently having a cluster of white male doctors’ portraits — great as they may be — sends a message to employees and students that “white men are in charge,” Dr. Jeroan Allison, a professor at the University of Massachusetts Medical School who researches health disparities, told the Boston Globe, which first reported the news.

A hospital official told the Globe removing the portraits will create a “sense of belonging” for women and minority employees and students.

The Washington Free Beacon reported on some of the medical luminaries whose portraits will be swept off to lesser locations, including:

… Dr. Harvey Cushing, the “father of neurosurgery,” who studied at Harvard and Yale and became surgeon-in-chief at Peter Bent Brigham Hospital in 1913. Cushing operated on hundreds of patients each year with “remarkable results,” and his meticulous notes and case studies provided the “history of neurological medicine from its beginning.”

Another prominent portrait to be moved is Dr. William Councilman, the first chief pathologist at Brigham Hospital. Cushing described Councilman as “a man of ardent and generous enthusiasms” and an “inspiring teacher for the young and such a delightful companion both for young and old.”