So ...How is the Free Market and Free Trade Working?

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The The Danville Register & Bee just broke this story about Goodyear laying off some 5,000 employees company wide. From a business perpective, after seeing sales plummet 21% in the 4th quarter this is probably a smart move. It does nothing for the hard working men and women who will now find themselves filing for unemployment.

I would expect this will mean approximately 400 more Southside area workers to become unemployed shortly. That figure is based on limited knowledge and recent dealings with United Steel Workers employed by Goodyear.

Under current constraints, will the victims of the layoffs be entitled to retraining? Probably not, unless the union has or is able to work out some sort of deal with Goodyear. Hopefully there will be some way for these soon to be former employees to keep some semblence of health care insurance.

How our legislators (state and Federal) will react is yet to be determined. I'm going to be talking with Congressman Tom Perriello tonight about it. I will be interested to hear how Delegates Danny Marshall and Don Merricks respond.

UPDATE 12:10 p.m.: Goodyear spokesman Keith Price verified Wednesday the company?s proposed job cuts could impact 400 hourly workers at its plant in Danville.

The Only Thing Free Was the Taking

The numero uno National Interest in the National Security Strategy is and has been our nation's economic well being. The flat earth society let down the barriers that restricted predatory trade and labor practices from threatening our economy and distracted our attention with dubious military adventures. And there you have it. The Great American Fire Sale is well underway. I hope the firemen are on the way.

Supply side economists and "free" trade artists

have a Republican answer: "More Tax Cuts for corporations and super wealthy!" That, they say, will encourage production and create jobs. Of course, one then asks, who will buy this new production? We actually have a glut of product around which cannot be sold, so why produce more, as Goodyear itself acknowledges when it lays off workers due to declining sales.

Supply side economics and so-called free trade globalization artists (I hesitate to call them "economists" because the glorious picture they painted of unending prosperity based on free markets was more a piece of voodoo art than economics) have shot their wad, their theories are blown apart by the real world experiment, and we are picking up the pieces---- yet still the free traders whine and carry on at great length against the Obama stimulus package, pretending that only more supply side medicine is needed to repair the damage they already have caused. Bah!

The Dynamic John M. Kuhlman Called It the Laugher Curve

But that stopped being funny in full flower.