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821What Real Globalization Would Mean..

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  • RE Ausetkmt
    Jul 8, 2000
      Very Interesting Folks,,



      " Compete, don't envy. "


      -----Original Message-----
      t.com]On Behalf Of BlackQuest.Com
      Sent: Monday, July 03, 2000 10:46 AM
      To: bbco@...
      Subject: [bbco] What Real Globalization Would Mean

      > http://www.tompaine.com/news/2000/05/04/index.html
      > Tom Paine
      > May 4, 2000
      > This Time A Yale Professor Was Shut Out of
      > the Globalization Debate
      > What Real Globalization Would Mean
      > By David Graeber <David.Graeber@...>
      > In the wake of the massive protests at the IMF/World Bank
      > meetings in Washington, pundits have been painting
      > demonstrators the same way they did the protesters at
      > Seattle: as enemies of "globalization" -- and, by
      > implication, benighted souls trying to duck the tide of
      > history. Speaking as someone who stood on the barricades in
      > D.C., I can attest that, from the protesters' perspective,
      > the truth is precisely the other way around. If
      > "globalization" means the unfettered movement of people,
      > products, and ideas, then we're the ones in favor of it. You
      > didn't see any banners denouncing "globalization" in
      > Washington; what you saw were denunciations of "corporate
      > globalization" -- a system, embodied in organizations like
      > the IMF, the WTO, and the World Bank, which is as much about
      > imposing and maintaining forms of protectionism than about
      > eliminating them.
      > Consider for a moment what real globalization -- the genuine
      > unification of our planet -- might entail.
      > * Free Immigration:
      > The globe today is divided up by invisible walls called
      > "borders," maintained by hundreds of thousands of soldiers
      > and police. As a result, if you happen to be a farmer born
      > in a country which is mostly desert, it is illegal to simply
      > move to one where there are adequate supplies of water. If
      > you have the bad luck to be born in a country there is no
      > decent school system, it is illegal to move someplace which
      > has one. As a result, most people in the world today feel
      > like prisoners. Real globalization would begin to take these
      > barriers apart. Proponents of corporate globalization demand
      > exactly the opposite. They want to maintain the invisible
      > walls, and keep the poor trapped behind them, so as to allow
      > Nike and The Gap to reap the profits of their desperation.
      > * The Global Rule of Law:
      > Real globalization would also mean creating the backbone of
      > worldwide legal institutions: for instance, permanent
      > tribunals to prosecute war criminals, enforce labor rights,
      > and protect the global ecosystem. But it's the protesters
      > who are pushing for such institutions; the U.S. government,
      > that great proponent of corporate globalization, which is
      > doggedly clinging to outmoded notions of national
      > sovereignty in order to resist it.
      > * The Free Movement of Knowledge, Cultural Products and Ideas:
      > As economists like Dean Baker note, the single most
      > significant form of protectionism in the world today is our
      > gargantuan system of patents and copyrights. If we had a
      > genuinely free global marketplace, whoever could manufacture
      > the best computer chip for the cheapest price would be free
      > to do so: whether they live in Chicago, Latvia, or
      > Bangladesh. Prices everywhere would plummet, and some of the
      > money freed up could easily be redirected towards publicly
      > funded research. Instead, the U.S. government, which
      > systematically violated English patent laws when we were the
      > ones trying to industrialize in the nineteenth century, is
      > now, like other proponents of corporate globalization,
      > trying to prevent others from doing the same: even going so
      > far as to threaten a trade war with China to preserve Warner
      > Brothers' right to charge workers who make sixteen cents a
      > day $15.95 for a Michael Jackson CD, or trying to tighten
      > patent restrictions on pharmaceutical production to prevent
      > Indian companies from continuing to manufacture medicine
      > that Indian people can actually afford. Real globalization
      > would loosen such forms of protectionism, or even eliminate
      > them.
      > This is not the only measure by which the protesters are
      > actually greater supporters of free trade than their opponents:
      > * Uniform Standards for Products and Licensing:
      > Governments and business organizations have spent decades
      > creating uniform international product standards. A screw or
      > a lug wrench made in Mexico or the Philippines is now likely
      > to fit an engine made in America. If it wasn't for this
      > painstaking groundwork, it would have been impossible for
      > American factories to so freely relocate to such countries.
      > However, there has been no similar effort to create uniform
      > standards in professional services: for instance,
      > qualifications to practice law, medicine, or accountancy. As
      > a result, sheet metal workers in St. Louis have to compete
      > with their counterparts in Tiajuana, but lawyers, CPAs, and
      > insurance claims adjusters there do not. If they did, the
      > public would save billions, but a lot of prosperous and
      > influential people would get upset. Corporate globalizers
      > want to protect the professional classes from international
      > competition. Real globalizers would demand that everyone
      > play by the same rules.
      > * A Market Principles in Banking:
      > One near universal demand among the protesters in Washington
      > was forgiveness for Third World debt. Really, this is just a
      > demand to apply normal market discipline to international
      > bankers. When a banker makes a loan, he is supposed to be
      > taking a risk. That's what entitles him to collect high
      > rates of interest. If a banker were to lend a million
      > dollars to Al Capone to build the world's largest toothpick
      > factory, and he skipped off with the cash, we'd say that
      > banker was a fool and deserved to swallow his losses. If
      > that same banker lends a million dollars to a Third World
      > dictator, he need never do so, because he knows the IMF will
      > always be there to squeeze the money out of the dictator's
      > former victims. (If millions of children have to go hungry
      > as a result, so be it.) Once again, as long as it is
      > Citibank's interest that's at stake, corporate globalizers
      > are happy to insist on the sacred principle of national
      > sovereignty.
      > It is time be honest. The real argument is not between those
      > who are for globalization and those who are against it. It
      > never was. The real argument is not about whether to reduce
      > the barriers; it's about which barriers to reduce, and how
      > far, and for whose benefit. Real globalization means
      > reducing restrictions on everyone. Corporate globalization
      > means reducing restrictions on those who are already rich
      > and powerful, and strengthening the walls which imprison the
      > poorest and most vulnerable. It is plainly immoral. That's
      > why so many thousands of America's young people having been
      > mobilizing to protest it, and demanding a form of
      > globalization which will actually benefit the vast majority
      > of people with whom we share this earth.
      > David Graeber is an assistant professor of anthropology at Yale

      Sender: C. Arthur Blair - BlackQuest.Com