Jun 22, 2008

Democrats Feeling The Heat On Free Trade

The New York Times has a look at the growing dispute between Senators McCain and Obama on free trade. This not just about free trade, or the stupid plan that Obama has to renegotiate everything around labour and environment standards, it is about consistency of message and what Obama actually stands for? His flip flopping around on the free trade issue shows at one level that he is feeling a bit exposed, but at another it shows worrying signs of how little Obama knows. The flip flopping won't help the WTO negotiations either. There is not enough time for Bush to get everything settled before his departure. Can Obama be trusted to see a deal through should he be elected in November - an eventuality the international media believe to be a real possibility (the same people thought Bush would lose in 2004)? Since we don't know what he actually believes in how do we know. So in these circumstances if you were a Brazil or India would you reveal your bottom lines and start to compromise?