Tuesday, September 07, 2004

The Outsourcing Boogie Man

Well once again Kerry attempts to play on people's fears about the economy with an attack on Bush and outsourcing. As I wrote about in my Economic Chicken Littles entry, the American electorate is vulnerable to rhetoric like this because of the general electorate's ignorance of basic economic principles.

Lets take a look shall we?

John Kerry (news - web sites) is promising North Carolina workers he will fight the forces sending U.S. jobs overseas, a timely topic in a state losing jobs to the manufacturing slump and international competition.

Thats right folks, John Kerry is going to take measures to inhibit free trade and market forces (in other words, inhibit the economy), while at the same time accusing Bush of inhibiting the US economy.

"Because of George Bush (news - web sites)'s wrong choices, this country is continuing to ship good jobs overseas — jobs with good wages and good benefits," Kerry said in remarks prepared for delivery at town hall meeting Tuesday. "All across America, companies have shut their doors, putting hardworking people out of a job, leaving entire communities without help or hope."

About week into a basic economics course, I think most students would realize this micro effect of outsourcing must take a back seat to the macro effect. Outsourcing enables companies to produce more efficiently which provides a net positive gain to the economy.

Let me mention a few things that Kerry conveniently forgets to mention.

  • Steady growth in manufacturing jobs (one of the "victims" of the Outsourcing Boogie Man.)

  • Bush supports retraining efforts. While you can argue the economic merits of this sort of government intervention, Bush is certainly not unsympathetic.

Unforunately, this will probably be a line a Kerry will continue to be able to take because people just dont know better. I think the Bush campaign is doing their best to combat it. But the Left has always been the master of playing on people's fears.