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‘FART’ bill indicates Trump’s intention to dump WTO: report

July 2, 2018

By Rachel Koning Beals : marketwatch – excerpt

Proposed bill’s nickname takes off on Twitter, adds to debate around its merit

The Trump administration has crafted a draft bill — ordered by the president — that would declare America’s abandonment of World Trade Organization rules, according to Axios, which said over the weekend that it obtained a leaked copy of the proposal.

The bill essentially provides President Donald Trump — who has argued for a better position for the U.S. in big trade pacts — a license to raise U.S. tariffs at will, without congressional consent and largely outside of the international rules governed by the WTO.

The bill, titled the “United States Fair and Reciprocal Tariff Act,” would give Trump unilateral power to ignore the two most basic principles of the WTO and negotiate one-on-one with any country. The first is the “most favored nation” (MFN) principle that stipulates countries can’t set different tariff rates for different countries outside of free trade agreements. The second pertains to “bound tariff rates,” which are the tariff ceilings that each WTO country has already agreed to in previous negotiations, according to the Axios report (more)

How does this not feel like we are rushing madly back into an uncomfortable, dangerous past? Where is the ray of light and hope at the end of this tunnel?

How does this act make the lives of ordinary citizens dealing with rising housing and health costs and stagnating wages, better?


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