Updates

04/25/11
Jamison Cocklin, Bangor Daily News BANGOR, Maine — When 450 workers are unemployed and uncertainty and economic hardship pervades an entire region, an American president should witness the devastation and sorrow firsthand. This is the way members of the Maine Labor Council and the United Steelworkers said they felt Friday after a shutdown of the East Millinocket paper mill on April 1 left the Katahdin region workers they represent idle and under threat of permanent displacement, given mill owner threats to scrap the mills if another owner cannot be found.
04/25/11
Tara Bozick, WSLS 10 Unfortunately, the story of the loss of Dan River Inc. isn’t unique. Cheap imports, overseas labor, big-box retailers and U.S. trade policy culminated in not just the demise of Dan River, but of U.S. textiles and ultimately, undermined American manufacturing, industry advocates said.
04/25/11
Steve Bennish, Ken McCall and Tim Tresslar, Springfield News-Sun DAYTON — Since 2000, Ohio’s total annual private payroll dropped by $22 billion when adjusted for inflation, a devastating economic implosion that hit every aspect of Ohio’s economy — from grocery stores, restaurants and retail to government budgets and beyond. As one telling indicator, the Ohio Department of Education said the proportion of youngsters receiving federally subsidized school lunches has reached a record high of four for every 10 students.
04/22/11
K. Scarpati, Supply Chain Digital According to a report in the Wall Street Journal, new data from the U.S. Commerce Department shows that multinational corporations in the United States trimmed their domestic workforce by nearly three million jobs during the last decade.
04/22/11
Hwang Doo-hyong, Yonhap News WASHINGTON, April 21 (Yonhap) -- The Obama administration has dismissed calls by some congressmen for South Korea to allow wider access to its beef market before the ratification of a pending free trade deal. "The beef issue remains a top priority for the administration, and we will continue to urge Korea to open
04/21/11
Fareed Zakaria, CNN.com The Wall Street Journal recently reported that U.S. firms are shifting hiring abroad: U.S. multinational corporations, the big brand-name companies that employ a fifth of all American workers, have been hiring abroad while cutting back at home, sharpening the debate over globalization's effect on the U.S. economy.
04/21/11
Richard Cohen, Politico The White House’s free trade negotiations with South Korea, Colombia and Panama are about to look like a piece of cake, compared to the work ahead to get House Democrats to agree on the details. Already Republicans are on board, another show of President Barack Obama’s ability to work with the GOP while irking his party’s liberal base.
04/20/11
Specialty fabrics manufacturers to Congress: "Jobs are at stake!" Sun Herald At a time when the U.S. is facing record unemployment, a group of specialty fabrics manufacturers is engaging in everything short of a bake sale in Washington, D.C. to draw attention to the latest fight for some of the last jobs still standing.
04/20/11
David Dayen, Firedog Lake The Obama Administration moved forward on a free trade agreement with Panama today, satisfying the final condition put up by Republicans to allow Congressional action on stalled trade agreements with South Korea and Colombia. The White House supplied a fact sheet on the deal. The sticking point with Colombia was the murder of trade unionists and organizers; the sticking point with Panama was its rampant use as a US tax shelter. As part of the deal, the US and Panama implemented a Tax Information Exchange Agreement (TIEA) that will in theory improve the exchange of information on tax dodgers. There are also claims of new protections for workers’ rights in Panama, similar to the Colombia assurances.
04/19/11
Todd Tucker, Foreign Policy When Barack Obama was elected back in 2008, he committed to breaking with the same flawed trade policy the United States has followed for a generation. Obama promised a new page, one that focused on creating American jobs and protecting the environment. Instead, his administration has flip-flopped on these campaign promises and is now pushing free trade agreements (FTAs) that are projected to cost American jobs, undermine U.S. negotiating credibility, and could even dampen the president's electoral prospects in 2012.

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