Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
To specify the argument, I think Edwards is the one most likely to succumb to pressure from special interests (labour organisations and industrialists) to raise tariffs, and you can't easily raise tariffs just on China, you have to raise them across the board.

The EU will not like tariffs.

On the other hand, I like the potential an Edwards presidency offers to rearrange the institutions and terms of international trade. But we'd have to form a common understanding to do that, and it's crucial do so very early in his eventual presidency.

by nanne (zwaerdenmaecker@gmail.com) on Mon Jan 7th, 2008 at 05:04:51 AM EST
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Couple of years ago, US administration (Bush) increased tariffs on some products. EU commision took it to WTO and got a license to counter. It then raised tariffs on key products exported by swing states. US quickly backed down.

It was a short trade war which I remember mostly by the tariff on swedish gingerbread cookies.

Sweden's finest (and perhaps only) collaborative, leftist e-newspaper Synapze.se

by A swedish kind of death on Mon Jan 7th, 2008 at 07:01:01 AM EST
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Yes, I remember that. I think it was only the threat of retaliatory duties that made the US back down.
by nanne (zwaerdenmaecker@gmail.com) on Mon Jan 7th, 2008 at 07:13:51 AM EST
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It was mainly about steel, as I remember it. The tariffs did last for about two years and did their job for Bush, politically.
by nanne (zwaerdenmaecker@gmail.com) on Mon Jan 7th, 2008 at 07:19:01 AM EST
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... pressure. The question is very much which way he will elect to go, since there is far more than enough countervailing force against crude protectionism to give wide leeway to a President who wishes to satisfy anti-globalist sentiments.

For example, a fight to reform WTO environmental exception treatment to allow a simple ban on tuna fished with the worst dolphin killing nets would attract so much support from various members of the anti-globalist coalition, and take the wind from the sails of a crude protectionist drive. And there is always the recourse to a "hard" negotiation with China to raise their exchange rate against the dollar ... where if it were not to the extent that it involves an increase of the value of the Renminbi against the Euro or the Yen, could well be gained as a victory trophy.

I've been accused of being a Marxist, yet while Harpo's my favourite, it's Groucho I'm always quoting. Odd, that.

by BruceMcF (agila61 at netscape dot net) on Mon Jan 7th, 2008 at 10:28:41 AM EST
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