Monday, March 13, 2006

Is Congressman Hunter Opposed to both Out-sourcing and In-sourcing?

California Republican Congressman Duncan Hunter, the chairman of the House Armed Services Committee was a major ring leader in killing the Dubai ports deal. Now with the completion of that deed, he has turned his weapon on American consumers and American businesses. Mr. Hunter is now advancing legislation that would require US ownership of infrastructure deemed critical to homeland security. The difficulties and the foolishness of his rhetoric and his proposed action would require more blog space than allowed by Blogspot. But allow me to list the most obvious.

First, what U.S. assets are critical to homeland security? Are we going to allow the same group of individuals that ran up a $400 billion federal deficit for the latest fiscal year to determine our “critical” assets? I vote NO. As a foreign sports car enthusiast, these pieces of art are critical to MY homeland security. In the comment section of this blog, please list U.S. assets that you think are critical to homeland security.

It drips with irony that the same politicians that rail against outsourcing are now complaining about in-sourcing. These isolationists will only be happy when they have walled off economic vitality. To quote Frost (loosely), “Before you build a wall, you better find out what you are walling in and walling out.”

Second, my research has concluded that foreign capital has made important contributions to U.S. productivity growth over the past decade. You may obtain a copy of one of the studies at the following site:

Third, foreign investment in the U.S. has been a significant contributor to lower inflation rates which have generated lower short term and long term interest rates. Just think of the contributions of Toyota automobile manufacturing in the U.S. This company has produced superior cars at super-competitive prices putting significant and well-deserved pressures on GM and Ford. (see my earlier essay on the impending death of GM).

If Congressman Hunter has not done enough damage to the U.S. economy, last week, he and Congressman Ryan introduced H.R. 1498, the Chinese Currency Act of 2005, a bipartisan effort to force the Chinese to de-link their currency to the U.S. dollar. As I have written in prior essays, this action could produce many negative and unexpected outcomes. My advice for Mr. Hunter, take a couple of introductory economics classes at a local community college.



Anonymous said...

..."please list U.S. assets that you think are critical to homeland security."
One of the assets I would deem critical is the nation's inland waterways infrastructure. Fortunately, there seems to be at least 2 level heads in Congress that support a bill to evaluate and recommend improvements in accordance with the American Society of Civil Engineers "report card."

I believe the critical assets have already been identified in myriad reports not only by government agencies such as the Department of Defense Critical Infrastructure Program, but also by unbiased professional associations such as the Congressional Research Service.

What are those critical infrastructures? Here's a good overview slideshow in PDF format. My $0.02.

Ernie Goss said...

Thanks for your insightful
comment Chris.

Ernie Goss