Posted: October 12, 2011
Republican Richard Nixon took a little trip to China in July of 1971 to meet with China’s Premier Zhou En Lai to open the door to trade with China a mistake the US would later regret deeply.
Nixon believed this was a bonus for his foreign relations policy since Russia and China were on shaky ground, the US came in to open up the US market to a flood of Chinese goods, enforced and pursued by future Presidents after Nixon was impeached.
In an article in the Washington Post dated June 11, 1971 Carroll Kilpatrick a Washington Post Staff Writer indicated President Nixon also lifted a 21 year trade embargo that had been imposed by President Kennedy permitting imports from China and other communist countries.
Richard Nixon was the first and only US President that opened the doors to China in poorly negotiated trade deals which today 40 years later have destroyed millions of US jobs forever.
Nixon exported jobs to China by allowing a long laundry list of goods to be imported and Americans in turn would export lumber, fertilizer, fish, farm, chemical, electronic and communication equipment products. In China huge photos of Nixon were plastered all over the country in great respect and gratitude for the lapse in judgement of the American President.
It was a plan of balanced trade which while the US government was asleep, China began exporting more and more goods, seizing opportunities to take over US manufacturing offering cheaper labor and America fell into that trap.
China needed and wanted to import aircraft and locomotives for transportation requirements from the US which they received.
President Nixon even lifted the requirement that shipments of grain or flour be transported by American ships which reduced business for the US based shipping industry affecting jobs.
Unions Concerned About Job Losses to China in 1971
At the time in 1971 the AFL-CIO President who was George Meany was critical of the decision made by Richard Nixon and called it a Breach of Faith which would negatively impact the jobs of Americans involved in shipping by sea.
The Unions were already concerned of what these changes would mean to American jobs and that was 40 years ago.
Today, the US imports almost every conceivable product from China through corporations moving their manufacturing to China for cheaper labor. Nixon wished to create “broader opportunities for contacts between the Chinese and America peoples”.
Nixon also relaxed currency control to allow China to use American dollars and allowed US oil companies to sell oil to China’s ships.
You could say that Nixon gave away the store, lock, stock and barrel a very huge mistake. Nixon had no controls or regulations regarding trade nor did he study what a trade deficit would mean to the American economy.
Further outrageous comments from Nixon indicate he had no idea what this would mean forty years later and had not the foresight or intelligence to protect America jobs.
On April 19, 1971 Nixon said when asked about trade with China it was “up to them”.
“If they want trade, we are ready. If they want to have Chinese come to the United States, we are ready. We are also ready for Americans to go there, Americans in all walks of life.”
In some convoluted way Nixon was naive as to what China had planned which was a coup of the US economy in retrospect they gladly stepped up their assault on America economically.
Nixon Exported Jobs to China
Now we know, that Nixon opened the proverbial pandora’s box that was best left closed for trade with China which has all but consumed American manufacturing, American jobs, the American economy and created the trade deficits that now exist.
These trade deficits which has negatively impacted on the livelihoods of American workers are not entirely responsible for the woes of America, but they are a very serious integral part of the problem.
In fact Nixon allowed China to destroy the US economy not with a cold war, but an economic war that has led to the joblessness and desperate times we have in 2011. For 40 years the United States has turned a blind eye to what’s been eating away at jobs, and like Donald Trump says:
China is Eating our Lunch
China’s population in 1971 was 800 million people and today it is 1.9 billion people a vastly growing population and trade with China has become one sided, out of balance augmented by artificial currency manipulation on China’s part.
China has five times the work force of the USA, enough to crack out products all day long for American consumption including Wal-Mart which is China’s distribution center to America.
Back then, Nixon was looked upon as a heroic President to have opened the doors to normalize relations with the closed door China communist country and opening opportunities in trade while he gave away the store. Nixon believed that eliminating “controls” on trade with China was a positive step but for whom?
Last year China threatened retaliation against US companies in China if the US Congress forced a re-evalution of the Chinese currency. In July of this year Bloomberg reports that Chinese hackers broke into the International Monetary Fund’s computers that were traced back to China’s spies. What role does China want to play on the world front and what do they gain by stealing, infiltrating and economic takeovers?
The inventory of stolen documents have never been revealed to the public yet but they left a trail. (Bloomberg)
The trade war continues to leach jobs from America, having taken over the fields of electronics, the steel industry, food, green energy, rare earth minerals and manufacturing in just about any industry you can think of today.
By stealing ideas, copying and using stolen blueprints to make products to sell back to the American consumer China has affected job and economic growth in a severely negative fashion.
Americans are the biggest consumers in the world, however that trend will have all but dried up if the recession continues to increase the ranks of the jobless.
What will the future hold in the Trade War with China -is not up to them like President Nixon declared. It is up to America.
A Long Long List of American Corporations that have Exported Jobs to China and Foreign countries is available HERE