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Raise your hand if you think that the US ought to negotiate an oil treaty with Canada that insists that the US exports more oil to Canada than it imports from Canada. Who actually thinks the US would be better off that way? Let alone Canada....

While we (the US, I'm American) is at it, how about a labor clause too? I'm thinking the US ought to demand that Canada's hockey teams "import" more hockey players from the US than it exports to the US. Sounds like a good idea to me, what do you think Jim will think of my brilliant idea?

Comparitive advantage isn't merely a "difficult idea from Ricardo", it also has its commonsense parts to it too.

What is more value added?! Raw materials or the products produced from them?! If I sell raw materials that are commodoties, I have not much real value, even though the process be less painful. But if I sell value added merchandise like video games and cars to North America addicts then truly I make the bigger sale! :-) Especially if I keep 50% of my exports coming from my home country patriotically. Even though it be cheaper to make them locally, the $$ transferred back to my home is more honourable?!

I drive a Toyota, and like the quality. As a Canadian I see some balance factors have to come in place. Even though I may not agree with governing policies, and protectionism, I also see an industry with a bit too much fat, while at the same time a Pacific issue of being in total control in the form of transplant plants. If the USA did not have a oil addiction Alberta would not have a mountain of cash. As far as I am concerned raw materials means nothing to the general population, but everything to a few who control this country and other countries. The world is full of greed both East & West, and they will do what they can to be in control. That is the point... :-( A tragic one nonetheless..

There's Jim Stanford's Canadian Auto Workers-Canada (their actual, official name) auto sector, which is in subsidized decline, and there's the non-union sector of Toyota and Honda which has been opening new plants and expanding existing ones in southern Ontario. I'm driving a Toyota and my wife drives a Mazda. It's surprising how many of the parts are made in Canada or the USA. So, Canadians aren't making as many uncompetitive junky Fords as they're still buying. Is this really a problem? A problem to be fixed by subsidizing the expansion of the manufacture of uncompetitive junky Fords?

I guess automaking is a global enterprise. Perhaps the only thing we can do in Canada is to ensure we get part of that action (parts jobs, assembly jobs, SG&A jobs and engineering jobs and design jobs). How? by having a competitive, adaptable, flexible work force and production technologies, and relatively stable and low input costs and resonable government interference. Does it matter who pays the designers, engineers, accountants, marketers, and factory workers? Our aim should be to maximize employment opportunities in this manufacturing sector and not to support any one company.

Canadian auto sector jobs haven't been lost - they've just moved to Alberta.


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