Classic EssaysWilliam Pierce

Thoughts on “Free Trade”

free_tradeby Dr. William L. Pierce (1998)

IT HAS BEEN interesting watching the collapse of the Asian economy during the last couple of months and its effect on the American economy. The people in America who have been hurt by what’s happening in Asia are those who are involved in exports of American products to Asia. The Asian countries whose currencies have fallen in value relative to the dollar are able to buy much less from American producers than before, and so many of our industries which are heavily dependent on exports are in trouble and are being forced to cut back their operations and lay off employees. It looks like 1998 will be a very bad year for most of these American export industries.

All of this is rather embarrassing for the New World Order crowd and for the trendy enthusiasts for a global economy. A year or so ago they were all telling us how much better off we’d be if we went along with all of their so-called “free trade” proposals. “Don’t worry if a few American jobs go overseas,” they said. “We’ll more than make up for it with the growth in our export industries.” Then after the Clinton administration pushed their proposals through, the globalists gave us one optimistic report after another on how our export industries were growing. This was all very deceptive, because despite their implications that so-called “free trade” was resulting in economic gains for us, it wasn’t. What we gained in export business was more than made up for by our losses in other industries that continued to lose out to China and other Asian and Latin American countries. The average American really hasn’t paid much attention to this because the overall American economy is still relatively strong, and overall unemployment here is still quite low.

We are now, however, seeing one of the pitfalls I warned against back during the debate over “free trade.” We are seeing what “interdependence” really means. “Interdependence” is one of those very trendy concepts which is fashionable among air-headed liberals and also is being pushed very enthusiastically by hardheaded Jewish media bosses. The idea is that no country — with the exception of Israel, of course — should be independent and autonomous. Autonomy has been given a nasty flavor by these people. To them it is a Politically Incorrect concept. It is a bit like fascism or racism, they would have us believe. What we should have instead of independence and autonomy is interdependence: that is, all of the countries of the world dependent on each other to such a degree that no country can act unilaterally on any matter, but must first obtain the consent of all of the other countries on which it is dependent: like a big “family of nations,” a very fashionable idea in this feminine era, a very warm and fuzzy sounding idea, the sort of idea in favor with the Clinton crowd and with air-heads generally.

What more level-headed Americans need to ask themselves is whether or not they really want to be dependent on China, Korea, Mexico, and a whole array of Third World countries just to be fashionable. Actually, the current collapse of the Asian economy may be a good thing for us, because it serves as a warning of where interdependence leads. And I will tell you now that everything I intend to say on this subject is from the very unfashionable viewpoint of a man who believes that autonomy is one of the most precious possessions a nation can have. Autonomy is a prerequisite for freedom. A nation which gives away its autonomy soon will lose its freedom as well.

Does it seem that I am over-generalizing here? Am I going a bit too far in claiming that “free trade” must lead to the loss of freedom? Well, of course, there are cases where unrestricted trade may be beneficial rather than harmful. If two trading partners already have a community of interests — which is to say, if their populations are very similar — then “free trade” will have the effect of binding them together and making them even more similar. Their wage scales and standards of living will tend to become equal. Eventually, their mores and ideas and attitudes also will become more similar. And their dependence on each other will grow. The individual partners will lose their autonomy. But if the populations already are essentially the same, then a new and larger autonomy will emerge.

It’s a bit like a man and woman becoming married. Each gives up individual autonomy and freedom and develops a dependence on the other. But the two as a whole — the married couple — gains a new autonomy which may be better for each of the partners than before — provided the marriage is a good one, and that is a critical stipulation. We may want to contemplate a marriage with Canada, say, or with Britain or Germany or Switzerland. But we should not even =consider= a marriage with Mexico or China.

Now, let me assure you that what I have said about the relationship between “free trade” and interdependence is quite well understood by the proponents of “free trade.” When, in their efforts to minimize your fears, they tell you that “free trade” with China will in no way jeopardize America’s economy or our national sovereignty, they are lying to you. Their aim, of course, is not primarily to damage America’s economy. In fact, as I noted a minute ago, they are a bit embarrassed about what the Asian economic collapse is doing to America’s export industries now. They are hoping you won’t notice that — and especially that you won’t draw any conclusions from that. Their real aim is to effect a marriage, to bring about interdependence, to destroy America’s autonomy and take away her freedom. And they prefer to do that without causing Americans to become agitated by too rapid a lowering of their standard of living. And the sort of marriage they like best is a marriage where the partners are as unequal as possible, a marriage with the least community of interests.

Perhaps you hadn’t noticed, but the most enthusiastic of the “free traders” are the people who are most enthusiastic about every other sort of egalitarian program, every other sort of racial mixing program, every other sort of program which promotes the interests of non-Whites to the disadvantage of Whites. Today’s “free traders” are the folks who were marching arm in arm with Black “civil rights” demonstrators a generation ago and were picketing the South African embassy a decade ago and are in favor of open borders and unrestricted immigration today. Being in favor of “free trade” today and against national autonomy is a touchstone of Political Correctness.

Don’t be confused by the fact that some labor bosses who are very Politically Correct on domestic racial issues are not entirely happy with what “free trade” is doing to the jobs of some of their union members, or that some very rich capitalists who have been indifferent to domestic racial issues are happy with “free trade.” The fact is that for the trendy, air-headed liberals and the media bosses who are the principal enthusiasts for “free trade,” it is not primarily an economic issue; rather it is an ideological issue, and the ideology is egalitarianism, raised from the individual level to the national level. They want America to lose her autonomy and her freedom and to become dependent on non-White nations, in the same way that they wanted White South Africans to become subservient to Blacks and in the same way that they wanted government-enforced racial integration of our schools and in the same way that they want the flood of Mexican, Haitian, and Chinese immigrants into our country to continue.

I’ll tell you a secret: the “free trade” issue is really a racial issue. The folks who were so hot to push NAFTA — the North American Free Trade Agreement — through wouldn’t have been interested in it if it had involved just Canada and the United States. What appealed to them was the idea of increasing our dependence on Mexico, the idea of equalizing Brown Mexicans and White Americans. They’re not really interested in increasing our dependence on Sweden, Germany, or Poland; what appeals to them is making us more dependent on Nigeria, Vietnam, China, or Honduras. Their view of history is a vision of White bullies and exploiters pushing the non-White peoples of the world around, and this is a very painful vision for them. They would much rather have things the other way around — so long as they personally are not the White people being pushed around. They want to make sure that White people don’t have a chance to be bullies again. And the way to do that is to make us dependent on non-Whites.

I’ve pointed this out on other programs, but I’ll point it out again now: the consequences of this loony-liberal trade policy are much more than economic. Our export industries may be hurting economically now because of what is happening to the Asian economy, but much more serious is what has happened to us because of our dependence on imports from Asia. We used to have a consumer electronics industry in America — televisions, VCRs, microwave ovens, and so on — and we also used to have a machine-tool industry: lathes, milling machines, and so on. Those industries have been wiped out — completely destroyed — by Asian competition. The same thing is happening with textiles, shoes and a hundred other more or less basic industries: industries which are essential for national autonomy. We couldn’t build a decent television receiver or a general-purpose lathe in this country now if we wanted to, because those industries no longer exist here. The factories have shut down and the skilled workers who used to make these things are now dishing out fries at McDonalds. It would take us a year to tool up again and probably five years to really pick up steam in many of these basic industries.

You know, it really doesn’t matter if we get all of our plastic hair curlers from China or not. We can do without those. But it does matter who makes our machine tools, because we can’t do without them. We need to keep all of our essential industries, all of the industries on which our autonomy is dependent, in this country, even if that means that the yuppies and the couch potatoes can’t afford to buy as many VCRs, even if it means that the cost of clothing goes up a bit.

Competition is a good thing if it keeps efficiency up and prices down. But it is not a good thing if it drives an essential industry out of the country. Undoubtedly there has been much inefficiency in American industry. Labor unions and their sometimes unreasonable demands for higher wages and more fringe benefits have been responsible for part of this inefficiency. Monopolistic business practices have been responsible for part of it. But competition, in order to be healthy, must be kept within national borders — or at least, within our own community of interests — which is to say, within our own White world.

Competition between Asia and the United States is not a matter of efficiency. There are many products which American industries simply cannot produce and sell as cheaply as their Asian competitors can, even if we do everything we can to maximize our efficiency. I’ll mention a trivial example which I noticed during the recent Yule season. I bought several strings of 100 Christmas tree lights each for $2.50 per string. That seems to be the going price in most stores. These strings of lights were made in China, of course, because no American company could possibly produce and sell them that cheaply and remain in business — unless, of course, their labor were essentially free.

We can get along without Christmas tree lights, but there are many other things we cannot get along without, and we are losing our ability to produce those things just as surely as we have been driven out of the Christmas tree light business. The yuppies and the couch potatoes may not worry about these things now, because they can still buy more consumer junk for less money, but the consequences of “free trade” will catch up with them soon enough, just as it already has caught up with our workers in industries dependent on exports to Asia and with our workers whose former jobs have been shipped overseas. Eventually “free trade” brings about a leveling of wages and standards of living. Eventually our happy couch potatoes will be earning the same wages as the Chinese workers who produce Christmas tree lights, and then they will not be so happy.

You know, this is what is happening in the American clothing industry right now. American women who work at sewing machines in American factories earn about $10 an hour, plus medical and other benefits. Korean or Guatemalan women doing the same work receive about one dollar per hour and no fringe benefits. The consequence is that American clothing factories are shutting down, one after another, and the companies are having the work done in Korea or Guatemala. The clothes are then shipped back to America, where the yuppies and the couch potatoes can buy them for less than if they were made with American labor, and the companies can make more profit. But the American women who were making $10 per hour plus benefits are being forced into minimum-wage work. Wages gradually rise in Korea and Guatemala, while they gradually fall in America.

There are fluctuations in this process — local and temporary ups and downs — which make it very complex and confusing if one focuses too closely on the details, but the overall effects are inescapable: wages and the standard of living fall in the richer country and rise in the poorer country, until the two are approximately equal. In addition, some industries will move entirely to one country or the other to take maximum advantage of local peculiarities in demographics or other resources. And when one of these industries that moves is an essential one, the country from which it moves loses its autonomy.

These are always the ultimate effects of “free trade,” and the promoters of “free trade” know that. They are counting on the process of increasing interdependence and wage equalization moving slowly enough so that Americans don’t become alarmed and try to pull back before the process has gone so far that we can no longer extricate ourselves. It’s a bit like the old story of cooking the frogs slowly enough so that they don’t realize they’re being cooked until it’s too late to try to jump out of the cooking pot. The idea now is to keep the yuppies and the couch potatoes reasonably happy, pay off the unemployed textile workers with extended government benefits taken from taxes on those who are still employed, and keeping everybody intimidated and confused with a steady flow of propaganda from the controlled media to make people think that they will be condemned as racists if they object to “free trade” policies. If the media bosses can pull it off, it will be one more demonstration of their ability to persuade a Gentile nation to commit mass suicide.

Of course, it doesn’t have to go that way. If the productive classes of this country would just begin thinking about their own long-range interests, they could halt the process now. They wouldn’t even have to be altruistic or to share the same ideology. All they would have to do is join forces long enough to put down and do away with the air-heads and the media bosses and their criminal collaborators. One short, sharp revolution, and we could scuttle the whole globalist scheme.

Look at what the enemies of our people already have done to us. Look at what they have done to our cities: cities which used to be ours, which used to be White communities. Is being able to buy cheaper VCRs worth that? Look at what they have done to our schools and our universities. Places like Harvard University used to be entirely White; the globalists have transformed it to a zoo with a student body which is less than a fifth White Gentiles now. Is being able to buy cheaper Christmas tree lights and cheaper shoes worth that? Think about the future our children and our grandchildren face in the sort of America the “free traders” are striving for. It will be an America in which our grandchildren will not only be a minority in our cities and in places like Harvard, but they will be a minority in the country as a whole. Remember, the “free traders” are also the ones keeping our borders open to the flood of immigration from the Third World. Is being able to continue making big capital gains on the stock market for another few years — so long as we didn’t make the mistake of investing in export industries, of course — are these capital gains worth what we are doing to our grandchildren?

If we shrink from the short, sharp course I mentioned, then we will doom our posterity to unending misery and squalor, slaving forever for the benefit of a minority which believes that it is entitled to rule all the peoples and nations of the world. Let us resolve not to let that happen and to do whatever we must to prevent it.

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Source: American Dissident Voices broadcast of January 3, 1998

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19 March, 2016 10:15 pm

Very interesting that Trump talks about Asian currency manipulation in almost every single one of his speeches in this current election cycle.

17 July, 2020 9:57 am

Globalism is a flop, at least for Americans. I didn’t read this entire article of jews backtracking, at, but it has some important points, like “…[economics forecaster] Krugman put it himself in a 2009 article in the New York Times Magazine, that ‘economists, as a group, mistook beauty, clad in impressive-looking mathematics, for truth.’ As the journalist Binyamin Appelbaum writes in his book,…, economists came to dominate policymaking in Washington in a way they never had before and, starting in the late 1960s, seriously misled the nation, helping to disrupt and divide it socially with a false sense of scientific certainty about the wonders of free markets. The economists pushed efficiency at all costs at the expense of social welfare and ‘subsumed the interests of Americans as producers to… Read more »