Protecting against Protectionism

The much anticipated and protracted $787 billion stimulus package has finally been signed and as expected, many noses are out of joint. While most of the noise has come from GOP representatives and other such auto-obstructionists, one source of unrest has emerged from abroad, namely G7 nations. The cause of their concern lies in the "Buy American" clause which of course will apply to the auto industry as much as, if not more than any other. G7 delegates such as Britain's delightfully named Alistair Darling have expressed fears that such a clause will promote protectionism, which would be damaging for international trade relations between US auto makers and suppliers overseas. An obvious knock-on effect of such measures if carried out in full by US car makers would be for other struggling nations to react to their own financial woes in a similar manner. However, politicians at home and abroad are doing what they do best to prevent such a global trade meltdown - they are talking about how to prevent it - now we all feel safe, right?

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