This time of year, many of us make a point to both reflect and look forward. It brings a sense of optimism, with the hope that each of us – and our country – will be able to overcome the challenges we will no doubt face in 2015.
Stephen DeMaura | All Articles
One of the most common refrains of the American left for decades has been their attacks on the corporate bogeyman they like to call “big business.” And in the political arena, by extension, Democrats just love to thrash Republicans as being nothing more than Big Business’ political tools. That line of attack has been around so long, it’s to be expected even in our ever-changing political landscape.
By official proclamation, President Obama recently declared World Trade Week in the United States. Over the week of May 18-24, he called for “events, trade shows, and educational programs that celebrate and inform Americans about the benefits of trade to our Nation and the global economy.” Those are all fine ideas and would certainly do their part to help raise awareness of the role international trade plays in all of our lives. But there’s one body in particular that could use some presidential encouragement. In the spirit of World Trade Week, the president should have pressed the Congress to pass trade promotion authority (TPA) legislation to boost America’s exports and grow our economy.
For decades, free trade has been a boon to the American economy, injecting capital into our markets and spurring job creation. But amidst negotiations for two major trade deals, known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), there are a select few who are seeking to obstruct any progress on expanding free trade and growing our economy. The most recent example comes in the form of an op-ed written by Brian O’Shaughnessy in the Daily Caller, which, while well-intentioned, mischaracterizes just about every aspect of the debate.
President Obama has been quick throughout his five years as president to routinely talk about how students today are graduating with higher debt. In fact, the president himself just paid off all of his student loans in the early 2000s.
Anybody who has recently taken an international flight and returned to the United States has inevitably suffered through long lines at U.S. Customs and Border Patrol check points. Our national security is of the utmost importance, but lately the wait times to go through customs have bordered on the absurd. For instance, passengers who recently arrived into Dallas/Fort-Worth International Airport reportedly waited for more than two hours in customs, after being on a plane for as long as a dozen hours. These unbearable wait times have been the unexpected result of an increase in international travel; Dallas/Fort-Worth International Airport alone has seen an 11 percent increase since last year.
As momentum builds in favor of ensuring sales tax equity between Main Street businesses, which are required to collect state sales taxes, and many online-only retailers, which are not, a growing and bipartisan chorus of public officials and opinion leaders have voiced their support for new House and Senate measures to end this uncompetitive loophole. But that chorus does not include the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC).