Max Baucus Finally Gets His Grand Bargain!

Usually, when Max Baucus tries to craft a grand bargain, oversized legislation starts by getting progressively worse, at which point the legislation finally dies.

But he has finally succeeded in getting a grand bargain, with a deal to extend Trade Adjustment Assistance in exchange for votes on the Korea, Colombia, and Panama trade deals.

Baucus said he had secured an agreement with the White House and Rep. Dave Camp (R-Mich.), chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, to renew the expanded version of Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA). The program, which funds job-training programs and healthcare benefits for workers hurt by trade, will be extended until the end of 2013.

If that doesn’t already make you vomit, then consider the way the Chamber of Commerce’s Tom Donohue is preening over this agreement.

“For members of Congress who care about American jobs, this is a moment of truth,” said Tom Donohue, the Chamber’s president and CEO. “I urge members of both parties to seize a reasonable compromise and move the trade agenda forward. The time to act is now.”

As if the Chamber gives a hoot about jobs–aside from the ones they can move to countries where labor organization is met with murder.

9 replies
  1. papau says:

    Compromises that destroy the Democratic Party are the world of blue dogs and Obama.

    This net job loss trade agreement package – as reviewed by the Obama folks – is in line with Obama’s screw the worker view – toss some “job training” to workers living in an area where the plant has closed, they have no equity because housing pricing collapsed with the close of the plant, and no jobs exist – yeah, that will help. Should be an easy sell to the base.

    And once again the Democratic Party is offering the GOP a he-said/she-said election rather an election about what we are for and what the GOP are not in favor of.

    We have a Medicare issue after the Ryan Plan disaster – but post Obama led compromises in 2012 the corporate controlled media will inform the voter that in the issue about which party “really” cares about grandma’s health, “Democrats say their cuts will have less impact on seniors, whereas Republicans say their plan will give seniors more choices.” – and that is sure to move votes in our direction.

  2. donbacon says:

    Candidate Obama, 2008:

    “One million jobs have been lost because of NAFTA, including nearly 50,000 jobs here in Ohio. And yet, 10 years after NAFTA passed, Sen. Clinton said it was good for America. Well, I don’t think NAFTA has been good for America – and I never have.”

    President Obama, 2011:

    “We are confident now that a free trade agreement would be good for our country, would create jobs here in the United States, open up new markets with potential for billions of dollars of cross-border trade,” Obama said. “We think it would be also very good for Panama and allow additional economic exchanges between our two countries.”

    If free trade, unlike before, will now provide jobs here in the United States, then why do we need “Trade Adjustment Assistance?”

  3. nahant says:

    As if the Chamber gives a FUCKING hoot about jobs–aside from the ones they can move to countries where labor organization is met with murder.

    Small edit!!
    They are looking to eliminate the middle-class in total… We just don’t mean anything to them…

    on edit Baucus is a greedy asshole!!

  4. prostratedragon says:

    Ah yes, TAA! Maybe it wasn’t this exact article, but it was something much like it that I saw a while back. The researcher documents and investigates reasons for underuse of the program by employers who have import competition.

    From the results:

    In principle WARN notices [to alert workers and communities to potential employment-displacing events] should precede large unemployment events and TAA petitions [seeking aid to the displaced workers] should follow them. In practice plants with one or more WARN notice in the period were associated with one or more TAA petitions about 75 percent of the time. However when the Davison’s database is restricted to consideration of those plants reporting job loss of 50 or more of the 525 plants in that category only 15 percent reported both WARN notice and TAA petition. Over half reported neither WARN notice nor TAA petition.

    While it is surprising that so few of the plants reporting large employment events are associated with either TAA petitions or WARN notices this is not evidence of wrongdoing. The WARN notice is only required when a large employment event is to occur within the next 6 months while the calculations of unemployment from the Davison s database cover total net employment change over the 12 year period. For plants that slowly lay off workers a WARN notice isn’t necessary — even if the cumulative result is a large employment event

    So, it took a researcher tracking down a data anomaly to discover that the program was ineffective, and something of why ——and then it turns out to be “no one’s” fault! Yeah, we want some more of that, for sure!

  5. kimsarah says:

    Seems like most of the jobs created here are non-unionized, low wages, low or no benefits jobs at McDonalds, Target, Wal-Mart and war machine defense contractors. And now robots, who will be counted as new jobs created, while they replace humans.

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