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Home Publications Blogs Beat the Press The U.S. and South Korea Have a Trade Deal, Not a "Free Trade" Deal

The U.S. and South Korea Have a Trade Deal, Not a "Free Trade" Deal

Sunday, 27 June 2010 15:40

The NYT used the term "free trade" three times in a short article on President Obama's plans to push Congress to approve the trade agreement this year. The agreement is not a free trade deal in that it leaves many barriers to trade in place and actually increases some barriers by requiring South Korea to increase the stringency of patent and copyright protection, notably for prescription drugs. It is not clear what information the NYT considers to be added by the inclusion of the word "free" in this article. Excluding it would both save space and increase accuracy.

Comments (3)Add Comment
written by izzatzo, June 27, 2010 5:28
South Korea became the latest victim outed under Baker's roaming gotcha spotlight for "Nanny Statist State" protectionism in a potential trade agreement with the US.

In response to Obama's question on Korea's beef import restrictions, "Where's The Beef?", Koreans asked, "Where's the Drugs", to which Obama replied, "Where's The Patent Protection?", to which Baker responded, "Where's The Free Trade?", for which the last part was edited out as coming from some wacko libertarian who wants to steal property rights to increase free trade.
the best things in life are protected
written by frankenduf, June 28, 2010 8:09
the word "free" serves a 2fold purpose:
1- serves as orwellian propaganda- any non-democratic policy is labeled as 'free' and hence is good for america- eg tanks roll into baghdad = bad; tanks roll in under 'operation freedom' = good
2- serves as dog whistle for any coporatist, who then can be sure it protects corporate assets
written by Queen of Sheba, June 28, 2010 4:07
Didn't you write a entry on this blog just a week or so ago about the patent monopolies granted to the pharmaceutical industry by the U.S.? I seem to remember your saying that this patent system increased the price of drugs up to 1000%. Is this the system the White House is requiring S. Korea to adhere to? Do the Koreans understand what misery they're in for?

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About Beat the Press

Dean Baker is co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research in Washington, D.C. He is the author of several books, his latest being The End of Loser Liberalism: Making Markets Progressive. Read more about Dean.