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War Tariff

make 'em pay
  (+3, -7)
(+3, -7)
  [vote for,

No, not the war tax already paid by citizens of imperialistic nations, but a tax on trade with warring nations.

For example, countries around the globe that do not support the U.S. invasion of Iraq would impose a tax on all U.S. trade, both imports and exports. While the local effect of a such taxes would be noticable, the cumulative effect on the nation waging war (in this case the U.S.) would be tremendous. U.S. citizens, faced with hefty price increases directly attributable to their government's action, would demand cessation of hostilities.

nuclear hobo, Mar 10 2007

info on trade deficits http://www.freetrad...bs/pas/tpa-002.html
educate yourself [jhomrighaus, Mar 12 2007]


       I'm not sure what this unlikely to be implemented measure would add.   

       U.S. citizens aren't particularly in favor of the war itself as is, and some of them already demand cessation of hostilities. In fact, the election of a democratic majority in house and senate could be seen as a popular mandate to end the war, and is certainly interpreted as that by the democrats that were elected.   

       Seeing relatives or friends come home injured or in body bags drives home the true costs of war in ways that more expensive t-shirts just don't.
jutta, Mar 10 2007

       Aren't trade embargoes and other financial sanctions pretty well baked?
MaxwellBuchanan, Mar 10 2007

       That would be a Cuban reference?
MaxwellBuchanan, Mar 10 2007

       How many KIA/WIA do you know? More US citizens die in car accidents in one month than all the US soldier KIA in Iraq since 2003.   

       People got annoyed when gas was $3+ per gallon. Let that happen to nearly every imported product and you will see some very rapid changes. Economics are the most effective technique for initiating change.   

       Additionally, a War Tariff would empower small countries by banding them together as an effective economic force. This would provide them the kind of clout the UN is supposed to but can't.
nuclear hobo, Mar 10 2007

       Yes, but how does this differ from the economic sanctions which countries are already presumably free to apply as they see fit?   

       In which case, surely, this is just "lets all"?
MaxwellBuchanan, Mar 10 2007

       Economic sanctions are simply punishment delivered to poor nations by wealthy ones. When they don't work, military action follows. Poor countries cannot sanction wealthy ones unless they band together. A small country can easily be economically crushed by an economic superpower, and in fact economic warfare is far more rampant than military.   

       This is a proposal to change the economic balance of power.
nuclear hobo, Mar 11 2007

       The 0.5 trillion dollars that the war will eventually end up costing the US government will be passed on to the tax payers. You'd think that would be an economic incentive enough to cease the war.
xaviergisz, Mar 11 2007

       Surely, an additional trade tax *is* just an economic sanction? And surely any country is free to do this at present?   

       In which case, this idea is surely just an exhortation to all the small nations to act together and have a unified policy against countries they don't like. In which case, surely, this is "lets all"? How is the action you're proposing essentially new?
MaxwellBuchanan, Mar 11 2007

       xavier, the iraq war will eventually cost the u.s. nothing monetarily. reparations will be sought and paid for by the iraqi people.as to the idea, it does sound just like another sanction. the un shoulda just done its job in the beginnin' and shit canned the whole thing.
the dog's breakfast, Mar 11 2007

       //the un shoulda just done its job in the beginnin' and shit canned the whole thing// The UN is crippled by the veto power of the permanent members of the Security Council, which makes the UN essentially impotent. The US invaded Iraq *without* UN authorization.
nuclear hobo, Mar 11 2007

       It is nice to see people thinking of ways to eliminate war.   

       Unfortunately, the US is currently running a huge record deficit in foreign trade so the oposite-from-desired effect may result. Most countries would suffer because they would end up selling less to the US (think China) and US companies would benefit by selling more to Americans. This proposal would in all likelihood be supported (perhaps unofficially) by corporate America and its representatives in the Whitehouse.   

       The overall result if implemented, would likely end up in a major world depression as the US retaliates with punitive tariffs of its own making. And we all know what normally happens as a result of major depressions - more war.   

       This idea gets a no vote from me.
innovatus, Mar 11 2007

       The trade deficit comes from purchasing things Americans demand but don't make for themselves because they can buy them much more cheaply overseas. While corporate America will certainly find a way to profit from trade sanctions, probably throguh price gouging attributed to 'foreign tariffs', America has transitioned to a largely service based economy and much of its industrial production has been outsourced overseas. Thus the huge trade deficits, where dollars go to China and elsewhere in exchange for goods no longer produced in the US. This is a potential 'social' throttle on the US economy as opposed to a throttle based on a strategic resource such as oil.
nuclear hobo, Mar 11 2007

       You have to consider the "all pull together" effect that this idea might have.   

       If a foreign country can be seen to be making life hard for an individual - mightn't it strengthen that individual's resolve against the distant power that's making their life more difficult? Mightn't groups of those individuals become more patriotic and be more likely to exhibit the kind of ugly anti-foreign feelings that are required in maintaining popular support for an overseas war?   

       Better for the aggrieved nations to organise music festivals and dish out free t-shirts in order to show what lovely human beings they are.
zen_tom, Mar 11 2007

       [nuclear hobo] I think you need to try to put some numbers on your little proposal here. When you do I suspect you will find that your grasp of the size of the US economy compared to just about every other economy on the planet is quite staggeringly off the mark. I suspect that even if a lot of countries tried this, that the US could pretty much cut them off without missing a beat and for most countries that would mean a near total collapse of their economy(as we would pressure those countries we have influence over(many) to do the same). The ones that are large enough to be able to weather such a response are generally into the US Economy for almost as much as we are in to them. Again very bad for their economy. The remaining set of countries actually don't have a big issue with the war in private and so will simply stand on the sidelines bemoaning the war but not willing to risk anything either.   

       There is a sad fact about the art of war and that is that no matter what it looks like on the surface they tend to be profitable ventures for someone(not always the people fighting them) this capitalistic element means that there are always countries willing to see things continue for their own benefit.   

       The amount of material leaving this country every day is positively staggering, and the number of countries willing or able to incur the wrath of the American people are relatively few and far between(note the fact that what you propose will effect most normal Americans and not in a positive way, if they decide to be really unhappy about the situation then God help the focus of their wrath, because they will be on the phone to their representatives in congress screaming for them to do something about it) This current war is a half-assed unsupported presidential fancy, not the committed response of a world superpower that feels threatened and backed into a corner.   

       According to the world bank the US accounts for 25%+ of the GDP for the world, the next largest economy is Japan at 10% the next after that is Germany at around 6% The next 8 economy's combined are less than 35% and the remaining 172 economies combined are less than 25% of the world GDP.   

       //America has transitioned to a largely service based economy and much of its industrial production has been outsourced overseas//   

       Based on this idea and this statement(and in your other annos)I think you need to see the link above to begin your education on trade. Your overall idea here is fundamentally flawed.
jhomrighaus, Mar 12 2007

       The link is 9 years old, and since that time the US trade deficit has increased some six fold, from $114B/year to $60B/month. Transition to a service economy refelcts diminshed domestic production of goods, which has been and continues to be outsourced overseas. This overdependence on service means the US economy is inextricably linked to products made overseas. The uniting of foreign countries with a unified trade tariffs would have a tremendous political impact. For example, watch the way one stock market 'blip' affects all global markets.
nuclear hobo, Mar 13 2007

       which is exactly why nobody wants to paly this game. they get pissy, try to charge us then when our stock market stumbles all of their foreign investments tank sending most economies on the planet into a tail spin.   

       The link was not intended to discuss the current financial situation but rather to discuss the nature of a trade deficit(which based on your response you have failed to read or understand the discussion) This sort of game just doesn't really work at all in a global economy. You impose sanctions and the US pulls all of its investments in foreign economies.   

       I would hardly characterize a trade deficit representing about 6% of the US GDP "inextricably linked to products made overseas"   

       The fact that manufacturing growth has risen for the last 40 months would seem to contradict your idea that we are becoming a service based economy that has no manufacturing capability.   

       You clearly do not understand what you are talking about and do not understand the complex relations ships between Trade, Budget, finance, GDP and world economy(not that I know much either but everything I read on line jives with what I know) but bottom line the US economy is growing, unemployment is fairly stable, Trade deficits account for only a small fraction of or GPD (if you read the link you would know that trade deficits have nothing to do with the volume of goods produced or traded but rather the flow of capital(money)). Your doom and gloom scenario is just not founded on solid ground. And your idea will not work and is not good. Period!   

       Read the link and recent financial news.
jhomrighaus, Mar 13 2007

       Sounds like a very excellent way for foreign countries to drive American corporations back to the US. I'm all for it! On sort of a similar note, check out www.divestterror.org Dropping terror supporting corporations from investment portfolios.
wittyhoosier, Mar 13 2007

       I am not sure which way to go on this one. This is not an original idea under marked for deletion you will find a catagory //advocacy - the post is a commentary on an existing, often widely discussed, issue dear to the author's heart. This includes ideas to clone, kill, jail, or tax all people who do X;//   

       But that never stopped me. I think this is a great idea for islamic countries who whish to spread Millitant Islam. It is great for polititians who wish to gain temporary power to point to some supposed injustice in the current system and rally people under his authority. It is great to have some lame excuse for your economic poverty like moral spite for some other country's evil that justifies imposing limits on the economic freedoms of your citizens and allows you to take money from special interest groups such as failing local competition to the previously untaxed imports.   

       While I think your plan is evil on many levels, it has it's own wisdom. [+]   

       As always the following quote is not meant to support any fact that has not already been supported: Luke 16:8 And the lord commended the unjust steward, because he had done wisely: for the children of this world are in their generation wiser than the children of light.
MercuryNotMars, Mar 13 2007


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