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Obama to Push Bogus 'Competitiveness' Theme in State of the Union Address

Obama's claim that "we can compete with anybody in the world" is a slickly-disguised appeal to support corporate globalization.

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In Washington, it is as though the estimated 4.9 million job
losses, 43,000 factory closings, and falling U.S. wages flowing from
free trade deals like NAFTA and China's entry into the World Trade
Organization never happened.

Equally unimportant are the opinions of the 86% of Americans who emphatically agree "that outsourcing of manufacturing to foreign countries with lower wages was a reason the U.S. economy was struggling and more people weren't being hired."

So who really matters on the trade issue?

As the New York Times reports, the South Korea deal "is playing well" with the audience that truly counts, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. It's apparently no problem to the White House that the Chamber hauled in millions from firms engaged in offshoring US jobs and then turned around and spent tens of millions in the 2010 mid-terms to defeat Democrats and elect pro-offshoring Republicans.

However, the drive for the job-destroying KORUS could well be met with a new grassroots approach, as suggested by Trunka's comment about the limits of Washington lobbying.

At the same time, Teamsters President James Hoffa, Jr., is promoting  a "Corporate Pledge of Allegiance" that US corporate CEOs will be called upon to sign. "They’ve got their $2 trillion in profits, and now we're calling upon them to create jobs here in the US," he stated on "The Ed Show. "

Ideally, the Corporate Pledge strategy could be used at the local level to visit CEOs across the United States, mobilizing labor's untapped power and reaching out to the 86% of the public worried about what corporations are doing to our economy and our futures.

Stay tuned for a major battle over KORUS.

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