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From: Scott Wolla (misterwolla@yahoo.com)
Date: Fri Jul 25 2003 - 13:13:27 EDT

  • Next message: Scott Wolla: "[Channel-talkeconomics] Video #8 observations - Growth and Entrepreneurship"

    Video #5
    Trading Globally

    In my one semester required Economics class, we
    havenít been able to spend much time on global trade.
    We do however, spend some time on the basic rationale
    for trade as being advantageous to all parties
    involved and the role of specialization. I really
    enjoyed the discussion of why Global Trade is so
    controversial. My perception is that most students are
    very patriotic in their attitudes about buying
    American products and protecting American jobs, but
    very few will personally pay more or go out of their
    way to look specifically for an American made product.
    Also, they automatically think of cars when speaking
    of global trade. I believe this issue is of special
    interest to the Iron Range of Minnesota because the
    iron industry is very cyclical and is very much
    affected by imported steel and also imported cars,
    since domestically produced automobiles use more
    domestically produced steel. When the Bush
    administration surprisingly decided to impose a steel
    tariff on imported steel a few years ago, we had some
    great discussions about tariffs, and their effects on
    trade and prices.

    I enjoyed the activity in which students check the
    labels of their clothing to see where they were made.
    Students often don't realize how interdependent our
    economy is on the economies of foreign nations. It
    serves as a good springboard for discussions on
    specialization. I also enjoyed the discussion about
    the various sources of a candy bar. It is truly
    amazing how something like a candy bar, something we
    think of as a piece of Americana, is truly an
    international product.

    The Banana Wars activity is a great one. The growing
    role of international trade and open markets will
    greatly accelerate the role of international politics.
    Students hear of the WTO in the news occasionally, but
    the Banana Wars activity does a wonderful job of
    involving students giving them an understanding of how
    the markets work.

    One area that I would like to fit into my existing
    curriculum is David Ricardoís comparative and absolute
    advantage.

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