Readers' Letters
by: Patrick Cote Members of the Oregon Fair Trade Campaign and Jobs With Justice protest a proposed free trade agreement with South Korea outside the Lloyd District office of U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Portland, who leads the committee that will consider the treaty in the Senate.

A recent Tribune article quotes President Obama as stating that the Korea-US Free Trade Agreement will 'support 70,000 more American jobs by boosting U.S. exports to South Korea' (Oregon may be a trade winner, Jan. 27).

According to the Economic Policy Institute, however, this agreement will displace 880,000 American jobs within seven years. This deficit-expanding deal would mean more job losses for struggling Oregon workers.

With an Oregon unemployment rate stuck at more than 10 percent, we need a Fair Trade policy that creates or saves more Oregon jobs - not another NAFTA-style Free Trade Agreement that will outsource more Oregon jobs.

Please join fellow Oregonians in urging U.S. Rep. Blumenauer and Sens.. (Ron) Wyden and (Jeff) Merkley to oppose passage of the Korea-US Free Trade Agreement.

Ken Cropper

Northeast Portland

Trade 'winner' headline misleading

Wow - nice headline (Oregon may be a trade winner, Jan. 27). Too bad the article (and reality) paint quite a different picture.

Maybe you should have written something like 'Portland could gain and Oregon may win, but most folks think otherwise.'

Chris Ferlazzo

North Portland

Trade is always a win-win

Another good article by Steve Law (Oregon may be a trade winner, Jan. 27).

All trade is fair trade, otherwise there wouldn't be any. As Yogi Berra says, 'If the fans don't come out to the ball park, you can't stop them.'

Trade is always a win-win. The guy who buys a Picasso for $5 million values the blobs of paint on the canvas more than his $5 million. He's happy, and so is Picasso.

China, South Korea, India and the U.S. can't make economics work for themselves. If China undervalues it's currency (not to mention our own printing press), they haven't changed economics. Everything in China will cost the Chinese more Renminbi. If they want to give us free solar panels, let's take 'em - that'll give us more money to spend on other Fords or GMs. If the South Koreans can't buy cheaper Fords or GMs, the South Koreans are worse off.

Mercantilism doesn't work and anything other than free-trade is mercantilism. As the French economist Frederick Bastiat said back in the 1840s, 'If goods don't cross borders, armies will.' World Wars I and II attest to that.

And as Thomas Friedman pointed out a few years back, no two countries with McDonalds franchises are at war with each other.

Stuart MacLean

Southwest Portland

Offshoring of jobs is too easy

The International Trade Commission stated that trade with China would only increase $1 billion, but went to $185 billion. They got it wrong with China - what assurance do we have that they got it right with South Korea (Free trade deal will be bad for workers, My View, Feb. 10)?

Who funds the ITC? We make it so easy for corporations to offshore our jobs. Maybe what we need is change?

Dan Maher

Southeast Portland

Free trade good for bosses

While reading the article 'Oregon may be a trade winner' (Jan. 27) on the Korea-U.S. Free Trade Agreement, I thought back to a public comment Rep. Earl Blumenauer made after his vote in favor of the U.S.-Australia Free Trade Agreement. He said that agreement was about creating good American jobs, and he pointed specifically at Freightliner, which manufactured trucks.

More of those trucks could be sold in Australia because the Australian tariff would be eliminated, making them competitive. And therefore, good paying American jobs would result.

Then I noticed a short while after Congress passed the agreement that Freightliner closed those truck-manufacturing lines and the good-paying union jobs at Freightliner were eliminated. That is how free trade works: good for the bosses, bad for the workers. Profits up, wages and salaries down.

Just say no to more trade agreements based on the North American Free Trade Agreement model. We need a new model for trade and the Korean agreement is just more of the same.

David Delk

Northeast Portland

Potestio honored by tribute

Jason Vondersmith: Thank you so much for the article on my dad, Mauro Potestio (UP's ironman fan sits on a record, Feb. 3).

Just like everything else that happened this week, the timing was of the essence. We read (the article) to him and although he really couldn't say it, you could tell he was very proud. He passed away Feb. 5 knowing that he was appreciated - not just by family, but also by friends and the community.

The award and your tribute is something we will always remember.

Phillip Potestio

Southeast Portland

Mauro loved UP sports, Sinatra

My dad was friends with Mauro (Potestio) since their days at University of Portland (UP's ironman fan sits on a record, Feb. 3). Whenever the Pilots - or anything UP or Sinatra - were mentioned in dad's presence, Mauro's name was always brought up.

Just a couple weeks ago, my husband, sons and I attended the UP vs. Saint Mary's game, for whom my husband played. The Pilots crushed the Gaels. And though there was disappointment in my household, I was happy for Mauro that his Pilots had a sweet victory.

Sarah Rask Robertson

Northeast Portland

Article avoids scare tactics

'Sometimes it's good to take note of the disasters that don't happen, and to consider why' (Program guides lives out of danger, Feb. 3). This is a great example of the Tribune's value to Portland.

Yes, disasters happen and should be covered by news organizations in order to bring awareness to things that need to change, but articles such as this do far more for the community by avoiding scare tactics and highlighting programs that work, the people who are working to build relationships with the disenfranchised, and those individuals who have the chance to receive the support they need.

Arlen Bynum

Southwest Portland

See you in another 10, Trib

Congrats on 10 and see ya at 20 (A decade of telling Portland's story, Feb. 3).

Tony Rowland

Goldendale, Wash.

Tribune keeps journalism in mind

This is real easy: Thanks to the Tribune for their journalism. Hope there will many, many more decades (A decade of telling Portland's story, Feb. 3).

The Tribune is still a newspaper even though it is online (in print on Thursdays). They - unlike many others - made the transition without losing sight of their reason for existing: journalism.

A newspaper holds a constitutionally protected place in our society and the Portland Tribune has brought honor and credibility to that place.

A newspaper with reporters, not bloggers - what a novel concept.

Larry Norton

Northwest Portland

Competition makes better news

Many thanks to the Tribune. Newspaper competition has made our city a better place (A decade of telling Portland's story, Feb. 3).

Geoff Rode

Southeast Portland

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