Globalization: What on Earth is it about? Globalization is a process in which geographic distance becomes less a factor in the establishment and sustenance of border crossing, long distance economic, political and socio-cultural relations.
BUILDING A CORPORATE EMPIRE: REASONS TO OPPOSE GLOBALIZATION • International markets could deliver untold misery in the form of poverty and unemployment • Diminishing national borders: fusing of individual national markets • Exploitation of third world countries where labor is cheaper and environmental standards are lower • Large-scale trans-national companies become more powerful and influential than democratically-elected governments, putting shareholder interests above those of communities and even customers • Corporations are disregarding the environment for profits and marketplace supremacy • National cultures and identities are also under threat because of satellite TV, international media networks and increased personal travel.
STATISTICS • Already, the world's top 200 companies have twice the assets of 80 percent of the world's population. • The northern hemisphere consumes 86% of natural resources from around the world • Global income of poorest people in world has dropped from 2.3% to 1.4% of total income in last decade • More than 1,500 non-governmental organizations registered with the WTO • Approximately 70% of French filmgoers watch Hollywood movies
Top five Reasons How Globalization hurts America • Millions of Americans have lost jobs due to imports or production shifts abroad. Most find new jobs--that pay less. • Millions of others fear losing their jobs, especially at those companies operating under competitive pressure. • Workers face pay-cut demands from employers, who may threaten to export jobs. • Service and white-collar jobs are increasingly vulnerable to operations moving offshore. • U.S. employees can lose their comparative advantage when companies build advanced factories in low-wage countries, making them as productive as those at home.
Top nine reasons to oppose the WTO • The WTO only serves the interests of multinational corporations • The WTO is a stacked court • The WTO tramples over labor and human rights • The WTO is destroying the environment • The WTO is killing people • The US adoption of the WTO was undemocratic • The WTO undermines local development and penalizes poor countries • The WTO is increasing inequality • The WTO undermines national sovereignty
NOTHING IS FOR FREE: • The WTO is a powerful international body that develops and enforces rules for corporate trade and investment • To protect corporate freedom, these global institutions apply downward pressure on wages and environmental regulations • “Free trade” policies have kept most nations of the global south in poverty FAIR TRADE, NOT FREE TRADE
DEGLOBALIZATION • Reorienting economies from production for export to production for the local market • More space, more flexibility, more compromise • De-emphasizing growth and maximizing equity • Society over economy
An end to all environmentally destructive corporate lending and support for more self-reliant, resource-conserving development that preserves biodiversity. • The reorientation of all corporate lending to ensure consistency with the agreements reached at the 1992 United Nations "Earth Summit". • A moratorium on corporate funding for the construction of large dams. • Substantial shifts towards alternative, cost-effective, resource-conserving energy, water-supply, transportation and sanitation projects. • A shift in away from agricultural export production and operations which directly or indirectly accelerate forest destruction. • A system that measures the wealth of a nation and the full value of its natural resources as well as the full cost of environmental degradation. PROPOSAL
References Globalisation: What on Earth is it about? http://news.bbc.co.uk/hi/english/special_report/1999/02/99/e-cyclopedia/newsid_711000/711906.stm Council for Canadian Unity’s Guide to Globalization http://cwis.kub.nl/globus/Lubpdfs/Globaliz/Global07.pdf Anti-globalization papers http://www.users.bigpond.com/r.nunn/2who.htm CORPWATCH: Holding Corporations Accountable http://www.corpwatch.org/feature/wto/8-bello.html http://www.corpwatch.org/feature/wto/1-mardigras.html CORPWATCH: Corporate Mardi Gras http://www.businessweek.com/2000/00_17/b3678003.htm http://www.globalexchange.org/economy/rulemakers/topTenReasons.html