John Feehery: Speaking Engagements


Get Used to Globalization

Posted on March 10, 2016
By WPPilot - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,

By WPPilot - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,

I am flying down to Miami to check out the last debates with the final four Republican candidates.

It’s appropriate that there would be a final four in March, because the Final Four is the natural culmination of the March Madness in NCAA basketball.

There is more diversity in college basketball than there is in the NBA.  There are more white players, and lot more players from overseas. The international players bring a certain flare to the college game, making it a tremendously exciting product to watch.

That’s the beauty of globalization. You bring talented people from all over the world and you make a great product.

No city is more globalized than Miami. It has been called Little Havana because of its proximity to Cuba, but Miami has people from all over the world who live there. There are Dominicans, Columbians, Russians, New Yorkers, even some people from the Midwest.

Miami is one of the world’s most interesting and most successful cities as a result. Globalization makes it so.

Marco Rubio understands globalization because he lives it everyday. He wanted to pass immigration reform in Congress not because he thought it would do great things for him politically. His mother told him to fix the broken immigration system, because Rubio’s family knows from first hand experience that America can only truly be great if it embraces globalization by fixing a broken system.

People want to come to America for a variety of reasons. Some base their decision to come here on pure economic reasons. They want to make more money. Some come to America because they want to escape desperate poverty. Some are forced to flee their homelands because they fear for their lives. Some come because the opportunity inherent in the American dream intrigues them. And some come to reunite with family.

America is a nation of immigrants and when the immigration system is broken, it impacts all of us.

Not all people who come to America want to live here for their rest of their lives. Some want to work for a season. Some want to pursue a job and when that ends, they want to go home.

As a country, we should make that decision as easy as possible for people. The government should serve the people. The government shouldn’t shake people down.

An immigration system that works well makes those decisions as frictionless as possible.

Illegal immigration is a problem, but mostly for the people who are here illegally. They are the ones most susceptible to being exploited by employers. And don’t think there aren’t unscrupulous employers out there who love to exploit the undocumented.

Globalization is more than immigration, though. It’s also trade.

And the State of Florida is a perfect example of the importance of trade. The Sunshine State exports billions of dollars worth of agriculture products. It also exports intellectual property produced at places like Disney. It manufactures small planes like the Embraer jet.

Of course, Florida also imports products. There are more consumers in Florida than manufacturers. Old people are done making stuff. They consume stuff.

And the fact of the matter is that globalization has been a tremendous plus for all consumers in Florida and in the rest of the country.

Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders want to go back to an idyllic time when the American people manufactured everything and consumed nothing. But that time never existed. Ever.

And when Trump says he wants to slap a 45% tariff on all Chinese products, what he is really saying is that he wants Florida’s consumers to pay a lot more in taxes to the government in order to prop up American businesses that simply can’t compete with Chinese companies.

I don’t know how well a 45% tax increase would fly with most American consumers if they truly understood what Trump is selling.

Of course, nobody has prospered more from globalization than Donald Trump. He is a global brand and his home town of New York City has done very, very well thanks to globalization.

The American people are angry at the politicians but I think that anger is misplaced. We live in a global world and we better get used to it.

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