"Buy American" Clause

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Betrayer0fHope, Feb 10, 2009.

  1. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

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    About 15 or 20 years ago, California printed an official agricultural booklet telling how important agriculture was to the state. One of the tables, gave crops in order of their economic importance to the state. That's right, marijuana was No.1, but the author was too honest, booklet was recalled (few actually got out) and "corrected."

    Likewise, back when I was young, perhaps still true, the Queen of England did not want (and it did not happen) that part of her state allowance came from the hard-working / men-pleasing girls (and others) of the night. Anyone know if English prostitutes are taxed on their earnings now?

    California could probably end legislative gridlock, balance its budget, pay its teachers and cops etc. by following your suggestion (and cut into organized crime) - but you cannot expect politicians to offend their religious right wing supporters, so they will not.
     
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  3. Texas Bob Registered Senior Member

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    The Democrats insisted on keeping a modified version of the "Buy American" clause in the spending package...sorry no stimulus here.

    That has almost all of America's trading partners hopping mad. We signed treaties -- and if we're not going to keep them, why should they?

    It sounds good and patriotic and high-minded and all... But it is empty political theater. Basically, they are playing to special interest groups (i.e. the labor unions)

    The "Buy American" protectionism of the 1930's added years to the Depression, since Americans had to have money in order to 'buy American'.

    And since nobody outside America was buying American in retaliation, nobody inside America was buying American, either. And the Depression widened and deepened.

    By 1936, nobody in America was buying much of anything.

    Now, legions of former Clinton officials are poring over the New Deal records of the FDR administration, searching for policy ideas for use in addressing the current crisis -- all in the name of 'change'. :shrug:
     
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  5. spidergoat Liddle' Dick Tater Valued Senior Member

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    How do you even buy American? My Ford was made in Mexico.
     
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  7. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

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    Ex president of Ford / Brazil, Luiz Carlos Mello, says that US auto maker's troubles will be good of Brazil's auto makers, noting that they are autonomous and profitable (world leaders in flex-fuel technology, smaller, more efficient, than US's with more than 30 years of experience with alcohol as fuel, etc.)

    He cites GM moving production of model made in Mexico to Brazil (but article in paper did not tell which model) and expects others to do the same. I assume this is because US is no long importing them much and Brazil's market is growing. Perhaps your next “American Ford” will be from Brazil with well tested flex-fuel capacity, just the right size for European roads / traffic? (You do live in one of the "low contries" do you not?)
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 19, 2009
  8. joepistole Deacon Blues Valued Senior Member

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    There is a big hole in the clause, it exempts countries which The United States has formal trade agreements in force...which is just about everybody.
     
  9. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

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    That does not include Brazil, one of the few countries the US has a positive balance of trade with. Brazil may change that if US ceases to buy Brazilian made steel.

    Bolivia does not much like the US now and has the world´s richest deposit of lithium (About 1/3 of all that is known to exist). - Bolivia may chose to make Lithium ion batteries. Moralis is now in France, talking to French president, earlier to Japan and others about getting help with making the battery plant. As part of the probably deal, they get the batteries. Then GM´s volt will have even more problems. It is one world now - screw free trade and YOU WILL BE SCREWED.
     
  10. draqon Banned Banned

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    Couldn't Chile provide the lithium to USA, in case Bolivia declines?
     
  11. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

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    I think China has the next best deposit. It is a question of battery cost. You can get lithium from sea water, but no one will buy your batteries. Batteries are a large part of the electric car cost. Bolivia is the "Saudi Arabia" of lithium.
     
  12. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

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    First Paragraph of Post 17:

    "It is not just “buy American” that has Indians (especially IT workers) upset: “US Senators had put forward stricter conditions on hiring on H-1B visas by firms receiving federal bailout money under the Troubled Asset Relief Program. These firms will not be able to hire workers under H1-B visas for the next two years.” From: http://www.financialexpress.com/news...e-sour/423922/ which is a little funny as India is at the forefront of protectionism and to some extent xenophobia. Xenophobia and protectionism are on the rise globally. "

    More on this at:
    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601109&sid=afB9Q1A5.qyI&refer=home
    including:

    "Chuck Grassley, a Republican Senator from Iowa, ... sent a letter to Microsoft Chief Executive Officer Steve Ballmer the day after Microsoft announced the job cuts last month, demanding Ballmer fire {H-1B} visa holders first."
    (MicroSoft is axing 5000 more workers.)

    A month or so ago I suggested some young, single, IT-wise American men might want to go to India or China - (ladies there are still centered on their man.) Better hurry if considering this as will not be long before you are not welcome there and you will be stuck in the US depression.
     
  13. kmguru Staff Member

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    11,757
    On Lithium:

    Even though over half of the world’s reserve of lithium lies under Bolivian soil, the two largest lithium exporters to the U.S. are Chile and Argentina. According to the United States Geological Survey (USGS), Chile provides 61 percent of lithium exports to the U.S. and Argentina is the source of 36 percent. Chile has a reserve of an estimated 3 million tons and Argentina weighs in with 400,000 tons, while Bolivia’s reserve is calculated as being about 5.4 million tons.

    Processing raw lithium carbonate into lithium-ion batteries will be a protracted task due to Bolivia’s anemic economy, which has been adversely affected by the decrease in the price of petroleum and the sag in commodity prices. Before this, Bolivia had been shattered by a series of military coups from 1978 to 1980 and then by a major economic crisis in the mid-1980s. This crisis, which resulted in 24,000% inflation in 1985, crippled the government and raised the country’s foreign debt to $3 billion, over which Bolivia is still struggling to recover.

    This analysis was prepared by COHA Research Associates Andy Blair and Adam Bloom ....February 19th, 2009
     
  14. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

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    I think that Bolivia's lithium salt deposit is significantly higher concentrate of LiCO3 (?) relative to the dominate NaCl. So it is cheaper source of Lithium and will win economically when Japan, France and /or China get production going.

    AFAIK, Bolivia does not export any significant amount of oil - they sell natural gas to Argentina and mainly to Brazil. They more than doubled the price about a year ago and sort of confiscated some of the processing plants Petrobras owned (Petrobras is more than 50% owned by Brazilian government). There is a large pipeline with long term a take or pay contract. It all got very touchy for a few months as Lula is left leaning and Morales is a far left "friend" but Brazil was being taken advantage of as had little alternative but to pay more.

    Bolivia did have great internal political problems (North east part where the gas is almost split off to become separate country and did print some of its own currency) About a month ago Morales won an election to have new constitution (by about 54 to 45% percent as I recall) It gives his native base more rights and country will not split.
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    More on thread:
    Today's paper tells that 3000 cars have been abandoned at Dubai's airport. Foreigners have been being fired. Many have debts there which can not pay and for that you go to jail - best to get out of the country. More than 3000 have.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 23, 2009
  15. kmguru Staff Member

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    We have plenty of Lithium Chloride in the great salt lake of Utah. It is a matter of extracting it. Presently they are extracting Magnesium and I think Boron from that water.
     
  16. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

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    Li Cl must have a very strong bond (stronger than NaCl surely). How would you get the Li free from it economically?
     
  17. kmguru Staff Member

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    Naturally Occuring LiAlSi2O6 is converted to Li2SO4 using H2SO4 then soda ash is used to convert to Lithium Carbonate which then reacted with Hcl to produce Lithium Chloride. The metal is extracted via electrolysis.

    It is a much shorter step from brine. There is a catch. Just to get to Lithium Choride would be expensive. But as a part of other metal extraction process, such as Magnesium - this can be cost effective.

    In Utah, I think it is the MagCorp (the plant changed hands too many times) that produces Magnesium and can easily produce Lithium if they wanted to.
     
  18. Slacker47 Paint it Black Registered Senior Member

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    667
    Here's my two cents, and I want a receipt:

    The american consumer is WEAK these days. My grandparents lived alone on a farm during the depression in the 30's because thier parents died. They dont buy anything that they dont NEED.

    The current consumers are the baby boomers, who have spent thier paychecks on so much crap that storage facilities are everywhere, and my generation, who are lost. The baby boomers in large part have fried thier brains or have been exposed to a large amount of bad chemicals or been screwed out of thier money. My generation (i am 23) was raised on transformers cartoons and Tucan Sam cereal boxes. The average person does not care AT ALL what happens to our nation. (On a side note, look at all the work being lost to illegal Mexicans) Our media is feeding bowls of feces into the average person. There is no logical consensus on TV. Glen Beck breaks down stuff into easy to understand terms, but Fox news jumps from random nothing-story to more nonsense. Look at the amount of alcohol consumed by the average person in America, get it?

    I do not see the average person having an ability have the brain to pull us out of this mess. There needs to be leadership and policy change. Our government is going to have to say FU china. I mean, we are taking loans FROM China. Ridiculous.

    I buy American always if the product is good. I do not buy crap because it is crap.
     
  19. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

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    Is LiAlSi2O6 found as a relatively pure mineral, a crystal? Is any of it actually providing Lithium now? Did you tell me in your post that the brine is a solution with Li+ ions in it?

    I do not know anything about all this, but Li+ ought to be able to pass thru some solids, especially metals with free electrons, as it is with only two outer shell electons, just like helium. Helium will "leak" thur very tiny cracks in metal - why it is used in vacuum leak detection systems. - Just some wild thoughts to stimulate you.

    There is NYTimes artricle only 21 days old which tells much of what I did and more at: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/03/world/americas/03lithium.html?_r=1&ref=world

    The lithium is in the part of Bolivia where the natural gas is not. The SW and where the population is mainly native. Morales's people. I bet they go with China, not the westerners (France is one and they will not ever talk to the US) that have exploited then for a couple of centuries. That would mean China would have essentially a lock on the world's economical supplies of Lithium.
     
  20. quadraphonics Bloodthirsty Barbarian Valued Senior Member

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    Morales' inclination seems to be to go with Bolivia, and not with any foreign entity. None of the companies pursuing lithium deals there are up for anything more than a minority stake in a Bolivian state-run enterprise. The fact of the matter is that Bolivia lacks the capital and expertise to get large-scale lithium production up in any reasonable amount of time, and so is forced to seek outside assistance. But it is not at all clear that Bolivia is serious enough about doing this to get enough financing and participation lined up quickly enough. Faced with a choice of accepting a majority stake from an outside entity, or not producing much lithium, it's possible they'll opt for the latter. As of right now, the lithium is just sitting in the ground, while peasants literally scrape out a living harvesting the salt deposits that overlie it, so this is all highly speculative.

    Also, even the most optimistic estimates of Bolivia's share of accessible lithium place it around 50% of the world total, so this project does not grant a "lock" to anyone any more than Saudi Arabia has a "lock" on world oil production. And it's also possible that there is more lithium outside Bolivia, and less inside, than has been accounted for already. Lithium isn't like oil, where countless billions have been spent seeking out every accessible deposit all over the world for the past century. And regardless of who (if anyone) gets the lithium concession, the resulting metal will be available for sale to battery producers the world over, at GM and beyond. Having direct access to the lithium simply provides a competitive advantage to any automaker that might get it. But it's unclear that Bolivia is willing to give up a whole lot of concessions on this matter, so it may not have much effect.

    There is a real possibility that, should Bolivia not get investment up and running and so rapidly bring production up over the next 5-10 years, that the industries will end up working around the lack of lithium. Either by devising an alternative battery construction or (worse) by forgoing electric/hybrid cars. it is crucial that they sieze this opportunity, both for the development of Bolivia and for the future of electric/hybrid cars.
     
  21. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

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    Last week Morales was in Paris seeing the French offer and buying an airbus. He will develop the deposit - no doubt about that, but may limit foreign owners to 49% or even nationalize it all later (as did to Petrobras's gas production facilities last year).

    I do not recall where I read it, but believe China is both the world’s largest producer of Lithium and second only to Bolivia in the size of its deposit (actually in Tibet, I think – a small part of why the world’s highest rail line was made. Passengers are supplied Oxygen during part of the trip!)

    Electric cars with Li-ion batteries will be very unimportant fraction of the US total if the China and Bolivia chose to sell / use their lithium only in China unless some new deposit is found – not likely as all known economically feasible deposits are in great salt flats – easily photographed from space satellites. That is why I said China helping Bolivia develop its world’s largest deposits would be a “lock” on the Li-ion batteries. Not only that, China is a leader (first in production volume soon, I think.) in the plug-in hybrid race:

    “Chinese company BYD, which stands for Build Your Dream … beat Japanese and U.S. automakers to release the first plug-in hybrid car in China. … BYD's F3DM model operates in either full electric or gas-electric modes, and contains an electric battery that can be charged at a regular plug or at a recharging station. It can travel up to 100 kilometers (62 miles) solely on battery power … If it fulfills its promises, the cheaper car may have a good chance against Toyota Motor's Prius in the urban Chinese market. … One of the world's biggest producer of rechargeable batteries for cell phones and laptops by sales, BYD moved into the auto market FIVE years ago. In September, Buffett-controlled MidAmerican Energy Holdings bought a 9.9% stake in BYD for $230.0 million.”
    From: http://www.forbes.com/2008/12/15/byd-hybrid-car-markets-equity-cx_twdd_1215markets04.html

    “BYD plans to start selling its first all-electric car in China next year {early 2009} and to start selling gasoline-electric hybrids in the U.S. and Europe by 2010. … BYD is based in Shenzhen and has 130,000 employees worldwide. It had sales of $1.8 billion in the six months to June {2008} , up 44% for the same period a year earlier. Profit after tax was up {only} 15% at $108 million, as raw material {read Lithium} costs surged for both its battery and handset components businesses. Two-thirds of BYD's sales are in China. {Mainly cell phones, I think at present. They have many models - some even will spray perfume on you from re-fillable chamber!} The company's chairman, Wang Chuanfu, said in a statement that the investment from MidAmerican will help give BYD further access to global markets, particularly for its new electric vehicles and environmental protection.
    From: http://www.forbes.com/2008/09/28/buffett-electronics-china-biz-cx_pm_0928batteries.html
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 24, 2009
  22. kmguru Staff Member

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    Lithium being next to Hydrogen in the periodic table, there are plenty of them like H2O. However, because Lithium is highly reactive, and so is chlorine, the brine would have a lot in it. Best place would be the Salt Flats or more so in the great salt lake. I worked as a plant engineer at the Magnesium Plant next to the Salt Lake many many years ago where we developed all kind of new technologies to make it possible to extract Mg from Salt Water.

    This may be time to revisit that process to extract Lithium there too. It all depends on our leadership. Just because we know it can be done does not mean our Lawyer politicians would know what to do!
     

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