Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Alan Blinder Reconsiders Free Trade

Like most mainstream economists, Alan Blinder has been a free trader. But a front-page Wall Street Journal article today says Blinder, a Princeton economist and former Federal Reserve Board vice chairman, is joining a growing number of economists who say "the downsides of trade in today's economy are deeper than they once realized."

For those of us who learned about the simple beauties of free trade in school, the world keeps getting more complicated.

According to the WSJ article, Blinder says the complicating factor is a new revolution in the global economy driven by communication technology that allows services to be delivered from far away, which may put 40 million Americans out of jobs over the next 20 years. The most vulnerable professions include computer programmers, data entry workers, actuaries, film editors, mathematicians, translators, graphic designers, and yes... even economists.

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