Judi Lynn (6211 posts)August 11, 2017 at 10:38 am
Senators fight proposed trade penalties for solar panels
Senators fight proposed trade penalties for solar panels
BY TIMOTHY CAMA – 08/11/17 01:11 PM EDT
A bipartisan group of senators is expressing “deep concern” over a federal agency’s consideration of potential trade penalties for imported solar panel technology.
The Friday letter spearheaded by Sens. Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) and Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), who both hail from states with growing solar power capacity, tells the International Trade Commission (ITC) that the penalties could severely hurt the solar industry.
The warning comes in advance of a hearing next week in which the ITC will consider a petition for tariffs or price minimums from beleaguered manufacturers Suniva Inc. and SolarWorld Americas.Gryneos, spud demon like this
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duckpin (3547 posts) (Reply to original post) August 11, 2017 at 10:45 am
1. [snark] Big Petrol and Obama/Trump have a lot invested in fracking
and moving tar sands across the country, tearing up the ground and providing sites for pollution. Why should we allow non-polluting renewable sources of energy into the USA and cause sadness for the Rexless Tillersons?[end of snark]"The justness of individual land right is not justifiable to those to whom the land by right of first claim collectively belonged "
Hobbit709 (2425 posts) (Reply to original post) August 11, 2017 at 10:55 am
2. And if we hadn't off-shored all our industry
Maybe we wouldn’t have to import them.I won't shut up and I don't waste my time teaching pigs to sing
cascadiance (2379 posts) (Reply to Hobbit709 - post #2) August 11, 2017 at 11:50 am
3. This is personal to me as Hillsboro's Solarworld laid off a lot of people…
… when their German parent company went out of business at the time, and was on the verge of going out of business here. Tariffs are used to try to help local manufacturers, not “penalize” an industry in general. As someone who could use a job here at some point, I SUPPORT protecting local industry from “dumping” of imports here underpriced.
Our earlier discussion here when Hillsboro’s Solarworld offices were threatened to go out of business when Germany’s parent went bankrupt…
If I were a citizen in many South American countries, and farmers there would put tariffs on our ag industry who were exporting American taxpayer subsidized imports of food products like corn products that their farmers couldn’t compete with, I’d have supported tariffs being charged on our exports there too as a nation where farmers were being put out of business by them not protecting their farmers with that dumping practice too, and forced to move up here to get work as undocumented workers.
Japanese and other Asian computer chip dumping put a lot of Silicon Valley companies out of the manufacturing business in the 90’s too. We should have put tariffs on their products too then, and perhaps we could have more business of manufacturing high tech products here too subsequently.
You know if adding tariffs to underpriced imports increases the cost of solar energy, perhaps we could provide tax credits for those who purchase it here, to keep the costs low for consumers here in this country, and have those tax credits paid for by the revenue from these tariffs. That way, we don’t limit the growth of demand for and consumption of solar technology, but the beneficiaries are U.S. consumers and U.S. based manufacturers of solar technologies here. This is the way tariffs are deployed in other industries for other goods by countries other than our country that helps countries like Germany build up their industries and their economies too with their value added taxes.
Perhaps in that environment, these Chinese companies would set up plants here in this country to manufacture these solar technology devices, etc. and help us with American jobs, even if we are buying their products then so that they could alleviate the tariff penalties they might have.Vote AGAINST the race to the bottom by both corporate parties who seek to screw workers over globally!
Punxsutawney (1504 posts) (Reply to cascadiance - post #3) August 11, 2017 at 11:55 am
5. Thanks for your response
Some of the stuff that people who work there have told me makes it clear that a response is needed. Dumping was just one of the problems. There was also, spying and industrial espionage allegations.To neoliberals, everyone and everything are disposable. - Chris Hedges “The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness" - J.K. Galbraith
spud demon (955 posts) (Reply to cascadiance - post #3) August 11, 2017 at 1:10 pm
8. We need a more serious rule than "no dumping"
Solar panels could be an exception to this, because we need them quickly to slow down GW.
If they sell us a product and make a profit without receiving subsidy, it’s not considered dumping. But it still could be unfair competition. What if their manufacturer pays below US minimum wage? Doesn’t have to follow US environmental rules? The 1% are more than happy to move their “investments” to countries where they can get away with more shit.
For the long term, we need a plan to deal with that. Protective tariffs are one option.Cubs, Google+, Weird Al, BMW
cascadiance (2379 posts) (Reply to spud demon - post #8) August 11, 2017 at 1:47 pm
10. If it is an industry we really want to incentivize more purchases…
… such as the solar industry where not only do we economically want to give American consumers a break, but we want to help move us towards renewable energy, I think that tariffs coupled with tax credits for renewable energy technology would help with both issues. Keep consumption up of where we want people to spend money for energy, but also ensure that our domestic manufacturers are protected from cheap labor or subsidized foreign competition. Perhaps even government subsidies for solar technology exports too for American companies, which arguably is what some people say is going on with China towards us.
The bottom line is we want more global move towards solar energy, AND we want to help protect and encourage American industry investment in building and deploying that technology here, and exporting it elsewhere. I don’t think those goals are mutually exclusive if done with proper tax policies.
Now some of the wealthy might not like where some of the funding for tax credits come from, etc. (perhaps a higher overall tax increase on the rich which is long overdue and probably won’t happen in the Trump years), but that is where we should move to.
Perhaps for the short term, if our industry needs time to catch up with the demand here, we could selectively remove or alleviate some of the tariffs for products of foreign owned companies if they in fact have domestic plants here in this country manufacturing solar tiles, etc. that give us jobs instead of the cheap labor overseas, kind of like how many foreign car manufacturers have plants here now. I think when Trump took office, there was news of many Chinese companies in a number of industries setting up shop here in the U.S., which perhaps is a clue to how we might get some form of local protection to keep jobs here in the immediate short term, and provide needed solar technology quickly.Vote AGAINST the race to the bottom by both corporate parties who seek to screw workers over globally!
dreamnightwind (1084 posts) (Reply to cascadiance - post #3) August 11, 2017 at 1:36 pm
Coldmountaintrail (989 posts) (Reply to cascadiance - post #3) August 12, 2017 at 8:42 am
13. i would too.
“The bourgeoisie cannot exist without constantly revolutionizing the instruments of production, and thereby the relations of production, and with them the whole relations of society.
Conservation of the old modes of production in unaltered forms, was, on the contrary, the first condition of existence for all earlier industrial classes. Constant revolutionizing of production, uninterrupted disturbance of all social conditions, everlasting uncertainty and agitation, distinguish the bourgeois epoch from all earlier ones…
“The bourgeoisie, by the rapid improvement of all instruments of production, by the immensely facilitated means of communication, draws all, even the most barbarian, nations into civilization.
The cheap prices of its commodities are the heavy artillery with which it batters down all Chinese walls, with which it forces the barbarians’ intensely obstinate hatred of foreigners to capitulate. It compels all nations, on pain of extinction, to adopt the bourgeois mode of production; it compels them to introduce what it calls civilization into their midst, i.e., to become bourgeois themselves. In one word, it creates a world after its own image.”
Tariffs get a bad rap because they (historically) provoked war; but the root cause of the war was not the tariffs per se, but capital’s ‘expand or die’ imperative.
And tariffs or something like them seem a legitimate (though not necessarily effective) response to what is often obvious ‘dumping’ of product actually sold below real cost in order to “break down the chinese walls” of regional/national economies; usually by big corporate actors.
Punxsutawney (1504 posts) (Reply to original post) August 11, 2017 at 11:53 am
4. As someone who lives within miles of a SolarWorld plant
And knows people who work there, I can say the actions of the Chinese with regards to the Solar Industry here have been reprehensible and intent on destroying our domestic solar manufacturing. Some sort of action is warranted.
cascadiance (2379 posts) (Reply to Punxsutawney - post #4) August 11, 2017 at 12:05 pm
6. And keep in mind we have Solarworld to thank for sponsoring Thom Hartmann…
… for many years that helped bring his show to Americans and keep them more informed than the corporate mainstream media would have if he weren’t present along with giving Bernie Sanders a voice to the American people every Friday the last few years on FSTV. Solarworld was mentioned daily in his breaks on his show then as a sponsor. Solarworld was doing even more than just giving us good renewable energy technology too.
Punxsutawney (1504 posts) (Reply to cascadiance - post #6) August 11, 2017 at 12:27 pm
7. I'd forgotten about that.
mmonk (1409 posts) (Reply to original post) August 11, 2017 at 2:48 pm
Snort McDork (2434 posts) (Reply to mmonk - post #11) August 11, 2017 at 5:12 pm
12. Fuck you Heinrich you corporate POS
Go live in China or some other country that treats its people like crap. We don’t want you here.