President Obama's remarks at Nike on Friday did a great job of outlining how and why trade agreements benefit small businesses, individual works, and consumers. The speech is well worth watching for a better understanding of the big picture of how trade agreements affect individuals both in the U.S. and abroad, and the overall economy.
President Obama acknowledges that past agreements have resulted in job loss in part due to the massive move towards outsourcing in the last two decades. But times have changed. The companies that are competing on cost have already moved manufacturing overseas and don't need new incentives to do so. The companies that are competing on quality -- advanced and high-end manufacturing is where the U.S. has a competitive advantage in global manufacturing (see Tesla) -- need trade agreements to cement access to growing Asian markets. In addition, these manufacturers are already moving towards bringing jobs back to the U.S. ("in-sourcing") to better protect intellectual property, quality, and reduce shipping costs and environmental impacts.
And kudos to Hello!Lucky's partner Egg Press for their shout-out in the speech and on The White House blog. President Obama gets the importance of small and micro-businesses, and creative entrepreneurs in creating high quality products, meaningful jobs that merge career with calling, and promoting conscious consumption of products that reflect creativity, quality, joy, environmental responsibility, and more. How awesome is that?