Chips and Dips

Some news that the U.S. media ignores (or covers up).

ITEM — From Business Times – 05 Sep 2008: “Singamas sees sales, margins dipping”

“(HONG KONG) Singamas Container Holdings, the world’s No. 2 maker of shipping boxes, warned that sales and gross margins may dip in the second half because of a weakening global economy …

“Fallout from the US sub-prime mortgage crisis may continue to undermine global economic growth and affect consumption in developed countries …”

ITEM — From Business Times – 05 Sep 2008: “China-US container shipments plunge 21% in June”

“(TOKYO) China’s container shipments to the US fell 21 per cent in June, the biggest drop since at least 1995, as American consumers cut back on buying new furniture and clothes amid the worst housing slump since the Great Depression …

“China Cosco Holdings, the country’s largest container line, and other companies are carrying fewer boxes to the US. UBS AG downgraded the container-shipping industry to ‘negative’ yesterday and forecast widespread second-half losses because of slowing demand and rising capacity.– Bloomberg”

“Sales … dipping”; “Fallout from the US sub-prime mortgage crisis may … affect consumption in developed countries”; “China-US container shipments plunge”; “widespread second-half losses because of slowing demand”. These reports deal with the most serious economic disaster this country, and the world, has ever faced, and the cause of this disaster is the unemployment crisis that has been visited upon the U.S.

Three weeks ago we recalled the remark made by an Asian reporter earlier this year that “If the U.S. sneezes, the Asian maritime industry catches cold”, and a few weeks before that we noted Steven Pearlstein’s story in the Washington Post with the headline: “This Recession, It’s Just Beginning”.

With respect to the second-half rebound that the self-styled experts had been predicting, Mr. Pearlstein observed, “It ain’t gonna happen. Not this summer. Not this fall. Not even next winter.” And let’s face it. Until U.S. authorities show some honest concern for downtrodden Americans by creating decent jobs and decent wages, every developed and under-developed country – and not just the maritime industry – will be down and out.

But will our elected politicians acknowledge that only a resurgent U.S. maritime industry – bolstered by millions of newly-employed Americans – could have the capability to revive the failing global economies? Or was Thomas Paine right when he stated that “The trade of governing has always been monopolized by the most ignorant and the most rascally individuals of mankind”?