Indian Rope Trick

If it weren’t for overseas newspapers, Americans would be pretty much in the dark about most of the important issues that their lives (and jobs) depend upon. All the election campaign blabber over the last month or so succeeded in keeping the presidential junket to India out of the national news, and if it weren’t for Reuters most of us still wouldn’t be aware of the event – and we certainly wouldn’t have been told that the cost to us taxpayers is (get this!) $ 200 million a day.

“NEW DELHI (Reuters) – A weakened President Barack Obama visits India this week to counter perceptions he has relegated the Asian power behind rivals China and Pakistan, but he may struggle to seal deals to help usher in billions of dollars of business …

“It was a sign of the times that Obama told the Press Trust of India that India should open up its markets to U.S. companies, a stance that may dominate a 10-day trip of Asia aimed at boosting U.S. exports and jobs, crucial for his presidency’s fate …

“An increasingly confident India wants recognition of its global weight. It wants a permanent seat on the U.N. Security Council and for the United States to allow exports of dual-use technology, banned after India’s nuclear tests in 1998 …

“India’s booming trillion-dollar economy is one of the few stars in a struggling world economy, offering U.S. investors massive opportunities. There are reportedly more than 200 executives accompanying Obama on his visit to Mumbai and Delhi.” –

Think about it: $ 200 million a day for ten days amounts to $ 2 billion. For that kind of money;
1. … we could revitalize about 40 shipyards;
2. … or we could build about 40 of our patented container ships;
3. … or we could provide full 4-year scholarships for about 40 underprivileged students;
4. … or we could provide $ 50,000 a year entry-level jobs for about 40 of the new college graduates who have absolutely no prospects of gainful employment;
5. … or we could provide health insurance premiums for several thousand of the nation’s uninsured;
6. … or we could provide unemployment benefits for several thousand of the nations jobless;
7. … and of course, there are some war veterans who thought they’d be cared for.

None of the above means a thing to the president or to those executives. Those “U.S. investors” are interested only in the “massive opportunities” being offered by “India’s booming trillion-dollar economy.”

[The last time such opportunities were offered, you’ll recall, was when Mr. Nixon and Mr. Kissinger visited China in a trip “aimed at boosting U.S. exports and jobs.” Remember that? What they really exported from the U.S. was about 50 million jobs. And those 200 or so executives with Mr. Obama? They’re looking to “seal deals” by exporting a few million more jobs. It’s the American way.]