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  • Buy American and "Protectionism"

    You may have missed it -- and I think many were more focused on last Sunday's World Cup qualifier soccer match between the U.S. and Mexico -- but last week there was a summit meeting of President Obama with his Mexican and Canadian counterparts. Climate change and energy were major pieces of the...
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  • Warming and Trade

    As Congress debates health care, its recent work on legislation to put in place new controls on energy usage and associated emission of "greenhouse gases" (GHG) has receded into the background somewhat, at least as the mainstream media is concerned. One of razor-edged issues at play in the...
  • Panama Jogs to the Right

    In the midst of incoming and established left-leaning politicians in the Latin America region comes a new winner who bucks the trend. Using words such as tycoon, magnate, self-styled millionaire, etc. reporters from all the major and not-so-major news services brought out words they had long since mothballed...
  • Copper - the new Gold Standard?

    Copper prices are at a 6 month high, so is this an indicator of economic recovery? Analysts are not so sure. China has been buying up copper at well beyond its current needs leading to speculation that the copper is going into long term stockpiles rather than to manufacturing. This has led others to...
  • More Leftward Leaning…and Now for Panama

    Further to this trend I was pointing out a few weeks ago, now we see that el presidente Rafael Correa won reelection in Ecuador, the first such repeat in three decades. So the people must like him. A close associate of president-for-life hopeful Hugo Chávez, Correa is seeking a constitutional amendment...
  • Five minutes of fame ...

    Is about the only thing the assembled leaders of the Americas could walk away with from President Obama at the recently concluded Summit of the Americas. Except for Hugo Chavez, who turned three minutes of face time into endless new press coverage, to say nothing of the new life he breathed into Eduardo...
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  • To the Left, To the Left ...

    We are witnessing a slow but steady shift in the elected leadership in Central and South America from the solid right-leaning sedulous figures of the oligarchy to more populous-leaning representatives who may show the world a different way to advance democracy. With the recent election of Mauricio Funes...
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  • Kudos to the European Commission on Revising the Metric Labeling Directive

    We've just gotten word from our friends in Europe that the EU metric labeling directive has finally been modified FROM requiring all products (and product packaging, training materials, other collateral materials, etc.) entering the EC after December 31, 2009 to use only metric measures and nomenclature...
  • Access

    Not to downplay the challenges -- and opportunities -- we are facing here in the U.S., or that many are facing in less developing countries around the world, here are a few thought-provoking points from a recent survey of India published in The Economist magazine. I have not independently verified but...
  • CBP Seems to Have Seen the Light

    U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), an arm of the Department of Homeland Security, today indicated that it has not forgotten that there are two elements to "secure trade" - security and trade. Based on constructive comments from traders, importers and manufacturers, CBP announced significant...
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