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The Jones Act needlessly hobbles the US economy
Hey, everyone, Peter Zion here coming to you from Richmond, Virginia at the Jefferson Hotel, which is like ridiculously glorious. Anyway, I wanted to talk about economic development in the United States today, something that’s getting a little bit of play because we finally have an industrial policy question. So we finally we have an industrial policy for the first time since World War Two that’s guided things like semiconductors. And not that that’s not important. And not that I don’t support that. But there are a lot of really baseline things the United States could do if the goal is more stable and reliable economic growth at all levels. So specifically, waterways. Now, moving things by water is less than 1/10, the cost of moving to Milan, you can move things at bulk, you can move things at speed over large distances, it really is the way to go. However, the United States adopted a law about a century ago called The Jones Act or the Interstate Commerce Act if you want to use the technical term. And what it does is it makes it illegal to ship any cargo between two American ports on any vessel that is not American crude, captained, built and owned. And what this has done is reduced the amount of traffic that we use our waterways for, by in excess of 90% over the course of the ensuing century. And so now we pretty much have about half of our products, almost two thirds of our products by truck, and then the remainder is a mix of everything else. Trucks being the most expensive way to move things over distance by far. Now for a state like Virginia that is on the Chesapeake. I don’t want to say that this has been the kiss of death, but wow, it is it grounded down their economic opportunities. The Chesapeake Bay is the best world class best bay in the world has the most frontage in terms of areas report citing my home state of Iowa is bracketed, bracketed by two navigable rivers, the Mississippi and the Missouri putting Iowa in a position where it has passed up massive economic opportunities. And then for 19 years I lived in Texas, which has one of the best coastlines in the world, and more deep water potential than the entire west coast combined. Basically, if your state is on a navigable river or an external coast, especially if it’s got a good Bay, like the Chesapeake or New York sound, or San Francisco, you have been missing out on massive amounts of economic activity. For decades. The single best thing that the United States could do if the goal was to salvage the status of its second tier cities and build out manufacturing would be to severely reformed the Jones Act. Now there’s an obstacle there. As you know, from some of my previous presentations, the United States is going through a period of political reshuffling and the factions that make up the parties are moving around. The faction that is most in motion is organized labor. And the two issues that organized labor is most concerned about our union membership, and immigration. And on the union membership issue, all of the jobs that maintain those Jones Act vessels, those old slow, inefficient ones that are the only ones allowed to operate. They’re all union jobs. And so the unions see this as a job Preservation Act, despite the fact that has cost the rest of the United States 10s of trillions of dollars over the course of the last century. So if you want to get mad about something, get mad about Jones, you want to call your congress people about something calm about Jones. That is the best way that the United States could reindustrialize protect its secondary cities, expand the port infrastructure, reduce its carbon footprint for transport, and ultimately make the United States a much stronger place moving forward. Easy fix. Okay, that’s it for me. Until next time,
Not all allies benefit from a US-Australia minerals deal
with the US About 53 percent of raw lithium is mined in Australia, and almost all of that is sold to China, where it eventually becomes lithium-ore batteries used in our phones, computers and electric vehicles. But now, the U.S. has reached an agreement with Australia that will help build up a parallel supply chain,
Control of Ukrainian canal is key to safety at nuclear power plant
After invading Ukraine in 2022, Russia quickly blew up a Ukrainian-constructed dam that blocked the water supply to the Russian-occupied Crimean peninsula. The canal is of vital strategic importance to Moscow as it provides drinking water and contributes to irrigation systems in the area. Straight Arrow News contributor Peter Zeihan argues that Ukraine has its
Ethnic Russian groups pose new threat to Putin in Ukraine War
A raid across the Ukraine-Russia border by a group consisting of anti-Putin Russians and Ukrainian citizens is raising new questions about Moscow’s defense strategy. The border raid in the city of Belgorod in southwestern Russia comes just a few weeks after drones attacked the Kremlin. Straight Arrow News contributor Peter Zeihan says the involvement of
Here are the hard facts about de-dollarization
Is the U.S. at risk of losing its global currency status? Given the Russian sanctions, tension with China, and most pressing, a looming deadline to raise the debt ceiling, the question is particularly relevant these days. Straight Arrow News contributor Peter Zeihan outlines the key characteristics that define a global currency, and argues most other
Is Saudi Arabia ditching the US dollar for the Chinese yuan?
For decades, the U.S. dollar has been the primary medium of exchange for international trade, but recent developments are impacting the dollar’s global dominance. China has been making efforts to replace the U.S. currency with its own, the yuan. Now Saudi Arabia is helping accelerate those efforts by agreeing to sell its oil to China
Stories each side is underreporting
Media Miss by the Left
Biggs ‘wouldn’t be surprised’ if debt ceiling bill passes
9 sources | 11% from the left
Media Miss by the Right
Greta Thunberg to take part in Edinburgh International Book Festival event
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