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May, 18th 2012

More Protectionism #FAIL

– Liz Mair

So yesterday, I posted this item noting how the Commerce Department was instituting new tariffs (bad in themselves) that would discourage purchase and installation of a key green technology that the administration supposedly wants people to use (doubly bad).

Today, comes the news that these new tariffs are-- you guessed it-- generating significant worry that we're kicking off a trade war with China over green technology. From Politico's Morning Tech:

SOLAR FLARE: TRADE TENSIONS WITH CHINA HEAT UP - Pro Energy's Alex Guillén reports: "Thursday's Commerce Department announcement of major tariffs on Chinese solar products has stoked fears of an all-out clean tech trade war. Trade tensions had cooled in March when Commerce had announced lower-than-expected tariffs in the first of its two investigations into Chinese solar products, leading officials to suggest the incident might become a speed bump rather than a sinkhole for solar industries on both sides of the Pacific. But on Thursday, Commerce announced tariffs for most companies at 31.18 percent, with some as high as 250 percent." More for Pros: http://politico.pro/KsYmNL

Trade wars and discouraging US consumers from buying and installing green technology they might otherwise be interested in using? Man, that is some change I can't believe in.

Note: Before the liberal readers of this blog even go there, yes, I do believe Mitt Romney has in the course of this presidential campaign advocated policy that would spur a trade war with China. This story plus that reality is just another reason why I am super-excited about the candidates that will feature on the general election ballot in November. [intro]

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