Social Evolution to Rapid Revolutionary Change and Essay

Excerpt from Essay :

Social evolution to rapid revolutionary change and contemporary globalization dynamics: Emphasizing the contributions of economic, and political process to societal change

Should the U.S. trade with Russia?

The Cold War ended long ago but trade restrictions still exist between the U.S. And the former communist superpower of Russia. In an effort to liberalize trade, the U.S. has been easing some of these restrictions. Recently, the Senate Finance Committee passed a trade bill that could double U.S. exports to Russia at a time when the U.S. economy is particularly strapped and in need of rectifying the trade imbalance that exists between itself and the rest of the world overall. Declining U.S. exports have been linked to sluggish job growth. U.S. exports to Russia currently hover around $9 billion dollars, a figure which some analysts estimate could double if the trade bill passes ("U.S. okays trade with Russia," The Korea Herald, 2012).

However, although Russia and the U.S. are no longer locked in a political standoff, significant political differences remain between the two nations. Russia's human rights violations, "its threats against U.S. missile defenses in Europe, its failure to protect intellectual property rights, its discrimination against U.S. agricultural products and most recently its support for the Assad government in Syria" have all strained relations ("U.S. okays trade with Russia," The Korea Herald, 2012).

One frequently-cited argument in favor of liberalizing trade is that trade alliances can facilitate cooperation and good will. The more economically dependent Russia remains on the U.S., the more apt it is to respond to U.S. pressures for change. And it is impossible to reap the full benefits of the bill if the U.S. waits for relations to improve on their own. "Enacting permanent trade status is necessary if U.S. businesses are to benefit from the lowering of trade barriers that will take place when Russia enters the World Trade Organization next month" ("U.S. okays trade with Russia," The Korea Herald, 2012). American workers could lose a valuable opportunity if the bill is not passed. Russia would be able to trade with the other members of the WTO with which it has completely normalized relations. Both business and farm interests in the U.S. stand to benefit, and they have been vocal supporters of the bill.

Although Congress has been hotly criticized for dragging its feet on stimulating the economy, there are strong currents of dissent in many quarters regarding the trade bill. "The bill only advanced to a committee" after legislation "that imposes sanctions such as visa denials and asset freezes on Russian government officials involved in human rights violations" was passed in conjunction ("U.S. okays trade with Russia," The Korea Herald, 2012). Another suggested amendment stated that the liberalization would not go into effect until Russia stopped supplying arms to Syria. In a manner unusual for the present Congress, debate is not split purely on partisan grounds -- some Republican supporters of free trade see the trade bill's passage as necessary; other Republicans…

Sources Used in Document:


Pukhov, Rusan. "Why Russia supports Syria." The New York Times. 7 Jul 2012.

[27 Jul 2012]

"U.S. okays trade with Russia." The Korea Herald. 19 July 2012. [19 July 2012]

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