Tag Archives: Intel

EU-US Free-trade agreement; everyone’s a winner!

By Leon J Williams

EU-US free-tradeFree-trade, that sounds good and everyone seems so happy at the news but what does it mean?

Free-trade really means no tax, so US and EU companies will be able to easily import and export without paying any ‘tariffs’ (taxes).

The real benefactors of this agreement will be large corporations, the markets will be happy!

For example, your local butcher (if you still have one) has nothing to gain from this, if they do import their meat it will likely come from within the EU and as such already part of a free-trade agreement and everything to lose. Large companies will have more money available to expand their businesses and continue to push out the little guy.

Less taxes means less money available for projects that help small to medium size enterprises (SME’s) both existing and start-ups.

Governments and big businesses will be happy but the rest of us not so much.

Unified regulations

This also sounds good in theory but will this be a compromise between US standards and EU standards, good for the US, bad for the EU. Why should we lower our standards to meet the US halfway?

What will happen over food safety over issues such as trans-fats?

What will happen over monopolising businesses such as Microsoft and Intel?

What will happen over the US’s lack of banking regulations?

This could spell disaster for Europe and a huge step forward for the US.

Competition vs Cooperation

By Leon J Williams

A few words on competition and cooperation.

There are many key facets in the capitalism vs socialism debate including the role of government,

I would say that this can be characterised in 4 groups:

Competition with government regulation
Businesses and people compete against each other with the government creating favourable circumstances for competition to thrive.
There are many examples to show that regulation is needed to prevent monopolies such as the EU’s huge fines for anti-competition against companies like Intel and Microsoft.

Competition with no government regulation
Businesses compete against each other, with no government interference leading companies to grow so large they can buy their rivals, monopolies are formed. Works well in the short term, awful in the long term.
To a certain extent you could say like the US though even they have regulation of their people and businesses.

Businesses and people compete and cooperate, taxes are higher to provide support to people who have lost out due to competition (welfare). Heavy support for small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) and heavy taxes and regulation on large businesses to prevent monopolies. All essential services are under government control. A lot of government regulation.

People work together, sharing jobs and social responsibilities. ‘Businesses’ are run by those interested in running them as a non-hierarchical cooperative. No government, so no regulation.

This is not in anyway a definition of what these terms are and purely a focus on the competition/cooperation aspect.

Competition is fine when it’s football (or any sport) teams compete, one team wins the cup and the rest try again next time but with life it’s not so similar, the winners get rich and the losers become homeless, entrenched in poverty and ultimately, die.