WTO Director Confronts Tough Questions

By John S. McClenahen World Trade Organization (WTO) director general Mike Moore's recent address to the International Union of Socialist Youth Festival in Malmo, Sweden, could have been just another speech. It wasn't. Moore, a product of New Zealand's politically left Labor Party, directly confronted his critics on the political left. Declaring that he will always be "a Labor man," Moore said he saw "no contradiction between being on the Left and supporting free trade and the WTO." Citing several studies, including recent WTO research correlating trade liberalization and the alleviation of poverty, Moore challenged his audience with three pointed questions. "How does making food and clothing from abroad more expensive help working people? How does raising the price of cars so that only the rich can afford them help working people? And how does protecting the jobs of yesterday at the expense of the jobs of tomorrow help working people?" he asked. "It doesn't. It doesn't. It doesn't," he replied.

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