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Jim Rogers: End of DPW Deal Will Mean War

Reported by Judy - March 11, 2006

In the aftermath of the Bush administration pulling out of the Dubai Ports World deal, Republicans are working frantically to make it look like the apocalypse is near. Instead of enhancing homeland security, Republicans are claiming, the refusal to let an Arab country operate U.S. ports may actually cause a war.

The biggest promoter of such an extreme view is economic guru Jim Rogers, author of Hot Commodities and a frequent guest on Fox News. Appearing on "Your World with Neil Cavuto" on Friday (March 10,. 2006), Rogers claimed the end of the deal, which came when Karl Rove called Dubai and asked them to back out of it, will set off a chain reaction culminating in war. Well, since we're already in a perpetual war on terror, I'm not sure how that will be any different from the current situation.

Anyway, Rogers compared the end of the DPW deal to the protectionism of the 1920s. "Protectionism and isolationism caused the Depression in the 1930s. We're doing it again," Rogers claimed, adding the French, Germans, Italians, and Poles are now all thinking about limiting outside investment in their countries.

Rogers argued that the U.S. needs foreign capital because "we are a debtor nation" and without foreign money flowing into the country, "First there's a recession, then it's a depression, and then it's a war." Then, of course, he blamed the unions for the whole deal, saying "they don't want to be efficient."

Democrat Dani Hughes, of Divine Capital Management, politely called Rogers' statements "quite alarmist" but conceded (unnecessarily, in my view) that Democrats were hoping to trump George Bush on a national security issue. But she also stressed the situation of the 1920s, an era of rising taxes, was not exactly comparable to that of today. Besides, life is not that mechanical. Events don't proceed in such lockstep fashion as Rogers laid out.

Mike Ozanian, Forbes senior editor, also called cancelling the deal "ridiculous" and "pure protection" and said "[Sen. Chuck] Schumer and all the Democrats should be tried for treason" for opposing the deal. Guess the GOPers were just being patriots and they just get medals.

Despite Roger's ranting about protectionism, George Bush is reaping what he sowed. He has whipped up anti-Arab feelling in this country for years, with the help of Fox News. He can't expect Americans to turn off those emotions that he helped stoke just because some buddies of his in a rich Arab country want to make money. And this is not just about foreign investment. This is about a company owned by a foreign government operating American ports. So we're letting foreigners control access to our own ports of entry.

Nor can Bush and his supporters like Rogers claim they want our borders open to everybody. If they are so anti-protectionist, why do we still have an embargo against Cuba? Why were we encouraged to boycott French wines and french fries?

If they can be selective about free trade, so can Democrats.

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