We no sooner get past talk about trade and chickens, and another example of trade barriers appears to help us explain the issue to our students.
According to this article from Forbes, a number of companies and a union are asking the U.S. government to seek relief from foreign competition. (Tariff? Other barriers?) The firms and their workers are having a tough time. Oddly enough, a number of the issues they charge are not uncommon in the U.S. I would be interested to know about how the paper industry is run in the U.S. I can't believe it receives no government benefits/subsidies/incentives, either specifically or in generally. However, a larger problem remains. The current worldwide slump has caused more protectionist measures around the globe. Revival of trade will be important to any subsequent turnaround in the national and global economy.
To that end, here are a number of links to short pieces on the Vox.eu site examining trade barriers. The first compares trade losses in the current downturn to (I know, it's overused) the Great Depression. The second addresses the G-20 (timely) about the need to work toward dropping trade barriers. The third is a podcast interview with the author of the second study. The podcast is relatively short (13 minutes) and a transcript is also available if you don't have the technology to do podcasts in your classroom.
I hope these are useful. I'd appreciate any feedback.