Conn Carroll /
There are already so many good reasons Congress should deny the Big Three a bailout, but the cost it will inflict on America’s free trade leadership could be the most dire. The Wall Street Journal’s Matt Slaughter writes:
Will a U.S.-government bailout go ignored by policy makers abroad?
No. A bailout will likely entrench and expand protectionist practices across the globe, and thus erode the foreign sales and competitiveness of U.S. multinationals. And that would reduce these companies’ U.S. employment, R&D and related activities. That would be bad for America.
Rising trade barriers would also hurt the Big Three, all of which are multinational corporations that depend on foreign markets. In 2007, GM produced more motor vehicles outside North America than in — 5.02 million, or 54% of its world-wide total. That year in China, the world’s second-largest and fastest-growing automobile market by volume, GM continued to lead in market share and became the first global auto maker to surpass the one-million mark in single-year unit sales in China.