The article was written by my international business professor and appeared in the Baltimore Sun.
Thursday, March 09, 2006
I haven't blogged in over a month so why not start things off again with something political. Houston, I'm sure you'll like this one.
As some of you may know, Dubai Ports World (DPW) is about to acquire P&O, a British company, for $6.8 billion who currently run American port operations in six US cities, which means that DPW could soon be operating our ports...God forbid a Middle Eastern company from running our damn US ports *scoff* *scoff* (please pick up on the sarcasm there). And, if they're from the Middle East that means they're all terrorists! - mouth gaping open. (Please note: I am speaking from the 3rd person in those last two lines)
President George Bush approved of the acquisition, one of the very few things he has gotten right in his presidency thus far. However, there is now uproar in Congress and among the American people over the acquisition. How can we have a Middle Eastern company run our ports? which supposedly equates to Arabs which equates to terrorists?!?!
I believe the acqusition should be approved because I am a strong neo-liberal follower and because this deal represents no national security threat whatsoever to the United States. The latter is what Congress has been alleging all along. National security, national security, blah blah blah. Let me explain a few things which my media has neglected to explain clearly to my fellow American people. Any company that operates our ports - whether it be an American company, British, Singaporean, or Middle Eastern - has the following responsibilities: they unload the ships, transfer the containers to the ground, and transfer the containers to empty trucks to go off in the distance. There is no responsibility of inspecting the containers. That is the responsibility of US Customs, US Immigration, and the US Coast Guard, all of whom currently inspect about 5% of incoming containers. So, that would mean this - it doesn't matter who operates our ports (f*cking Osama bin Laden could operate them for all I care) these companies will not be able to stop any potential national security threat like a bomb because it is not their responsibility. It's the responsibility of my stupid ass government. One more thing before I forget. A Kuwaiti company operates ports in New York and Newark (RIGHT NOW!!!). So far, I've heard one media source on one occassion mention this. If only 275 million other people knew the same, maybe their views would change slightly.
So why are US politicians pulling all of this sh*t? Well, with November elections just around the corner, our senators and representatives want to get re-elected. Congress has been threatening to introduce legislation to block the acquisition. In response, President Bush has said he would veto any such bill. However, Congress has punched back by saying they will override his veto with the 2/3 majority which is VERY possible. Last I checked, Congress is formulating the legislation right now.
Lastly, Americans wonder why so many people around the world hate us. If they, not me because I consider myself educated on the issue and many other international issues, weren't so f*cking ignorant about other religions, cultures, and countries then this wouldn't even be an issue. The acquisition would have been completed by now. But NO, everything in life must be complicated.
I'm sure I could write more about this whole situation, but I'm giving up for now.
Name: Mark Marasco
Location: Erie, PA, USA
Occupation: Corporate b*tch