Answer: It is due to the free-trade policies of Bush and McCain, which permit trade rivals to impose value-added taxes of 15 percent to 20 percent on steel imports from the United States while rebating those taxes on steel exports to the United States. We are getting it in the neck coming and going.
An America First trade and tax policy could have U.S. steel mills rising again, while those in Japan, China, Russia and Brazil would be shutting down as uncompetitive in the U.S. market.
But we no longer put America first.
The U.S. government burns its incense at the altar of the Global Economy. The losers are those guys in Youngstown McCain was lecturing on the beauty of NAFTA. And the winners are the CEOs who pull down seven-, eight- and even nine-figure annual packages selling out their country for the corporation.
Does McCain think $6 trillion in trade deficits since NAFTA, a dollar rotting away and 3.5 million manufacturing jobs lost under Bush was all inevitable? Does he think we can do nothing to stop the deindustrialization of a country that used to produce 96 percent of all it consumed?
Why should those guys in Youngstown vote for McCain?
So the feds can teach them how to shovel snow?
Even Hillary, whose husband did NAFTA with Newt Gingrich and Bob Dole's help, now gets it.
Then McCain took a time out to denounce the North Carolina GOP for ads tying the Rev. Wright to Obama, and the pair to two Democratic congressional candidates. To their credit, the North Carolinians told McCain where to get off and are running the ads.
What does a McCain victory mean for conservatives?
Probably a veto on tax hikes and perhaps a fifth justice like Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito or John Roberts, to turn two pair into a full house. Fifty years after Warren, it could be game, set, match for the right.
But McCain may also mean more Middle East wars, more bellicosity, more manufacturing jobs lost, malingering in the culture wars, and more illegal aliens and amnesty.
In Pennsylvania, thousands of Republicans re-registered to vote Democratic, and 27 percent of the GOP votes went to Mike Huckabee or Ron Paul. McCain may just stretch this rubber band so far it snaps back in his face.