Posted By Clyde PrestowitzYesterday's Wall Street Journal story, "Obama Panel to Watch Beijing," took me back nearly thirty years.
According to the story, Deputy National Security Adviser Mike Froman is overseeing formation of a task force that will aim to enforce U.S. and international trade rules. Aimed primarily at China, the task force apparently will consist of officials from the departments of Commerce, Treasury, and Energy as well as from the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative. In particular, it will focus on trying to stop or alter China's currency manipulation, intellectual property infringement, and policies that condition market access on technology transfer or on moving production to China.
The story especially grabbed my attention because in the mid- 1980s as Counselor to the Secretary of Commerce in the Reagan administration I was designated the Chairman of a Trade Strike Force whose purpose was to seek out unfair trade wherever it might be and smite it down by enforcing U.S. trade laws. I immediately felt a kindred spirit with Mike Froman and didn't know whether to congratulate him or to offer condolences.