Quonset Megaport

Quonset Megaport

Turn the industrial park at Quonset into a solar energy green business park.  Practice industrial ecology.  No waste, nothing toxic or violent.  And definitely not a Container Port.  The container industry abuses communities, is responsible for part of the growth in sweatshops, disrupts democracy, demands communities transform to met it needs, rather than adapting its technologies to better fit in with communities.  The questions at Quonset are great, the economics very iffy, and totally dependent upon a continued growth in corporate power.  If we cut through the rhetoric, and actually start to practice a sustainable economy, the need for Quonset to be a container port is eliminated by any logic.  The logic that the other ports will just up the subsidy anti should not be dismissed,  and it is not a game we want to play.  I talk to lots of people in the shipping industry who think even with current trends Megaport Quonset is a loser.  It will not capture the major load/lode.  I hear they are finally considering a barge port.  No dredge, order of magnitude fewer trucks, rail connections actually able to handle the traffic, and more jobs per container.

Part of the entire corporate agenda is less democracy.  No people suing over the EIS, no people defending the Endangered Species Act with lawsuits, no public input until after the plan is done, so we say we can not change, no public confrontations with the minister and corporate elite telling them of the damage they do.  We are accused of being a white middle class movement defending wild spaces at the expense of the poor, but what of 500,000 farmers marching against Genetically Modified foods and 25,000 farmers in Brazil occupying Monsanto factories.   Look at the Dayak in Indonesia resisting to protect their communal based lifestyle and farms for corporations who covet the forest.

Creating a Container Port  at Quonset is going to require huge public investment and yearly subsidies.  It will create a few jobs, though probably fewer than if alternative development took place at Quonset, nd at a higher price in investment per job.  Rhode Island will still be able to send and receive goods very effectively, we do now.  A huge container port, one of the 4 or 5 biggest in the land, will generate huge truck pollution, more traffic jams, noise, light pollution.  We are likely to see alien invasive species take up residence in the Bay and on our land more and more often.  We could lose Narragansett Bay fisheries and fishermen and open ourselves up to the rapid spread of things like the West Nile Virus, a disease that came to the US on a container ship.

Stopping a container port will also say we do not wish to contribute to the destruction of the planet.  We are concerned about our communities, and the communities around the world who are exploited to fill the corporate coffers with goods to peddle.  We are for  full and open discussion about what the economy should look like, unlike the processes we have seen from,  the RIEDC, the RIEPC and the Government of Rhode Island.  We want a world where greed is not the dominate factor, and creating sustainability is possible.

It is hard to know where to put this in the arguement about why not to build a container port, but we have never yet seen an actual compare and contrast analysis about what the economic impact on Rhode Island and surrounding communites would be of building a container port versus the use of the land base at Quonset for other things.  My guess is that this is intentional.  The trade agenda folks, the corporate agenda folks, have an obsession with a port as a roadway into the 21st century, into globalization, and are unwilling to accept that not every road to globalization even makes sense in their own warped world.  So reports that only consider the economics of a megaport are produced.

Who is keeping the list of things to ask about the economy hen we compare and contrast a Megaport proposal with other options.  My list of questions include the effect of sweatshop good importation into a community? The costs of air pollution form ships and trucks?, the price of noise and light pollution?, as well as traditional economic questions.  What are the implications of building a port in a non traditional port area, and of the implications of a port in an area not conducive to human interaction.  Give us information on the growth in manufacturing with or without a port and let us make the decision. Make sure job losses caused by the megaport are included in the net jobs count.  And discuss the implications of a port for long term ecological sustainability in Rhode Island.  Others have other questions.  How do we introduce them into a real analysis and discussion.

For all the studies of what a Megaport at Quonset would do, and the historic studies of how to convert the whole area from a Naval Base to an industrial area, there have been no studies comparing and contrasting the results we would see at Quonset, and in the Greater Rhode Island economy, using different redevelopment strategies.  We have been given fanciful results about how many jobs would be created at the port, numbers that shrink with every new report, and in collaborative industries with a variety of large container port configurations, and there have been all manner of extrapolations about how if everything goes right that a container port would be a money maker, but we know these to be puff piece analysis, bringing in the results the EDC expects from its consultants.  We have seen members of the shipping industry tell us that a big port is the only answer, that a variety of sizes would be profitable, and that it will take huge subsidies to make anything work.  But we have not seen a report on the damage to the economy that noise, light, air, water pollution will have, the real effects on the fishing and boating industries that the ship traffic will have, the effect of sweatshop goods on the economy of importing communities, or even more importantly, what alternative development scenarios would mean for Rhode Island and Quonset.  This means we have not been told even how a barge port or standard industrial development would play out, let alone something like a solar powered industrial ecology manufacturing center based on non polluting transit systems.

One would think that if the EDC really wanted to end the jobs debate on the side of the port they would produce such an analysis.  I would suggest that the reason they have not shown us such studies is that an honest study would demonstrate the house of cards the container port is. One might hope that the legislature would really be interested in the biggest bang for the buck, rather than serving the fantasies of politicians and delusions of Road Sign Grandeur that a named port terminal would bring, and order a real economic analysis before going on to an expensive and litigious Environmental Impact Statement.

Environmental Impact Statements are just that, an analysis of the ecological damage that a port would produce.  A version of cost/benefit analysis included, but there is no actual compare and contrast of the economic/ecological impacts of various development scenarios.  That is why we need now, before we go to an EIS, an analysis of the economic results of the various scenarios.  We are never going to know what to put at Quonset unless all of the possible scenarios are studied, not just those favored by those who support corporate globalism.  You would think there would be nothing to hide.

The Economics of a Container Port.  How the RIEDC has not told us the real scoop.    Greg Gerritt  1/27/01

The Rhode Island Economic Development Corporation (RIEDC) is again proposing that port facilities designed to load and unload very large (6000 TEU or larger) container ships be built at Quonset.  Originally proposed as a completely private venture, it now seems the RIEDC, or rather the people of RI, will pay for the cost  (millions) of researching and writing an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), and then we shall get a private investor, complete with shipping contracts, to build the rest.  We have been authoritatively told by the Rhode Island Economic Policy Council that if RI does not end up with a world class container port, one that is very close to the sea lanes, has great rail and highway access, and carte blanche to eat North Kingstown, that our economy will collapse, our children will leave us, and Rhode Island shall forever be thrown into the deep pit of a second rate economy.  And Furthermore any human being with half a brain has to think building a megaport at Quonset is going to be the coolest thing to hit Rhode Island since sliced bread.  You get the picture.  Governor’s Legacy.

We have been written in Master Plans that if a megaport is built that it will directly result in 3800 jobs over the next 20 years, and that the rest of the industrial park will employ an additional 23,000 people. Of course the RIEDC does not tell you that they project that all of the  land at Quonset will be employed in 10 years even without the port.  (So much for the deep pit).

A port, a big port, creating 190 jobs a year for 20 years, at the cost of millions.  We could find lots of people on the street, maybe even in the Governor’s office, that could create more than 190 jobs a year with the money this will cost the taxpayers, and I doubt they would have to damage bay ecosystems, threaten tourism and fishing jobs, or kowtow to an industry that is especially community unfriendly in order to do so.  This headache for jobs that are supposed to pay an average of less than $10.00 per hour? Ouch.

The big questions; is corporate globalization good for us, can the economy keep growing in its current manifestation as the resource base and climate deteriorate, is there a better way to develop the economy in service to the community, what are the real effects in Rhode Island of turning us into a conduit for sweatshop production to replace the jobs in textiles that we once had, is economic inequality good for us, and what are the implications of the people of RI directly contributing to tropical deforestation and the creation of sweatshops, are never asked.  All we get are fantasies about spinoffs and mid level jobs without the gridlock and pollution from the spin doctors.

We get this drivel about how good this is going to be for us because the training economists and Economic Development Agencies get addles their minds and they forget how to subtract.  In Neo Modern Economic Theory it seems that no matter what happens, no matter how horrible, if people spend money on it, it contributes to a rising Gross Domestic Product, which is the Holy Grail.  If you sit in a traffic jam, they can calculate how much it costs your business, but call that an addition to the economy because some one else gets paid to do your work. You want to be productive in the traffic jam so you do not lose your job so you use your cell phone, and drive into your neighbor.  The hospital costs to repair your neighbor are added to the economy instead of deducted, and so is the time you spent filling out the insurance company paperwork.  Airplane crashes, droughts, hurricanes, toxic waste, earthquakes, wars and all other manner of evil are all good for the economy because someone can make a lot of money repairing the damage, whereas if good policies and community oriented government had prevented or mitigated the disasters, fewer dollars flow into corporate pockets, which means it is bad for the economy.  It is only when the cost of insuring a particular type of disaster gets too high and corporate coffers are threatened, that real action in a positive direction takes place. The best current example is that the insurance companies, paying ever higher hurricane and el Nino claims as the weather worsens due to pollution, now gives us an insurance industry that occasionally takes a progressive position on stopping global warming.

Nature is free and there for the taking, the garbage goes somewhere else, and cutting taxes for the rich is good for the economy.  Sometimes some of the people currently poor are able to move up the economic ladder in the craziness of corporate globalization, but many more people go through even harder times, the farmers who lose their land because only the well connected folks have access to the genetically modified seeds and the bugs are now resistant to the traditional crop protection methods, the children who is stricken with industrial caused cancer, or the working homeless family that can not find an apartment they can afford.  Did you know homelessness is good for the economy because now we can have an entire industry geared to providing the homeless emergency housing?

Economists know the price of everything and manipulate interest rates and monetary supplies in a frantic attempt to steer the economy towards making their friends richer.  But they can not figure the costs, and do not see a world that values community more than money.  They pay lip service to a damaged planet and damaged communities, but they still work to make sure that a larger and larger percentage of what wealth there is goes to fewer people.  In Rhode Island economic inequality is growing faster than any other state, and for a place with a slow growing population, sprawl is eating the landscape at a rather alarming rate.  In a supposed boom we having growing homelessness and hunger. But it does not compute, and can therefore be ignored.

So we get proposals for mega ports and luxury high rises,  Big Digs and bigger cars.  Even middle class housing is no longer on the drawing boards. As a bone they toss us brownfields, that we have to pay to clean up because the corporate masters have moved  on.  An energy supply crisis, created by years of short sightedness, creates temporary movement towards solar and wind power, but also elicits calls to drill more holes, in ever more fragile ecosystems, because the money is more important than the ecosystem.  The price of everything and the cost of nothing.

What do they carry in container ships?  Are we allowed to ask?  Does it matter to an economy? Mostly what they carry is goods produced by the lowest possible wages because they carry goods that do not need to move as quickly as other factors in the economy.  Clothing, lumber, metal products.  Things we used to make here in Rhode Island, and no longer do because the same people who  bring us the megaport are the same people who did not want to pay a living wage here when near slaves can be hired elsewhere at one tenth the cost, the other 90 percent of what was labor’s share then being available for those higher up the ladder.

The process of economic development has rarely been in the hands of the community. The wealthy decide what benefits them most, and then do it.  It is why a recent study in Massachusetts clearly demonstrates that the poorer or darker the folks in a neighborhood, the more likely some one rich had benefited from making it toxic.  When the rich, or their surrogates in government pretend to practice the principles of sustainability, rather than really searching for the best answers for the community, what they do is constrain debate to a few preordained solutions rather than allow new approaches to arise organically from the community. The best solutions are not talked about because with a full discussion of the possibilities it might be clear how much the corporations are skimming off for their class.   It is time for a new approach.

Well if we do not build a megaport, what can we do at Quonset that will UNIQUELY POSITION RHODE ISLAND FOR THE INTERMODAL POSSIBILITIES OF THE 21ST CENTURY?  Two words, Global Warming.  As long as Rhode Island is investing millions, invest it in not only clean technologies, but technologies that repair the damage to the life support systems of the planet.  Clean energy, the restoration of marine systems, closed loop manufacturing systems, recycling.  Maybe someone could come up with a way to recycle all of the containers that are piling up in US ports as we continue to import way more than we export, both in containers and value.

The reality is that we have not yet seen any comparisons between what the RI economy would look like if we decided not to build a megaport, and the money was invested in community appropriate economic development, and what the RI economy will really look like if the megaport is built.    We have not seen what the job losses from so closely aligning ourselves with community unfriendly industries such as shipping will do to our communities, what the costs in health care, pollution control, sprawl, and ecosystem loss will be.  Which jobs will be lost, who will be the losers? We already know who the winners would be if we built the megaport.  Lets compare a megaport with a solar energy, clean industry, global warming prevention strategy.  But do not hire old economy consultants to do it. We have already seen what they tell us.

Which approach spreads wealth more equitably in the community?  Which helps more people move out of poverty with the least cost to the community and ecosystem.  Which moves us towards a sustainable prosperity rather than skewed growth?   Which helps heal ecosystems as well as create jobs?  Which does not contribute to oppression around the world?

I suspect we shall not have this discussion in the halls of government any time soon unless the people demand it.  The Governor, some legislative leadership, the EDC, are all committed to a megaport.  The issues of whether or not this is a good project seem of no concern to them, there is money to be made for the few, the many be damned.  But we shall demand good public policy, policy that comes from the people. We shall ask who benefits, and can we do better for the community and the planet, and because the facts are on our side we shall prevail. Economic development can truly be a community process, and it works better when it is.  We shall not see a megaport at Quonset, and because of the overreaching of the wealthy and their surrogates in government, we may see the beginning of a new economic policy, one that works for the people and sustains life on Earth.

The power of the press seems to belong to those who own one, so it is no surprise that in the first edition of “Rhode Island Citizen” Christopher Bergstrom and the Economic Policy Council have again been afforded the opportunity to trot out an economic model guaranteed to damage the economy that most Rhode Islanders live in, in a way that prevents the public from seeing or hearing the real debate about the economic future of Rhode Island.  The economic model that the Economic Policy Council favors places an ever rising percentage of the wealth of the planet in the hands of an ever diminishing percentage of the population.  Of course those with the power to manipulate the future would be celebrating a plan that makes them richer and more powerful, even though it is at the expense of the poor and the ecosystems of the planet.

The Economic Policy Council, funded partly by the State of Rhode Island, and partly by some of the largest and most powerful  corporations in Rhode Island, uses all of the current buzzwords about being anti sprawl, supporting sustainability, and providing opportunity for all of Rhode Island’s residents, but it is quite clear that this is only platitudes to soothe the public rather than a plan that will eliminate poverty, reduce economic inequality, and protect the ecosystems that we all rely upon.

It is very clear that the globalization of the economy has had a very different effect for and on the different members of our community.  For the economic elite, globalization has brought  riches beyond belief.  For the rest of us it has brought factory closures, and the elimination of local farms as well as a declining standard of living.  Over the last 25 years 90% of the growth in income in the United States has gone to 5% of the population, minimum wage has not kept up with the cost of living, and even during periods of what might be called an economic boom homelessness and hunger have increased.   It is true that hundreds of millions of people around the world have joined the global middle class as a result of globalization, but additional hundreds of millions have been harmed, lost farmland, and become poorer.  Global ecosystems have also been the loser, with greenhouse gas emissions, deforestation, water pollution, and toxic waste dumping spreading across the planet as globalizations real calling card.  Here too the poor seem to get the short end of the stick as tin horn dictators allow toxic waste to be dumped near poor villages in return for payments to their Swiss bank accounts.

While Mr. Bergstrom soothingly writes of maintaining manufacturing and mid level jobs in Rhode Island, the fact is that the very globalization that Mr. Bergstrom seeks to promote that has been what draws the jobs out of RI as the elite continues to seek lower wage factories.  It is the economic elite that continue to abandon Rhode Island,  and the policies espoused by the EPC just speed up the process.

The Economic Policy Council analysis might also be looked at as part of an overbearing attempt to foist a Megaport at Quonset onto the people of Rhode Island.  It is an admonishment that you have no choice, you must become a cog in the global machine, and that it will pass you by if you do not build a container port.  First of all the supposition that globalization is good for us is not yet proven, and probably never will be.  And if the people of Rhode Island choose that economic model ( I am still waiting for us to actually be asked about which model we prefer and to see the real debate upon the issue), one would think that they would also have thoughts about how to implement the model.  Or is that not allowed.

The people have spoken pretty clearly about the issue.  The ruling class, and the few people with a direct investment in the proposed port like it, while anyone who would live near it looks at it as a Cancer in the community, environmental activists think about the invasive aliens it will bring, and those who have really studied the issue think about the sweatshops and deforestation that  are an integral part of the process of filling containers.  Then think about the jobs we will lose from its creation.  And besides, if it was such a good bet, the Governor would not be looking at taxpayer money to complete an Environmental Impact Statement.  Mr. Bergstrom also writes about how the elites of Southern New England are starting to look at themselves as residents of one cooperating metro region, and as a part of that how Quonset is the place for the New England Port.  More hallucinations, as we quite clearly hear the other people associated with ports in New England talking about how Boston is expanding and keeping its traffic.

The EPC also writes of “clusters” in the economy.  While some of these clusters are not particularly harmful in themselves, others, such as financial services, are even more efficient than most in siphoning planetary resources and the lives of the poor into the maelstrom of ever expanding wealth for the ruling elite.  Given that ecosystems return about 3% a year, an industry that requires much larger returns on investment must be either siphoning off an extra large chunk of ecosystems resulting in their depletion each year, or are taking that which would be going to the poor.  Rhode Island would be belter served by efforts to grow more food locally, manufacture for local needs, and focus on technologies that clean up past disasters and eliminate the use of greenhouse gases.

As usual we are being sold a bill of goods by the Economic Policy Council.  Members of the Council are concerned about maintaining their power and money and attempting to place what clearly benefits them at the heart of public policy rather than policies that benefit the majority and keep the ecosystems healthy.

JOBS AND QUONSET DAVISVILLE AS A RESOURCE FOR RHODE ISLAND
draft  1/23

The RIEDC believes Quonset Davisville to be an incredible resource for Rhode Island, and a real generator of JOBS.  The RIEDC touts its location as a port, convenience to the Interstate, rail connections, airport, and open space with a great steam plant.  The RIEDC and the Governor also believe that true nirvana will be reached when a Container Port to rival any in the world is built there.   And when nirvana is reached there will be JOBS.  Thousands of jobs, GOOD JOBS, that almost pay a living wage, while bringing RI clearly into the Global Economy.

THE RIEDC, the gang that couldn’t shoot straight.  They bring in port advocate after port advocate, pay them big bucks to write a study/master plan/wet dream. Then try to pretend that the report clearly shows a port can be built and that it will make tons of money and create JOBS.  We have yet to see a non biased study.  The advocate are paid to produce a port feasibility study and to make it work.  They spin scenarios and call it a master plan.  Then the EDC spends the public’s money like it was their own slush fund and brings in phony port developers who were both bankrupt and tossed out of every other port they tried to develop.

And the numbers said a 3800 jobs that pay an average of less than $10.00 per hour, and that was at full build out in 20 years.  The new plan foresees even fewer port jobs because it would be almost totally automated, precluding the need for workers. There are many cheaper and easier ways to create that many jobs at better wages than to turn Narragansett Bay into a fishpond for invasive species, turn I-95 into even greater gridlock, use a rail connection that will only be available late at night, pollute the air, and turn Rhode Island into a sluice way for products made in sweatshops for retailers whose sole purpose seems this week to be to put Rhode Island based companies out of business.  And from no taxpayer funding, other than all the subsidies the big corporations get to temporarily set up shop, we now have the State of RI proposing to spend the taxpayers millions on an EIS with no investors in sight.

Global Warming is a big issue for little Rhody.  Sea level rises, we lose our beaches because of the development behind the dunes.  Lets use Quonset as an alternative energy, reverse global warming R&D corporate park.  We know that could create thousands of jobs, and it would be reversing the ecological destruction usually associated with Economic Development Plans.   Its got to be better than what the gang that couldn’t shoot straight is cooking up.

RISAA version of quonset economics.  1/28/01

The Rhode Island Economic Development Corporation (RIEDC) is again proposing that port facilities designed to load and unload very large (6000 TEU or larger) container ships be built at Quonset.  Originally proposed as a completely private venture, it now seems the RIEDC, or rather the people of RI, will pay for the cost  (millions) of researching and writing an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), and then we shall get a private investor, complete with shipping contracts, to build the rest.  We have been authoritatively told by the Rhode Island Economic Policy Council that if RI does not end up with a world class container port, one that is very close to the sea lanes, has great rail and highway access, and carte blanche to eat North Kingstown, that our economy will collapse, our children will leave us, and Rhode Island shall forever be thrown into the deep pit of a second rate economy.  And Furthermore any human being with half a brain has to think building a megaport at Quonset is going to be the coolest thing to hit Rhode Island since sliced bread.  You get the picture.  Governor’s Legacy.

The reality is that whether a container port gets built at Quonset or not, the Industrial Park is projected to be full in 10 years, and the most the port will add is about 190 jobs a year at an average wage of less than $10.00 per hour.  For the millions the State of Rhode Island is investing in the process and port, and the private dollars that could leverage on almost anything, this is not a good investment.

Currently economic development is an elite driven system.  Therefore nearly all of the benefits go to the elite.  The rate of inequality between rich and poor is growing faster in Rhode Island than any other state.  Rising inequality also correlates with sprawl, ecological damage, and the poorest folks living in the most toxic neighborhoods.  There has to be a better way.  Economic development as a community driven process takes into account inequality, ecology, and the desire of all people to have a high quality of life.   And the results are clearly better , especially for the poorest people in the community

One result of the elite driven process is that many of the big questions do not get asked.  The RIEDC has not even asked what the results of similar sized investments in other strategies would be, let alone what the importation of sweat shop goods do to a community, whether or not corporate globalization is good for us, or how an increase in greenhouse gas emissions could effect the beaches of Rhode Island and our tourism and fishing industries.

Well if we do not build a megaport, what can we do at Quonset that will UNIQUELY POSITION RHODE ISLAND FOR THE INTERMODAL POSSIBILITIES OF THE 21ST CENTURY?  Two words, Global Warming.  As long as Rhode Island is investing millions, invest it in not only clean technologies, but technologies that repair the damage to the life support systems of the planet.  Clean energy, the restoration of marine systems, closed loop manufacturing systems, recycling.  Maybe someone could come up with a way to recycle all of the containers that are piling up in US ports as we continue to import way more than we export, both in containers and value.

I suspect we shall not have this discussion in the halls of government any time soon unless the people demand it.  The Governor, some legislative leadership, the EDC, are all committed to a megaport.  The issues of whether or not this is a good project seem of no concern to them, there is money to be made for the few, the many be damned.  But we shall demand good public policy, policy that comes from the people. We shall ask who benefits, and can we do better for the community and the planet, and because the facts are on our side we shall prevail. Economic development can truly be a community process, and it works better when it is.  We shall not see a megaport at Quonset, and because of the overreaching of the wealthy and their surrogates in government, we may see the beginning of a new economic policy, one that works for the people and sustains life on Earth.

Article on Globalization for Sierra Newsletter  greg gerritt  5/3/00

Globalization, as we think about it in the modern world, is considered the process by which the economy of the entire world becomes more closely linked.  Tariffs are eliminated, investment barriers fall, the economy becomes a world economy instead of individual national economies.  If you do not think about it, you might think this could be really nice.  One world, no more wars because what country is going to destroy the factories that its citizens own in other countries, the fruits of the world economy flowing everywhere.  This rosy scenario is the official party line of the corporate world and governments that are totally committed to world domination by large corporations, but the reality is alot different.

Do you remember the Asian economic crisis of 1998? The crisis is which millions of people had their economic underpinnings kicked out because investment capital can flow so freely across borders, and left Southern Asia at the first hint of trouble.  Do you buy Nike sneakers, the company in which spokesperson Michael Jordan makes more money than all of the facctory workers who make Nike shoes put together?  Did you like the idea of a container port at Quonset serving the new trade routes from Asia with 1000 ft long ships carrying goods made behind barbed wire fences by workers who are not permitted to leave by armed guards, work 16 hour shifts in unsafe factories for pennies an hour?  This is the real face of globalization, not the pretty face that organizations like the RI Economic Policy Council want to put on it, the face where the hi tech economy lifts all of us into the new high wage economy.

Even the World Bank, while strongly supporting globalization, has finally admitted that the prime result of globalization is a further wideniing of the gap between rich and poor.  In contry after country, rich countries and well as poor countries, the trend towards globalization has resulted in the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer.  It has resulted in millions upon millions of farmers losing their farms, becoming landless peasants, the poorest of the poor, or sweatshop workers.  Peasant farmers have been undercut buy imports and put out of business in country after country as the rich countries have forced open markets.  It is truly the global race to the bottom.  Even in the richest countries the separaation between rich and poor is increasing, with the rate of separation growing faster in RI than in any other state.  CEO wages are now 400 times that of the lowest paid workers, while 30 years ago that ratio was on 40 to 1.  RI also ranks among the worst states in terms of corpoorate reinvestment, and this is directly attributable to corporations moving jobs to low wage countries and places with lax environmental laws.  Whole sectors of the RI economy are gone because of the corporate race to the bottom.

Hand in hand with the destruction of the economy by the globalizers is the destruction of the global environment.  Forests around the world are falling to the corporate chainsaw, the maquiladoras on the Mexican/U.S. let chemicals flow into drainage ditches that run through the shanty towns the workers live in, poisoning kids daily, genetically engineered crops damage insect populations in ways that put organic farmers out of busness and threaten a cascading effect throughout ecosystems.

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