Over on The Telegraph they've jumped on the Gordon Brown "Blame the USA" bandwagon.
'Buy USA' push may see America slip from free trade church.
Hans Redeker, currency chief at BNP Paribas, says the US risks setting off a collapse in discipline across the world. "The US has a leading role so this could set off a huge response in other countries," he said. "There is already talk of a €100bn (£91bn) fund in Germany to save its industry from being sold off cheap."
French president Nicolas Sarkozy has proposed a "strategic investment fund" to fend off "predators" – a euphemism for sovereign wealth funds from Asia and Russia – hoping to snap up France's crown jewels. "We will intervene massively whenever a strategic enterprise needs our money," he said.
So there you go - it's OK for Germany and France to take such measures but if the USA do then that is "dangerous".
Maybe it's just me, but I wasn't even aware there was a "free trade church", but if there is then they are worshipping a myth - just like the new religion of anthropogenic global warming - because there is no such thing as free trade between nation states.
I'd go further and argue that, unless you are a fan of globalisation, trans-nationalism and supra-nationalism then free trade between nations isn't even desirable. It is, of course, essential to have free markets and free trade within a nation - or as free as possible, but when it comes to trading with other nations it is far less desirable.
The notion of "free trade" is based on the belief that no nation should impose tariffs or restrictions on other nations selling their produce to them - but this is not "free" trade because there exist imbalances in national production of items for trade. A nation such as Britain, which has strict employment rules, regulations for working conditions and minimum wages can not compete in the market with nations like China which have few such restrictions. When one nation has such a competitive advantage then the trade is far from free.
Instead, a sensible nation balances its trade dependent on what it needs and what it produces. For instance, if a nation needs wheat, then it makes little sense to impose restrictions on wheat imports - but if a nation produces wheat then what is the point of importing it?
Because it can be produced cheaper by a different nation?
That is very short term thinking because, eventually, it won't be and if, by importing the wheat from cheaper sources abroad, you have ruined your own wheat production industry then you have made your nation dependent on others.
And that is the one thing any nation should try to avoid. It should be the goal of any nation - and their government - to make themselves as self-reliant as possible. Of course, ever since we've had governments we've had governments who make decisions based on short term gain without regard to the longer term implications - but never as much as we've had in the last half century.
The really annoying thing, as far as I'm concerned, is that while British governments have bought into this "interdependency" thing through the EU most other EU nations have not - so while Britain has played fair by the rules virtually every other EU nation has bent and twisted those rules to suit its own national agenda.
That's why we don't have a car industry anymore. Of course British car manufacture was blighted by poor management and trade union intransigence but so was the rest of Europe at the time (and in some countries it still is!) - but while we played by the rules the other car producing nations of Europe went to extraordinary lengths to ensure they protected theirs. Our manufacturers went belly up or were bought up by foreign companies - theirs thrived at our expense.
Same with our fishing industry, agriculture, steel, power, armaments and so on. Well, it's about time we stopped playing fair and started protecting ourselves and our nation and this recession provides the perfect excuse and opportunity to do it.
Unfortunately, with our political scene dominated by left wing supra-national Marxists that is not very likely to happen.