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    10.19.18 Dean’s Law and Policy Forum Puts Spotlight on Trade Policy
    Brooklyn Law School - Assistant Professor of Law Julian Arato

    The October Dean’s Law & Policy Series program featured Professor Julian Arato, an expert on international economic law and co-director of the Dennis J. Block Center for the Study of International Business Law, who spoke about trade policy and the politics of trade.

    “What makes good trade policy also makes bad trade politics,” said Arato, describing the inverse relationship between the two. “The flip side is that crazy trade policy can be very good politics.”

    Laying out the main arguments for and against free trade, Arato explained how trade is fundamentally connected with the economy and society overall. “When we talk about trade, we’re asking ‘what kind of society do we want to live in?’ Trade policy is fundamentally part of that question, about [society’s] interests and values,” he said.

    Arato presented a succinct analysis of current trade policy, tariffs, and trade deals being advanced under the Trump administration, which he said limit international trade while reducing domestic safety-net policies that protect American workers and companies.

    “In order to understand [what] the administration has put forward, on both the tariff front and the trade deals front, you need to understand the background and theory of trade—what trade is supposed to be about,” said Arato. “In short, what’s happening is bad, and makes little sense.”

    The next Dean’s Law and Policy program on Nov. 5 will feature Professor Susan Herman, president of the ACLU, who will speak on the topic “Do We Live in a Democracy?

    Watch the Trade Policy forum here