Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Heath: National Security and Economic Globalization: Toward Collision or Reconciliation?

J. Benton Heath (New York Univ. - Law) has posted National Security and Economic Globalization: Toward Collision or Reconciliation? (Fordham International Law Journal, forthcoming). Here's the abstract:
In this contribution to a symposium on "International Trade: Isolationism, Trade Wars, and Trump," I argue that the present challenge to the economic order is both broader and more intractable than the symposium title suggests. Many observers are rightly concerned about the Trump administration's broad invocations of national security, and about rising economic and strategic tensions with China. Without diminishing either of these challenges, I argue that Trump’s actions on trade reflect the increasing entanglement between national security policy and “ordinary” economic regulation—an entanglement that both predates and will outlast his administration, and extends farther than just the United States. This entanglement stems from a dramatic series of shifts in national security policy since the 1990s, such that security measures overlap with trade and investment rules in an ever-widening range of circumstances. Moreover, not all of these new security policies bear the hallmarks of abuse and overreach that characterize the Trump administration. It is unclear whether our international economic institutions have the legal tools, the capacity, or the legitimacy to address this growing body of novel—but not necessarily abusive—national security aims. This short piece introduces these critical claims and potential responses, both of which are developed further in forthcoming work.