>The, sort of ,defense argument that I think works goes something like this:
>all over the world need clean water, irrigation, and sanitary sewer
systems. We in
>the USA make the best equipment to solve these types of problems. We make
>pipe, we make the pumps, the motors, have the technology to make the
>wastelands of the world bloom. We should be exporting this equipment and
>technologies. It's low tech---it's also what people need in the 3rd world.
>way of thinking this makes long term friends and allies.
No you shouldn't: low tech is what industries in the 3rd world can do best, and if you flood their market with subsidized products you destroy their fledgling industries. Instead, you should open your markets and _buy_ their products. Even if this upsets your steel lobby (and your textile lobby, and your toy lobby and...)