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The left sees the WTO as the henchman of a shadowy clique of stronger nations forcing agreements that allow them to exploit less developed nations.
However, the resulting high price of foreign goods allows domestic makers to raise their prices as well.
As a result, a tariff may also work as a wealth transfer tax that uses public money to support a domestic industry that is producing an uncompetitive product.
While it's debatable whether the organization is useful economically, the WTO is very important politically.
Subsequently, governments - with or without citizen support - will likely continue to support the organization.
This view has its points, as the most economically powerful nations seem to set the WTO agenda and were the first to pass anti-dumping acts to protect favored domestic industries while also opposing similar actions by less powerful nations.
(To examine this further, check out Unloved, Unneeded, Unwanted Free market proponents attack the WTO on the grounds that it's an unnecessary entity.
Read more in Operating Behind the One-Way Mirror Many critics of the WTO also contend that the organization has struggled with one of the basic goals it set for itself: transparency.
Even in one of its main functions - settling disputes through negotiation - the WTO is infamously opaque when it comes to revealing how settlements were reached.
Rather than making complicated and heavily politicized agreements between nations on what they can and can't protect, free market thinking suggests that trade should be left to companies to work out on a deal-by-deal basis.
They believe if the WTO were really designed to encourage trade, it would force member nations to drop all protective measures and allow true free trade, rather than facilitating tariff negotiations.