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A recent article entitled “America for Sale” caught my attention this morning. Why?

Just a few days ago, I was writing an article about Virginia’s new initiative, VITAL (Virginia International Trade Alliance), which essentially creates a network of companies committed to luring foreign investments into the commonwealth and marketing it globally. And this is a goal of numerous states, of course–branding, trading, and investing overseas. A no-brainer, right?

Well, I didn’t think of it until I read the “America for Sale” article, but suppose a state is too successful at attracting foreign investors and shareholders. At what point does an American business become an unAmerican business? Does it matter where a corporation’s origin is if its investors use a different language and currency? Do we have national safeguards to prevent an overload of foreign investment? If not, shouldn’t we?

Can we recognize the line between selling stocks and selling out?

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