Friday, July 6, 2018

Trump's Trade War With China Begins

That sound you hear is dominoes falling.

The United States imposed the first duties on $34 billion in Chinese goods early Friday and China immediately retaliated, launching a commercial battle that analysts fear could shake markets and cramp global business. 
As Beijing fired back with tariffs of its own, it accused the U.S. of violating WTO rules and setting off “the largest trade war in economic history to date.”   
“In order to defend the core interests of the country and the interests of the people, we are forced to retaliate,” the Chinese Commerce Ministry said in a statement.  
The Asian nation slapped levies on an equal amount of American goods, including heartland staples like soybeans, corn, pork and poultry — a move President Trump said would compel him to hit China with another round of duties on up to $500 billion in products.
Surprise!  The Man Baby and his crime family won't personally get burned:
As the Trump administration initiates a possible trade war with China, the president’s businesses continue to benefit from partnerships involving the Chinese government, via state-backed companies and investors. 
Chinese government-backed firms are slated to work on parts of two large developments — in Dubai and Indonesia — that will include Trump-branded properties. 
The Trumps are the landlord to one of China’s top state-owned banks, which has occupied the 20th floor of Trump Tower in Manhattan since 2008. The bank’s lease is worth close to $2 million annually, according to industry estimates and a bank filing. 
And despite the Trump administration’s focus on American manufacturing, assembly-line workers in China still produce blouses, shoes and handbags for the clothing line created by Trump’s daughter Ivanka, a White House adviser. 
The tariffs that were set to kick in at 12:01 a.m. Friday are not expected to affect the Trumps’ financial interests...
Surprise II!  China is using The Man Baby's trade wars as leverage the U.S. once had in containing China to contain the U.S.:
... [O]ur unilateralism and contempt for international trade rules have given China an opening that should never have existed in the first place, especially since Europe has virtually the same complaints about Chinese trade practices that we do. 
Meanwhile, Trump’s temper tantrum seems to have driven China closer to other countries it has had strained relationships with, such as  India and Japan. 
Trump has also unwittingly given a shot of adrenaline to the 16-party Asian regional trade deal that would cover half the world’s economy. Unlike the TPP, the United States is not a party to these negotiations — but China is.
The Man Baby was so desperate to kill our involvement in President Obama's Trans Pacific Partnership that, in doing so, he handed China, with its own 16- member Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, a massive geo- economic boost and leadership in the powerhouse east Asian market. 

We also have the reality of big business, who positively slavered at the prospect of the Republican tax cuts for corporations and the wealthy that the Man Baby would sign, reaping what they've been (and still are) sowing:
The imminent prospect of a trade war, it seems, concentrates the mind. Until very recently, big business and the institutions that represent its interests didn’t seem to be taking President Trump’s protectionist rhetoric very seriously. After all, corporations have invested trillions based on the belief that world markets would remain open, that U.S. industry would retain access to both foreign customers and foreign suppliers.
Trump wouldn’t put all those investments at risk, would he? 
Yes, he would ... [snip]  
The thing is, big business is reaping what it sowed. No single cause brought us to this terrible moment in American history, but decades of cynical politics on the part of corporate America certainly played an important role. 
What do I mean by cynical politics? Partly I mean the tacit alliance between businesses and the wealthy, on one side, and racists on the other, that is the essence of the modern conservative movement. 
For a long time business seemed to have this game under control: win elections with racial dog whistles, then turn to an agenda of tax cuts and deregulation. But sooner or later something like Trump was going to happen: a candidate who meant the racism seriously, with the enthusiastic support of the Republican base, and couldn’t be controlled.
As the Man Baby's trade wars with the rest of the planet proceed, more jobs will be lost, more farms will fail, and the test of whether white nationalist nativism or self- preservation will win out among the Man Baby's cultists will be upon us.  We're not betting on self- preservation.


donnah said...

I've already seen two separate interviews with American farmers, one is a dairy farmer, both of them voted for Trump and both of them are “disappointed” by the tariffs but STILL believe that Trump knows what he's doing. One of them said their farm is teetering on the edge of failing, but they hope the tariffs are a bluff tactic and soon China will cave and they'll be back in full swing.

We, as Democrats, can no longer cater to the very people who brought this Trump pestilence unpon this country. Let them face the hard fact that he doesn't care about them and that they are expendable after the vote. Stop asking their opinions, stop finding ways to make them feel good about their president.

Maybe China will cave. Maybe farmers will soon be making money again.

Maybe not.

W. Hackwhacker said...

donnah -- the types of cultists you cite will always make the bad decision, based on decades of programming and/or innate rot. They've always been with us, just more hidden from time to time. If only they could be hidden now from the media, because we have serious work to do to save our country, and we don't need useless distractions.