Thursday, August 29, 2019

Quora: What's your reaction to President Trump's latest tweet that he's raising tariffs on China because of their retaliation?

Don Keebrane, Attorney (2008-present)

He’s an idiot. He thinks he can bully China into a trade deal like he bullied his way through the GOP primary. He never should have pulled out of the TPP to begin with. We had roughly a dozen other countries willing to stand by us in condemning China’s theft of intellectual property and other unfair trading practices.

The tariffs have been a complete failure, and he shouldn’t have been able to impose them to begin with. It’s Congress’s job to decide on tariffs, not the president; the only time the president can impose tariffs is in the interest of national security. China’s unfair trading practices aren’t a threat to national security, but he can get away with it because they’re still considered a hostile foreign power. His tariffs also included Canada and countries in the EU that are part of NATO; by definition, a NATO country can’t be a threat to US national security, but the GOP is too spineless to do anything about it.

Trump started imposing tariffs on Chinese goods, only a complete fucking moron wouldn’t expect retaliation.

The difference between our strategy and China’s is China has one. We don’t. President Xi also doesn’t have to worry about reelection, Trump does. That’s why the first industry China targeted with its retaliatory tariffs was the agricultural industry. People from rural areas tend to vote Republican. Imposing tariffs on American agricultural products means American farmers can’t sell their products to China since Chinese importers can buy them elsewhere without the tariffs. The soybean market is dead and other agricultural commodity exports are down by 40%.

On the flip side, we’re just paying more money for American goods manufactured in China. Whenever Trump announces new tariffs the market falls; today it fell roughly 600 points. It’s bad for consumer confidence to have this trade war, and even worse when Trump tweets about it.

He’s not that bright, but his ability to manipulate markets is probably making people associated with him a lot of money. When the market plunged 1,000 points the other day. I’m sure some of his buddies bought shares of some of the stocks that fell and made money after they slightly recovered.

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