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chasfh

The Presidency of Donald J. Trump

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The unemployment number has been going down steadily for the last ten years - for whites, blacks, Latinos and everyone else.  It's a very shallow talking point for Trumpers.  Wages are still low.  The gap between the wealthy and everyone else keeps getting wider.  The debt is soaring despite a massive tax cut for the wealthiest of the wealthy.  The economy has now slowed to a point where the GDP is  back where is was in 2016.  But everyone keeps saying the economy is booming because one bogus number (which doesn't include people who have stopped looking for work) is really low.  

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1 hour ago, CMRivdog said:

 

I've been patient with Trump on China, but this is getting old.  It's definitely hurting both sides, you'd think now is the perfect time to negotiate something now.  

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In the end, China will make a small concession which amounts to nothing and Trump will build it up to be a historic deal.  All his followers will believe him.  Another win for Trump! Same as the Canada and Mexico deals.  

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28 minutes ago, tiger337 said:

In the end, China will make a small concession which amounts to nothing and Trump will build it up to be a historic deal.  All his followers will believe him.  Another win for Trump! Same as the Canada and Mexico deals.  

As much as I hope this isn't the case, I wouldn't be too surprised.  The new NAFTA, whatever that is called was considered a slight upgrade. Not sure how much room there was for improvement there, so slight might be all that we could get.  Any trade deal with China needs vast improvement.  As much as it would suck, I'd almost prefer to see Trump continue it and the next administration would then have time to nail something down.

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51 minutes ago, ewsieg said:

I've been patient with Trump on China, but this is getting old.  It's definitely hurting both sides, you'd think now is the perfect time to negotiate something now.  

Do you continue to regard Trump as an honest actor when it comes to his responsibility to America and its people? Meaning you will approach each new situation that arises as a real possibility he will turn over a new leaf and prove himself to be a true leader?

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3 minutes ago, chasfh said:

Do you continue to regard Trump as an honest actor when it comes to his responsibility to America and its people?

I wouldn't say that I ever regarded Trump as an honest actor.  In regards to trade, it's the one topic that I think his business side and his wealth gave him a different view than most on and while I wasn't all that gung ho with him on trade, I was willing to see it through.  As we all see, the world revolves around what Trump see's, he doesn't have the ability to really relate to what others say/do.  So I think watching his wealthy friends deal with China, where he didn't have to, gave him a different perspective that maybe is actually needed.

The prevailing views on trade with China over the last 20-30 years has been:

Business community - We have to do whatever is required because that untapped market is too important.

Politicians - We have to do whatever the business community says to keep them happy plus China is too big to **** off.

Many have felt we're selling our soul to get something that really will never be attainable.  

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There was nothing in Trump's personal history or education that would or should have suggested that he would be competent, let alone expert, in international trade deals.

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3 minutes ago, Mr. Bigglesworth said:

There was nothing in Trump's personal history or education that would or should have suggested that he would be competent, let alone expert, in international trade deals.

Based on the position we're currently in, there is nothing to suggest that any Chinese expert, trade expert, business leader from the last 30 years, politician from the last 30 years, educator, business school, etc, have anything to suggest they would be competent either.

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3 minutes ago, ewsieg said:

Many have felt we're selling our soul to get something that really will never be attainable. 

Politicians tell us we can have Chinese goods made in the USA without a price increase to consumers, which is clearly unattainable.  Tariffs artificially create price increases to consumers that approach what goods would cost to manufacture in the USA, with the tariffs themselves going to the government instead of the private sector -- and in the Trump Administration's case, being redirected to industries adversely affected by tariffs....along with some corporate welfare and big donor kickbacks to boot.

 

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Just now, ewsieg said:

Based on the position we're currently in, there is nothing to suggest that any Chinese expert, trade expert, business leader from the last 30 years, politician from the last 30 years, educator, business school, etc, have anything to suggest they would be competent either.

The nutshell summarization of the past 30 years with regard to China:

  • Business wants cheaper overseas labor, and China is offering the perfect solution and location.
  • Business lobbies and rewards politicians to promote China as a trade partner. 
  • Politicians tell public China exports will benefit consumers while minimally impacting U.S. manufacturing jobs. 
  • Public gets used to low prices from Chinese exports, but disapproves of the millions of U.S. manufacturing jobs lost.
  • Public demands politicians bring back manufacturing jobs from China, but doesn't want to pay more for goods that will cost more to manufacture in the U.S. 
  • Politicians ride populist wave and implement tariffs that increase the cost of Chinese exports to consumers, but don't result in any new U.S. manufacturing jobs.

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2 minutes ago, ewsieg said:

Based on the position we're currently in, there is nothing to suggest that any Chinese expert, trade expert, business leader from the last 30 years, politician from the last 30 years, educator, business school, etc, have anything to suggest they would be competent either.

Yes, but the difference is that it's safe to assume that by and large, China experts and trade experts are serious-minded and serve as checks and balances to one another, while Trump is an incompetent, sociopathic man-child who takes the counsel of literally no one.

I asked only because your post implies that you typically give Trump the chance to prove himself a worthy and competent leader who takes his fiduciary duty to the American people seriously, when in fact he forfeited the right to that assumption a long time ago.

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10 minutes ago, ewsieg said:

Based on the position we're currently in, there is nothing to suggest that any Chinese expert, trade expert, business leader from the last 30 years, politician from the last 30 years, educator, business school, etc, have anything to suggest they would be competent either.

I don't think that is true, but even if it is, it does not necessarily follow that someone without experience or education will do as well or better as those with experience and/or specialized education.

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7 minutes ago, Mr. Bigglesworth said:

I don't think that is true, but even if it is, it does not necessarily follow that someone without experience or education will do as well or better as those with experience and/or specialized education.

My point is the status quo has done nothing but put us behind the eight ball.  Trump, right or wrong on anything else, has put out some valid complaints that have always been there about China, but never pushed by any political administration or business leader.

Do we really have to go this way again?  You can disagree with me, but does a minor point which honestly isn't even pro-Trump as we have no idea how it'll end and at best, is still hurting our economy, has to be attacked because it's not anti-trump enough?  

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14 minutes ago, chasfh said:

I asked only because your post implies that you typically give Trump the chance to prove himself a worthy and competent leader who takes his fiduciary duty to the American people seriously, when in fact he forfeited the right to that assumption a long time ago.

I can only judge Trump on his actions.  You folks seem to think that as he's a blatant liar, you can't trust anything.  I go into this assuming every politician is lying to me and don't trust them.  Hence, all I have are their actions.   It's easy to just say Trump is an idiot so everything he does is wrong, but I do think something different needed to happen with China.  I'm not confident it'll turn out well, but I've been willing to see how it plays out.  Like I said initially though, it's getting old.

 

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16 minutes ago, ewsieg said:

My point is the status quo has done nothing but put us behind the eight ball. 

Is this actually correct, though?

Undoubtedly there have been losers from the easing of trade policy over the years. And there is little argument that policy makers may not have given enough consideration to those left behind. 

But having said that, you can point to may areas, geographic and economically, who have undoubtedly benefitted from increased trade between the two countries. 

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4 minutes ago, ewsieg said:

I can only judge Trump on his actions.  You folks seem to think that as he's a blatant liar, you can't trust anything.  I go into this assuming every politician is lying to me and don't trust them.  Hence, all I have are their actions.   It's easy to just say Trump is an idiot so everything he does is wrong, but I do think something different needed to happen with China.  I'm not confident it'll turn out well, but I've been willing to see how it plays out.  Like I said initially though, it's getting old.

 

It's fair to judge a typical man on his actions, although I think that's a bit naive in this case because that in his position as the most powerful man on Earth, his words are the same as actions, and as such Trump's words have the power to be dangerous all on their own. I also believe Trump is a special case liar, and that he does not represent anything close to business as usual.

Also, not for nothing, I think he is an agent of, for lack of a better term, evil. Not only is he self-serving to the exclusion of everyone else, which I would agree is not unique to him, but I also think he actively desires the worst possible outcome for basically everyone else, because I truly think he does not believe he really wins unless everyone else loses. He's not a "win-win" guy, or even merely a "win" guy. I think he's a "win-lose" guy. That makes him a special kind of dangerous.

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10 minutes ago, mtutiger said:

Is this actually correct, though?

Undoubtedly there have been losers from the easing of trade policy over the years. And there is little argument that policy makers may not have been enough consideration to those left behind. 

But having said that, you can point to may areas, geographic and economically, who have undoubtedly benefitted from increased trade between the two countries. 

I'm not saying increased trade is bad, that's actually good.  What i'm referring to is fair trade.   I just tried to find some documentation on how much this trade war is costing and find a slew of different numbers emphasizing specific industries.  Some of what I found was: 

-300,000 less jobs

-Up to 60 billion dollars based on $460 per household average with roughly 128 million households in the US.

-All out trade war could cost up to 300 billion (not sure if estimated per year or as a whole)

As of 2013, Intellectual theft was estimated as a loss of 200 billion a year and stopping that alone was estimated to bring 2 million jobs back to the US.  

I know none of you trust Trump and i'm not saying you should, but would you be willing to spend 60 dollars on something that would save you 200 a year? 

https://www.foxbusiness.com/business-leaders/trump-us-china-tariffs-trade-war

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/trumps-trade-war-squashed-an-estimated-300000-jobs-so-far-moodys-estimates/

http://www.ipcommission.org/report/ip_commission_report_052213.pdf

 

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9 minutes ago, chasfh said:

It's fair to judge a typical man on his actions, although I think that's a bit naive in this case because that in his position as the most powerful man on Earth, his words are the same as actions, and as such Trump's words have the power to be dangerous all on their own. I also believe Trump is a special case liar, and that he does not represent anything close to business as usual.

Fair point, and part of what you're saying matches up with my desire to get back to a politician in the White House, where even though when I'm being lied to, I can't necessarily prove it and I sleep better at night as a result.

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4 minutes ago, ewsieg said:

 I know none of you trust Trump and i'm not saying you should, but would you be willing to spend 60 dollars on something that would save you 200 a year? 

Setting aside the apples/oranges aspect of this comparison...

Perhaps we could save the 200/yr without spending the 60 (plus countless job losses)

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14 minutes ago, ewsieg said:

I'm not saying increased trade is bad, that's actually good.  What i'm referring to is fair trade.   I just tried to find some documentation on how much this trade war is costing and find a slew of different numbers emphasizing specific industries.  Some of what I found was: .....

there is a grain of truth here but the problem is that Trump has the cart before the horse. Tariffs, in particular tariffs that are in place strictly as a negotiating ploy and thus not likely to be permanent, cannot and will not draw US capital expenditure for domestic manufacturing. It has long been a dirty word with the GOP, and the Clinton and Obama dems were almost as bad with the nonsense that the "knowledge economy" would save high paying jobs, (the fact is that nothing is easier to transplant across boarders than knowledge!),   but you have to push and pull. You have to have a domestic 'industrial policy' that provides the labor, investment and tax environment to support manufacturing and is committed to a long term program. Once you do that tariffs can be a rational method of protecting nascent developing producers. But the tariff first, without any of the other, is pointless and non-productive. In the present situation they are nothing more than additional consumer taxes.

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Here's an illuminating excerpt from the new book "Border Wars" that really highlights the effects of Trump's War on Competence.

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5 minutes ago, Gehringer_2 said:

But the tariff first, without any of the other, is pointless and non-productive. In the present situation they are nothing more than additional consumer taxes.

And the tariff first leaves the potential for a lot of collateral damage in its wake, especially in industries where looser trade policy is more beneficial.

The two states I've lived longest in my life (MI and TX) are a good example of this... while perhaps you could make the argument that tariffs may (at least on the margins) help in returning manufacturing to a state like MI, the effects of said tariffs are felt differently in a state like TX which has largely benefitted post NAFTA.

IOW, these moves are felt differently on where you are in the economy.... which sector you are in, what state you are in, etc. So implementing tariffs may do some good in one place and significant harm somewhere else in the economy. And Trump, for his part, has shown little indication that he understands this 

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1 hour ago, ewsieg said:

My point is the status quo has done nothing but put us behind the eight ball.

And my point is that isn't terribly relevant when deciding what you are going to do moving forward.

I would suggest what is far more relevant is understanding what put you behind the eight ball and executing a rational plan to address those deficiencies.  Maybe it is because the *experts* aren't as advertised, maybe it is because of things outside of the experts' control, and if one studies the thing, they find the experts actually did a good job within the constraints of an unmanageable situation.  I don't know.

Making (or advocating) a change to make a change because things aren't working is no different than throwing darts at a board blindfolded.

Unless there is some specific things you think Trump could address that others didn't / couldn't *and* those things are key to addressing the issue, then there is no logical reason to expect an improvement.

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4 minutes ago, Mr. Bigglesworth said:

And my point is that isn't terribly relevant when deciding what you are going to do moving forward.

I would suggest what is far more relevant is understanding what put you behind the eight ball and executing a rational plan to address those deficiencies.

Making (or advocating) a change to make a change because things aren't working is no different than throwing darts at a board.

So unless there is some specific things you think Trump could address that others didn't / couldn't, and those things are key to addressing the issue, then there is no logical reason to expect an improvement.

right

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To be fair to the President, when he was a candidate, he was adept enough to identify and speak to the anxiety that voters (especially in the Midwest) had on trade and NAFTA.... things that a lot of politicians and policy makers didn't really address (or address adequately) at the time or in the aftermath of NAFTA.

The problem is that the primal scream of populism doesn't always lend itself to good solutions. Hence where we are today.

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