The Trump Trade Wars
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  1. #1
    BamaNation Hall of Fame CharminTide's Avatar
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    The Trump Trade Wars

    This article is almost two years old, but I came across it recently, and I think it's aged extremely well.

    We've now seen several instances of Trump "negotiating" trade, and many people have come to the (correct) realization that Trump only cares about PR victories in these conflicts, not actual victories with actual effects. He shouted about NAFTA for years, stomped his feet in office, and ultimately claimed victory over Canada and Mexico. Yet the actual concessions from either country -- and the impact on America -- are essentially nonexistent. He just wanted the PR, and he backed off once he had it.

    China saw that. They know very well that they could get out of this current trade spat with the same kind of minor concessions that Canada and Mexico made, and it would not have any meaningful effect on either country. But they haven't. They're choosing not to. By all accounts, it was China who decided to leave the negotiating table. They see Trump as an opportunity to speed the decline of America as a global player, and they are prolonging this conflict in order to quicken that goal.

    Making China Great Again

    China’s leaders rarely air their views about an American President, but well-connected scholars—the ranking instituteniks of Beijing and Shanghai and Guangzhou—can map the contours of their assessments. Yan Xuetong is the dean of Tsinghua University’s Institute of Modern International Relations. At sixty-five, Yan is bouncy and trim, with short silver hair and a roaring laugh. When I arrived at his office one evening, he donned a black wool cap and coat, and we set off into the cold. Before I could ask a question, he said, “I think Trump is America’s Gorbachev.” In China, Mikhail Gorbachev is known as the leader who led an empire to collapse. “The United States will suffer,” he warned.

    Over a dinner of dumplings, tofu, and stir-fried pork, Yan said that America’s strength must be measured partly by its ability to persuade: “American leadership has already dramatically declined in the past ten months. In 1991, when Bush, Sr., launched the war against Iraq, it got thirty-four countries to join the war effort. This time, if Trump launched a war against anyone, I doubt he would get support from even five countries. Even the U.S. Congress is trying to block his ability to start a nuclear war against North Korea.” For Chinese leaders, Yan said, “Trump is the biggest strategic opportunity.” I asked Yan how long he thought the opportunity would last. “As long as Trump stays in power,” he replied.

  2. #2
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    Re: The Trump Trade Wars

    China reported the weakest growth in industrial output since 2002. -from https://www.bloomberg.com/news/artic...global-economy

    Doesn't seem like too much of a good deal for China..
    Last edited by Bama 8Ball; August 30th, 2019 at 11:08 AM.

  3. #3
    BamaNation Hall of Fame Chukker Veteran's Avatar
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    Re: The Trump Trade Wars

    Quote Originally Posted by Bama 8Ball View Post
    China reported the weakest growth in industrial output since 2002. -from https://www.bloomberg.com/news/artic...global-economy

    Doesn't seem like too much of a good deal for China..
    Trump feels pressure to make a deal and not do further damage to his country's economy that the Chinese leader doesn't because they don't have elections there. They can, and I expect will, simply wait Trump out.

  4. #4
    BamaNation Hall of Fame GrayTide's Avatar
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    Re: The Trump Trade Wars

    Quote Originally Posted by Chukker Veteran View Post
    Trump feels pressure to make a deal and not do further damage to his country's economy that the Chinese leader doesn't because they don't have elections there. They can, and I expect will, simply wait Trump out.
    Talking heads are saying that, at this point, Trump is likely to take a bad deal with China just to show his cult that he is "a deal maker" and to enhance his chances for re-election. Once again he has been out maneuvered by an autocratic strong man.
    "My momma always said you got to put the past behind you before you can move on." Forrest Gump

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  5. #5
    BamaNation Hall of Fame CharminTide's Avatar
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    Re: The Trump Trade Wars

    Quote Originally Posted by Chukker Veteran View Post
    Trump feels pressure to make a deal and not do further damage to his country's economy that the Chinese leader doesn't because they don't have elections there. They can, and I expect will, simply wait Trump out.
    Literally the only thing that would get Trump re-elected is a strong economy. He waltzed into this conflict with the hubris of someone who actually said, "trade wars are easy to win," and he simply expected it to be over in a few months with no real consequence. But China has decided that they don't want to give him a victory. They're settling in for the long haul. Their state media is framing the endurance of these tariffs as a patriotic duty for all Chinese.

    If Trump backs down, China claims a decisive victory on the world stage and furthers their argument of being the new global economic power -- the only country to stand up to the U.S. economy in three generations and win. This would be disastrous to U.S. power. But if Trump doesn't back down, this plus Brexit speeds a global recession and he loses next November. China then uses his defeat as evidence that the American people have soundly rejected their leader's opposition to the great Chinese economy.

    No matter what he does now, we all lose in some way. And the fact that he allowed himself to get backed into this corner is all the evidence you should need that he's in way, way over his head.

  6. #6
    BamaNation Hall of Fame GrayTide's Avatar
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    Re: The Trump Trade Wars

    Just another example of Trump's complete lack of knowledge in understanding the history and culture of the Chinese people, the working of global economics, and lack of negotiating skills with foreign officials who are far superior in intellect and ain't trying to negotiate the sale of a piece of Bronx real estate. The Chinese understand and play the long game while Trump is nothing more than a day trader devoid of any cognitive ability.
    Last edited by GrayTide; August 30th, 2019 at 05:45 PM.
    "My momma always said you got to put the past behind you before you can move on." Forrest Gump

    "The past is never dead. It's not even past." William Faulkner

  7. #7
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    Re: The Trump Trade Wars

    Quote Originally Posted by GrayTide View Post
    Just another example of Trump's complete lack of knowledge in understanding the history and culture of the Chinese people, the working of global economics, and lack of negotiating skills with foreign officials who are far superior in intellect and ain't trying to negotiate the sale of a piece of Bronx real estate. The Chinese understand and play the long game while Trump is nothing more than a day trader devoid of any cognitive ability.
    I have spent some time while on the lawnmower or out walking thinking about how manufacturing cost is built in manufacturing in order to price a product. It isn't necessary to go into all of that except to say that the investment in equipment has to be amortized based on labor or material cost in order to justify an investment in a new product. If the equipment is owned by a government entity in China then it becomes effectively free for the Chinese manufacturer. That is one of the reasons that they can quote a finished product for less that the US manufacturer will pay for raw materials even with all other cost of production being equal. Hoping that makes some sense!

    The point is there likely isn't anyone on the US side that understands any of the details that go into producing a product at all.

    The other blunder that has been made is to place such a broad tariff on Chinese goods including electronics. The Chinese have invested billions in producing electronic components including I Phones and there is not the equivalent manufacturing capability in the world. So now Trump has blundered into a dilemma with US businesses clamoring for relief, hardliners wanting to continue the war and the global economy slowing down.

    Since he wandered into the arena and began messing with the bull it is my hope that he gets the horns!

  8. #8
    BamaNation First Team Toddrn's Avatar
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    Re: The Trump Trade Wars

    I am just one person and certainly not an expert on the economy or the political arena. I do believe that there are other factors that will get President Trump re-elected. Our country is a huge mess and has been for a long time. There is lots of blame to go around. The left and right have people that are very extreme in their beliefs. These people make both parties look bad. There are lots of people that are just fed up with voting for people that have spent their entire lives in Washington and have done nothing but add to mess we are in. I can not vote for someone who has been in office for 20, 30 or 40 years that tells me "I have the answer to our problems". If they had the answer why have they not already solved our problems? I think we will once again see a large group of silent voters that will vote for Trump. They have learned to keep their mouth shut and not talk openly about this because they do not want to be harassed or mistreated because of the way they vote or believe. I miss the country we once were and long to see a time when people can disagree and discuss their beliefs without having to worry about being attacked. No one really thought Trump would win the first time. Don't write him off because people will put up with a lot just to make a point. Regardless of who is elected lets hope and pray that they will make Americans their first priority and do what is best for our country.
    Quote Originally Posted by CharminTide View Post
    Literally the only thing that would get Trump re-elected is a strong economy. He waltzed into this conflict with the hubris of someone who actually said, "trade wars are easy to win," and he simply expected it to be over in a few months with no real consequence. But China has decided that they don't want to give him a victory. They're settling in for the long haul. Their state media is framing the endurance of these tariffs as a patriotic duty for all Chinese.

    If Trump backs down, China claims a decisive victory on the world stage and furthers their argument of being the new global economic power -- the only country to stand up to the U.S. economy in three generations and win. This would be disastrous to U.S. power. But if Trump doesn't back down, this plus Brexit speeds a global recession and he loses next November. China then uses his defeat as evidence that the American people have soundly rejected their leader's opposition to the great Chinese economy.

    No matter what he does now, we all lose in some way. And the fact that he allowed himself to get backed into this corner is all the evidence you should need that he's in way, way over his head.

  9. #9
    BamaNation Hall of Fame CharminTide's Avatar
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    Re: The Trump Trade Wars

    Quote Originally Posted by Toddrn View Post
    I am just one person and certainly not an expert on the economy or the political arena. I do believe that there are other factors that will get President Trump re-elected. Our country is a huge mess and has been for a long time. There is lots of blame to go around. The left and right have people that are very extreme in their beliefs. These people make both parties look bad. There are lots of people that are just fed up with voting for people that have spent their entire lives in Washington and have done nothing but add to mess we are in. I can not vote for someone who has been in office for 20, 30 or 40 years that tells me "I have the answer to our problems". If they had the answer why have they not already solved our problems? I think we will once again see a large group of silent voters that will vote for Trump. They have learned to keep their mouth shut and not talk openly about this because they do not want to be harassed or mistreated because of the way they vote or believe. I miss the country we once were and long to see a time when people can disagree and discuss their beliefs without having to worry about being attacked. No one really thought Trump would win the first time. Don't write him off because people will put up with a lot just to make a point. Regardless of who is elected lets hope and pray that they will make Americans their first priority and do what is best for our country.
    I'll amend to "IMO, the best chance Trump has to be re-elected is a strong economy."

    It was dumb for him to put his best re-election asset at risk, especially with the Fed signaling that they're willing to lower rates and keep this faltering pseudo-bull market running for as long as possible.

  10. #10
    BamaNation Hall of Fame GrayTide's Avatar
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    Re: The Trump Trade Wars

    Add this to his list of those to blame if the economy falters.

    https://www.msn.com/en-us/money/comp...6JE?li=BBnb7Kz
    "My momma always said you got to put the past behind you before you can move on." Forrest Gump

    "The past is never dead. It's not even past." William Faulkner

  11. #11
    Senior Administrator TIDE-HSV's Avatar
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    Re: The Trump Trade Wars

    Quote Originally Posted by Toddrn View Post
    I am just one person and certainly not an expert on the economy or the political arena. I do believe that there are other factors that will get President Trump re-elected. Our country is a huge mess and has been for a long time. There is lots of blame to go around. The left and right have people that are very extreme in their beliefs. These people make both parties look bad. There are lots of people that are just fed up with voting for people that have spent their entire lives in Washington and have done nothing but add to mess we are in. I can not vote for someone who has been in office for 20, 30 or 40 years that tells me "I have the answer to our problems". If they had the answer why have they not already solved our problems? I think we will once again see a large group of silent voters that will vote for Trump. They have learned to keep their mouth shut and not talk openly about this because they do not want to be harassed or mistreated because of the way they vote or believe. I miss the country we once were and long to see a time when people can disagree and discuss their beliefs without having to worry about being attacked. No one really thought Trump would win the first time. Don't write him off because people will put up with a lot just to make a point. Regardless of who is elected lets hope and pray that they will make Americans their first priority and do what is best for our country.
    Three years of his policies have convinced you he is the answer?
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  12. #12
    BamaNation First Team Toddrn's Avatar
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    Re: The Trump Trade Wars

    No never said that I thought he was. I am like so many others who would like to see him keep his mouth shut, stay off twitter and just focus on the problems we are facing as a country. Also saying that anyone who thinks someone that has been in Washington for decades and suddenly has all the answers is delusional. He can and may get re-elected because those that are running against him are not any better based on their past job performance.
    Quote Originally Posted by TIDE-HSV View Post
    Three years of his policies have convinced you he is the answer?

  13. #13
    BamaNation Hall of Fame CharminTide's Avatar
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    Re: The Trump Trade Wars

    Quote Originally Posted by Toddrn View Post
    He can and may get re-elected because those that are running against him are not any better based on their past job performance.
    Just checked, and it doesn't look like any of the Dem candidates have locked brown children in cages, tried to take healthcare away from millions of Americans, or brought a soaring economy to the edge of recession.

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