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EU Threatens Trade War Over Trump’s Tariff Plan

EU Threatens Trade War Over Trump’s Tariff Plan

EU to “forge a coalition of countries” to fight proposed US import tariffs

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AX0fKY_zQEw&t=2205s

Rattled by President Trump’s proposal to raise tariffs on steel and aluminum imports, the European Union is threatening the U.S. with a full-blown trade war. “We will now impose tariffs on motorcycles, Harley Davidson, on blue jeans, Levis, on bourbon,” Jean-Claude Junker, President of the European Commission, warned earlier this week.

“Should Trump follow his words with actions, Europe will reply proportionately,” German Economy Minister Brigitte Zypries said in response to the proposed move.

Earlier this week, President Trump had mulled the prospect to impose 25 percent import tariffs on steel imports and 10 percent on aluminum, a move aimed to prevent foreign producers from dumping cheap steel and aluminum into the U.S. market.

The EU is ready to ‘reciprocally raise’ import duty on U.S. steel and aluminum, Germany media reported on Wednesday. The EU, along with other steel and aluminum producing countries like Canada, Brazil, Japan, and China, might also lodge a formal complaint with the World Trade Organization (WTO).

President Trump might have been onto something when he said that the EU had “banded together in order to beat the United States in trade,” at a Florida fundraiser recently. As Germany’s state-run broadcaster Deutsche Welle now reveals, the EU plans to “forge a coalition of countries to agree a unified reaction to Trump’s move.” Brussels hopes to recruit Canada, Japan, Australia, and Turkey among other countries in a united front against President Trump’s move, the broadcaster said.

As a retaliatory measure, the EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström wants to target US agriculture products like peanut butter, cranberries, and orange juice, France24 revealed:

Bourbon, Levi’s jeans and Harley Davidson: these are the main products Brussels is threatening to tax in the event of US tariffs on imports of aluminum and steel. The EU did not chose these products by chance.

EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström on Wednesday added that the EU’s counter-measures would also include tariffs on US steel and agricultural products as well as on peanut butter, cranberries and orange juice.

“EU goes tactical in looming US trade war,” claimed France24. Retaliating against U.S. steel import tariffs by hitting bourbon, peanut butter and cranberries juice, doesn’t sound like a grand strategy—unless Brussels has a better card up its sleeves.

“If the E.U. wants to further increase their already massive tariffs and barriers on U.S. companies doing business there, we will simply apply a Tax on their Cars which freely pour into the U.S.,” Trump wrote on Twitter. “They make it impossible for our cars (and more) to sell there. Big trade imbalance!”

Despite tough talk from Brussels, the EU bosses are treading on thin ice, and they know it. According to the German newspaper Die Welt, merely the talk of a trade war is destabilizing the euro currency zone. The strengthening of the euro against the dollar, as a result of President Trump’s announcement, is set to make European exports less competitive in the U.S. market, the newspaper argued:

At a meeting on Thursday, the top custodian of the euro [Mario Draghi, President of the European Central Bank] had the opportunity of criticizing the US. Since US President Donald Trump raised the prospect of imposing punitive tariffs on trading partners, the transatlantic relations have been adversely affected. Even the monitory policy, which usually is not connected to international trade policy, needs examining.

The mere announcement of the tariff on US imports has pushed the governments of key US trading partner in a state of hectic activity and the financial markets in a state of anxiety. The stock markets have fallen, the dollar has lost value. The latter can be a problem for the European Central Bank. A strong euro not only slows down the economic growth, but lead to a decline in inflation. [Die Welt, March 8, 2017; Translation by the author]

Steel and aluminum imports make up for a tiny sliver of the overall U.S.-EU bilateral trade that is somewhere in the range of $650-$700 billion annually. According to EU data, U.S. imported $5.6 billion worth of steel from Europe in 2016. During the same period, European aluminum imports to the U.S. was around $500 million. The annual U.S. trade deficit with the EU is around $147 billion. Given the trade discrepancy, if the EU gets into a trade war with the US, it has lot to lose.

Video: “I’ve warned US President Trump, we will take countermeasures,” Jean-Claude Junker, EC President

[Cover image via YouTube]

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Comments

Bring it on!

    notamemberofanyorganizedpolicital in reply to snopercod. | March 8, 2018 at 10:16 pm

    You said it!

    Bring it on!

    The EU (PU) has Trillions more to lose than the U.S.

    The EU probably imports about a row boat full per year of each of those U.S. items mentioned in the post.

There will be no tariffs that target European trade, unless they are exploiting labor (e.g. refugee crisis/immigration reform) or environmental (e.g. regulatory avoidance/shifting/obfuscation) arbitrage in order to leverage monopolies and practices to undermine market function.

Are they? Is this why Western Europeans influenced our elections, specifically presidential, and became apoplectic when Americans promised to elect an establishment outsider to office?

Whoopty-doo. Notice that the EU is threatening to impose increased tariffs on luxury good from the US. Bourbon? Levis? Harleys? I wouldn’t mind taking up the slack by buying more Bourbon, more Levis and a Harley. Anyone else similarly inclined?

The EU is extremely protectionist already. Not only are imports, into the EU, heavily tariffed, but state subsidies to certain industries, such as aircraft manufacture, tend to create a severe trade imbalance between the US and the EU, with the US getting the short end of the stick. The 2017 US-EU balance of trade was -$151,415,600,000 [151 billion dollars] for the US.

The fact that the free-traders refuse to acknowledge is that the US is the premier market for consumer goods, accounting for 25% of that market. Due to that fact, the US does not need imports, if it produces the goods to supplant those imported. Right now, an immense amount of wealth, generated in the US, goes out of the country. The negative balance of trade, which exists for US, has to be reduced, or eventually, the US will not be able to enjoy its current standard of living. This has to be addressed. And, it appears that the current administration is more than willing to enter into bilateral trading agreements which will guarantee a more equitable balance of trade.

    Ragspierre in reply to Mac45. | March 8, 2018 at 11:54 am

    The fact that the free-traders refuse to acknowledge is that the US is the premier market for consumer goods, accounting for 25% of that market.

    No. That’s a lie. As I’ve been pointing out to you economic know-nothings, that’s WHY we have a “trade deficit” (which is term for demagogues and NOTHING more). We have a HUGE and RICH consumer base. NOBODY could possibly buy enough of our stuff to “balance trade” in dollars (another false metric). We will ALWAYS have a “trade deficit” with Switzerland, for instance.

    “Due to that fact, the US does not need imports, if it produces the goods to supplant those imported.”

    This is a complete disjunction with anything rational or in reality. It also suggests you LOVES you some Big Brother. Suppose I want a Volvo?l Suppose I want a Liebherr crane?

    “Right now, an immense amount of wealth, generated in the US, goes out of the country.”

    No, it does NOT! If you and I trade, we BOTH have to be made wealthier, or we DO NOT TRADE.

    “The negative balance of trade, which exists for US, has to be reduced, or eventually, the US will not be able to enjoy its current standard of living.”

    This is completely false. Who is packing this Malthusian bullshit in your poor old skull…???

    Where do you find this nonsense?

      Halcyon Daze in reply to Ragspierre. | March 8, 2018 at 12:47 pm

      Why are you so emotional?

        Ragspierre in reply to Halcyon Daze. | March 8, 2018 at 12:58 pm

        Why are you trying to deflect with bullshit?

        Everything I’ve said here is both factual and rational.

        Deal with it on those terms.

          stevewhitemd in reply to Ragspierre. | March 8, 2018 at 3:07 pm

          No, you’re as emotional as a mean 7th grade girl in a school cafeteria.

          Re-read your note. You are name-calling, sneering, derogatory, and rude. Why?

          You claim to be a lawyer. Why don’t you, when you’re here at Legal Insurrection, pretend that your delivering a brief to a judge, and write and behave accordingly? Then perhaps your antagonists here will have to behave in the same way.

          You really do make LI unpleasant, and unfortunately there’s no way (unlike with Discus) to block you.

        Halcyon, rags has the special burden of being the smartest person of all time. The abject failure of human-kind to accept the gospel-of-rags drives him to apoplexy. It is completely understandable (and adorable, I might add).

        You see, we deserve his insults and contempt. If we refuse to submit, his reaction, naturally, is to subject us to more. Rag’s philosophy seems to be, “The floggings will continue until morale improves.” Yay, rags!

        I actually find his punishment of us very persuasive, even inspiring….just not in the direction he intends.

        I can easily imagine him staring into a mirror as he types his meltdowns, and smiling his special, evil smile. Luv ya, rags.

          Ragspierre in reply to bear. | March 8, 2018 at 1:23 pm

          More pure pre-school bullshit.

          Deal with the facts and rationale. Or you can continue to blow shit on the thread, which is what you mostly do.

          bear in reply to bear. | March 8, 2018 at 1:48 pm

          Rags, you prove my point with each of your keystrokes. Luv ya, babe.

          Ragspierre in reply to bear. | March 8, 2018 at 2:08 pm

          What I’ve demonstrated…with your ample assistance…is that you have nothing to contribute here but more of your crap.

        Tom Servo in reply to Halcyon Daze. | March 8, 2018 at 2:01 pm

        He’s still pissed off that I humiliated him, twice, when he kept claiming that Trump was going to sign an amnesty bill. I tried to be nice, showed him why, I said “let’s wait and see” and as soon as it was proved that I was right, and that he had been an idiot, he went into Tourrete’s Syndrome mode again and started shrieking insults, as he is doing here.

        This is a guy who claims to be able to represent people, and yet as soon as he gets exposed he starts shrieking insults hysterically – as if anyone cares when he does it for the ten thousandth time.

        I suspect the real reason is that he’s pissed off at getting stuck working low dollar auto insurance claims for a living. I’ve known other guys stuck doing that, wondering why they went to school just to sit in a room full of people doing the same thing. They’re always pissed off, it’s almost as bad a job as cold calling. I really do feel sorry for him, every screamed insult is really just a sad cry for help.

          Ragspierre in reply to Tom Servo. | March 8, 2018 at 2:41 pm

          Wow, Tom, I’m surprised you brought up this lie again.

          I still have the links open to what I said and what you said. You’re a filthy liar. And you know it.

          I’ll be happy to supply the links you kept threatening to publish, but then would not when I invited you to…several times.

          I have those, too.

          Ragspierre in reply to Tom Servo. | March 8, 2018 at 2:45 pm

          Tom, I’ve never done an insurance claim. I mostly represent small businesses and families.

          You have a rich and diseased imagination, and a really toxic personality.

          MarkSmith in reply to Tom Servo. | March 8, 2018 at 7:37 pm

          I’ve seen this anger before. I think it must be from a feeling of abandonment because he was adopted.

      MarkSmith in reply to Ragspierre. | March 8, 2018 at 1:12 pm

      Hey Look, it is a Flat World. Thomas L. Friedman speaking.

      Chicken Little (said like Tommy Flanagan) “the sky is falling.”

      Yea, that’s the ticket! We give up trade and the world falls apart. Stop, don’t give it up. Just think Roger and Me is a joke. Please don’t do it. Ahhhhhh, can’t make Detroit great again! Or Allen Town…..no. Won’t work…..Please, stop it. It hurts……….. Please, I want to drive a little car that looks like a go cart and live in a 600 sq. ft. house.

      Something tells me that a boast in the American Eco will make up for the 16% (likely less) loss.

      This is a game of chicken and we are driving the SemiTruck and they are driving a Yugo. Any bets on who is going to win this game.

        Ragspierre in reply to MarkSmith. | March 8, 2018 at 1:18 pm

        You’re nuts, and stupid. There’s nothing to you but personal attacks without the least fact or rationale to back it up.

        You forgot to call me “Morris”. I’m hurt.

        In a collision between a Yugo and a semi, both drivers can be killed or badly injured. I know, having been in the trucking business. Is that your idea of wise policy?

          bear in reply to Ragspierre. | March 8, 2018 at 1:31 pm

          Marksmith makes a decent point, in that the Yugo is guaranteed to end up, along with its passengers, the size of a squashed grape. The semi…not so much.

          Please, rags, bless us all with more insults. We deserve them all. And more profanity, too…much more profanity.

          Ragspierre in reply to Ragspierre. | March 8, 2018 at 1:44 pm

          Bare: I got nuthin’ here. Nutin’…

          Just blowing more useless crap. It’s your forte.

      Mac45 in reply to Ragspierre. | March 8, 2018 at 4:48 pm

      “No. That’s a lie. As I’ve been pointing out to you economic know-nothings, that’s WHY we have a “trade deficit” (which is term for demagogues and NOTHING more). We have a HUGE and RICH consumer base. NOBODY could possibly buy enough of our stuff to “balance trade” in dollars (another false metric). We will ALWAYS have a “trade deficit” with Switzerland, for instance.”

      So, why do we have a HUGE and RICH consumer base? After all our population comprises only 5% of the world population. But, we comprise 25% of the consumer market. How did we get so rich? Because we developed a huge manufacturing base, which led to widespread employment at high wages. Now, Switzerland is a strange economy. 27% of its exports are gold [$81.2B]. And 31% of its imports are gold [$82.9B]. And, it has a balance of trade of +$66B. So, what it looks like is that Switzerland, which doesn’t produce any gold, makes a lot of money by acting as a gold broker.

      “This is a complete disjunction with anything rational or in reality. It also suggests you LOVES you some Big Brother. Suppose I want a Volvo?l Suppose I want a Liebherr crane?”

      What I said was the US does not NEED any imports. You might WANT a Volvo or WANT a Liebherr crane, or WANT a Rolex, but you do not really need them. Also, any manufactured item which can be manufactured outside the US can be manufactured INSIDE the US for sale here.

      “No, it does NOT! If you and I trade, we BOTH have to be made wealthier, or we DO NOT TRADE.”

      Economics 101 says that if you spend more money that you make, you will eventually run out of money. A household which makes $20,000 a year but spends $28,000 a year will go bankrupt. I(n the case of the US, we have two sources of economic income. One is manufacturing. The other is service. To remain a viable economy, we have to get enough revenue from both sources to at least break even. And, we have two markets, domestic and foreign. In the foreign market, if more dollars are going out of the country than are coming in, this represents a loss of revenue for the country. And this is the situation in which the US finds it self today. The dollars which remain in circulation within the US, domestic spending, represents neither a loss nor a profit for the country. If the country has a large enough and rich enough consumer base, then it can support itself for a very long time with minimal foreign trade.

      As to trade automatically making both trading partners richer, this is pie-in-the-sky wishful thinking. In the case of consumer products, this is usually not the case, as the products are consumed in the country which receives them and does not produce any foreign revenue for the business within the receiving country. It is a little different if we are speaking of raw materials, as those material can be used to produce manufactured items for foreign sale, thereby producing foreign revenue for the manufacturing nation. In the case of your Volvo, Sweden makes all of its revenue off the item sold in the US as foreign income. This money pays for raw materials and manufactured items which go into the production of the item. The rest goes to domestic labor in Sweden. If you purchase a Cadillac, produced in the US and sold there, then all of the labor costs associated with the production of that vehicle remain in the US, just as they remain in Sweden in the case of the Volvo. However, the cost of the parts also remains in the US, if the parts are produced there. This benefits both the manufacturers and the consumer in the US because a greater amount of the sale price of the car remains in the US. What is interesting is the number of nations which produce certain consumer goods almost solely for export to places like the US and Europe. labor costs in these locations are so low that they workers can not afford to buy the products which they produce.

      What has hurt the US, in foreign trade, is the growth of multinational corporations and horribly lopsided trade agreements, such as NAFTA. What were once US manufacturing assets have been moved offshore or bought by multinationals and closed. And, as these corporations have few, or no, US employees, the revenue generated through wages occurs in another country, not the US. The same is true with NAFTA and favored trading status for China. China stifles US imports at every turn as well as outright stealing intellectual property. But, multinationals and investment concerns fall all over themselves sending US dollars to China. Trade is supposed to be balanced. Not heavily weighted in favor of one nation or another.

        Ragspierre in reply to Mac45. | March 8, 2018 at 4:57 pm

        There is so much wrong…and stupidly wrong with that steaming pile of crap that I won’t bother to try to unwind it.

        I’ll simply ask again where you get this mindless drivel?

        Ragspierre in reply to Mac45. | March 8, 2018 at 7:05 pm

        Com’on. Tell us what gave you the ideas that you puke here. Be a man, for once.

        Where did you get your Economics 101, for instance? Because your example (you’re awfully STUPID example) is “budgeting 101”.

        Economics would teach you that when you go to your grocery store, and buy $10.00 of groceries, you are AT LEAST $10.00 (in fact, much more) more wealthy. You are, or you wouldn’t buy the groceries. You did not “lose” $10.00. You gained the stuff you need in a market exchange that both your grocer and you benefited from.

        But the dollar measure of your transaction (which is bogus) puts you down $10.00. This is how you get to the stupidity of a “trade deficit”. It ignores the actual wealth transfer.

Dejectedhead | March 8, 2018 at 11:37 am

When with the EU stop meddling in US elections?

clif the stiff | March 8, 2018 at 11:37 am

Why does China have “favored nation status” in trade, as an emerging economy when everything, almost, that is bought in the U.S. has got “made in China” on the bottom? Let’s get real and label all for what it is!

What a joke the EU threats are, and total hypocrasy too. The EU has tarrifs on steel already at about 50% and just recently raised them on certain companeis to almost 80%. And Trump talks of 25%!!! And the rate on EU cars coming into the USA is 2.5% and the rate of US cars going into the EU is 10.0% Yeah…!! lets even all that out for sure.. BRing it on!!!

Might be worth suffering some of the costs of a trade war (and the proportionally larger costs for our European friends) just to destroy the communist Junker. Could we even free Europe from the EU? Getmany would be hit hardest. Maybe we could take out Merkel. Bowl a strike!

These fools don’t realize that Trump was just making a first bid in a negotiation and put them on notice.
The real targets are countries (China?) where the government subsidies or manipulate currency to give an unfair advantage to their products in order to close down the American competition. Once they do that they raise the prices to the US.
The goal isn’t to have a trade war and exclude outsiders, it’s to make them play fair in the marketplace.

He unintentionally revealed how out of touch he is. Very few Harleys are exported to europe, levis offshored their production many years ago, bluejeans are also produced overseas in low wage countries, i do not believe there is a cranberry farming operation anywhere in the EU, our cotton is exported to asian low wage countries that make fabric and then garments for export all over the world. Synthetics fabrics are made from petroleum products as well as plastics.

    Ragspierre in reply to dunce1239. | March 8, 2018 at 12:53 pm

    Harley-Davidson has responded to the EU’s threat, saying in a statement: “Import tariffs on steel and aluminum will drive up costs for all products made with these raw materials, regardless of their origin. Additionally, a punitive, retaliatory tariff on Harley-Davidson motorcycles in any market would have a significant impact on our sales, our dealers, their suppliers and our customers in those markets.”

    Approximately 16 percent of the company’s sales are to Europe.
    https://townhall.com/tipsheet/leahbarkoukis/2018/03/06/now-the-eu-is-proposing-tariffs-against-us-goods-n2458007

    So it would appear YOU are out of touch.

    American cotton growers…and petro-chemical producers…need international trade to thrive.

      herm2416 in reply to Ragspierre. | March 8, 2018 at 12:58 pm

      “American cotton growers…and petro-chemical producers…need international trade to thrive.”
      Who said that ALL international trade will stop, Rages?

        Ragspierre in reply to herm2416. | March 8, 2018 at 1:03 pm

        Nobody. Although the Malthusian Mac45 seems to think that would be swell.

        But, looking back at the history of tariffs, Smoot-Hawley came pretty close to throttling international trade, and deepened and prolonged the Great Depression, while sending it all over the globe.

          MarkSmith in reply to Ragspierre. | March 8, 2018 at 1:30 pm

          Wow they teach econ in law school!? BS about Smoot_Hawley.

          Checkout what econ MIT Professor Peter Temin says:

          https://books.google.com/books?id=squLnSDrJ4EC&pg=PA46&lpg=PA46&dq=peter+temin+smoot+hawley+Lessons+from+the+Great+Depression&source=bl&ots=3UxaSTyk3l&sig=7W_1IiDXMSCW2ATteQy8bjJ5smQ&hl=fr&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjx376g48fUAhWFfxoKHZgjDE8Q6AEIRzAF#v=onepage&q=peter%20temin%20smoot%20hawley%20Lessons%20from%20the%20Great%20Depression&f=false

          Temin says “Despite its popularity, however, this argument fails on both theoretical and historical grounds”

          Ragspierre in reply to Ragspierre. | March 8, 2018 at 1:40 pm

          https://www.ineteconomics.org/perspectives/blog/mass-incarcerations-dangerous-new-equilibrium

          That’s your boy, Alt-Righter.

          But they DO teach economics in MBA courses, and I hold one.

          It wouldn’t matter, however. And throwing ONE nutter’s views on the page doesn’t change the consensus. Smoot-Hawley was a disaster, and we have more recent examples from both the Barracula and W administrations of how tariffs DAMAGE our own economy.

          5under3 in reply to Ragspierre. | March 8, 2018 at 2:46 pm

          Ben Stein as Econ Teacher in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off: In 1930, the Republican-controlled House of Representatives, in an effort to alleviate the effects of the… Anyone? Anyone? …the Great Depression, passed the… Anyone? Anyone? The tariff bill? The Hawley-Smoot Tariff Act? Which, anyone? Raised or lowered? …raised tariffs, in an effort to collect more revenue for the federal government. Did it work? Anyone? Anyone know the effects? It did not work, and the United States sank deeper into the Great Depression. Today we have a similar debate over this. Anyone know what this is? Class? Anyone? Anyone? Anyone seen this before? The Laffer Curve. Anyone know what this says? It says that at this point on the revenue curve, you will get exactly the same amount of revenue as at this point. This is very controversial. Does anyone know what Vice President Bush called this in 1980? Anyone? Something-d-o-o economics. ‘Voodoo’ economics.

          Ragspierre in reply to Ragspierre. | March 8, 2018 at 2:53 pm

          Oh, it was worse than that, and more on point today.

          Smoot-Hawley was expressly a PROTECTIONIST measure. Just like Duh Donald’s.

          And PROTECTIONISM NEVER WORKS. It ALWAYS winds up damaging even the protected interests.

          What it does do for a time is transfer wealth FROM Americans generally to special interests in a VERY inefficient mode.

          It is, of course, a corrupt, liberty-denying Progressive BIG GOVERNMENT program.

          MarkSmith in reply to Ragspierre. | March 8, 2018 at 3:05 pm

          What does Mass Incarceration’s Dangerous New Equilibrium have to do with Trade? Another off the topic point.

          Smoot-Hawley was implemented during a time when wages were dropping (something like 30%) and people were not working. Kinda the opposite times here, eh.

          Right now market is at all time high, so the market does not agree with you either. Take a look at your 401 K and tell me it does not look better than it did 3 years ago.

          Sorry, but Trump actions (good or bad) are making my retirement look a hellva lot better than Bush or Obama.
          That may change but you can’t argue with success.

        Ragspierre in reply to herm2416. | March 8, 2018 at 3:12 pm

        The author of your ONE cite countering the consensus on Smoot-Hawley being a nutter has a lot to do with you fallacy of a resort to authority.

        Smoot-Hawley put a LOT of Americans out of work. The whole “cause-effect” thingy is outside your kin.

        The markets are very clearly jittery over Duh Donald’s plunge into Progressive planned economics, or haven’t you been reading?

        The trend in the markets has been up for the better part of a decade. So “up”, many of us are worried about a “bubble market”. Duh Donald didn’t do that. Not for good or evil.

          MarkSmith in reply to Ragspierre. | March 8, 2018 at 7:54 pm

          We, how about your beloved progressive conservative fake conservative like you – Patrick J. Buchanan

          But didn’t Smoot-Hawley cause the Depression? Again, myth. The 1929 collapse on Wall Street triggered the Great Depression. The failure of thousands of banks, wiping out a third of America’s savings, caused the Depression to last until WWII, long after the Smoot-Hawley tariffs had been rolled back.

          MarkSmith in reply to Ragspierre. | March 8, 2018 at 8:01 pm

          Oh gee, someone else that thinks different that the Jacobin:

          Dispelling Smoot-Hawley’s Myths

          Irwin notes. “The consensus among economic historians,” he reports, “is that monetary and financial factors were the dominant factors behind the Great Depression in the United States.”

          Douglas A. Irwin, Peddling Protectionism: Smoot-Hawley and the Great Depression

          MarkSmith in reply to Ragspierre. | March 8, 2018 at 8:05 pm

          Oh, but it gets even better – looks like Morris got sucked in to the Myth created by the Progressive Democrat Roosevelt – the Jacobin’s true colors are showing – how about doing some more fact checking:

          Myths of the
          Smoot-Hawley Tariff by Roger Simmermaker

          There are few that will mention or acknowledge that President Hoover raised the top income tax rate from 25 percent to 65 percent in 1932. FDR continued this atrocious policy by further raising the rate to 79 percent! This insurmountable climb in the income tax rate reaped far more damage on the American consumer than any modest tariff increase on a select amount of import sensitive items. Keep in mind that tariffs are a discretionary, indirect tax. The consumer can choose to buy the import or the domestic good, and therefore refuse to pay the tariff. No consumer escapes direct income taxes. Everyone must pay. No wonder it took World War II to drag us out of the bottom of the economic barrel.

          http://www.howtobuyamerican.com/simmermaker/ba-0012-smoothawley.shtml

          Ragspierre in reply to Ragspierre. | March 8, 2018 at 8:13 pm

          However, many economists hold the opinion that the tariff act did not greatly worsen the great depression. According to Paul Krugman, “Where protectionism really mattered was in preventing a recovery in trade when production recovered.”

          So, you should add Paul Krugman to your handful of idiots who don’t understand the global effects of Smoot-Hawley.

China sells tons of steel to America under the flags of different companies. It’s all a scam to make it look like we don’t really get that much form them.

We don’t need American supplies to keep our country safe, just think of trying to get steel from China if war breaks out !

    Ragspierre in reply to gonzotx. | March 8, 2018 at 1:29 pm

    There’s no doubt about where steel comes from, and Chinese steel imports to the U.S. are in the single digits.

    Our steel-makers supply slightly over 70# of our consumption. Canada and Mexico (with whom we have mutual defense agreements) are the second and third ranking suppliers. China isn’t even in the top ten.

    But there’s no doubt that “national security” is NOT the reason behind Duh Donald’s catastrophically BAD Bernie Sanders/AFL-CIO trade policy. He’s admitted it.

      MarkSmith in reply to Ragspierre. | March 8, 2018 at 1:54 pm

      Reducing our trade deficit with China by 100 B is 1/3rd of the the Chinese deficit. How much more is that deficit is not funneled through third partner countries.

      We have been getting screwed by the globalist Friedman out- sourcing BS for too long. Yea it looks good on paper but think about it. In the 60’s, Detroit had a lower Black unemployment rate than whites.

      Keep buying into the Globalist/Friedman views and anything of value will be a cheap knock off produced somewhere else so only the rich globalist can afford the real thing.

      The issue at hand is fair trade. That means not using offshore subsidized resources and materials. It is understandable to create new consumer markets like India and China, but not at the cost of American jobs and standard of living.

      I don’t think this looks anything like the Bernie Sanders/AFL-CIO trade policy. It looks like something against the Uniparty destructive trade policies we have been living since the 70’s.

      Outside the box thinking is needed to break the Uniparty and Globalist. Go Trump, get um! Mother of Invention starts in the garage, we need more of that here in American.

        Ragspierre in reply to MarkSmith. | March 8, 2018 at 1:59 pm

        Friedman was not a “globalist”, you lying POS. He was a patriotic American.

        The leading lights of Brexit are patriotic Brits…who are all in for international trade.

        Imposing tariffs (taxes on Americans) isn’t “new”, and it isn’t remotely “thinking outside the box”. It IS Progressive 101 BIG GOVERNMENT planned economics. It IS anti-liberty.

        I know. Swell by the Alt-right. It’s who you are.

        Ragspierre in reply to MarkSmith. | March 8, 2018 at 2:06 pm

        Oh, you meant Thomas Friedman, who I literally NEVER think of as an economist or anything else.

        I was thinking of Milton Friedman, who you can’t even understand. I miss him every day.

        My error.

        Ragspierre in reply to MarkSmith. | March 8, 2018 at 2:18 pm

        “I don’t think this looks anything like the Bernie Sanders/AFL-CIO trade policy.”

        Really? How do they differ? And explain WHY both Sanders and Duh Donald each lauded the other on trade policy during the campaigns. And THEN explain why Progressives and SOME unions are congratulating Duh Donald on his adopting THEIR positions.

        We’ll wait.

The three largest “trade deficit” nations in the world…

The U.S., Canada, and Great Britain. Terrible standards of living…!!!

Venezuela right now has a huge trade surplus. So, what does “trade deficit” mean?

Nada.

    MarkSmith in reply to Ragspierre. | March 8, 2018 at 2:21 pm

    Obviously it is not brain power in Texas. Maybe it is weather since those countries as listed in the Northern Hemisphere.

    Sun Spots! That is the difference. Yes, we should keep doing the Friedman Globalist losing policies because sun spots are causing us problems. Yea, that is the ticket!

    Maybe the problem with Venezuela is that its key export went from $100 a barrel to $26 and bad government trade policies runt by a dictator. Another thing to think about, the key trade product could not be used by those who live in the country. You can’t drink oil and stay health.

    Also, making bad trade deals with countries that don’t make things for your country is bad too. Ie, selling oil to China can get you a lot of new plastic rubric cubes but you sure can’t eat those either.

    Venezuela ships in food primarily from Brazil, Colombia and Mexico because the government stopped cultivating its rich farmland years ago.

    http://money.cnn.com/2017/07/26/news/economy/venezuela-economic-crisis/index.html

    Morris, you are so out of your league on this one. Keep up the comic humor.

      Ragspierre in reply to MarkSmith. | March 8, 2018 at 2:36 pm

      My gawd. You are an idiot.

      How come a “trade surplus” isn’t a wonderful thing? How come it hasn’t spelled economic wonderfulness in ANY NATION, at ANY TIME?

      How come a “trade deficit” has NEVER spelled a lack of wealth in ANY NATION at ANY TIME?

      Let me help; because it is simply a term used by demagogues to put the hoo-doo on ignorant people. Just like now.

      Just like you.

        Barry in reply to Ragspierre. | March 11, 2018 at 12:24 am

        “My gawd. You are an idiot.”

        You were looking in a mirror when you typed that.

        30 years ago when I first traveled to China I would get up in the morning and watch a human powered wave of bicycles riding to their work places.
        Today I get up in the morning and watch a petrol powered wave of motor vehicles carrying the workers.

        You are the dumbass in the mirror.

How ’bout we pull our military out of these countries and quit defending them on our dime? Time for them to start pulling their own weight.

Look up-thread.

What you’ll see is me making some pretty unimpeachable points, using economic facts, figures, and rationale. All from a conservative POV.

What you’ll see after that is a welter of personal attacks that have nothing to do with what I presented.

This is typical from the T-rumpian cult these threads have become.

Rags you are very wrong, China diverts it’s steel to many countries that then dump it in America, even President Trump spoke to this during his News conference with the Swedish leader a few days ago.

China’s Steel Producers Up To Their Old Tricks
by Stuart Burns on NOVEMBER 17, 2017
Style: Market Analysis Category: Anti-Dumping, Exports, Ferrous Metals, Global Trade, Imports

gui yong nian/Adobe Stock
President Donald Trump may not have said much, if anything, about China’s steel exports during his recent tour. Both European and U.S. legislators, however, are carrying out investigations into not just simple dumping but more complex and illegal activities, such as shipping via third parties to hide the origin and avoid pre-existing dumping tariffs.

Benchmark Your Current Metal Price by Grade, Shape and Alloy: See How it Stacks Up

A Reuters article this week explains how the European Union’s anti-fraud office (OLAF) said it has found Chinese steel was shipped through Vietnam to evade the bloc’s tariffs.

In part, the current case may be a matter of timing.

The quantities involved are said to be relatively small and the case in question was concluded last year. There is strong evidence, however, to support the belief that China shipped organic coated steel via Vietnam, utilizing Vietnamese certificates of origin and, as a result, avoided roughly 8.2 million euros ($9.5 million) of anti-dumping duties.

Since then, China has closed a portion of its excess steelmaking capacity and exports have fallen, but that doesn’t lessen the charge that this was an illegal program to avoid duties, and charges should be brought if the case holds up.

Western steelmakers are hoping similar duties will be applied to Vietnamese origin steel to close the loophole. This would be rather hard on the legitimate Vietnamese steel producers, but may be the only way to prevent the deception being repeated in the future.

Reuters went on to say the U.S. is due to rule shortly on whether Chinese steelmakers subject to U.S. duties also diverted their shipments to Vietnam for minor processing into cold-rolled and corrosion-resistant steel before selling them on to the United States.

By some estimates, the report says up to 90% of the value of the Vietnamese steel shipped to the U.S. was produced in China.

General import data supports the allegations.

I

    Ragspierre in reply to gonzotx. | March 8, 2018 at 4:14 pm

    “A Reuters article this week explains how the European Union’s anti-fraud office (OLAF) said it has found Chinese steel was shipped through Vietnam to evade the bloc’s tariffs.

    In part, the current case may be a matter of timing.

    The quantities involved are said to be relatively small and the case in question was concluded last year. There is strong evidence, however, to support the belief that China shipped organic coated steel via Vietnam, utilizing Vietnamese certificates of origin and, as a result, avoided roughly 8.2 million euros ($9.5 million) of anti-dumping duties.

    Since then, China has closed a portion of its excess steelmaking capacity and exports have fallen, but that doesn’t lessen the charge that this was an illegal program to avoid duties, and charges should be brought if the case holds up.”

    Yep. As I said. We know where steel comes from. It’s a myth this is any kind of factor in the U.S. economy.

    Note also this is from a steel industry publication. Interested much…???

There is no such thing as free trade. Speaking in terms of free trade is anachronistic. The world that Milton Friedman described does not exist.

Friedman: if a country taxes their citizens (their subjects) to subsidize their industries to undercut your industries, then take advantage of that government made inequality and buy at lower cost from them to your hearts contentment. Thank their citizens for making their products cheaper for you.And keep doing that until they wise up.

Well, that’s lovely. Until your country has no more critical industries like steel. And all your imported steel (and aluminum) is lower quality with more impurities made by veritable slave labor and with no environmental protections.

Canada doesn’t have a steel production industry worth mentioning. They’re below the Ukraine. They import nearly all their steel from China. That steel goes into products with American market in mind.

Liu Zhongtian, is the communist billionaire who stockpiled 6% of world’s aluminum in Mexico. The United States is the target market for the largest portion of those products. The American industries are undercut by this globalist maneuver that exploits a loophole in NAFTA.

Trump is trying to close the loophole in NAFTA that allows China to sidestep our targeted tariffs against China’s tariff and non-tariff restrictions against American products.

But Canada and Mexico cannot do something so damaging to their own interests. They cannot close the loophole that allows China access to American market. China keeps its protection against American industry and uses NAFTA to have access to our market.

Argue all you like about the importance or unimportance of fairness in trade, but stop using the term free trade, because that situation does not exist.

It’s amazing to see the whole world jump on Trump for trying to equalize trade. He’s trying to bring to our attention the trade barriers leveled against us. But he has so much built-in opposition from everyone that message simply does not get communicated.

The Harley Davison statement did say sales to Europe = 16% of its business. And that tariff will affect all industries that use steel. But there is much more that Harley Davison didn’t mention because it is too complex and muddles their anti-Trump statement.

India puts a tariff of 100% on heavy touring motorcycles. That’s why Harley Davison built a plant there.

Harley Davison is building a plant in Thailand to avoid its 60% tariff

Japan had non-tariff restrictions. License seekers for large touring motorcycles were required to pass a unique test designed specifically to exclude American made motorcycles. They had to ride across a balance beam. Only 2% passed the test.

(Their restriction against passengers of touring motorcycles has been repealed)

Free trade is a gorgeous ideal, but it must be free both ways. And it must not be manipulated by key global conglomerates and bankers who control supply to maximize cost to individual countries. They run their numbers that include government subsidies such as a nation’s healthcare programs, federal and state, and their insurance coverage to determine the cost of, say, HIV-related pharmaceuticals to cost Americans thousands of dollars per regimen while just a few dollars for African countries. And that same accounting goes for every commodity and product, from lemons and avocados to men’s suits and laptop computers.

The economic world that Milton Friedman described no longer exists. Just using the term “free trade” is quaint and indicates you’ve lost track of how the economic world works today. Tariffs are the least of the global manipulation by conglomerates that control entire segments of global commodities and industries that rival and challenge the power of nations.

Bour 3

HEADLINE NEWS:

Trump signs aluminum and steel tariff order that will take effect this month – but EVERY country on earth will be invited to negotiate exemptions from ‘flexible’ policy

and

Stocks close higher after Trump signs tariffs that exclude Mexico and Canada

Looks like the Jacobin Cat does not understand how the systems works. Investors seem to be giving it a big OK!

Just like Morris is wrong on Trump, he is wrong on tariffs.

    Ragspierre in reply to MarkSmith. | March 8, 2018 at 7:55 pm

    OK, Alt-right boi, let’s pin you down.

    About what am I wrong on tariffs?

      MarkSmith in reply to Ragspierre. | March 8, 2018 at 9:05 pm

      Jacobin Morris if you have not figured it out:

      But, looking back at the history of tariffs, Smoot-Hawley came pretty close to throttling international trade, and deepened and prolonged the Great Depression, while sending it all over the globe.

      Senator John Heinz III – Congressional records:

      see congressional record: https://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/granule/CRI-1985/CRI-1985-SMOOT-HAWLEY-TARIFF-ACT/content-detail.html

      “It gravely concerns me that every time someone in this administration or the Congress gives a speech about a more aggressive trade policy, or the need to confront our trading partners with their subsidies, barriers to imports and other unfair practices, others in Congress immediately react with speeches on the return of the Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act of 1930, and the dark days of blatant protectionism and depression…It seems that for many of us that Smoot-Hawley has become a code word for protectionism and, in turn, a code word for the depression. Yet, when one recalls that Smoot-Hawley was not enacted until more than 8 months after the October, 1929 collapse, it is hard to conceive how it could have led to the Great Depression…the changes supposedly wrought by this single bill in 1930 appear fantastic.”

      Ragspierre in reply to Ragspierre. | March 8, 2018 at 9:09 pm

      Your link…like your dick…is broken, Alt-right boi.

      Tell us SPECIFICALLY where I’m wrong on tariffs. Don’t link some speech by some protectionist pol.

      You. Now. And explicitly.

      Ragspierre in reply to Ragspierre. | March 8, 2018 at 9:12 pm

      “Yet, when one recalls that Smoot-Hawley was not enacted until more than 8 months after the October, 1929 collapse, it is hard to conceive how it could have led to the Great Depression…the changes supposedly wrought by this single bill in 1930 appear fantastic.”

      Wul, yah, ya drooling moron. Nobody claimed it CAUSED the Great Depression. It DID deepen and prolong it, however.

      Are temporal relationships among all the other things you have trouble with…???

        MarkSmith in reply to Ragspierre. | March 8, 2018 at 9:25 pm

        “It DID deepen and prolong it, however.”

        Yes, you bought in to FDR stump speech. Your true colors show. Look at our import/export levels then. It is bs and made a good sound bite for the elections.

        Bottomline, Smoot-Hawley supposed impacts do not apply here and Smoot-Hawley is a smoke screen that you bought in to because you were indoctrinated by a liberal MBA program (if that is true).

        You speak like the true progressive you are and you can not back up that statement. You also can’t backup how Trump’s position on steel tariffs are going to hurt us either.

          Ragspierre in reply to MarkSmith. | March 8, 2018 at 9:28 pm

          OK, Alt-right boi, let’s pin you down.

          About what am I wrong on tariffs?

          No more bullshit. Answer the question. Or STFU.

          MarkSmith in reply to MarkSmith. | March 9, 2018 at 10:16 am

          Aw the poor Jacobin Morris. I think most of us here scored our points “About what am I wrong on tariffs”. Reading comprehension seems to be an issue with you. You messed up understand who Thomas Friedman vs Milton Friedman is. Your use of profanity and your need to claim you are educated to justify that you are more knowledgeable than anyone here is classic projecting of your inferiority complex on us.

          It is time to move on to something more important than engaging with you. Sorry, you’ve gotten way more attention than you deserve. I contend that you have gotten away with it for so long because most of us here respect others opinions even if we disagree with them.

          Ragspierre in reply to MarkSmith. | March 9, 2018 at 10:33 am

          Everyone can see you running, Alt-right chickenshit.

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