Trump continued to trample all over the newspapers set out to absorb his stuff at the G7 meetings in the otherwise-perfect south of France. It isn’t news to write that he appeared to tie himself into a noose during his bleats to the press. But, these particular utterings have bigger ramifications that ripple around the globe. As I wrote Friday, he had reached a tipping point. Forty-eight hours later, he’s descending faster than even the most cynical among us could imagine. Astoundingly, he appeared to demonstrate some humanity in admitting to a reporter that he’d had “second thoughts” about the trade war with China and his latest actions. “Yeah, sure, why not?” Then he followed up in a way that caused everyone to check into which dimension they’d been flung. “Might as well. Might as well,” he said, when asked again. “I have second thoughts about everything.” Seeing as how he has no second thoughts about anything, ever, do I even have to add the “but”? A wild statement from @PressSec: “The President was asked if he had ‘any second thought on escalating the trade war with China’. His answer has been greatly misinterpreted. President Trump responded in the affirmative – because he regrets not raising the tariffs higher.” — Rebecca Ballhaus (@rebeccaballhaus) August 25, 2019 That is right, his only regret is not being more “himself” in punishing the world with his madness. “I regret being so unusually tepid. It goes against everything I believe in, which is me, and doing the most “me” as possible.” He did not say, but might as well have. As I reported, breathlessly, yesterday – Trump confirmed that he believes he has the authority to order U.S. companies to end business with China. But – look out – he didn’t have any “plans” to do so right now. Trump adds that while he can do it, he has no plans to declare a national emergency on China right now. Says “Actually we’re getting along very well with China right now. We’re talking. I think they want to make a deal much more than I do” — Katherine Faulders (@KFaulders) August 25, 2019 Which brings us back around to wondering what he could possibly have been thinking when he actually did, appear, to tweet out a “hereby” direct order? He then went on to summarily get “owned” by best pal Boris Johnson, the U.K.’s own version of Donald Trump. The press asked Trump if the G7 nations put any pressure upon him to end his trade wars, to which he arrogantly stated, “No,” they had not, but then needed to really show his moxie: “Nobody would tell me that.” Having just declared himself beyond being questioned, that no one had that right or boldness, Boris – on behalf of the U.K. and sane people everywhere, said “Hold my beer.” It is this easy: Just to register a faint sheeplike note of our view on the trade war: we’re in favor of trade peace on the whole, and dialing it down if we can. We think that, on the whole, the U.K. has profited massively in the last 200 years from free trade, and that’s what we want to see … we don’t like tariffs on the whole.: Note to Boris, I know you’re new, […]
If the economy recedes in late 2019 and 2020, Trump might not make it to November 2020. I know nothing about economics, and so I am not going to even fake an analysis of where the country stands right now, except to note that we have had near miraculous growth since President Obama’s initiatives took root in late 2009-2010. Economic growth has not been too fast, perhaps not fast enough initially. But it was sufficient to lead Obama to victory in 2012, and got Hillary Clinton more votes in 2016. Growth normally doesn’t continue as long as it has. We are long overdue for a retraction. It is almost impossible to get rid of a president, no matter how bad, in a great or even “good” economy. Americans are fundamentally self-interested, and that is understandable. When Americans feel their own lives are “on the right track,” then what goes on internationally or even politically, cannot overcome economic certainty and comfort. It is almost impossible to reelect a president in an economy that is retracting. Jimmy Carter won a Nobel Peace Prize, he was perhaps too mature for this nation in his fiscal and environmental policies, and yet he faced a devastating world-wide downturn and lost to “sunny days again,” Reagan. George H.W. Bush truly did run a war as well as one can be run, and then got the hell out. He oversaw the destruction of our Cold War nemesis, the Soviets, and Germany reunited. But the economy had slowed, substantially. Both Carter and H.W. Bush got beat, relatively soundly, in their attempt to get reelected. Trump has done three significant things while in office. He appointed grossly conservative judges, from District Courts to the Supreme Court. He has demolished the administrative state, from environmental laws to business regulations. And he signed a tax cut massively slanted to the rich. That is it, that is the list of his accomplishments. The past due notice on those tax cuts is coming, ask Ronald Reagan, and ask George W. Bush. Tax cuts slanted to the very wealthy work for a year, maybe two, and then the bill comes due. Because they never, ever, trickle down. Never. Usually the bill is a shrinking economy, but it can come as it did in 2008 with a virtual free-falling economy. Do not think that the wealthy people who run this country don’t know this fundamental truth. They just make too much money during that year or two to resist the impulse. If things get too bad, as they did in 2007 and 2008, the wealthy will make money while getting themselves bailed out by the government, somehow. The rich got theirs from Trump. They are now likely tired of Trump. Every self-respecting, half-literate person in this nation, not focused on abortion as the only issue, must be looking around at the international troubles that seem to be bubbling-up, from Central America to Kashmir to Hong Kong, to Russia and wondering when the big hammer will slam through the desk. Instability, is a killer. Big business has too much riding on predictable returns to allow for big surprises. Right now, this type of person looks abroad and sees instability. They look at home, the market and see instability. They look at farmers and see pain. They […]
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