Trump: "Trade Wars Are Good And Easy To Win"

In a tweet that knocked US stock futures even lower in pre-market trade, sending the Dow futs over 200 points lower, President Donald doubled down on his support for tariffs on aluminum and steel that triggered an outraged reaction in global markets, and acknowledged that what he has started is nothing short of "trade war."

hen a country (USA) is losing many billions of dollars on trade with virtually every country it does business with, trade wars are good, and easy to win. Example, when we are down $100 billion with a certain country and they get cute, don’t trade anymore-we win big. It’s easy!

Most countries - including Canada, China and much of Europe  - have already issued statements condemning Trump's decision, which also elicited outraged howls from economists and pundits, who argue that the tariffs will make American goods less competitive, and will dethrone the US from global trade flows as shown schematically in the chart below.


Meanwhile, having set off on the war path, it is unlikely that Trump will revise his direction until this chart showing America's record trade deficit (ex petroleum) changes its direction...


... or the market tumbles too far and the president is forced to admit defeat, just like president Bush's own mini trade war before him, who in 2002 imposed tariffs of as much as 30% on steel imports before reversing course the following year amid a tsunami of retaliation from trading partners, but not before the S&P tumbled more than 30%, the dollar plunged and bond yields were cut almost in half.

Confirming that even his base is questioning the decision, the Wall Street Journal published an editorial today characterizing the adoption of aluminum and steel tariffs as Trump's "biggest policy blunder of his presidency.


Bes bonderøven-farm ass Fri, 03/02/2018 - 09:41 Permalink

the manufacturing jobs will only come back when:

1. Americans become the slave labor


2.  There is enough pork lining the pockets of the oligarchs

and not a moment sooner


American companies are making the vast majority of profits going to "overseas" companies

it's a fake trade war and only going

to make your stuff way more fucking expensive

over the cliff bitchez

In reply to by bonderøven-farm ass

Oldwood Bes Fri, 03/02/2018 - 09:59 Permalink

And you just keep believing it's corporations making these choices and not the American people. 

I'm sure you always have bought only American, right?

Talk about hypocrisy. We tell corporations we will only buy the cheapest and don't give a fuck if Chinese slave children made it and then condemn corporations for giving us EXACTLY what we asked for!

How about we just say NO once in a while? How about instead of bitching when government fails to protect us from our own actions and then bitching because they do protect us from our own actions, we simply ACT responsibly in consideration NOT just of our most immediate desires, but the FUCKING FUTURE.

We shouldn't need protectionism imposed upon markets. We should individually ACT protectionist in our every action, eliminating any need or demand for government intervention.

The notion if liberty is completely lost when we abandon respect for our future and those we interact with, and especially those we leave behind to deal with the mess.

In reply to by Bes

fx Oldwood Fri, 03/02/2018 - 11:10 Permalink

May it be that Trump has had too much of that game show master crap? Always talks about winning, winning. For winning's sake. No matter what's actually at stake and whether the win is worth the risk or the wager.


Yeah, all these wins he promised... quick and easy and what not.


Read that tweet of him again and again . Simply stop trading when you have a deficit - gee, maybe there's a reason for that trade deficit that has more to do with greedy corporate america and failed politics than "dumping" by others? maybe the others are just more productive, more efficient? And above all, are not used to live on borrowed money all the time in squanderville

In reply to by Oldwood

Boubou Dsyno Fri, 03/02/2018 - 09:40 Permalink

That is true in several ways. Wherever you go US news predominates , full of arrogance and threats - keeping the world on the edge.

I am 1000 miles down the road and it is hard to avoid it as the US persecutes my country contrary to wto rulings.

What a pity. With all the resources and a military to conquer the universe , US becomes such an instrument for instability bullying and mass murder.  Can't the US just shut up for a minute and just make sure they defend their own territory.

You would see tensions deflate like magic

In reply to by Dsyno

Memedada eforce Fri, 03/02/2018 - 07:52 Permalink

Tariffs, taxes, “big government” is not defining of socialism. The only relevant defining aspect of socialism vs. capitalism is ownership. In a capitalist economy the means of production are privately owned and in a socialist economy the means of production are socially, publicly and/or commonly owned. Everything in US Inc. is privately owned.

Taxing a capitalist economy does not make it socialist (like the often very heavy taxes/tariffs in feudal societies did not make them socialist). All the taxing done in US is done on behalf of the ownership class (to pay for the privately owned health insurance Ponzi, the privately owned food-stamp Ponzi, the privately owned MIC, bailouts to the privately owned banks/FIRE-sector, rent to the privately owned FED or just as pure 1:1 handouts to the privately owned corporations (the so-called corporate welfare – more honestly: the corporate theft)). There’s an obvious reason US plebs are kept ignorant when it comes to defining ideologies: if you can’t diagnose the disease you’re very unlikely to identify the right cure.

In reply to by eforce

Falconsixone Memedada Fri, 03/02/2018 - 08:08 Permalink

If the top 500 companies are taken over by govt. (every year) they will fail and the whole thing starts over at the bottom thus giving the little guy a chance. Socialism at the top capitalism in the mid and low. But there has to be a rule that the tax payer doesnt have to bail the socialist 500 out other then voting with their dollars ($ lol).  

In reply to by Memedada

tr123 Memedada Fri, 03/02/2018 - 13:06 Permalink

It may not make the textbook definition but it's part and parcel of the system. You shouldn't be so literal because it compromises your ability to understand what you're talking about.

Replacing the free market with force wielded uncontested from a central authority is what characterizes all branches of socialism. Anything else is irrelevant.

This kind of intervention erodes the power of the market to determine economic activity and lodges in the state's dick, if only by an inch or two. Coincidentally, this is also a textbook Marxian strategy to subvert Capitalism through intervention-begotten interventions until they become so self-defeating that it would be easier to adopt total Socialism rather than returning to the pre-modified state.

We are far from being a free market capitalist country. 2008 bailouts proved that decisively. Becoming more Fascist by the year, though it's debatable exactly how many decades ago this started.


In reply to by Memedada

D.T.Barnum BennyBoy Fri, 03/02/2018 - 06:44 Permalink

"The Smoot-Hawley tariff bill was a good example of winning."

This article argues it won't be winning, decreasing demand for dollars etc.

By 1934, U.S. imports and exports were reduced by more than 50% and many Great Depression scholars have blamed the tariffs for playing a substantial role in amplifying the scope and duration of the Great Depression.


In reply to by BennyBoy

Oldwood D.T.Barnum Fri, 03/02/2018 - 07:28 Permalink

Smoot Hawley was put into place when we had a significant surplus not to mention burying our limp economy in socialst bullshit and redistribution welfare manure. It's NEVER just one thing, no matter how much the ideologies demand it. America funded 90% of our federal government with protectionist tarrifs prior to The Fed, taxing imports while NOT taxing US labor OR business a dime. 

Now we tax OUR labor, OUR business, OUR income, while not taxing imports AT ALL. IS THAT WINNING FOR YOU?

The US hasn't had a surplus in decades, and the deficits are growing.

What is it with the pacifists? Is it only a war if you actually fight back? When will you accept we have been getting our ass handed to us for decades and pretending it wasn't true by using debt, writing bad checks to cover our losses.

But no. You're right. We should just keep extending our losses, going deeper into debt, keep buying those imports, surrender our jobs in exchange for "entitlements" that we are assured we deserve, and live that American dream of no tool, no troubles.

Go do another bowl and everything will seem as right as rain. Peace brother.

In reply to by D.T.Barnum

Oldwood D.T.Barnum Fri, 03/02/2018 - 07:37 Permalink

Would it make a difference?

Trump can do or say nothing that the media will applaud, unless he shot himself. It is the inverse of Obama who could say or do no wrong. If Trump leans conservative he is the devil and if he leans left he is a liar.

But regardless, massive deficits, debt and delusion are most definitely our deliverance.

In reply to by D.T.Barnum

Oldwood css1971 Fri, 03/02/2018 - 08:23 Permalink

The Utopian dream (nightmare) in full effect. The only thing preserving these areas from the complete abyss is debt, more debt, more delusion. I am convinced that a huge part of our problem is people indoctrinated to believe they shouldn't have to work. We have no prosperity without​ production, and sucking on the debt titt, public and private just delays and exacerbates the realization.

In reply to by css1971

HopefulCynical D.T.Barnum Fri, 03/02/2018 - 07:29 Permalink

...many Great Depression scholars have blamed the tariffs...

Yes, the globalists' standard line of bullshit.

Mercantilism - the goods go out and the gold comes in - made Britain the mightiest empire of modern times.

So far as decreasing demand for dollars, isn't everyone here always cheering the collapse of the petrodollar? Isn't this quite possibly two birds with one stone?


In reply to by D.T.Barnum

crossroaddemon Oldwood Fri, 03/02/2018 - 08:11 Permalink

Problem: tariffs == massive increase in price of consumer goods right now for an already squeezed populace. Rebuilding/modernizing U.S. steel and aluminum manufacturing infrastructure == ten year project. So a decade or more of pain in pursuit of long term rewards... how are you going to sell that shit? It's the same as healthcare; you can't tell J6P that things have to get worse before they get better. If you can't offer a smooth upgrade path it's a loser. If they go through with this it'll be just like when it was tried 15 years or so ago; it'll be rescinded as soon as it starts to eat the markets for lunch.

In reply to by Oldwood

Oldwood crossroaddemon Fri, 03/02/2018 - 08:16 Permalink

You're right....let's do NOTHING like the last fifty years of hearing about our WINNING trade deals.

I'm sure it will get better all by itself.

Recognize that we got HERE because the fear of pain (far less than now) prevented us. There is no painless path, but the economy shows some strength now, even though it's built upon shit. If we don't act NOW we NEVER WILL.

In reply to by crossroaddemon

veritas semper… BennyBoy Fri, 03/02/2018 - 12:27 Permalink

Those trade wars could be "easy to win" IF you don't have 800 BILLION $ TRADE DEFICIT every year.

And if you could produce something beside warmongering, BS, diabetes and GMO food crap which induces sterility in animals/humans.

And if you still have some GOLD left.

And if your economy is a real economy and not paper shoveling , rent extraction and inflation counted as GROWTH(FIRE economy)

I do acknowledge that the petro-f*cking-dollar is not completely dead and JUSA can still print and count this as "wealth and economic growth ,and S&P miracle market and stocks"

In other words , US does not qualify for this"easy win"



In reply to by BennyBoy

Brazen Heist D.T.Barnum Fri, 03/02/2018 - 06:35 Permalink

They've privatized warefare....all the fighting is to be done by mercenaries (PMCs) now. And proxies. That's why Saudi Arabia is the jewel of the Anglo Zionist cabal. It provides them a pool of brainwashed zombies to recruit from. Nice little racket huh? That's until the Terror-Dollar can keep holding it up.

At this rate, you got to be insane to keep giving Uncle Sam a free hand to fuck over the world by buying up his debt.

USTs as risk-free instruments. Are you really sure about that?

In reply to by D.T.Barnum