Patterico's Pontifications

5/31/2019

President Trump Starts Trade War With Mexico

Filed under: General — Dana @ 6:47 am



[guest post by Dana]

President Trump has started another trade war. This time with Mexico. Tweeting late yesterday afternoon, the President said:

On June 10th, the United States will impose a 5% Tariff on all goods coming into our Country from Mexico, until such time as illegal migrants coming through Mexico, and into our Country, STOP. The Tariff will gradually increase until the Illegal Immigration problem is remedied,..at which time the Tariffs will be removed. Details from the White House to follow.

Untitled

Additionally, the White House said in a statement:

The tariff on all goods by land, sea, and air from Mexico will hike to 10 percent on July 1 — and potentially increase substantially from there.

“If Mexico still has not taken action to dramatically reduce or eliminate the number of illegal aliens crossing its territory into the United States, Tariffs will be increased to 15 percent on August 1, 2019, to 20 percent on September 1, 2019, and to 25 percent on October 1, 2019,” Trump said in a statement released later by the White House on Thursday. “Tariffs will permanently remain at the 25 percent level unless and until Mexico substantially stops the illegal inflow of aliens coming through its territory.”

…”Thousands of innocent lives are taken every year as a result of this lawless chaos. It must end NOW! … Mexico’s passive cooperation in allowing this mass incursion constitutes an emergency and extraordinary threat to the national security and economy of the United States.”

Reporting that the Dow Jones futures hadn’t moved until the President’s tweet, Investors Business Daily reports on the downside:

This could undermine efforts to ratify the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), the revision to Nafta, just as the three countries begin a push to approve it. The U.S. already is embroiled in an escalating China trade war and still mulling global auto tariffs.

GM stock fell 1.5% and Ford stock 2% in late trade. U.S. tariffs on Mexico would affect supply chains for General Motors and Ford. Mexico is a big producer of cars, trucks and parts.

GM, Ford and other automakers already are worried about looming global auto tariffs, though Trump recently delayed that trade-war decision by up to 180 days.

Further reaction to the announcement saw the “Dow Jones industrial average futures fall 200 points, or 0.8%, while Mexico’s peso tumbled 2% against the U.S. dollar.”

Here are the numbers :

Goods imports from Mexico totaled $346.5 billion in 2018 (ustr.gov/COUNTRIES-REGI…)

A 5% tariff on that flow of goods amounts to a $17 billion tax increase.

In 2018, we imported $93 billion of vehicles, $64 billion of electrical machinery, $63 billion of machinery, $16 billion of mineral fuels, and $15 billion of optical and medical instruments from Mexico.

Mexico was the second largest supplier of imports to the United States in 2018. So, we’re imposing a tax on *everything* Americans buy from one of our largest trading partners.

…Mexico is our largest supplier of agricultural products: fresh vegetables ($5.9 billion), other fresh fruit ($5.8 billion), wine and beer ($3.6 billion), snack foods ($2.2 billion), and processed fruit & vegetables ($1.7 billion).

And here is the outlook for California if the tariffs are imposed:

The state imported $44 billion in goods from Mexico in 2018, making it the third-largest importing state for goods from Mexico, according to the California Chamber of Commerce.

Mexico is also California’s number one export market, buying $30.7 billion in goods last year, 17% of all California exports.

Computers and electronic products remained the state’s largest exports, accounting for 25.8% of all California exports to Mexico.

The tariffs would reportedly apply to all Mexican imports.

If you recall, it was a little over a week ago that President Trump chided White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow, advising him “not to worry about how tariffs would impact U.S. businesses.” This after Kudlow publicly (and rightfully) contradicted the President by admitting that, “yes, both sides [U.S. and China] will pay in these things.”

Even Trump’s supporters in Congress are having a hard time backing him in this, for good reason:

“This is a misuse of presidential tariff authority and counter to congressional intent,” said Sen. Charles E. Grassley (R-Iowa), chairman of the Senate Finance Committee. “I support nearly every one of President Trump’s immigration policies, but this is not one of them. I urge the president to consider other options.”

President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador of Mexico is also imploring President Trump to reconsider this move, and to enter into negotiations instead.

Just how much of a decrease in border crossings would be necessary to signal the tariffs a success remains unclear:

“We are going to judge success here by the number of people crossing the border and that number needs to start coming down immediately in a significant and substantial number,” Mulvaney said.

(Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.)

–Dana

99 Responses to “President Trump Starts Trade War With Mexico”

  1. A trade war on two fronts now? How does this not strengthen China’s position and leveraging power?

    Dana (779465)

  2. Given his lack of understanding about how tariffs work, it wouldn’t surprise me if Trump has jumbled-up thinking on this: I’m making Mexico pay extra to us. I’ll use that extra money to pay for the Wall. See, I told you Mexico would pay for the Wall. Campaign promise fulfilled!

    Dana (779465)

  3. It seems to be hard to stop Donald Trump from going down this road.

    He’s continuakly sdemanding that Mexico stop people from travelling from Central american to the U.S.-Mexican border by hook or by crook.

    He’ll continue to do so, until the Democrats attack
    his goals

    Sammy Finkelman (db7fea)

  4. Donald Trump is demanding that Mexico stop people from travelling from Central American to the U.S.-Mexican border by hook or by crook because there’s no other way to stop migrants from being released into the United States.

    Mexico is not bound by American courts, or by humanitarian considerations . Or Trump thinks so anyway. (And so did Obama, although he backed down after coming under criticism.

    Of course Trump is not explicitly calling upon Mexico to be inhumane.

    Sammy Finkelman (db7fea)

  5. “President Trump has started another trade war.“

    Because wars don’t officially start until years after the invasion already happened.

    Munroe (9ac6d0)

  6. A few well placed marines would stop the crimalein invasions in seconds. Along with very few rounds of ammo well placed.

    mg (ce4572)

  7. 6. [A few well placed marines along with very few rounds of
    ammo well placed rounds of ammo would stop this in seconds]

    True, unless the coytes decided to go to war with the United States.

    But that would not be humanitarian, as well as an illegal order, that would not be carried out, and the American people at learge would be repelled by any attemott.

    What would work is denying U.S. visas or entry into the United States by well placed Mexicans, and this sort of threat may have worked with other countries such as maybe Costa Rica.

    But that would disrupt much more trade, as well as possibly turning Mexico into actively ncouraging crossing the border, or even into an enemy of the United States (or at least a non-co-operator
    in keeping out terrroists) with the hopes of settling this with the Democrats afetr the 2020 election.

    So Trump’s just doing this with tariffs and not with visas for Mexicans.

    Trump is also cynical about any Mexican objections, and also
    tends to have this idea that migrants are being deliberately sent over by governments.o

    Sammy Finkelman (db7fea)

  8. I guess he really is scared of impeachment.

    gabble (cd2753)

  9. I knew Mexico awarding Jared the Aztec Eagle was not going to end well:

    When you have a narcissistic “it’s all about me” megalomaniac like Trump, the best way to turn him against the people close to him is to praise them and honor them instead of him.

    But I should have known that Ivanka would not let the Fifth Avenue Flake retaliate against the father of her children, so the Orange Baby is taking it out on Mexico.

    nk (dbc370)

  10. Renegotiating NAFTA out of one side of his mouth, and imposing tariffs out of the other. Why should any foreign leader even bother to talk to this clown?

    nk (dbc370)

  11. I certainly wouldn’t want to be part of the diplomatic delegation from North Korea.

    DRJ (15874d)

  12. Given his lack of understanding about how tariffs work, it wouldn’t surprise me if Trump has jumbled-up thinking on this: I’m making Mexico pay extra to us. I’ll use that extra money to pay for the Wall. See, I told you Mexico would pay for the Wall. Campaign promise fulfilled!

    Dana (779465) — 5/31/2019 @ 6:55 am

    That sounds like something he might believe and also something he thinks he can make his base believe.

    DRJ (15874d)

  13. >“I support nearly every one of President Trump’s immigration policies, but this is not one of them. I urge the president to consider other options

    And yet it’s next to impossible to imagine this *legislator* doing the work to pass a bill cancelling the tariffs, or prohibiting such Presidential abuses in the future.

    Talk is cheap.

    aphrael (3f0569)

  14. As you note in the post, this will make it hard to finalize the US-Canada-Mexico trafe agreement. No wonder Trump handed that off to Pence. Let Pence take the heat.

    DRJ (15874d)

  15. Sen. Charles E. Grassley: 13.>“I support nearly every one of President Trump’s immigration policies, but this is not one of them. I urge the president to consider other options.”

    Coward!

    What Senator Grassley should say to him is:

    “In your attempt to more strictly enforce U.S. immigration laws, you’re facing checkmate, and you have no good moves. It’s time to face reality and give up.”

    Sammy Finkelman (db7fea)

  16. Don’t forget to tax remittances to Mexico.

    NJRob (4d595c)

  17. Does the Constitution allow duties on exports?

    nk (dbc370)

  18. I really hope this is another instance of him making a lot of noise and not following through.

    I also hope that congress fixes the emergency powers act. Personally I think it should give congress a reasonable time (30 days? 90?) to affirm an emergency act. I doubt that will happen. But I think it would be nice.

    Time123 (ae9d89)

  19. Munroe (9ac6d0) — 5/31/2019 @ 7:47 am

    The title of this post should be

    “Trump punishes Mexico with $85B tax on Americans”

    Dave (1bb933)

  20. On the other hand, the US Tax Code allows family members living in Mexico to be deducted as dependents on one’s tax return.

    nk (dbc370)

  21. Sen. Charles E. Grassley: 13.>“I support nearly every one of President Trump’s immigration policies, but this is not one of them. I urge the president to consider other options.”

    Coward!

    What Senator Grassley should say to him is:

    “In your attempt to more strictly enforce U.S. immigration laws, you’re facing checkmate, and you have no good moves. It’s time to face reality and give up.”

    Sammy Finkelman (db7fea) — 5/31/2019 @ 9:40 am

    No way sammy, Trump is totally going to build a big beautiful wall between the US and Mexico and Mexico is going to pay for it. That will fix all our problems.

    Time123 (ae9d89)

  22. Alternate title:

    “Trump admits total failure of his immigration policies, begs Mexico to bail him out”

    Dave (1bb933)

  23. Renegotiating NAFTA out of one side of his mouth, and imposing tariffs out of the other. Why should any foreign leader even bother to talk to this clown?

    Exactly. I don’t think he understands that those foreign leaders (let alone the American people) have no problem seeing this ginormous inconsistency. Perhaps he hasn’t even put it together…

    Dana (779465)

  24. The problem I see with policies that harm Mexico-US trade is that much of the trade is done by companies like GM that do part of the work in Mexico and part in the US. This splitting up of a task to make use of lower labor costs in Mexico is done by many American companies. The Dow-Jones dropped when this was announced because it is seen as hurting those companies.
    Trade wars are like other wars. Even easy victories have casualties.

    Slugger (a40948)

  25. The economics book I finished reading a week ago explained the truth of the matter as simply and accurately as I’ve ever seen:

    How well we live is determined by our productivity. Productivity results from specialization. Specialization is only possible thanks to trade.

    Dave (3394d4)

  26. Do three asseverations make a gallimaufry?

    nk (dbc370)

  27. If you can’t trust the other specialists, you have to be a generalist.

    Ingot9455 (68bf96)

  28. ‘Starts’??? tToday is May 31, not June 10. It’s just another windy tweet-threat; no ‘trade war’ has actually been instituted w/Mexico… yet.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  29. the market is down, more likely because of the inverted yielded curve, but that requires a little more explanation, then what happens on rocky maddow and Vanderbilt the twits show,

    narciso (d1f714)

  30. “Renegotiating NAFTA out of one side of his mouth, and imposing tariffs out of the other. Why should any foreign leader even bother to talk to this clown?”

    How DARE he attach conditions that include “act like a real country and not a cartel sockpuppet” to the trade deal!

    But seriously, foreigners who make leader generally need a more compelling reason to walk away from negotiations than “he OFFENDED me with his last-minute big moves and big talk!”

    “In your attempt to more strictly enforce U.S. immigration laws, you’re facing checkmate, and you have no good moves. It’s time to face reality and give up.”

    What an inspiring and poll-tested message. Really fires up the troops.

    “GM stock fell 1.5% and Ford stock 2% in late trade. U.S. tariffs on Mexico would affect supply chains for General Motors and Ford. Mexico is a big producer of cars, trucks and parts.”

    It’s absolutely TERRIBLE that Trump is forcing them to spend money to rebuild the supply chains stateside, after they spent all that money paying fly-by-night consultants to raid the pension funds to outsource on the assumption that the US would be tarriff-free forever. No one is sadder than me that people who buy cars will have to pay a premium to build modern factories, supply chains and infrastructure in America. Again. When Mexico has PERFECTLY GOOD INFRASTRUCTURE JUST SITTING RIGHT THERE. It’s almost as offensive as the notion that farmers should run their farms with modern heavy equipment instead of armies of cheap campesinos, who need I remind you are SITTING RIGHT THERE and can be hired at minimal training hassle with no externalities that I have to pay for!

    The notion that any company should keep cash reserves for major future investments instead of blindly following the Amazon model for maximum stockholder profits all the time is absolutely anathema and they’ll be hearing from my lawyers if they try to tell me to do ‘due diligence!’

    My retirement DEPENDS on the permanent growth economic model and I won’t take no for an answer!

    Fluffposting while Rome burns (77a774)

  31. This is so mind-bogglingly stupid on so many levels that one scarcely knows where to begin.

    The Grand Obsequious Party better wake up, before Tariff Man utterly destroys the coalition that gave Republicans their majorities. That coalition is primarily made up of socially moderate, pro-free market, pro-free trade, pro-business conservatives. Lose them, and the Republican party will lose big in 2020.

    Most of these voters didn’t so much vote for Trump as they voted against Clinton, whom they hated. Yet even then, he only won the election by 80,000 votes in certain counties spread out over three states she did not campaign in, and lost the popular vote by 3,000,000. Hated Hillary will not be on the ticket this time around, and whoever the Democrats nominate will not run such an inept campaign.

    Look at how monumentally incompetent this president is. Withdrawing the US from the Trans-Pacific Partnership was a colossal mistake. The whole purpose of that trade agreement was to exclude China and limit its economic expansion. The result of US withdrawal was it allowed China to move in and take the lead in negotiations and exert its influence over member nations that comprise a market which makes up 70% of global trade! Now, the US is excluded from that market and increasingly isolated. D’ohnuld Drumpf’s reaction was to start a trade war with China, which necessarily means all its signatory trading partners, which include Canada, Mexico, Argentina, Bolivia, Australia, Japan, Taiwan, and Viet Nam. Retaliatory tariffs abound.

    Tariff Man escalates the trade war, not just with China, but America’s two largest trading partners, Canada and Mexico, by imposing tariffs on steel and aluminum from both. Then he tries to bully his way around negotiating a new trade agreement between the three, the USMCA, to replace NAFTA, which he called the worst trade agreement ever. Yet his trade agreement is arguably worse. It has not been ratified by the legislatures of either country, and now probably won’t be.

    Congress complained that as long as the tariffs on steel and aluminum from Canada and Mexico were in place, the deal would not be ratified; there were other concerns, such as enforcement, as well. So D’ohnuld lifted those tariffs, desperately hoping to get his signature trade deal ratified by Congress. Then he turns around and erratically imposes yet more tariffs on all imports from Mexico, 5% starting on June 1, escalating to 25% on October 1. Does that not include steel and aluminum products, the tariffs on which he just lifted? None of it makes any sense, but then what would one expect from an insane clown.

    Now the USMCA is in jeopardy, but then it was a bad deal to begin with, but still any deal is better than no deal. And the US has no deal with the Trans-Pacific Partnership; China does. And as the trade war escalates, China is now threatening to shut of the export of rare earth minerals, which are essential for all forms of technology, everything from cell phones and satellites. That is their ace in the hole. Of course, they always could just dump their US treasury bills, of with they own a third, if they really wanted to wreck the US economy, which is built on selling debt to finance overspending, which has only increased under this Republican administration and Congress.

    Meanwhile, US agriculture is in dire straits. This has been a very bad season for farmers. Not only have these tariffs and trade wars excluded them from profitable foreign markets, but this recent spate of severe weather events has disrupted crop production. That was unpredictable and unpreventable, but even if they had had a good year, their ability to sell their crops is severly limited due to loss of markets because of idiotic trade wars. China simply switched it purchase fo soy beans from the US to Bolivia, with which it has a low-tariff trade agreement.

    The same is going to happen in every other industry. The US wants to slap tariffs on imports from Mexico? Mexico will simply sell its products to other members of the low-tariff Trans-Pacific Partnership, and impose retaliatory tariffs on US products.

    Exactly how does that work itself out? Well, American consumers can expect to pay a lot more for basic necessities at the grocery store. Tariffs are a sales tax on consumer goods, and that includes food, but when extended to practically everything else, from housing materials to automotive parts, they inclusively result in economic devastation. Those most hurt in these trade wars are those involved in the agriculture and automotive industries; they’re going to lose a lot of money, and their losses will inevitably be passed on to their consumers, who really don’t have that kind of money to spend. Most are living paycheck to paycheck, desperately trying budget their expenses. Increased prices on everything doesn’t help them at all.

    Thus Tariff Man becomes Tax Master, wielding his authority over all things economic, without sense or inhibition. That is completely unacceptable.

    I did not vote for Trump, because I saw him for what he is, always has been, a total fraud and a failed businessman who somehow concocted a false image of himself as a brilliant success, in tabloid journalism and realty TV, with the help of a couple of ghost writers.

    Now, the gig is up. It’s over. The curtain has closed on the incompetent clown.

    Gawain's Ghost (b25cd1)

  32. This broke it for me. I no longer care what happens to Trump. I’d prefer that no precedents are set that would handicap future presidents, but this guy has to go. Again, there is a clear case for impeachment on the general problem of his unsuitability to the office; his temperament, his mental fitness, his behavior, his dishonesty, his incompetence and his lies.

    Say what you will about Richard Nixon, no one ever thought he was stupid, unqualified, or incompetent. He made major contributions to America’s security and served at a time of great turmoil. His ethical judgement was his undoing, but it was a classic tragedy not simple evil.

    Say what you want about Bill Clinton, no one ever thought he was stupid, unqualified, or incompetent. He made major adjustments to long-standing problems, balanced the budget and reformed welfare. He just couldn’t keep his fly closed and was ruthless in his pursuit off power.

    But this guy. He IS stupid, he IS unqualified, and he IS incompetent. He also ignorant and shows no willingness to correct that, or listen to people who aren’t. He is rude and crude, a bully, and a racist, sexist pig.

    Sure, he was the better choice (still) of two candidates and (mostly) appoints good judges. The Supreme Court is still 5-4 rather than 3-6.

    But this isn’t enough. In every other avenue of governing he has failed miserably and is now lashing out in desperation.

    I am so done.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  33. Does the Constitution allow duties on exports?

    No. Article I, Section 9: “No Tax or Duty shall be laid on Articles exported from any State. “

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  34. This is so mind-bogglingly stupid on so many levels that one scarcely knows where to begin.

    I began with “This broke it for me” and ended with “I am so done!”

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  35. > I no longer care what happens to Trump. I’d prefer that no precedents are set that would handicap future presidents, but this guy has to go. Again, there is a clear case for impeachment on the general problem of his unsuitability to the office; his temperament, his mental fitness, his behavior, his dishonesty, his incompetence and his lies.

    Welcome, Kevin. You are now seeing what the never Trump side has been saying for four years.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  36. Our Captain know how to navigate through choppy seas; this course change quashes Mueller and impeachment chatter over weekend news cycles.

    Strawberries on the menu in the mess tonight, Captain, sir!

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  37. That coalition is primarily made up of socially moderate, pro-free market, pro-free trade, pro-business conservatives. Lose them, and the Republican party will come in third in 2020.

    FIFY.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  38. @33. Fair-weather Trumpster knows not of the ‘shiny object maneuver’ — he hasn’t done anything but pipe out a distracting tweet.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  39. well lets see, Clinton slashed the defense and intelligence budgets just in time for al queda to rise, while committing the military to more and more irrelevant operations in bosnia, Haiti et al, his cra revisions, along with the doj pressure on the banks, set the stage for the subprime bubble, which was the most disastrous economic decision, in perhaps 50 years, meanwhile admitting china to the wto with no preconditions, incurred substandard labor and environmental impacts, wide spread corporate espionage, (through instruments like Huawei) fed the genocidal ambitions in sudan, supported the mullahs in iran, in their nuclear program, of course propped up the kim regime, so lets get a sense of (redacted) perspective,

    narciso (d1f714)

  40. “You are now seeing what the never Trump side has been saying for four years.”
    aphrael (e0cdc9) — 5/31/2019 @ 12:42 pm

    … and backing up with a pee dossier.

    Munroe (e1b049)

  41. > … and backing up with a pee dossier.

    I didn’t need the pee dossier to know Trump is unfit for office because of “his temperament, his mental fitness, his behavior, his dishonesty, his incompetence and his lies”; that was obvious from his temperament, behavior, dishonesty, and the like *before he even got into politics*.

    I’ll remind you that — as a liberal gay man — I voted for Ted Cruz in the 2016 primary. My vehement objection to Trump has nothing to do with his politics; it has to do with his behavior.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  42. “I didn’t need the pee dossier to know Trump is unfit for office“
    aphrael (e0cdc9) — 5/31/2019 @ 1:33 pm

    I didn’t know you could get a FISA warrant issued based on “his behavior, his dishonesty, his incompetence and his lies”. That sort of power would normally worry a liberal.

    Munroe (d9efa6)

  43. and I voted for cruz as well, it wasn’t the majority even plurality opinion, now paul singer did much to marginalize cruz because of his expressed beliefs and largely that is why trump prevailed he couldn’t get traction, even among the team that was supposed to be on his side,

    narciso (d1f714)

  44. see it doesn’t matter even if they conjure some bogus claim, they will hunt some down to the end, whereas others are barely scathed
    https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/leaked-navy-emails-show-top-officers-struggling-with-how-to-handle-a-former-governor-ensnared-in-scandal/ar-AACcQ2S?ocid=spartandhp

    narciso (d1f714)

  45. Munroe: who brought the FISA warrant into it? I didn’t mention it, I don’t think Kevin mentioned it; it’s irrelevant to the discussion we were having.

    For what it’s worth, I think a FISA warrant was clearly justified *prior* to the pee tape, based upon this paragraph from the executive summary to volume I of the Mueller Report:

    > In late July 2016, soon after WikiLeaks’s first release of stolen documents, a foreign government contacted the FBI about a May 2016 encounter with Trump Campaign foreign policy advisor George Papadopoulos. Papadopoulos had suggested to a representative of that foreign government that the Trump Campaign had received indications from the Russian government that it could assist the Campaign through the anonymous release of information damaging to Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. That information prompted the FBI on July 31, 2016, to open an investigation into whether individuals associated with the Trump Campaign were coordinating with the Russian government in its interference activities.

    If a foreign government comes to the US government and tells us, “this member of a Presidential campaign is *openly telling us* that the Russians are offering to assist them”, then the only responsible response is to investigate it.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  46. I didn’t know you could get a FISA warrant issued based on “his behavior, his dishonesty, his incompetence and his lies.

    So wait, Donald Trump was the target of a FISA warrant?

    You can learn so much from people who mindlessly parrot GatewayPundit and InfoWars!

    Dave (3394d4)

  47. I get it you don’t care about due process, and proper procedures, mifsud was clearly a western intelligence asset, when he contacted Papadopoulos, there are repercussions relating one of his sponsors in western intelligence, along with the bureau and other other agencies,

    narciso (d1f714)

  48. Munroe: who brought the FISA warrant into it? I didn’t mention it, I don’t think Kevin mentioned it; it’s irrelevant to the discussion we were having.

    It’s the TrumpWorld 2019 equivalent of the Chewbacca Defense.

    Dave (3394d4)

  49. C’mon, Greitens ran afoul of the pre-existing R machine in MO, the yin to St. Lunatic’s yang. Hawley is getting talked up as a #46, so he’ll get his kicks in too.

    urbanleftbehind (4d5eac)

  50. There’s a secret dial built into the Super-Trumpkin Decoder Ring (available now from the RNC for $100):

    A. FISA Warrants!
    B. Witch Hunt!
    C. But Gorsuch!
    D. Binary choice!
    E. MAGA

    The rotation keeps things fresh, you know.

    Munroe, we’re all still waiting breathlessly for more of your favorite slavery jokes.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  51. “who brought the FISA warrant into it? I didn’t mention it, I don’t think Kevin mentioned it; it’s irrelevant to the discussion we were having.”

    If by “never Trump” you really meant only those Never Trumpers who didn’t push the pee dossier or join the campaign surveillance cheerleader squad, you could state that clearly. But, it seems that’s not what you meant anyway.

    I guess we can add to the liberal credentials cheering on Mifsud, Turk and Halper.

    Munroe (69991b)

  52. What GRIM TIDINGS now yawn forth from Pat’s comment section?

    “I no longer care what happens to Trump.”
    “I began with “This broke it for me” and ended with “I am so done!””

    AHEM. Those sentiments could have been more appropriately expressed via video emotes of African Women of Color, like most Resistance types prefer to do.

    Hel-lo, a ghost thinks he can educate the rubes on economics:

    “Not only have these tariffs and trade wars excluded them from profitable foreign markets, but this recent spate of severe weather events has disrupted crop production.”

    ‘We can’t sell all the crops that we don’t have in the first place!’ Sure dude, whatever.

    “China simply switched it purchase fo soy beans from the US to Bolivia, with which it has a low-tariff trade agreement.”

    Nice to know that Bolivia will get RICH off of selling soybeans to China, after all it was farm subsidies and open farmers markets that really made America great.

    And American farmers are historically known for telling the absolute truth about their financial situations at all times, never hiding money, never manipulating their own supplies even up to the destruction of their own stock, and always starving to death during the bad years. And they’d commit suicide themselves before hitting the Fedgov with any ‘Farm Bills’, and certainly aren’t among the more heavily-subsidized sectors of the US economy. Libertarians, one and all!

    “The whole purpose of that trade agreement was to exclude China and limit its economic expansion.”
    “And the US has no deal with the Trans-Pacific Partnership; China does.”

    Sounds like maybe the first part was belied by the second part, really.

    their losses will inevitably be passed on to their consumers, who really don’t have that kind of money to spend.

    Yes, because as basic economics taught us, the price on a product keeps going up until no one has money to buy it. This isn’t transparently mendacious emotional rhetoric at all!

    “Tariffs are a sales tax on consumer goods, and that includes food, but when extended to practically everything else, from housing materials to automotive parts, they inclusively result in economic devastation.”

    They devastated the US so hard that it was able to fund its entire government with surpluses on it for a century.

    gg, GG. Sell your brand of crazy someplace else. Rich people made bad long economic bets in the fat years and are going to end up paying for them. Life will be much less overleveraged and overscaled as a result. Embrace the inevitable corrections to come.

    Pierre Omidyar's Top Towel Boy (5736f9)

  53. Beldar, I’ve moved on to Ebola humor.

    Munroe (3d09c0)

  54. Super-Trumpkin Decoder Ring

    What you need a decoder ring for, according to the New York Times, is the Mueller Report or Mueller statement, .

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/05/29/opinion/robert-mueller-trump.html

    Sammy Finkelman (102c75)

  55. the history of tariffs are tricky, you can overcalibrate like with mcckinley in 1890, although it’s not clear it had much impact on the subsequent downturn in 1893, that was more related with railroad overexpansion, the worst was smoot Hawley,

    narciso (d1f714)

  56. Trump’s not raising tariffs that much, and besides it helps the economy, because it can cause the federal Reserve Board to lower interest rates. And so Trump may be responsible for 5% GDP growth next year in spite of himself.

    Also maybe he willl admit he is checkmated on illegal immigration.

    Sammy Finkelman (102c75)

  57. Welcome, Kevin. You are now seeing what the never Trump side has been saying for four years.

    Yes, but that does not mean I will sign on to other dishonesty or lies. To call Trump’s intemperate and ineffectual attempts to offer petty resistance to the Mueller probe “high crimes” debases the term and lowers the bar for impeachment. That “obstruction” was only a part of Bill CLinton’s failed impeachment, it would also be hypocritical.

    But his incompetence, unsuitable temperament, reckless and arbitrary foreign policy, and a willing and pervasive ignorance all add to a clear and present danger to our national security. And THAT is impeachable.

    Rule of thumb: If the only other correction is assassination, then impeachment is in order.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  58. If the only other correction is assassination, then impeachment is in order.

    Not my idea, it comes from the Founders.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  59. Munroe — I meant those people who saw Trump for what he is *before he started winning primaries* and have opposed him because of who he is since that time.

    Nothing in the Mueller Report, which I’m slowly reading, has altered my opinion of *Trump*, because my opinion of Trump wasn’t based on anything involving Russian meddling. Nor am I the only one.

    Furthermore, to the extent I think the Russian meddling investigation was warranted, the pee tape has and had nothing to do with it.

    Honestly, if you were US intelligence and a representative of a foreign government, whom you have no reason to distrust, came to you and tells you that a highly ranked member of a presidential campaign is openly declaring that a different (and generally vaguely hostile) foreign power is offering to help them win an election, what would you do?

    What do you think the ethical thing to do was at that time?

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  60. Welcome, Kevin. You are now seeing what the never Trump side has been saying for four years.

    No, I saw it all along — I was against Trump right up to the day he surprised us all by winning. If I could’ve gone back in time and replaced him with Cruz, I would have done so at any time.

    But, until now I could convince myself that his policies, while suboptimum, were aimed in a better direction, and I was unwilling to support the socialists’ campaigns (still am, that last part). But I can’t support this President’s increasingly bizarre actions and I cannot comprehend what 8 years of this man might do. Nothing good.

    Please God let this be the action that gets him a primary opponent. What’s Nikki Haley up to? Is she still waiting on 2024?

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  61. I wonder how much of his support comes from Republicans like me who are unwilling to give the Democrats any ease or comfort. Opposing Trump does not mean that I support the Socialists’ attacks. It just means that I can’t defend this man one day longer.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  62. aphrael,

    From what I’ve read (and there is more than one story), the FISA warrants were either issued or extended with the Steele Dossier as part of the submission, and that dossier is itself suspect as an electoral dirty trick. Too much information is in locked drawers right now for me to have an opinion, but at some point it appears the FISA process was corrupted.

    That being said, it wasn’t why the Mueller investigation started.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  63. Thank God for Trump. He’s TRYING to do something to secure the border. Mexico has been laughing at us, as they run up a huge trade deficit and help illegals from Central America march across their country to invade the USA.

    But oh noes. Some American consumers might pay 5 cents more for lettuce. Oh no!

    rcocean (1a839e)

  64. The Republicans in the Senate are completely useless. When have any of them tried to help Trump secure the border and enforce the immigration laws. Most are either secret liberals like Mittens or they’ve completely bought off by the Chamber of Commerce.

    Trump is our only hope.

    rcocean (1a839e)

  65. Trump is our only hope.

    Then we have none.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  66. A trade war. Heavens! Countries have been raising tariffs on US Goods since forever. But that’s not a trade war. Its only a trade war, when the USA does it. I just hope our $20,000 Billion economy doesn’t collapse because $200 Billion in Mexican imports, now costs $210 Billion. OMG, will we survive that .0001 Percent increase?

    rcocean (1a839e)

  67. Then we have none.

    Isn’t that the Never Trumper battle cry? What was Bill Kristol, David French, Jonah Goldberg or Erick Erickson offering us in 2015, before Trump came along? Just more “Invade the world, invite the world” and a big Globalony sandwich. Lets allow illegal immigration to run wild, lets allow foreign countries destroy our industries, lets fight useless wars in the middle east, lets give the Democrats the Supreme Court and forget all the social issues Because its all OK cause Goldman Sachs got a tax cut and ’cause “Free Market”.

    Had we not nominated Trump and won, we’d have President Hillary. And its obvious that’s what the Never Trumpers preferred.

    rcocean (1a839e)

  68. 11. The CNBS Evening News also reported about the report of the North Korean Foreign Minsitry officials being executed :in late MArch” I got one thing a bit wrong. It wasn’t the chief nuclear negotiator who got executed. He was merely sentenced to hard labor. It was the special envoy to the United States who was executed, along with four oters.

    The CBS reporter had the caveat that South Korean newspapers have been wrong in the past – officials reported executed have later appeared on television; and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was shown answering a question saying they are trying to verify that.

    Sammy Finkelman (db7fea)

  69. what is clear, is the welfare state, could not have grown to brobagdinian dimensions without the income tax, and even then the deficits it encourages are unsustainable,

    narciso (d1f714)

  70. Mexican officials are on the way to Washington but nobody can figure out what they could possibly agree to.

    Trump, presumably wants Mexico to send migrants back to the countries they came from, bit what’s the metric? It seems to be connected to the number of ppeople reaching the U.S. border and requesting asylum.

    Sammy Finkelman (db7fea)

  71. I think the federal government pays out more in Social Security benefits than anything else, and Social Security has a separate tax, not the income tax, as does Medicare.

    Sammy Finkelman (db7fea)

  72. generally vaguely hostile) foreign power is offering to help them

    Offering? They did it. Anyone could tell.

    But what Papadoupolous was told about were clearly the deleted Hillary Clinton emails, which Russia didn’t havem abd not the DNC emails, which they did have and kept secret till the hack was discovered. It took maybe amonth for them to leak it. And this was misunderstood.

    The Mueller Report by its vague words, probably convys afalse impression.

    Sammy Finkelman (db7fea)

  73. > But what Papadoupolous was told about were clearly the deleted Hillary Clinton emails, which Russia didn’t havem abd not the DNC emails, which they did have and kept secret till the hack was discovered. It took maybe amonth for them to leak it. And this was misunderstood.

    Regardless of what he’d been told about, my point is that the fact that a foreign government came to us and said “this guy high up in the campaign is talking about the Russians offering to help” was *per se* sufficient grounds for an investigation.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  74. What was Bill Kristol, David French, Jonah Goldberg or Erick Erickson offering us in 2015

    Were they running for President?

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  75. no mifsud told him what was obvious to anyone with breath in their lungs, but strzok and page didn’t care, and he played it back to downer, who had ulterior reasons to bring him to London, as did halper who was paid with dia accounts to conduct opposition research, making it up when it came to miss lokhova, oh he does have ties to truibnikov, no 2 in the fsb,

    narciso (d1f714)

  76. Had we not nominated Trump and won, we’d have President Hillary.

    Patterico? I want to say this is [unflattering assessment deleted]. May I?

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  77. French was, then McMullin took the shot, mostly funding rick Wilson’s beer bill,

    narciso (d1f714)

  78. I certainly wouldn’t want to be part of the diplomatic delegation from North Korea.

    Yet Trump won’t give up on Kim, because it would be admitting a mistake. And there is no one Trump can have shot.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  79. Most are either secret liberals like Mittens or they’ve completely bought off by the Chamber of Commerce.
    Good lord! Are now even the Chamber of Commerce are Anti-Trump? Are they socialist pee-tape pushers pandering to the Deep State?
    I know there’s a thing about posting personal comments, but really, that, and this:

    Thank God for Trump. He’s TRYING to do something to secure the border. Mexico has been laughing at us, as they run up a huge trade deficit and help illegals from Central America march across their country to invade the USA.

    Comments like that are make you seem like a caricature of a Trumpist.

    Mexico is not “laughing” at us. They are wringing their hands and worried sick that we could turn on them.
    The refugees flooding through their country are a drag and cost. They want them out as fast as possible.
    A way to do that is pass them on. And they simply can’t just shut them at the their border; it’s not that easy.
    So instead of penalizing the Mexicans why not help them, or offer to?
    Give them tents and water and razor wire and medical aid and help the Mexican government to turn the refugees away in a humanitarian fashion.
    That’s cheaper, better for everyone and starts to make the case that Mexico can handle the influx or deal with the tide at least.

    And here’s an idea that’s never been thought about (s/): How about concerted action and a long term plan of action with the countries and governments of Central and South America to try as much as we can to stop the need for floods of people fleeing impoverishment and unjust regimes? One that does not include assassination or forcible regime change?
    If the way to win the War On Drugs™ is by reducing the need in the states, then isn’t the way to win the “Invasion of America” (copywrite pending) going to happen by actually reducing the need for a literal lifeline in the first place?
    We’ll never stop all immigration and I personally don’t want to; I just want it legal and tied to the needs to our nation, and not have our nation in thrall of 12 families in a particular country or a tin-pot dictator somewhere south.

    TomM (954e56)

  80. “What do you think the ethical thing to do was at that time?”
    aphrael (e0cdc9) — 5/31/2019 @ 3:11 pm

    Inform the Trump campaign and enlist their help. But, this only works if Trump wasn’t the target. So, either he was or he wasn’t. You tell me.

    Did ethics guide Brennan when he asserted the CIA doesn’t spy “domestically”? Why do you think the low ranking campaign member, which you call high ranking, was overseas when worked on by Halper, Turk and Mifsud?

    Munroe (655c73)

  81. The regrettable part is that the lowered barriers from NAFTA helped create the supply chains that Trump is now applying tariffs to, and is Reason #2 out of the ten reasons why Trump’s tariffs on Mexico are stupid.

    Paul Montagu (ed733c)

  82. I am enjoying aphrael and Dave destroying Munroe’s partisan talking points on FISA. If someone wants to take on rcocean’s “5 cents more for lettuce” horseshit I will applaud a second time.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  83. I meant to get a lot of stuff out of the stock market 2-3 weeks ago and just had a lot of other things distract me. I’ll probably wait for a better time but I hope it comes soon.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  84. Selective persecution is all the DOJ is about. What a horseschiff bunch of traitors.

    mg (8cbc69)

  85. Yet Trump won’t give up on Kim, because it would be admitting a mistake.

    Love is blind.

    Dave (1bb933)

  86. Never Trumpers, democrats, the chamber of commerce dolts and the Mexicans will continue to protect their illicit investments and rob the great American people. Close the muthafricking border.

    mg (8cbc69)

  87. “I am enjoying aphrael and Dave destroying Munroe’s partisan talking points on FISA.”
    Patterico (115b1f) — 6/1/2019 @ 12:02 am

    It must’ve been the Star Wars reference. I need to watch those someday. Was that the one where Spock came back from the dead?

    Destroying the partisan talking points in FISA isn’t quite as enjoyable, I’m sure, but we all may have to get used to it.

    Munroe (be5f1a)

  88. 74. aphrael (e0cdc9) — 5/31/2019 @ 4:17 pm

    this guy high up in the campaign is talking about the Russians offering to help” was *per se* sufficient grounds for an investigation.

    The first thing wrong here, is that he wasn’t high up in the campaign. The second wrong here is that they weren’t offering to help. This was a hint. Not an offer to give them to the campaign. The idea maybe was that he’d want, or the campaign would want, to get closer to the Russians and maybe eventually they’d get that information.

    Emails, which, remember, didn’t exist because this was clearly meant to be Hillary Clinton’s deleted emails. (I am not sure why anyone wold think there was asincere Russian offer to help. If Russia wanted to help, they’d just do it. The on;y reason for wanting to be asked is to get something from the campaign.

    There was something going on – they were trying to penetrate the campaign. The third thing wrong here is that this probably is not an exact description of what hapepned to Papadoupoulos.

    Another thing here is that the FBI clearly did not trust anyone in the campaign, or affiliated with the campaign, because they didn’t try to warn anyone, which they should have made some attempt to do, even if they didn’t trust anyone, because maybe it might be somebody there would be against it.

    Note: The reason the idea that the Russians possessed some or all of Hillary Clinton’s deleetd emails, was that Comey and others had said her server was vulnerable to penetration. Except that it wasn’t, because none of the methods commonly used to penetrate other email accounts would work with clintonemail.com, not phishing, not guessing the password *, not using security questions to reset the password; and if they somehow did get in it wouldn’t go unnoticed by the SYSOP, Justin Cooper, and would be stopped before they got very much, and they didn’t even know what software it ran so they couldn’t plan in advance, and they couldn’t even hope to physically break in, or steal the data, because it was guarded by the Secret Service.

    And it was safe from subpoenas as well, unlike Donald Trump’s federal income tax returns, where copies were stored outside of the control of Donald J. Trump. And she had friends in the FBI, so even when they got a search warrant, (for Anthony Weiner’s laptop) they didn’t look in such a way so they could stumble upon anything unexpected. There never was an email account that was as secure as hdr22@clintonemail.com)

    * Huma Abedin may have set her own password, but Hillary’s was probably set by computer by Bryan Pagliano and entered automatically on her devices, and she couldn’t even give aay her password because she didn’t know it. Every time she canged computers, he had to link it up again. Maybe there was some device test.

    Sammy Finkelman (db7fea)

  89. “Regardless of what he’d been told about, my point is that the fact that a foreign government came to us and said “this guy high up in the campaign is talking about the Russians offering to help” was *per se* sufficient grounds for an investigation.”

    More deliberately obtuse verbiage.

    There are foreign governments and ‘foreign governments’, the fact that the new wailing point of the NeverTrumpers with regard to declassification is that FIVE EYES IS GOING TO DIE (good riddance) indicates that some foreign governments and spies had privileged relationships to leverage in order to pull a fast one on the guy all the NATOphiles hated with a passion.

    British and Australians(with convenient board memberships on Chinese companies targeted for sanctions) colluding with the FBI to treat vague riffs on publicly available knowledge like CONCERNING ADMISSIONS OF INTERNATIONAL COLLUSION are part and parcel of internationalist dirty tricks.

    Calling these very political concern troll reports by well-known liberal diplomats immediate grounds for an investigation is foolish on its face…unless the FBI was deliberately asking for it, in which case it becomes malicious obstruction.

    “Honestly, if you were US intelligence and a representative of a foreign government, whom you have no reason to distrust, came to you and tells you that a highly ranked member of a presidential campaign is openly declaring that a different (and generally vaguely hostile) foreign power is offering to help them win an election, what would you do?

    What do you think the ethical thing to do was at that time?”

    I’d tell them that Mexico does it all the time for the other side and is honestly quite better at it, so letting Russia do its own amateurish fumbling is nothing but equal time.

    But seriously, nothing like your horrendous example actually happened in a real life interaction admissible in court:

    “Over drinks, Papadopoulos mentioned Russians had information on Hillary Clinton that could prove damaging, Downer told The Australian in an April 28 interview.

    There was no indication in the short exchange with Papadopoulos that Trump was aware of the damaging information, Downer also said.

    “By the way, nothing [Papadopoulos] said in that conversation indicated Trump himself had been conspiring with the Russians to collect information on Hillary Clinton. It was just that this guy, [Papadopoulos], clearly knew that the Russians did have material on Hillary Clinton — but whether Trump knew or not?” Downer explained.

    “He didn’t say Trump knew or that Trump was in any way involved in this. He said it was about Russians and Hillary Clinton; it wasn’t about Trump,” Downer told The Australian.

    Papadopoulos’s reference to Clinton material was vague, Downer suggested.

    “He didn’t say dirt; he said material that could be damaging to her. No, he said it would be damaging. He didn’t say what it was.”

    During that conversation, [Papadopoulos] mentioned the Russians might use material that they have on Hillary Clinton in the lead-up to the election, which may be damaging,”

    Being a red-blooded American and not a limey, my inclination after hearing the actual information Downer provided would be roughly: “WOT??? ‘e’s ‘avin a giggle, mate, all them blokes in DC is talking about ‘oos got this bird’s letters since she left the bleedin’ door wide open for anyone to pinch ’em! ‘E only knows wot’s in the papers, ‘e does!”

    And if anyone insisted on pushing an investigation regardless, I would have fired them for failure to appreciate basic conversational context. People who fall for Brits spinning yarns will fall for all sorts of other things.

    Australian with Huawei Board Membership (8aa339)

  90. It must’ve been the Star Wars reference. I need to watch those someday.

    No Star Wars movie made after 1983 is worth watching.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  91. It must’ve been the Star Wars reference.

    It’s a Simpsons reference.

    Dave (1bb933)

  92. D’oh, I mean a South Park reference.

    I’m too tired…

    Dave (1bb933)

  93. Munroe, your decoder ring is stuck on FISA. You need to rotate the bezel, man.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  94. If he had the decency to drown to prove he wasnt a witch.

    Narciso (f43143)

  95. trump wants to force changes in Mexican law, among itehr things, based solely on his own preferences, without any basis in any treaty Mexico signed or what anyone in Congress wants, partially because Congress wouldn’t pass laws he wanted.

    That could be better grounds for impeachment than a lot fo oter things

    Sammy Finkelman (102c75)

  96. Original New York Times story about pure and execution of Korean nuclear negotiators:

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/05/30/world/asia/north-korea-envoy-execution.html

    Follow-up artivle:

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/05/31/world/asia/Kim-Yong-chol-execution-north-korea.html

    Theer have been reports going back 6 weeks or more.

    In my pinion the purge did not happen all at once. That’s very Stalinist. It may have started in March butsome higher ranking people were gottten to later. The second NYT article gives more background.

    Sammy Finkelman (102c75)

  97. Breaking– Trump tweets tonight deal reached; no tariff war w/Mexico.

    “Tariffic.”

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  98. ^winner winner chicken dinner

    urbanleftbehind (b501d0)


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