Tag Archives: US-Mexico trade

Tariffs punish U.S. consumers, won’t curb migration

Do I have this straight?

Donald Trump wants to impose tariffs on goods coming to the United States from Mexico until our southern neighbor ends illegal immigration from Mexico into the United States.

Is that what he wants to do?

Well, why is the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, other business groups friendly to Republican politicians (such as the president), and GOP politicians (such as U.S. Sen. John Cornyn of Texas) so angry with Trump over the tariff threat?

Earth to POTUS: Tariffs don’t punish the countries that send goods into this country; they punish U.S. consumers who will pay more for those goods to cover the cost of the tariff.

The stock market took a header today. My retirement fund — not to mention the funds of millions of other Americans — also took a hit. Will it come back? I certainly hope so.

This tariff notion once again flies in the face of whatever passes for economic policy that emanates from the White House.

Donald Trump is conflating immigration policy with economic policy. He is seeking to damage one of this nation’s pre-eminent trading partners. Mexico clearly doesn’t want the tariff imposed, particularly since Mexico, the United States and Canada are supposedly set to agree to a new “free trade agreement” among the three nations.

It’s called the United States/Mexico/Canada Agreement, aka USMCA. It replaces the North American Free Trade Agreement, which Trump called one of the worst trade deals in human history … or words to that effect.

How in the world does this tariff play in the context of the pending USMCA?

My view? It doesn’t play well at all!

Meanwhile, U.S. consumers are going to be the primary victims of yet another scatter-shot presidential economic policy.

This is not how you “put America first,” Mr. President.

Border shutdown or not? Let’s go with ‘not’

Donald Trump is a malleable man. He says he intends to do one thing, then backpedals . . . sometimes furiously.

Repeal the Affordable Care Act now? Sure, but wait! Let’s do it after the November 2020 election.

Shut down the border with Mexico? Yep! Right now, or else. But, whoa! Let’s wait a year and see what happens, shall we?

The president was adamant that we should close the 2,000-mile border with Mexico. Then someone musta got to him, telling him what he should have known already: Closing the border, Mr. President, is going to cost this country tens of billions of dollars in business with one of our largest trading partners.

Then he backed off. He said he doesn’t “play games.” He had vowed that he would close the border, “100 percent.”

Not now.

Actually, the one-year delay likely means the border won’t close at all. I’m OK with that. Shutting down our border with Mexico is going to do far more harm than good.

Trump calls the closure threat a national security matter. He says security is more important than trade. I agree with that. However, is there an actual “national security threat” being presented at this moment? I remain highly dubious of that assertion.

So, for now the president has backed off. Good. I hope he stays backed off for as long as he is in office.