Donal Trump talks politics (well, economics) …and manages not to make a complete ass of himself

via Donald Trump Would ‘Put Country First’ and Pay More Taxes

Donald Trump … said he’d be willing to pay more in taxes – but he doesn’t think Wall Street would go along with it.

“I would be willing to George, but a lot of people wouldn’t be. A lot of people would leave the country. I’m talking about big people, job-producing people. Would I be willing? Yeah, I’d be willing. I’d put country first. Lot of people don’t necessarily put country first,” he said.

Odd stuff for a businessman to be calling out the patriotism of other businessmen, on top of saying higher taxes would be fine with him. Brave to say, in fact. He would not be saying these thing if he was planning to run (and certainly not if he was still running).

Trump says we should close the loopholes on oil companies, a position that sets him apart from many in the Tea Party.

“Every time the economy gets good, oil goes up…So what they do is they systematically destroy any momentum you get. Because oil should be selling at $25 to $30 a barrel right now,” Trump said.

A cynic might say Trump only favors this because he doesn’t own any oil companies. And because he wants cheap energy for his hotels and buildings. And that probably is the main reason for his stance.

But that doesn’t make the position any less true.

Lastly, Trump takes on China:

What else does Trump want to tax? Chinese products, in order to get the country to stop manipulating their currency, he said.

“You put a 25% tax on Chinese products, products coming into this country, two things are going to happen. Number one, this country’s going to take in a bundle of money,” he said. “And number two, a lot of people won’t have their products made in China. They’ll start being made in Alabama, in Iowa, in New York, in Texas and lots of other places.”

And if that starts a trade war? That’s okay, he says, because we shouldn’t be trading when there is such an imbalance, it’s not fair trade.

“The fact is, China is not our friend. I was asked, ‘Are they our enemy?’ I said, ‘Yeah. Actually, they’re our enemy. China is our enemy.’ What they’re doing to us is unbelievable.”

Here is where Trump goes a little too far, but is nevertheless basically right about the situation. The worst kept secret in international affairs right now is probably the fact that China is doing some increasingly shitty things to the US:
-cyber attacks
-maintaining the aforementioned artificial trade imbalance
-taking the downed helicopter from the Bin Laden raid from Pakistan
-threatening to help out nations like Iran or hurt places like Taiwan if the US tries to impose the kind of sanctions Trump is calling for.
-plenty of other things I’m not privy to, I’m sure

And that’s the thing. China has all the leverage. Not because we owe them money. But because they have of levers to pull, as a result of both their geographic location and system of unilateral government control, that we do not have (meaning they can work economically with nations near them we dislike, and that they don’t have to deal with a “Congress” in order to take big actions).

If they were a smaller nation, we would have military leverage to counteract the things they do. And on that same subject, the less “free” trade is between the US and China the more likely military hostilities would be. At the moment, trade forces both countries to play nice.

All in all it is a complicated situation, for sure. Trump is right about the problem, but (to my knowledge) wrong about the solution. Mostly because there is no “solution”, at least no big bold public solution such as the ones Trump is calling for.

___

Back to politics.

Unfortunately for Trump supporters (there must be some out there somewhere), the fact that Trump is speaking the truth on some issues means he probably isn’t running for office anytime soon. He’s been bitching every once an a while about running as a third party candidate, but what Trump is really saying is “Mitt Romney is a tard, so I’ll run if he gets the nomination“. If anyone besides Romney gets the nomination, as is likely, Trump will be placated. I suspect he is only saying the stuff he is today because he is pleased with Rick Perry entering the race.


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