“Trade wars are good, and easy to win” Donald Trump March 2, 2018 tweet
Trump would like to pressure China into respecting intellectual property. A lot of folks who understand free trade say this is fair and right. Trade wars using tariffs don’t work. In fact, the outcomes are so absolutely predictable, the other country will retaliate. We have a 34 billion dollar tariff against China, so they impose equal tariffs against us. Their and our exporters get hurt. Does any country gain leverage on trade disputes by first imposing tariffs? What tariffs have done is to end trade discussions between countries. Policy changes can’t proceed while trade wars are in progress. So, the idea of waging war and peace doesn’t work. And leverage would work if one country is feeling real pain and the other is not. But, this isn’t the case, and our pain is very apparent to voters. China doesn’t have voters, so their tolerance is as high as the leaders want to go.
PS. I’m working on another blog called Presidential lies and myths. Trump’s tweet on trade wars is a myth and it’s a whopper. Lies usually have some false statistic associated with them, most notably with immigration and the economy.