Donald Trump

Why Do Liberals Hate Trump's Trade Policies? Because Bernie Did Not Propose Them

Behold the liberal hypocrisy

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Donald Trump told Chris Wallace on Fox News Sunday that letting American companies such as Carrier move their operations and jobs to cheaper countries without

BernieTrump
Abisdale via Foter.com

facing penalties wasn't free trade, it was "dumb trade." Such statements are driving Paul Krugman and his fellow liberal pundits up the (yet-to-be-built great Trump) wall.

But here's the thing: These very same folks have been cheering on even cruder economic nationalism from their own side.

Remember when Obama and his Treasury Secretary Jack Lew accused Burger King of insufficient patriotism when it "inverted" to Canada by merging with Tim Horton to avoid America's ridiculously high corporate taxes? Liberals didn't tell the duo to knock it off. In fact, I note:

Many of them didn't want the president to simply stop at just bullying from the bully pulpit. They wanted him to do whatever it took to "halt inversions in their tracks" — including executive action if Congress refused to play ball.

Ditto for a lot of Hillary's reactionary trade proposals. But the man who gets the biggest pass from liberals is their darling Bernie Sanders. Since losing, he has proposed one of the most bone-chilling pieces of anti-trade legislations in living memory.

And how have liberals reacted to Bernie? By dumping on Trump.

Go here to read the whole thing.

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  1. Rereads byline… this is two in a row!

    So it seems we are surrounded by bad, bad, bad or worse on trade.

  2. Duh, it’s obviously because Trump has no regard for the constitution, unlike Clinton or Obama.

    1. Or Bernie. Don’t forget Bernie! Don’t let the world forget Bernie! Don’t let the Democrats forget Bernie!

  3. “Such statements are driving Paul Krugman and his fellow liberal pundits up the (yet-to-be-built great Trump) wall.”

    There are very few people who should be judged by their words–presidents even less so than others.

    Obama shouldn’t be judged by his words.

    Trump shouldn’t be judged by his words.

    If Obama supported a treaty that actually worked to restrict trade, I wouldn’t support it just because Obama called it “free trade”.

    If Trump renegotiates something that actually liberalizes trade, I won’t oppose it just because Trump says it’s restricting trade either.

    If and when Trump liberalizes trade, as sure as the sun will rise tomorrow, he’ll call it some form of patriotic protectionism. Why should we care what he calls it?

    My understanding is that the Carrier deal wasn’t just about penalties for leaving–it was also about Trump saying in private that he is going to push for corporate tax reform that’s so good, when it passes, Carrier will be sorry they left the United States.

    We need to stop focusing on what Trump says. What Trump says is calibrated to win him votes in Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania. For goodness’ sake, Trump is full of bluster. By definition, bluster shouldn’t be taken seriously.

    Let’s go after Trump for what he does–if and when he does it. Let’s stop chasing the ball every time Trump throws us some more scary or obnoxious words to go fetch.

    1. While I agree with the general tenor of your argument, at this point, what Mr. Trump says is really all we have to judge him by. And a lot of that, so far, isn’t particularly promising if you believe in free trade.

      1. “If and when Trump liberalizes trade, as sure as the sun will rise tomorrow, he’ll call it some form of patriotic protectionism. Why should we care what he calls it?”

        I hope you are right, but what’s your basis for thinking he will liberalize trade?

        1. Does lifting trade sanctions on Russia count as liberalizing trade?

          1. It’s either lift sanctions on Russia or nuclear war. Those are the only two choices.

        2. The point is that he should be judged on what he does rather than what he says.

          The point is that if he liberalizes or restricts trade is more important than whether he says he’s restricting or liberalizing trade.

          Obama renegotiated the South Korean Free Trade deal (after it had been ratified by the South Korean parliament) so that it would gain the approval of the UAW.

          “The deal was supported by Ford Motor Company, as well as the United Auto Workers, both of which had previously opposed the agreement. Remarking on the UAW’s support, an Obama administration official was quoted as saying, “It has been a long time since a union supported a trade agreement” and thus the administration hopes for a “big, broad bipartisan vote” in the U.S. Congress in 2011.[1]”

          http://tinyurl.com/zylv5ut

          Whether it was really “free trade” as Obama said is a matter of opinion. Looks like it institutionalized protectionist rent seeking by the UAW to me. Regardless, it was what it was no matter what Obama called it.

          And whatever Trump’s trade policy will be, it’ll be what it is regardless of what Trump calls it in the media or on twitter.

          We have good reason to believe that Trump will call his policy protectionist regardless of whether it is.

          1. Yes, I agree, the left and media will criticize whatever he does, even if it is something they would normally applaud. I am less optimistic that he will liberalize trade, but I agree, he’ll get no credit if he does.

        3. Whoops, meant for Ken.

      2. If what he’s said has been mostly bluster, what he says probably shouldn’t be the center of the conversation.

        Incidentally, chances are he won’t be throwing Hillary Clinton in jail.

        You could judge him by his appointments.

        That’s something he actually did.

        We can go by what he apparently did when he talked to Carrier.

        He promised to roll back regulation and reform taxes.

        PENCE: “He called the chairman of the parent company and just asked them to reconsider their decision to move jobs to Mexico from here in the state of Indiana. And he shared our vision for less taxes on businesses, to roll back the avalanche of regulations that’s been stifling companies like Carrier, driving them out of our country.”

        http://tinyurl.com/hlxdex6

        That’s something he actually did. He got a company to stay here by promising to do things that capitalists like.

        Then he went on TV and promoted and promoted it as nationalistic protectionism. But from what I can tell, it isn’t that. If America gets tons of jobs because Trump deregulates, slashes corporate taxes, etc., he’ll go on the campaign trail four years from now claiming that his protectionist policies worked!

        I don’t care what he says anywhere near as much as I care about what he does. It was the same with Obama.

        1. He got a company to stay here by promising to do things that capitalists like.

          Yeah, no. They stayed because Indiana gave them a $7 million tax break.

          1. $7 million to United Tech on a long term decision like moving a plant is not a big deal.

            It didn’t hurt any, I’m sure.

            Did Indiana offer to give United Tech that money before Trump weighed in?

          2. Not that I support it, but $7MM for 1000 jobs is onlu 7k per job. It’s even less when you consider that’s over 10 years, so 700/job/year. If ‘stimulus’ actually cost that much, then keynes might have had a point.

            And again, I’m not defending it.

          3. I would say that Indiana was merely cutting its losses. I’ll bet they would have lost more than $7 million in revenue if the plant had completely closed down.

        2. “He got a company to stay here by promising to do things that capitalists like.”

          No, *corporatists* want to rig the system in their favor using whatever tools are at their disposals. If it’s tax breaks, great. If it’s lobbying for tariffs to protect their industry, great. If it’s sounding like a capitalist in order to get more favorable treatment for them by fooling the rubes and ideologues that they are on their side, then great.

          Capitalists would scrap the entire regulatory state and tax code, institute only that which is absolutely necessary for a well-functioning market, and then go tell Carrier, “if that’s still not good enough for you, then don’t let the door hit your ass on the way out”.

          1. Actually, if you don’t like slashing corporate tax rates and deregulation, then you’re a phony capitalist.

            You may be a principled phony capitalist, but you’re a phony capitalist all the same.

            1. Look I am on your side on this one. I think the corporate tax rate should be abolished.

              What I am objecting to is the insinuation that rent-seeking companies should be praised as “capitalists” if their mode of rent-seeking just happens to be in the form of tax breaks.

              Carrier used their own employees as hostages (“give us tax breaks or we fire them all!”) in order to demand selective tax breaks for themselves, that other companies are ineligible to benefit from. I would not consider such behavior to be that of a principled capitalist.

              I am glad Carrier is paying less in taxes, but I’m not going to condone their conduct.

              1. “What I am objecting to is the insinuation that rent-seeking companies should be praised as “capitalists” if their mode of rent-seeking just happens to be in the form of tax breaks.”

                Well there’s the source of the confusion.

                When I said “capitalists”, I was referring to myself and my fellow libertarians.

                We capitalists like slashing corporate taxes and we like deregulation.

                We don’t oppose things regardless of whether Trump goes on TV and calls them “protectionism”, “socialism”, or “Nickleback”!

                I should have been more precise.

                1. “We don’t oppose things regardless of whether Trump goes on TV and calls them “protectionism”, “socialism”, or “Nickleback”!”

                  Now don’t be too hasty. I am against all forms of Nickelbackism.

              2. Right, the tax rates should be the same for everyone. Carrier shouldn’t get a special extra tax break just because they cut a deal.

                If this continues then MORE companies will threaten to move plants to Mexico because you’ve just offered then the incentive of a lower tax rate.

                If we wind up with a lower corporate tax rate that nullifies all the tax breaks then that will be better.

                1. Why shouldn’t they get a special break, considering all the effort they put in to get one? And what’s wrong with its encouraging other companies to do the same? Win-win in my book! More agitation for tax cuts, leading to more tax cuts, leading to more agitation for same.

          2. If taxation is theft, then corporate taxation is double theft.

            And what’s not to like about deregulation?

            1. A self-interested corporatist would oppose deregulation because it means facing more competition and losing market share.

              1. The assertion was that capitalists (like me) like slashing corporate taxation and deregulation.

                We real capitalists should not oppose what Trump did with Carrier when he promised them that he’d go after corporate taxation and deregulate–and they’d miss out on that if they left.

                Because slashing corporate taxes and deregulation are things that real capitalists like.

              2. See: Mattel and lead based paint regulations.

            2. What about lower taxes and deregulation for some people, but only special people that Trump likes?

              Come on, Ken, you’re smarter than this.

              1. But who is agitating for “only”? Who is saying, lower our taxes & regs, but nobody else’s? They may not say to lower everybody else’s, but that’s not the same as saying not to lower everybody else’s.

      3. “What Mr. Trump says is really all we have to judge him by.”

        One thing that probably needs to be said: None of Obama’s non-Senate confirmed international deals will stick.

        That isn’t the new normal. Obama didn’t change everything by virtue of the lightness of his being.

        Any trade deals Trump renegotiates will need to be ratified by the Senate to stick.

        When he submits proposals for ratification, there will be more than merely his words to judge him by.

    2. I see Ken hasn’t been grabbed by the pussy.

      1. This is one of the things the media still doesn’t get.

        The voters were unfazed by allegations of pussy grabbing.

        The media should feel that in their bones.

        Feel it. Know it. Live it.

        When Trump tweets that “Flag burners should be deported”, he’s probably telling the media to go fetch a stick while he does something important.

        When Trump goes on TV and screams about protectionism or immigration, he may be saying something genuine–but he also telling Shikha Dalmia to write articles about him denouncing him for being protectionist and anti-immigrant.

        That’s how Trump got elected–without hardly spending any money. . . . by getting the media to do stories about him denouncing him for being the thing that the voters in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, and Wisconsin really wanted.

        1. The “pussy grabbing” thing is a good example of what you’re talking about. Maybe it’s because I did a hitch in the Navy, but I’ve heard many men say similar things. In my day (yeah I’m old) this was called “bragging”. Generally, the more a man talks about pussy the less of it he’s seen. In Trump’s case, he probably wouldn’t have to bother grabbing, for the simple reason that he’s rich. This truth infuriates feminists but rich guys do get a lot of pussy thrown at them.

          1. ^This.

            I heard one of his “accusers” story. The woman in question went to Mar-Lago(?) for an event with her husband and family when Trump supposedly just kissed her “against her will”.

            What happened after that? Nothing!

            She did not slap his big old Cheeto-Hitler pumpkinhead sideways, she did not even give her best, “How fucking dare you!!!! to his face, and her husband apparently was too busy sucking Trump’s dick for money to say something himself. And she said nothing for 15 years.

            “I know what you are, we’re just negotiating a price”.

    3. Well, we’ll find out what trump’s policies actually are. The Carrier deal strikes me as naked cronyism. But I am pleasantly surprised by some of his cabinet picks, particularly Rex Tillerson and Andy Puzder.

  4. I did have a fair minded liberal friend admit to me that Trumo and Sanders were on the same page with regards to trade protectionism. My friend, of course, wants as much protectionism as possible.

  5. To find out what free trade is, you have to read through a couple thousand pages of secret prose written by lobbyists and bureaucrats.

  6. I don’t remember who it was but one of our commentariat said that their proggie friend main concern was that Trump might enact some progressive policies and get credit for them.

    That sums up the proggie attitude pretty well.

  7. It’s Jack Lew, not Lewis

  8. Holy hell I just looked into Bernie’s proposal more in-depth…we’re lucky Trump is so pro-trade in comparison

  9. Go here to read the whole thing.

    The Weak?

    Yeaaaah… no.

    1. I believe those articles make their way on to Reason’s site in about a week anyways. Sometimes worth the wait, sometimes not.

  10. And how have liberals reacted to Bernie? By dumping on Trump.

    It’s almost like proggies/liberals don’t have any principles.

  11. This was actually… Good. Keep up the trek back to sanity, reason, and you might find something in your stocking next year.

    1. A Trump doll?

  12. Why Do Liberals Hate Trump’s Trade Policies? Because Bernie Did Not Propose Them

    But the man who gets the biggest pass from liberals is their darling Bernie Sanders. Since losing, he has proposed one of the most bone-chilling pieces of anti-trade legislations in living memory.

    Sounds to me like he DID propose them, hence the pointing and laughing at progressive’s hypocrisy.

  13. Partisanship lends itself to hypocrisy. Nothing surprising there. The real issue for libertarians is confronting why Republican voters love so-called liberal trade policies and how this new realization will play out in future elections.

  14. Why Do […]s Hate Trump’s Trade Policies? Because […] Did Not Propose Them

    Seems to be a lot of that going around.

    Libertarian activists have a self-interested Establishment just like everyone else. I discovered that when I got Howard A. Stern to seek the LP nomination for governor of NY. They loved that he endorsed our nominee of 4 yrs. previous, W. Gary Johnson, but when Stern wanted the nomination himself, suddenly it raised hackles.

    I learned similarly of Not Invented Here when trying to license one of my inventions. It goes on even when it comes to coaching children in football. Often it seems the lower the stakes, the more hard fought.

  15. Stop complaining! If liberals hatred of Trump makes them embrace free trade, we should be encouraging them.

    Everyone knows that Democrats have always been at war with Oceania in favor of free trade.

    Side note. Wouldn’t it be cool if the D’s suddenly decided to embrace free markets because they have to be the polar opposite of whatever the R’s are advocating?

  16. This is has been like two straight weeks of non-insane Shikha articles, where am I?

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