Free Trade

The Trade War Is Going So Well That Trump Might Bail Out Apple

"If I didn't help them, they would have a big problem," says Trump. But maybe he's already "helped" enough.


While speaking to reporters at the White House on Tuesday, President Donald Trump tried to argue that his trade war was sapping China of its economic strength.

Instead, he inadvertently pointed out how the trade war is also hurting American companies—and seemed to suggest that his administration could be preparing to bail out of the world's most profitable businesses.

"If I didn't help certain companies—American companies, like Apple," Trump said, before promising that any assistance given to Apple would be "for a very short period of time" until the tech firm was able to relocate its supply chains out of China.

"If I didn't help them, they would have a big problem," Trump said.

Given the White House's haphazard handling of the trade war and the president's propensity for going off-message, it's hard to say what exactly Trump will do. But it is notable that he seems to be considering such a deal—just days after having dinner with Apple CEO Tim Cook. After that Friday night dinner, Trump told reporters that Cook "made a very compelling argument" about how tariffs were making it more difficult for Apple.

It seems likely that Apple will take a beating from the next round of tariffs set to take effect on September 1, but so will everyone else. According to an analysis from investment bank JP Morgan, the next round of tariffs will cost the average household between $600 and $1,000 annually, and Apple figures it will be one of many well-known American brands that will take a hit.

It's possible to interpret Trump's remarks on Tuesday as him suggesting that other American companies could get similar bailouts—but that's an even more untenable position. Trump's earlier bailouts of farmers hurt by the trade war have already cost more money than all his tariffs have generated, so how would the White House pay for another round of tariff relief aimed at huge corporations like Nike, Boeing, and Apple? Even if there was a way to do that, would the same bailouts be offered to smaller businesses?

That's pretty unlikely. Again, look at how the farm bailout was handled. An analysis by the Environmental Working Group, an agriculture policy center, found that 54 percent of the first $8.4 billion spent by the Trump administration's tariff relief program flowed to just 10 percent of farmers receiving aid. More than 1,000 people living in America's 50 largest cities have also received bailout payments—which isn't too surprising since the federal government has a long history of sending farm subsidies to people who aren't farmers. In all, the farm bailouts are a good indication of the problems with a centrally planned economic policy. It might sound good to say that we'll cover the losses of farmers and companies hurt by the trade war, but actually doing that results in typical bureaucratic waste.

If Trump is suddenly more concerned about the plight of American businesses forced to pay his tariffs, then offering to bail Apple out is exactly the wrong thing to do. Even if some sort of federal subsidy would help Apple avoid the tariff costs, it would do nothing to help all the other American businesses that are suffering under those same tariffs—companies whose CEOs don't have access to dinner with the president.

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  1. When bulls fight, it is only the grass that suffers.

    1. Agreed!

      From the article…
      “Trump’s earlier bailouts of farmers hurt by the trade war have already cost more money than all his tariffs have generated, so how would the White House pay for another round of tariff relief aimed at huge corporations like Nike, Boeing, and Apple? Even if there was a way to do that, would the same bailouts be offered to smaller businesses?”

      “Smaller businesses”, my ass!!! How about MEEE?!?!? When do I (glorious supposedly-“free” mere individual) get my rebate or tax cut to make up for all the extra crap-tariffs that I have paid?!? (No, don’t worry, I am NOT holding my breath on this one!)

      1. You will get a tax break when they pay off the national debt. I promise. /s

      2. The American economy can easily absorb these bailouts.
        The bailout of Apple is an obvious incentive to encourage Apple to move it’s manufacturing back to America. I cannot see Trump giving money to Apple if they keep their manufacturing in China. This move will therefore bring hundreds, if not thousands of jobs to Americans as well as protect the intellectual property of Apple. It will also put more pressure on China to give in.
        China cannot win this trade war. The trade imbalance is far to high for them to win. America’s economy continues to grow despite the trade war while China’s economy is shrinking as a rapid rate.

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  2. Trump teases some sort of bailout for Apple

    “I’m gonna do you a favor, no questions asked. And one day, I’m gonna come to you and you’re gonna do me a favor, no questions asked.”

    1. “Why have you never come to me before this day on my daughters wedding the one day you know I can’t deny a favor?”

  3. Bailout? For Apple? You mean the Apple sitting on roughly 80B in cash? That Apple? They don’t need a bailout, they need a reminder that they are an American company. And they’re partnering with Red China to build iPhones….the same people who serially lie, cheat and steal American IP.

    Memo to The Donald: Um….No bailouts for Apple.

    Maybe Timmy Apple needs to think long and hard about his partners. And hell, I own APPL.

    1. I bought some oranges yesterday. They were good.

  4. Too many people here pretend what comes out the speaking end of Trump means anything more than what comes out the excreting end. It doesn’t; He’s just a child-like buffoon. Over the last 24 hours DJT has:

    (1) Accused Jewish Democrats of being “disloyal”.

    (2) Explained that Kashmir is a difficult because “You have Hindus and you have the Muslims and I wouldn’t say they get along so great.”

    (3) Canceled a state visit to Denmark because they wouldn’t sell Greenland.

    (4) Thanked some nobody-twitter-conspiracy-freak for saying Israeli Jews “love (Trump) like he is the second coming of God.”

    (5) Told reporters “I am the chosen one” to take on China.

    (6) Whined the prime minister of Denmark was “nasty” about his proposal to buy Greenland and he’s not going to let her talk to him that way.

    (7) Doubled down on his anti-Semitic disloyalty remark: “If you vote for a Democrat, you’re being disloyal to the Jewish people and you’re being very disloyal to Israel.”

    The only meaning found in Trump’s words is proof of his incompetence. The man is mentally ill.

    1. Wow! Who allowed you in here? Are you ready for the onslaught of raging hatred by Trump’s Brownshirts?

      I am proud to have my comment follow yours.
      The faint voice of libertarian values.

      1. When hihn gives approval, nothing else need be said.

      2. Hey shitstain. Not dead yet I see.

    2. Too many people here pretend what comes out the speaking end of Trump means anything more than what comes out the excreting end.

      I disagree. Too many people pretend that too many people in their own heads ascribe significantly more meaning to what comes out of Trump’s mouth than what comes out of his ass. It seems reasonable to surmise that they do this because they’ve habituated themselves to the notion that everyone should ascribe significantly more meaning to what comes out of any politician’s mouth than what comes out of their ass.

      1. Aha. Cranial rectal inversion syndrome. I have seen this before. Looks like a severe case.

  5. To be fair, Trump has tried to be Presidential, a unifier, over a dozen times. He’s caved each time, slapped back by his base. His own tactical failure, the same tactical stupidity that caused his unbroken string of business failures.

    By refusing to expand his base, that’s all he’s got. They own him. Despite all his false machismo, he’s literally owned by America’s goobers — NOT the working class base, but his goober base who KNOWS they own his soul.

    Fox News has reported his total failures on taxes, the economy, deficits … everything.

    CBO just EXPLODED his tax cut bullshit. Instead of fueling massive growth to avoid debt (which has NEVER happened!), he is now hands-down the WORST President EVER on debt ….despite being handed the longest recovery EVER, for an incoming President… by Obama, who inherited the 2nd worst.

    And today, the White House was FORCED to admit the possibility of an imminent recession.

    The ONLY American to celebrate is Jimmy Carter — no longer THE worst President in modern times.

    Trump’s NEW New Deal is now the biggesr cluster-fuck since FDR.
    Today’s question; will he CRASH soon enough for the GOP to get a nominee good enough to escape a TOTAL rout next year.

    It was GOP fuckups under Dubya that gave us Obama and an entire Dem Congress.

    1. unbroken string of business failures.
      Please post pictures of your gold plated penthouse and hot wife.

      1. Please post pictures of your gold plated penthouse and hot wife three hot (ex-)wives as well as any paid porn stars who claim to have had sex with you.


        Could you imagine if Stormy Daniels had an affair and was paid off by Jimmy Carter? They’d chuck him face down in a shallow grave and start shoveling whether he was dead or not.

      2. “Please post pictures of your gold plated penthouse and hot wife”

        I’ll be happy too, right after Daddy leaves me so many millions that no amount of business failure can squander it all. The hot wife would surely follow (as hot wives always do) but I’m afraid I have too much taste for the gold-plated penthouse. Too much taste and not enuff inherited wealth : That’s the story of my life.

        Seriously now, you must know Trump would be running a three card monte scam on a street corner without Daddy’s millions, right? Not even the most obsequious Trumpian bootlicker has to know that…….

        1. You’re a funny faggot. Especially since you do t understand money or anything.

      3. Normal rich people do not post pictures like that and do not boast about their wealth, at least not any of the ones I know.

        Normal men who are successful with women do not parade them around like trophy’s and boast about their conquests. Not to mention how hot their daughter is.

        Today Donald called himself “the chosen one” .

        I don’t think it is mental illness it is just that he is an asshole.

        1. It depends on who he believes chose him. He can certainly make that claim when it comes to the American people since we was elected president. However, according to the many ‘conspiracy theories’ I have read over the last few years, Trump may well have been picked by military intelligence who are well aware of the massive paedophile ring running out of Washington and needed someone who was not a politician and therefore not compromised by the likes of Epstein to clean up the shithole Washington has become. The Dems will no find anything they can use against Trump. MI have gone over his past and found nothing of consequence the Dems can use to impeach. All the Dems have left is smear and scare tactics. Their latest narrative is to push the possibility of a recession yet there are no underlying indicators that a recession is imminent. They are hoping it will be a self-fulfilling prophecy. They are hoping to scare the American people into not spending and holding onto their capital thereby causing a slowdown. I can’t see this obvious tactic working for anyone who does even rudimentary research. There is no housing market or banking crisis. There is no rapid increase in inflation. There is literally nothing to confirm a recession is looming. In actual reality, More people are employed in America now than any other time in history. The American economy is growing in a controlled and sustainable way and there are no underling factors to indicate this boom will immediately be followed by a bust.

    2. It was Reagan’s fuck up that gave us Bush the Elder and it was all downhill from there. Dole? McCain? Romney? Are you kidding me? Big Government Nanny-Staters every one.

      1. Do you mean Bush the Lesser that gave us Bush the Least?

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  7. Given the White House’s haphazard handling of the trade war and the president’s propensity for going off-message, it’s hard to say what exactly Trump will do.

    It’s hard to say that he’s going off message when nobody has the slightest idea what the message is. Assuming there is one.

    1. It is Trump’s unpredictability that makes him hard to pin down. He first gets the press to second guess what he is about to do and then does the opposite. Just look at the way the press handled the North Korea situation. They pushed to narrative that war with N.K. was inevitable and then Trump turned it around and peace broke out. It is my guess that all the while the press were predicting doom and gloom on the Korean peninsular that Trump was actually putting the finishing touches on a peace deal. Trump allowed the press to run with their narrative and they ended up looking like assholes when the opposite happened.
      How many times has Trump played the press for fools and they fall for it every time. Trump’s genius is that he has the press hanging on every tweet he makes while he moves in the background doing the opposite. It would not surprise me if the meeting with Chinese delegates in September results in a finalised trade deal. Trump may well have 99% of the deal already negotiated and the meeting is merely to sign on the dotted line. All the while, the press are ranting and raving about how bad the trade war is and how much it is affecting the American people without once reporting on the state of the Chinese economy and how China cannot go on much longer without reaching a settlement. The American economy is still growing at an impressive rate despite the trade war while the Chinese economy is shrinking at a rapid rate because of the trade war. China cannot win this war because there is a massive trade imbalance in their favour. Tariffs are having a far greater effect on Chinese exports than they are on American exports to China.

  8. Apple is sitting on more cash than the government.

    Who should be bailing whom?

    1. I do not think it is cash they need. The trade war is screwing with their supply chain and costs. They are global and competing in a highly competitive global market. They are already pricy and can’t raise prices any higher. If Samsung can get the components and materials at lower cost they are screwed.

      What they need is for Trump to back off and end this stupid thing.

      1. Fuck what Apple needs. This is a trade war which needs to be fought. Apple made their bed when they took their production to China at the cost of American jobs. Doing so they made massive profits at the expense of the American workers they screwed over. I don’t think they have the right to even call themselves and American company. Did they honestly believe they could continue to use cheap Chinese labour to increase their profits without any consequences and still import their crappy phones without any significant tariffs. Why would anyone side with Apple, especially the American press.

  9. Fuck taxpayer paid bailouts.
    Go under motherfuckers!

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