Free Trade

The Trump Administration Is Still Charging 25 Percent Tariffs on Disinfectants Used To Combat COVID-19

"The tariff is making it more difficult for companies to supply our nation's essential workers with antiseptics and sanitizing products they need."

|

President Donald Trump's tariffs are crimping supply chains for chemicals used to manufacture disinfectants and cleaning products—items that are needed to combat COVID-19 and that will be in even higher demand as the economy reopens.

In a letter sent last week to U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, the American Chemistry Council, an industry group, highlighted dozens of items that are subject to the Trump administration's tariffs. The list sent to Lighthizer includes various chemical building blocks used to manufacture everything from soap to detergent, and surface cleaners to bleach.

One of the most important is isopropyl alcohol, a critical ingredient in hand sanitizer and other disinfectants used by households, the food service industry, and first responders. Since 2018, imports of isopropyl alcohol from China have been subject to 25 percent tariffs.

"The tariff is making it more difficult for companies to supply our nation's essential workers with antiseptics and sanitizing products they need to protect themselves and others from COVID-19," Chris Jahn, president and CEO of the American Chemistry Council, tells Reason.

The Trump administration took action in March to exempt medical equipment—including face masks and personal protective equipment (PPE)—from its tariff regime. But those exclusions did not apply to chemicals, like isopropyl alcohol and the dozens of other items on the council's list that are not strictly defined as medical equipment but remain crucial to many products used by health care workers.

Trump's tariffs are also affecting companies that need to purchase disinfectant wipes and other cleaning products. "According to the CDC guidelines…to prevent the spread of COVID-19 it recommends the use of EPA approved disinfectant wipes," wrote Daniel Marquardt, principal owner of Hilo Industries LLC, a Virginia-based construction contractor, in a tariff exemption request filed last month. Hilo, like many other businesses across the country, needs to import tubs of disinfectant wipes that will be "used by our customers, employees, and their customers to enable them to work and patronize safely to help combat and control COVID-19," Marquardt wrote.

But the tariff exemption process is opaque and slow—far from the ideal way to relieve the stress tariffs are causing. Sens. Tom Carper (D–Del.) and Pat Toomey (R–Pa.) have urged the Trump administration to move more quickly and issue more tariff exemptions in order to speed the response to the pandemic, but White House trade adviser Peter Navarro has laughed off those concerns as "fake news."

In the long term, maintaining tariffs that make it more difficult and expensive to manufacture disinfectants seems even more foolish. As the economy reopens, there will likely be a surge in demand for cleaning products capable of killing the virus that causes COVID-19 in order to keep the customers of restaurants, offices, and salons safe from infection. There are American companies churning out those products, but Trump's tariffs are getting in the way.

Trump and his supporters often seek to frame the trade war as a way to break America's supposed dependence on Chinese goods. But if these tariffs were intended to drive producers out of China, well, they weren't really necessary in the first place. In 2017, the last year before Trump's trade war began, the U.S. imported about $1.8 million of isopropyl alcohol from China. But the United States imported more than $121 million from all sources around the globe, according to data from the Department of Commerce.

The tariffs have also been ineffective at their stated goal. In 2019, U.S. companies imported $1.9 million of isopropyl alcohol from China and paid more than $400,000 to the federal government in taxes for the privilege of doing so—up from about $100,000 in import duties in 2017.

"The tariffs on China aren't really thwarting these imports," says Dan Ikenson, director of trade policy studies at the Cato Institute.

But the tariffs are making it more expensive for American businesses to make those purchases, and therefore leaving them unable to purchase as much as they might otherwise choose. Much of the Trump administration's trade war has been a real-life lesson in what economists call a "deadweight loss"—that is, a market inefficiency that creates losses for some participants but no gains for anyone else—but rarely does it appear this obvious.

"Trump really needs to drop tariffs on all imports during this pandemic," says Ikenson. "That would free up cash flow—north of $6 billion per month—for companies to continue to operate, keep supplies moving, and keep workers on payrolls."

The Trump administration has delayed tariff payments for three months as a way to boost liquidy for American importers, but that's little help over the long term. Tariffs on products that are necessary components of disinfectants will only make it more difficult to achieve the reopening that Trump desperately seeks.

"If there were ever a time to put differences aside and provide tariff relief to support U.S. national security, economic stability, and the health and livelihoods of all Americans," says Jahn, "that time is now."

NEXT: Masks Can Be a Symbol of Privacy and Personal Responsibility, Not Tyranny

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. Let me guess.

    The tariff brings the price of a bottle of alcohol from 80 cents to a dollar but it somehow appears at $47 on your Medical bill.

    Also, I hear you get a rebate if you inject it directly into your lungs.

    1. Change Your Life Right Now! Work From Comfort Of Your Home And Receive Your First Paycheck Within A Week. No Experience Needed, No Boss Over Your Shoulder… Say Goodbye To Your Old Job! Limited Number Of Spots Open…
      Find out how HERE…… See More here

    2. According to this Business Wire article:

      https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20180424006094/en/Global-Isopropyl-Alcohol-Market-2018-2023—ResearchAndMarkets.com

      we account for one-tenth of global export volumes — but we also account for one-fifth of global export volumes!

      What’s wrong with this picture?

  2. The germs are gonna get you!

    1. The Rona’s a’comin!

    2. Sarah Jackson, Start earning today from $600 to $754 easily by working online from home. Last month i have generate and received $19663 from this job by giving this only maximum 2 hours a day of my life. Easiest job in the world and earning from this job are just awesome. Everybody can now get this job and start earning cash online right now by just follow instructions click on this link and vist tabs( Home, Media, Tech ) for more details thanks….. See More Details

  3. Nice try Eric. Even you admit it only applies to the source of the problem, Communist China.
    So buy from someone else.

    1. And he ignores, again, the DoD document from Friday showing that China limited their own exports in order to stock up on supplies. The shipments to the US were going to be hampered tariffs or not. Eric doesn’t like honest analysis.

      1. It just infuriates me that the Reasonistas refuse to do even the most basic research anymore in their desperate pursuit of orangemanbad.

        In the first dozen comments here, Boehm’s premise was either refuted or valid extenuating circumstances were presented.
        With just a few minutes googling he could have at least anticipated the refutations and shored up his argument. But he couldn’t be bothered, he just typed up this junk, pressed submit, clapped his hands and said “There, another victory for the ‘Resistance'”.

        It’s the “I don’t give a shit about telling the truth or doing my job because my side is righteous” attitude that’s so prevalent here now that pisses me off…
        Or maybe journalism was always like this, and we just didn’t know because we didn’t have easy access to the raw info.

        1. He gets paid for clicks. He’s a whore. Expect him to behave like one.

        2. ” clapped his hands and said “There, another victory for the ‘Resistance’”.

          More like he clapped his hands and said “close enough for Koch work.”

        3. “…desperate pursuit of orangemanbad.”

          Orange Man bad?!? He BAD, all right! He SOOO BAD, He be GOOD! He be GREAT! He Make America Great Again!

          We KNOW He can Make America Great Again, because, as a bad-ass businessman, He Made Himself and His Family Great Again! He Pussy Grabber in Chief!

          See The Atlantic article by using the below search-string in quotes:
          “The Many Scandals of Donald Trump: A Cheat Sheet” or this one…

          https://reason.com/2019/09/02/republicans-choose-trumpism-over-property-rights-and-the-rule-of-law/

          He pussy-grab His creditors in 7 bankruptcies, His illegal sub-human workers ripped off of pay on His building projects, and His “students” in His fake Get-Rich-like-Me realty schools, and so on. So, He has a GREAT record of ripping others off! So SURELY He can rip off other nations, other ethnic groups, etc., in trade wars and border wars, for the benefit of ALL of us!!!

          All Hail to THE Pussy Grabber in Chief!!!

          Most of all, HAIL the Chief, for having revoked karma! What comes around, will no longer go around!!! The Donald has figured out that all of the un-Americans are SOOO stupid, that we can pussy-grab them all day, every day, and they will NEVER think of pussy-grabbing us right back!

          Orange Man Bad-Ass Pussy-Grabber all right!

          1. Clinton actually pussy-grabbed. I didn’t care then and I don’t care now.

            What I care about is low taxes, less regulation, no wars, and less redistribution. That’s mostly it. Anybody who can deliver that gets my vote.

            1. Fair enough. But this new culture war thing with rednecks not wearing masks in public has to stop. We need to get our economy going again, and if we need to decrease our social distancing to do so, we better increase our mask efforts. It will have a measurable impact on reducing the spread + psychologically it makes a large portion of the population feel better and, so more likely to enhance the reboot the economy. Trump has been pushing this crap and he needs to cut it out and tell his supporters to wear the masks in public, or this reboot will fail.

      2. “Eric doesn’t like honest analysis.”

        And JesseSPAZ is THE most honest poster around!

        https://reason.com/2020/02/07/michael-bloomberg-and-the-imperious-presidency-2/#comment-8120734

        JesseSPAZ comment: “He can fire political appointees for any fucking reason he wants.”
        Jesse’s over-archingly lusting after the super-powers of the Trumptatorship YET AGAIN!!!
        Trump can fire them for not assigning their entire paychecks to Trump… For not licking Trump’s balls as much as JesseSPAZ does… For turning down Trump’s requests for then to perform personal murder-for-hire… For having fucked Stormy Daniels out of turn, when it was Trump’s turn… For Air Force Captain-Sir-Dude-Sir-Pilot-Sir refusing orders to go and bomb Nancy Pelosi’s house…

        Just when I was rooting for JesseSPAZ to turn from his evil ways, he doubles down on Trumptatorship-worship AGAIN!

        And JesseSPAZ NEVER-EVER takes back his lies! Because JessePSAZ is perfect, in His Own Sacred Mind!

        1. What’s hilarious about you spamming this all over the website is that political appointees can, and routinely are, fired on a whim all the fucking time. It has nothing to do with Trump being a dictator.

          1. So then you agree with all of the below…
            Trump can fire them for not assigning their entire paychecks to Trump… For not licking Trump’s balls as much as JesseSPAZ does… For turning down Trump’s requests for then to perform personal murder-for-hire… For having fucked Stormy Daniels out of turn, when it was Trump’s turn… For Air Force Captain-Sir-Dude-Sir-Pilot-Sir refusing orders to go and bomb Nancy Pelosi’s house…

            Then they wonder why conservatives aren’t taken seriously!

            I have news for you: I served in the USA’s military forces, all of which are staffed by “political appointees”. The Armed Forces are BY LAW, required to follow their own written policies, to include policies concerning their firings of their “employees”!

            Jesse engages in lies and hyperbole, and he NEVER takes it back! THIS is an example of a reason why frozen-over-brained, locked-minded, egotistical, “perfect”-people-type conservatives like Trump and Jesse, can be taken seriously, only at hazard to oneself and the nation!

            1. I mean he could literally fire them for any of those reasons. Some of those reasons would be egregiously criminal and rightly result in impeachment, but that doesn’t change the fact that a position that serves “at the pleasure of the president” is up to the president’s whim.

              Which is why ambassadorships, etc. are almost always politically well connected shitheels or donors.

              I really don’t understand why this seems controversial to you.

              1. Jesse voraciously lusts after a Trumptatorship, as do many Trumpistas. If a Trumptatorship doesn’t scare you, and slavery to a Trumptatorship sounds better to you than freedom does, then there’s not much hope of changing your mind.

                Demented Pro-Trump commentors here (like JesseSPAZ) think themselves to be Constitutional Scholars, and bless the idea that the Trumptatorship has “absolute rights”. ‘Cause Trump says so!!!
                https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2020/02/president-trump-absolute-rights/607168/
                Donald Trump’s Strange and Dangerous ‘Absolute Rights’ Idea
                This is a profound misunderstanding of the American constitutional system.

                END TITLES IMPORTS

                Yet Trump can’t bring Himself to go on a much-needed head-chopping (douchebag-firing, layoffs) spree at the FDA, until such time as the USA has as much freedom as ALL OTHER NATIONS ON THE PLANET have, to blow on OTC cheap plastic flutes! Super-Trump, where are you now? North Koreans have more cheap-plastic-flutes freedoms than we do!

                1. I’m not a “Trumpista” by any stretch of the imagination. And we are under no threat of a Trump dictatorship.

                  Pull yourself together.

    2. Meanwhile it’s taking time for warm and fuzzy Denmark to be tooling up their Isopropyl Alcohol industry. Funny thing about crises, they don’t want until you get your supply lines shifted over, the need to sanitize is today, not three months from now.

      I can’t believe you’re defending Trump’s personal decision to gouge the healthcare industry over his spat with China.

      1. Everybody should have a fucking spat with China at this point. They hid the problem all the way up through Chinese New Year so their countrymen could spread the coof far and wide, locked down Wuhan internally while still allowing them to travel internationally, took in PPE from other countries and then had the gall to try and make a buck by selling that same PPE back to those same countries later on, and sent out crappy COVID tests that had a 70% failure rate.

        Fuck China, and fuck anyone sticking up for them. Tariffs are the least those chink assholes deserve.

        1. Agreed. China deliberately obfuscated and lied about the nature of the Wuhan coronavirus. Further, they knowingly allowed people out of Wuhan to the rest of the world, while prohibiting people from Wuhan to travel internally within China.

          The deliberate and considered actions by China have lead to tens of thousands of deaths in the United States. That cannot go unanswered and unpunished.

      2. “Trump’s personal decision to gouge the healthcare industry”

        It’s a bloody tariff on Isopropyl which can be and is manufactured anywhere and everywhere. Even in this age of globalization it’s manufactured in every single country with an oil industry. It’s just water and propene.
        A 10000% tariff on Chinese Isopropyl wouldn’t affect a damn thing.

        This isn’t the first time Boehm’s lied about tariffs and sanitizer.
        Last month he wrote an article about how OrangeHitler wanted everyone to die by refusing to stop tariffs on Purell sanitizer.

        Readers here checking Boehm’s “facts” discovered that what actually happened is that before the pandemic Purell had applied for a tariff exemption on a computer chip used in their automatic dispenser sensors, and were turned down because the request was improperly filed.
        That’s it.

        You can’t trust a thing he writes. Everything has to be verified.

        1. “A 10000% tariff on Chinese Isopropyl wouldn’t affect a damn thing.”!!

          Let me use some logic to trace thru the sequence of events that demonstrates how wrong that statement is.

          That large of a tariff effectively removes Chinese isopropryl from the market.

          This increases the demand for isopropyl from domestic or other sources.

          What happens when the demand for alternate sources of isopropyl go up? Oh yea, the law of supply and demand kicks in and THE PRICE GOES UP!

          What happens when the price goes up? Oh yea, the same law kicks in again and THE AMOUNT PURCHASED GOES DOWN.

          So we end up having less isopropryl and paying more for it. This of course is true of all tariffs, not just this one.

          I’d say to have less and pay more is to be pretty damn affected!

          1. You’re an idiot.
            Chinese imports of isopropyl even without tariffs are more expensive than buying the equipment (a still) and whipping it up locally, which is why imports are completely irrelevant to the North American market.

            Propene is essentially a byproduct of refining, it’s available anywhere there is an abundance of propane from oil/gas operations… like from all the fracking in the Midwest.
            High quality isopropyl can be made in your basement for practically nothing by mixing propene with water in your jury-rigged home still; and hundreds of manufacturers (and highschool chem classes) in North America do just that.

            That’s why Chinese imports are tiny and irrelevant and usually part of something else. And that’s why this article is panic mongering, and why you’re a gullible tool.

            1. And bleach is made from lye and table salt. You’re either a moron or a liar if you’re quoting k street lobbyists as technical specialists.

            2. I guess I threw you with my appeal to logic.

              So how much isopropyl do we import a year from China? Sounds like you might know. I have no idea but even if the liquid itself is free, there’s still cheap labor involved in getting it to the final product. It’s still something consumers pay for. It’s not free. Why doesn’t it follow the law of supply and demand? What else in your opinion doesn’t?

              In other words, instead of calling me an idiot, find the flaw in my logic and kindly point it out to me.

              1. It’s in TFA

                “In 2019, U.S. companies imported $1.9 million of isopropyl alcohol from China”

              2. In other words, instead of calling me an idiot, find the flaw in my logic and kindly point it out to me.

                He already pointed out the flaw in your logic: the US buys a negligible amount of Isopropyl from China.

                1. So my logic holds for anything we buy a non-negligible amount? That makes you an ardent free-trader!

                  1. I’m a free trader for things that don’t impact national security. Where did I give the impression otherwise?

                    1. He, like other bumper sticker econ majors here, dont understand supply chain risks are actually a cost. They should be mitigated.

                    2. And JesseSPAZ is an econ GENIUS! Who understands most of all, the TRUMP is the ultimate “stable genius” about EVERYTHING, to include the economics of injecting and inhaling bleach to cleanse your viruses away!

                      Here’s all that you need to know, when “channeling” the stable geniuses, JesseSPAZ and Trump:

                      JesseAZ is ALWAYS right… In his own mind!
                      See https://reason.com/2020/01/01/trumps-inartful-dodges/#comment-8068480
                      JesseAZ is TOTALLY on board with dictatorship (presumably so long as it is an “R” dictator that we are talking of).
                      With reference to Trump, JesseAZ says…
                      “He is not constitutionally bound on any actions he performed.”
                      Jesse, if at least you could couch things honestly! “JesseAZ WANTS a Trumptatorship, Jesse hates the stupid Constitution, Jesse thinks we’d be better off under Orange Man’s Unlimited Powers, Jesse AZ-also thinks his support of the Trumptatorship will allow JesseAZ to share in the resulting pussy-grabbing fest… “ Whatever it is that is REALLY in your head! Context and phrasing matter! If you said THIS IS WHAT I WANT, at least you’d be HONEST! But no, you say…
                      “He is not constitutionally bound on any actions he performed.”
                      Then you expect people to believe the lies that you post! I, for one, am not fooled!

                    3. Demented Pro-Trump commentors here (like JesseSPAZ) think themselves to be Constitutional Scholars, and bless the idea that the Trumptatorship has “absolute rights”. ‘Cause Trump says so!!!
                      https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2020/02/president-trump-absolute-rights/607168/
                      Donald Trump’s Strange and Dangerous ‘Absolute Rights’ Idea
                      This is a profound misunderstanding of the American constitutional system.

                      END TITLES IMPORTS

                      Yet Trump can’t bring Himself to go on a much-needed head-chopping (douchebag-firing, layoffs) spree at the FDA, until such time as the USA has as much freedom as ALL OTHER NATIONS ON THE PLANET have, to blow on OTC cheap plastic flutes! Super-Trump, where are you now? North Koreans have more cheap-plastic-flutes freedoms than we do!

                    4. Sidd – I got the impression when you said “flaw in my argument”. My argument is that restrictions on trade raise prices and produce shortages. i.e., we pay more and get less. And it follows logically from the most basic of economic laws.

                      I for one feel more secure in a world in which the two baddest asses are trading with each other, thereby building groups in both countries with a vested interest in peace, than when they’re isolated such that each becomes the other’s convenient scapegoat for all that’s wrong with the world. That’s what leads to war.

                    5. “And it follows logically from the most basic of economic laws.”

                      It also follows from those same laws, that if you cut off a negligible supplier of something, the rise in prices will be negligible.

              3. I have no idea but even if the liquid itself is free, there’s still cheap labor involved in getting it to the final product. It’s still something consumers pay for. It’s not free. Why doesn’t it follow the law of supply and demand? What else in your opinion doesn’t?

                Shipping costs apparently don’t exists in your fantasy land.

                1. Supply-and-demand are in fantasy land? And what part of reality are you from?

                  Of course shipping costs exist. If all factors into the cost of the product when it’s in the market.

                  1. I have no idea but even if the liquid itself is free, there’s still cheap labor involved in getting it to the final product. It’s still something consumers pay for. It’s not free.

                    This comment only makes sense if you ignore shipping costs.

              4. “I threw you with my appeal to logic”

                I suppose you had to appeal for it because you have none of you’re own.

                I’ll spell it out for you.

                1. Chinese isopropyl annual imports to the US amount to less than the cost of a 3-bedroom bungalow in San Francisco ($1.9 m). The US on the other hand, produces over 900,000 tons a year.

                2. The isopropyl that does come from China is usually packaged with something else. For example, as part of things like cleaning kits.

                3. It is far more expensive for North American retailers to ship it from China than to tool up and make it themselves or buy local.

                Because it is more expensive to ship it from China, nobody does. That is why a 1000% tariff would not affect domestic supply or demand.

    3. So buy from someone else.

      The Nationalist’s version of “learn to code.”

      1. Pillow Man can retool part of his factory to create PPE but there’s no one that can convert to isopropyl alcohol production?

        1. Why should the government try to manipulate supply chains in the first place?

          Also, I’m guessing that there are all kinds of red tape to starting isopropyl alcohol production here in the US. Retooling isn’t going to happen overnight. And the reason that we buy it from China in the first place is that we likely can’t compete on price. If we could we would already.

          1. It’s just water and propene. It’s a fracking byproduct. The US (and everywhere else) manufacturers it for pennies to the ton.

            Hospitals use ethanol more than isopropyl anyway.

            1. Seems there’s not a lot of fracking going on right now.

            2. Literally the only reason consumers use isopropyl is because it’s toxic, and thus not taxed as booze when sold to consumers. If it weren’t for that, everybody would be using ethanol instead.

          2. “Why should the government try to manipulate supply chains in the first place?”

            With China? Where should I start?

            1. “Where should I start?”

              By leaving the adults and logical, fact-driven folks to discuss these matters, and getting back to the only thing you know how to do, which is to smear your poop on the walls!

              1. So you’ll be joining the kids then.

          3. China ready manipulated supply chains…

            Why is this so fucking hard for some of you.

            1. A lot of idiots have jumped off of cliffs, cut off their dicks, committed suicide, voted for Trump, or done any of 1,000,000 stupid things.

              What does that have to do with what I should do, or what we should do? Is there any connection here?

            2. The only way to fix it is by our government manipulating supply chains? Since when is the best way to beat a command economy to out-command them?

    4. Yes, Reason thinks supporting Communist China and helping them build their military even stronger is preferable to getting the raw products from somewhere else. That isn’t Reason; that’s national suicide.

  4. Probably the least bad tax is the one on importing goods from a genocidal communist dictatorship

    1. Some least bad taxes are worse than other least bad taxes. And tariffs are worse.

      The purpose of taxes is to raise revenue for necessary government services. But the purpose of tariffs is industrial protectionism, not revenue. It’s the worse tax because of it.

      1. “The purpose of tariffs…”

        What are you talking about? Tariffs can have an intent to raise revenue just like any other tax. All federal tax revenue in the early days of the republic was raised through tariffs.

        Of course, taxing any one revenue source will always have disproportionate effects. Property taxes will hurt property owners the most. Sales and income taxes will hurt people with less disposable income. … And given that you have to tax *some* revenue source, it seems to me the least bad tax is a tax that offsets the costs of regulations the government imposes. Lets say we have all of these expensive labor, environmental, and safety regulations in our country that increases the costs to do business 25%. Then we do trade with another country that doesn’t have these expensive labor, environmental, and safety regulations, so we put a 25% tariff on them to make everything equal. Seems fair to me.

        In fact, Adam Smith agreed. In The Wealth of Nations, he argues this as the exception to the rule and says these types of tariffs make sense.

        1. So we are too fat to compete and therefore we need to force our competitors to wear a weighted suit? For fairness? Who do you want to nominate as the Handicapper General?

          1. Are you kidding me? You just ignored everything I said.

            What the situation is like is that we force our domestic businesses a weighted suit, but you’re complaining that our competitors might have to wear one too.

            1. Nope I read everything you said. Instead of arguing that we should get rid of burdensome regulations that do nothing to help consumers, employees and businesses and only serve to further increase government control of our lives; you want more burdensome regulations to make things “fair”.

              1. Nah, I think we should get rid of unnecessarily burdensome regulations. But we should also not allow dumping in rivers and use our army to fire on strikers, like they do in countries like China.

                But hey, if you think we should allow dumping in rivers and we should fire on strikers, you can try to sell that to the American public, instead of hand-wringing about tariffs. The public would reject that, of course.

                The idea that we would ever be able to strip our regulatory environment down to be competitive with China is either naive or is ignorant of what’s actually allowed in China.

                1. SAGN is right. If the ecological damage is so great or the working conditions so dangerous (either could very well be) we should be grateful for other countries more willing to take those risks and happy to buy from them. What’s to be gained by adding the extra burden? It drives up the price and, to the extent it does anything at all, brings back more of the jobs we’re supposedly trying to have less of.

        2. “What are you talking about? ”

          It’s a Hihn sockpuppet, it irrationally hates the Constitution.

          1. Whats the Hihn reference? Frederick A Hihn?

            1. A prolific and deranged old man, who told us he eats his own shit.

            2. A smooth-brained sociopath whose capslock key gets stuck when he posts here.

        3. Tariffs were also instituted to prevent Great Britain from dominating American trade while American manufacturing was in its infancy. America did not grow to be a manufacturing juggernaut by practicing “free trade”. Neither did any other major power. Even China doesn’t practice “free trade”.

          1. Even China? China doesn’t practice free anything least of all free trade! The amazing thing is that so many of us want to emulate them.

            1. The Chinese do many things that are in their interest. And to the degree that it doesn’t conflict with the US Constitution, there is no reason our government can’t do the same.

              Tariffs are constitutional and sensible, at least as long as we have domestic taxation of production and labor.

              1. The Chinese oligarchy does many things that are in the Chinese oligarchy’s interest, that’s for sure. But that doesn’t mean they’re in the interest of China in general. The Chinese consumer, for example, gets totally screwed. Most of the products of the world’s markets are off limits for him.

                Tariffs stink just like all taxes stink and a balance of taxation should, I’ll agree, include tariffs. But that’s not why they’re passed nor why they’re proposed. It’s always from the point of view that they’re good for America. That’s bullshit! They’re good for the American companies that are thereby protected. But for the far greater number of us they’re not good at all.

      2. Even adam Smith discussed retaliatory tariffs in a market dummy.

        1. Did Adam Smith understand the ugly nature of political back-stabbing and self-seeking and rent-seeking? Did A. Smith study the below:

          Meanwhile in the real world…
          https://reason.com/2019/04/22/trumps-washing-machine-tariffs-cleaned-out-consumers/
          Trump’s Washing Machine Tariffs Cleaned Out Consumers
          A new report finds the tariffs raised $82 million for the U.S. Treasury but ended up increasing costs for consumers by about $1.2 billion.
          PROTECTIONISM DOESN’T WORK!!! DUH!!!
          Protect American washing-machine makers from Chinese competition? The FIRST thing that American washing-machine makers do, is jack UP their prices… AND the prices of dryers to boot, too! To SOAK the hell out of all of us consumers!!!
          From the above-linked Reason article about washing machines…
          “All told, those tariffs raised about $82 million for the U.S. Treasury but ended up increasing costs for consumers by about $1.2 billion during 2018 … (deleted). Although the trade policy did cause some manufacturers to shift production from overseas to the United States in an effort to avoid the new tariffs, the 1,800 jobs created by Trump’s washing machine tariffs cost consumers an estimated $820,000 per job.”
          Summary: Nickels and dimes to the USA treasury; boatloads of pain for consumers. USA jobs created? Yes, at GREAT expense! Putting these 1.8 K workers on a super-generous welfare program would have been WAY better for all the rest of us! Plus, you know the WORKERS don’t make super-huge bucks (no $820,000 per job for THEM); the goodies flow to the EXECUTIVES at the top of the washing-machine companies! The same ones who play golf with The Donald, and join him for gang-banging Stormy Daniels! Essentially at our expense!

          A. Smith was no super-genius! He didn’t understand just how nasty Trumpistas and other A-holes can get!

          1. Adam Smith understood something obvious: if the government saddles domestic producers with extra costs, then it needs to impose similar costs on imports through tariffs.

            You fail to grasp this pretty elementary fact.

            1. If any one of you must be subjected to insanely senseless and counter-productive punishment, then, in the name of basic fairness, you must ALL be subjected to insanely senseless and counter-productive punishment!!! NONE may escape The Sacred Wrath!!! (Other than our kindergarten teacher, of course).

              Because our kindergarten teacher said so!

      3. The purpose of tariffs is to level the playing field when government imposes costs on domestic producers and domestic labor.

        Imposing massive costs on domestic product and labor while importing tariff free from elsewhere is a textbook way of destroying your manufacturing base and your economy. That’s what you’re advocating, and it’s stupid.

        1. Brandybuck never advocated this part of your equation:

          “Imposing massive costs on domestic product and labor…”

          That’s where you have a MASSIVE logic failure! Doing stupid thing “A” is hardly ever fixed by doing stupid thing “B”! FAR more often, the TWO stupid things COMPOUND the stupidity of each other!

        2. Well you’re half right. “Imposing massive costs on domestic product and labor” is a textbook way of destroying your economy. But imposing additional massive costs on your consumers only makes it worse.
          If the massive costs are there for reasons such as environmental protection or occupational safety (not saying they are), then that’s a recognition that these are jobs we want to have less of, not more. In that case we should be grateful that other countries are willing to pollute or endanger themselves for our benefit. So why penalize them (and ourselves) with tariffs.

  5. Alcohol imploding!

  6. God bless the tariffs! God bless Trump!

    1. Amen!

      1. How dare you! God should be asking Trump to bless Him!

        Yeah, the idea that the American Chemistry Council – aside from the irony of the American Chemistry Council buying foreign chemicals – is doing anything other than rent-seeking is absurd and the idea that the import tariffs are simultaneously crippling the industry while being a negligible part of the industry is simply illogical, but there is such a thing as the principle of the thing. You know, if you’ve got any principled objections to government inserting itself into commercial transactions by willing participants in the name of collectivist action by Top Men. Which, unfortunately, not a lot of people have. We’re all socialists now and the common good takes precedence over individual desires.

    2. It’s sad how idiotic you and sarcasmic have become.

    3. The funniest part about this is Brandy and Sarcasmic are so fucking dumb they think nobody was against China’s history of free market violations prior to Trump. That is literally how dumb these two people are.

      1. A lot of people, probably because their heads are stuck up their own asses, muss something about Trump – he didn’t originate any ideas. He didn’t come up with some novel ideology and spread it to the masses.
        Trump saw a market opportunity: people who have beliefs and desires that no politicians, R or D, were supportive of.

    4. Tariffs weren’t designed for only the President to use them as he pleased. Congress is supposed to vote on tariffs.

      It is pretty clear that Trump knows nothing about tariffs. Slapping tariffs on Red China while still buying from Vietnam, Malaysia, Indonesia, Mexico, and every other country who has super low wages and little to no benefits makes no economic sense. Jobs won’t come back here until it is clear that it does not pay to produce overseas. Otherwise, it is an exercise in futility.

      1. I’d say it’s more an exercise in sticking it to Chinese imports in particular. I don’t think it’s ever really been about bringing those jobs or plants back here.

  7. Isopropal alcohol can be made very quickly with existing infrastructure, Reason even wrote an article about that but there it is the deep state regulations that slow that one down. Maybe Trump could make an executive order or something Hitlorian like that forcing it to be produce here.

    I wouldn’t trust anything from China

  8. I think the problem is the ATFE, get rid of them and we will have tons of isopropyl booze

  9. >>needed to combat COVID-19

    we have always been at war with …

  10. Eric has a Trump-it, and can only play one note.

    1. off-key and discordant.

  11. If you don’t like tariffs then you’re a TSD suffering Hillary voter.

    1. I’m sure China will liberalize their government and not be a bunch of IP thieving, virus-spreading trash any day now; we just need to keep our supply lines rooted there and they’ll eventually listen to reason.

      1. In the mean time let’s punish consumers of Chinese goods! That’ll teach those dirty ChiComs who’s boss!

        1. We only care about liberty as long as we can buy cheap Chinese crap!

          1. Free trade is for chumps! Protectionism is where it’s at! Three cheers for tariffs! Hip hip hooray! Hip hip hooray! Hip hip hooray!

            1. “Taxes on foreign products bad. Taxes on domestic products and services good!”
              -sarcasmic

              1. Yeah, that’s what I said.

                1. At least you admit it.

            2. “I’m against slavery unless the slaves are making me cheap shit”

            3. Free trade never once made a country great. American manufacturing might occurred because we had tariffs in place. Then we decided that was stupid, and free trade was great. Next thing you knew, plants closed left and right and went overseas. But what do economists care? They are paid by manufacturers. And so many are now stuck with low-paying service jobs. Free trade is great; actually it is a race to the bottom. Who will work for less money and less benefits. Yes, let’s promote that idea.

          2. We only care about liberty as long as we can buy cheap Chinese crap!

            As opposed to not caring about liberty? You’re not even making sense.

            1. I love when you announce to the world that you’re stupid.

    2. You realize only you and the other dumb econ major brandy brought up trump right?

      Are you able to even form a cogent argument at this point?

    3. Eliminating tariffs while keeping high corporate taxes and regulations is stupid.

      It’s the kind of stupidity Hillary voters are prone to, though not just them.

  12. How did the comments section around here get so thoroughly overrun with Trump cum garglers?

    1. Speaking from that cum gargling experience?

    2. Don’t you have an AOC shrine in your basement to jerk off to?

    3. Fuck off Jeff, you’re not fooling anyone.

    4. Why did only the bumper sticker econ majors bring up trump?

  13. So that’s why he wanted everyone to inject disinfectants: to increase tariff revenue. /sarc

  14. lol that extra 10 cents a bottle of alcohol isn’t stopping anything. Nonstory. Alchol has a hug markup but you won’t see this writer noting that. The 25% in on bulk alchohol

    1. Exactly.

  15. If this is your case against tariffs, you did a terrible job. There’s better arguments than paying slightly higher for medical equipment and supplies that will get jacked up 500% to the customer and their insurer.

    Really, Reason keeps putting these articles out that don’t really prove anything, but they do appear to be cyclic like an editor’s menstrual cycle. TDS seems to happen that way, in waves.

    1. Exactly. Almost as if they are making Red China’s case to continue to be dependent on them. We already know that is a lousy idea. Perhaps if the Chinese media bought out Reason and fired their staff, they might take a slightly different tack.

    2. “Reason keeps putting these articles out that don’t really prove anything”

      Please refute the below (or are you a flat-Earther, or a Holocaust-denier, requiring ever-shifting and impossible-to-meet standards of “proof”?)

      Meanwhile in the real world…
      https://reason.com/2019/04/22/trumps-washing-machine-tariffs-cleaned-out-consumers/
      Trump’s Washing Machine Tariffs Cleaned Out Consumers
      A new report finds the tariffs raised $82 million for the U.S. Treasury but ended up increasing costs for consumers by about $1.2 billion.
      PROTECTIONISM DOESN’T WORK!!! DUH!!!
      Protect American washing-machine makers from Chinese competition? The FIRST thing that American washing-machine makers do, is jack UP their prices… AND the prices of dryers to boot, too! To SOAK the hell out of all of us consumers!!!
      From the above-linked Reason article about washing machines…
      “All told, those tariffs raised about $82 million for the U.S. Treasury but ended up increasing costs for consumers by about $1.2 billion during 2018 … (deleted). Although the trade policy did cause some manufacturers to shift production from overseas to the United States in an effort to avoid the new tariffs, the 1,800 jobs created by Trump’s washing machine tariffs cost consumers an estimated $820,000 per job.”
      Summary: Nickels and dimes to the USA treasury; boatloads of pain for consumers. USA jobs created? Yes, at GREAT expense! Putting these 1.8 K workers on a super-generous welfare program would have been WAY better for all the rest of us! Plus, you know the WORKERS don’t make super-huge bucks (no $820,000 per job for THEM); the goodies flow to the EXECUTIVES at the top of the washing-machine companies! The same ones who play golf with The Donald, and join him for gang-banging Stormy Daniels! Essentially at our expense!

      1. Yes, tariffs cause US consumer to pay more. What’s your point?

        1. That PROTECTIONISM DOESN’T WORK!!!

          For anyone except spoiled fat cats!

  16. The linked letter is hilarious. Apparently everything is made from ethane, propane, naptha, ammonia, and methanol.

    1. Add acetate to that list and you are quite closer to the truth.

  17. I have to agree with tariff in this case.

  18. GIMME A BREAK ERIC.

    How many US based alcohol distilleries have been BEGGING state and fed agencies (state liquor control FedBATF, CDC,FDA, and others to let them divert methanol they are already prodicing but cannot sell because the pubs are locked down, and begin pridicing hand sanitiser and other similar products for domestic use here.? I’ve read so many such reports…. ths ir that regulation from our stinking government have prevented this from happening. Or, how’s about diverting the ethanol production now going into our FUEL TANKS, making a more costlu and inferior product decreasing mileage and causing problems with our cars, and putting THAT into the productioin ipipeline for the stupid hand sanitiser….. which is NOT the answer for the spread o fthis virus anyway.

  19. Sorry, it is way past time we bought ANYTHING medical or anything that is even remotely medical from Red China! Stop the whining, Reason. You “Free Traders” are the reason we make very little in this country.

    1. So then, is it “Constitutional” that you, or the Collective Hive, should decide for me, and for other “free traders” who we can, and cannot conduct free acts with, of consensual capitalism? Who decides, and why? WHO is my moral superior here, who knows SO MUCH BETTER THAN I, who I should and should not be allowed to buy from and sell to? Can you point out to me, ANY modern nation that has taxed itself (via tariffs or other taxes) into peace and prosperity?

      1. Yes, it’s constitutional.

        And as long as we impose extra costs on domestic manufacturers, it’s reasonable to impose similar costs on imports.

        The libertarian solution is no corporate taxes, almost no regulations, and no tariffs. The progressive solution is high corporate taxes, lots of regulations, and lots of tariffs. Either of those are better than what you want: high corporate taxes, lots of regulations, and no tariffs. What you want is simply stupid.

        1. If one person is unfairly punished, we must ALL be unfairly punished, right? I agree with your description of Libertopia… I don’t see how “all must be punished equally” is going to get us there, better than “we must lessen the unfair punishment whenever and wherever we see it”. Less total stupid is better than more-balanced more-stupid!

  20. You say that as if you think it’s a bad thing.

  21. Best deals on apartments for rent and sale, cars for sale in uae, used mobiles, computers, electronics, jobs, new and used cars in Dubai and the whole UAE

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.