Strange how the guy who boasts about his degree from “Wharton”—which is, in reality, an undergraduate degree in economics—knows little or nothing about how international trade works in the 21st century. His promise of a trade war, one that he himself elected to start, is coming to fruition. It’s a trade war that appears to have been started for no reason at all, with no clear objective, and bizarrely involves some of America’s closest trading partners.
If Trump thinks the United States can use bullying and threats to get the rest of the world to bend to its will, he’s sorely mistaken. Rather than tremble and quake at the prospect of American tariffs, other countries will simply find new trading partners, new sources of materials, or simply move to another country. Take the Trans-Pacific Partnership. Trump envisioned dozens of bilateral agreements, which he no doubt would personally negotiate using his illusory deal-making skills, to replace the TPP. Instead, the members of the TPP will make their peace with China—which was what the TPP was enacted to prevent.
Now, it seems that Trump’s trade war—which, again, he chose to start for no clear reason—will end up hurting the American economy, and in the continuation of a trend that permeates his presidency, hurting his own supporters the most.