Majority of Business Owners Support Increased Tariffs

An August financial poll found strong support among American business owners for Trump’s financial policies, including levying additional tariffs on Chinese goods. They reported having a positive outlook on the economy and “feel the administration has had a positive impact on their business overall.” 

By Mark Anderson

While the mainstream media continue to wail about how President Donald Trump’s application of tariffs on imports will only incite “trade wars” and could not possibly generate even a single shipping crate’s worth of benefits, an early-August UBS Investor Watch poll says otherwise.

According to the poll, 71% of business owners, from both small and large companies, support levying additional tariffs on Chinese goods. In addition, more than 70% of business owners have a positive one-year outlook on the state of the economy.

As for the poll’s rating of the president, 55% of business owners feel the administration has had a positive impact on their business overall, with 20% reporting a negative impact.

And though you’d never know it by perusing the pulp of The New York Times or The Washington Post:

  • 64% of those polled want more tariffs on European goods.
  • 66% support more tariffs on imports from Mexico.
  • 60% would like to see additional tariffs on Canadian goods.
  • Among high net-worth investors, 59% support more tariffs on Chinese goods.

“China is the top concern when it comes to U.S. trading partners, with 88% of business owners [polled] claiming they believe China engages in unfair trade practices with the U.S.,” the “Daily Caller” website, a conservative news outfit, noted on Aug. 2. “Trump has taken a great deal of criticism from lawmakers on both sides of the aisle, who believe his trade policies are protectionist and will hurt long-run economic growth.”

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That’s accurate enough, though “unfair trade practices” falls far short of describing the huge trade surplus China enjoys at America’s expense—a deficit on the U.S. side of the ledger that was $375.2 billion in 2017 alone, up from $347 billion in 2016. It could be argued that the tariffs on Chinese goods simply represent “payback time,” given the decades of growing trade deficits, widespread industrial-production losses and plummeting consumer purchasing power the U.S. has been forced to endure under “free trade” agreements written well outside of public view.

When it comes to lawmakers and free trade, partisanship suddenly becomes muted and legislators who can barely agree that water is wet suddenly march in lockstep, screaming about how protectionism should be forbidden, just as tariffs should be forbidden. Why? Because both concepts adversely impact the ruling internationalist establishment—collusive central banks, investment banks, certain law firms and insurance interests, influential tax-exempt think tanks and arm-twisting lobbying firms, the Bilderberg and Trilateral Commission groupings etc.—to which many members of Congress are beholden.

The institutional bias runs deep. This writer recalls in 2011 covering a meeting of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund in Washington. There, a Wall Street Journal reporter hanging around in a food court warned me that using the words “tariff” and “protectionism” too often, or discussing them conceptually and objectively, much less advocating them, was largely taboo within the gilded walls of those institutions.

Since the media is a tool of the trans-nationalist elite who run the above-noted interlocking interests, Americans are hard pressed to get a clear and complete explanation not just about the degree of support for Trump’s tariffs, but also about tariffs themselves.

Tariffs, it is said, raise prices, but so do domestic income and property taxes as tax-related costs are passed off to the end consumer. Better to raise taxes at the water’s edge and make corporations who sought cheap labor overseas pay for the privilege of selling their goods in the U.S. market.

This arrangement, by limiting the sale of imports via import taxes [tariffs], has the added benefit of protecting domestic investments and production within the U.S. That, in turn, fosters a more nationalistic economic outlook, meaning that protectionism deflates the plutocratic, internationalist system. Hence the reason that “protectionism” and “tariffs” are rated as dirty words whenever they’re advocated.

Mark Anderson is AFP’s roving editor.




Tariffs Are Actually Good for U.S. Economy

Despite doom & gloom scenarios offered by elite, bad trade practices needed to be killed.

By John Friend

President Donald Trump has long railed against what he describes as unfair trade deals and high tariffs imposed on U.S. businesses and manufacturers, denouncing many of the key pillars of the post-WWII global economic order and vowing to end these deals, which have harmed American workers and companies for decades now.

During the 2016 presidential campaign and following his election as president, Trump has repeatedly promised, much to the chagrin of leading globalists both in the U.S. and abroad, to impose tariffs on goods from other countries that impose high tariffs on U.S. goods and services as well as to enact other protectionist trade policies in an effort to boost American business and manufacturing.

Since the beginning of this year, Trump has imposed a number of tariffs on goods coming from long-time U.S. trade partners and allies, including Mexico, the European Union (EU), and Canada, particularly on steel and aluminum imports originating in these countries.

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At the recently concluded G7 Summit, held in Quebec June 8-9, Trump described the high tariffs that target American manufacturers as “ridiculous and unacceptable,” and described the U.S. as “a piggy bank that everybody is robbing.”

On June 10, Trump let loose on Twitter, denouncing the free trade deals brokered by previous administrations.

“Why should I, as president of the United States, allow countries to continue to make massive trade surpluses, as they have for decades, while our farmers, workers & taxpayers have such a big and unfair price to pay? Not fair to the people of America!” Trump tweeted. “Sorry, we cannot let our friends or enemies take advantage of us on trade anymore. We must put the American worker first!” read yet another tweet, hinting at moves the president plans on making in order to rectify the unfair trade deals the U.S. has suffered under for so long.

Trump and his top advisers have argued recently that now is the time to take drastic action on these unfair trade deals, and they are expecting cooperation from traditional allies and longtime trading partners such as Canada, Mexico, and the EU.

“The global trading system needs major surgery and every country must be part of the solution, even our friends,” Daniel DiMicco, a former trade adviser to Trump’s campaign and current chairman of the Coalition for a Prosperous America trade group, explained to The New York Times recently.

Once again taking to Twitter to express his sentiments on the controversy, Trump explained simply: “The United States will not allow other countries to impose massive tariffs and trade barriers on its farmers, workers and companies while sending their products into our country tax-free. We have put up with trade abuse for many decades—and that is long enough.”

How much cooperation he will receive from other countries, including long-time allies and trading partners, remains to be seen. The president, however, appears more defiant than ever on this issue and has made it a central premise of his agenda.

Virtually the entire mainstream corporate media and political establishment have lambasted Trump and his criticisms of the various free trade deals that comprise the post-WWII global economic order, viewing free trade as sacrosanct and necessary for a prosperous economic powerhouse such as the United States. Sen. John Mc-Cain (R-Ariz.), a leading globalist and neoconservative warmonger, recently argued that “bipartisan majorities of Americans remain pro-free trade, pro-globalization, and supportive of alliances based on 70 years of shared values,” a false and unchallenged narrative that has been endlessly promoted and parroted by the political and media establishment for decades. And what have the results of this been? Millions of good jobs have left the United States, and the wealthiest 1% of the world have increased their net worth while hardworking middle-class Americans continue to struggle.

Trump and his top advisers disagree and have pledged to finally put American workers and manufacturers first by renegotiating trade deals to protect American businesses and industry.

John Friend is a freelance author based in California.