One of the greatest gifts President Trump provides through his policy discussion(s) is an awakening to how much U.S. voter perspective has been driven by constructed fallacy.
This is especially true in the discussion of domestic economic policy. There are trillions of dollars at stake; and the stakeholders are growing increasingly angry as President Trump places a spotlight on decades of economic fraud and abuse.
Prior to the 2016 election few people understood that DC politicians don’t actually write legislation, lobbyists do. Politicians don’t write laws, their role is to sell legislation created by lobbyist groups. That is the modern legislative model; that’s how it really works. Unfortunately the same bastardized and manipulated process has happened around trade deals and trade agreements.
In modern trade agreements, before the election of President Donald Trump, corporations would write the actual language within the deal. Corporate lobby groups like the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, have fully functioning staff that do nothing except write the trade agreement language.
If a multinational corporation wanted to increase its value, it simply needed to pay the indulgency fee to the U.S. CoC and the massive lobbying group would create language inside the agreement to assist their interest. Note the corporation didn’t need to be U.S. centric, currency is multinational. The U.S. CoC then pays politicians, both democrats and Republicans, via campaign contributions for the trade controls. People can debate the nuance and intersections of governmental bureaucracy within the process; however, peel all the skin from the onion and this is how it really was working.
Then came President Trump.
Much like the November 2016 election showed how there were no legislative lobbying groups in DC who aligned with President Trump’s legislative agenda, hence no MAGA laws at the ready, the same is true for international trade agreements. The election of Donald Trump disrupted the entire process. The Office of the Presidency was now looking out for U.S. worker and economic interests; the U.S. CoC lost all influence overnight.
In the decade prior to November 2016 can you remember who the U.S. Trade Representative was? Even just one of them? Or how about any U.S. Commerce Secretary since 2000? …..See the point? They were irrelevant to the process. The executive branch and the legislative branch willingly abdicated their trade positions in exchange for financial payments from corporations direct and indirect.
With enough money thrown into the process politicians became multimillionaires; and even the administrative state benefactors circling the politicians could easily get rich. A fantastic gig for the DC crowd. Who could resist?
Notice all of those DC retirements lately? Not, unrelated to the Trump-effect.
Have you ever really elevated high enough to contemplate what underlies the opposition to candidate Trump, President-elect Trump, or now President Trump? March 2016, Sea Island, Georgia ring a bell? I digress…
Bottom line, there are trillions of dollars at stake; there has been approximately 20 years of selling U.S. trade and economic policy; the functionality of much of the worlds political power brokerage was/is dependent on retention of this system of financial control and influence. Almost all economic trade discussion was centered around hiding this simple truth. Entire fallacies of false choice were, purchased, constructed, created and put into print within economic text books. [Authors well compensated]
As CTH has been sharing, long before Trump, it is all based on a series of necessarily growing lies. Each new lie bigger than the one before it, because the irreconcilable truth needs to be hidden, conflated and obfuscated.
An example of a fallacy of false choice you might find familiar:
Corporate outsourcing is due to manufacturers looking for cheap labor; … AND … also, job losses are due to automation. See the problem?
If automation replaces labor, then why move the manufacturing process? The argument doesn’t add up. Confused? Don’t worry, you’re supposed to be.
If you don’t think the effort at selling economic nonsense has corrupted even generally intelligent people, allow me to present an audio-visual example from yesterday. Pay attention to this abject nonsense closely.
I’ve prompted the video to 40:27 so you can just click for a 30 second soundbite. Seriously, this is an important watch:
Did you hear that?
“Foreign investment is the inverse of trade deficits, because all of those trade dollars have to come back to America somehow. The bigger the trade deficit, the more foreign investment you get”.
I shall break it down, but re-read it again because it’s important to see just how good the psychological gaslighting has been. Jonah Goldberg isn’t stupid; but he actually believes what he just said. He really believes it.
“Foreign investment is the inverse of trade deficits”…
If this were true, Africa would be the world’s dominating economy. The actual inverse of trade deficits is higher taxes and printing money. The wealth redistributed in trade deficits must be made up somehow. If trade deficits were great to have Africa would be the world economic power.
“because all of those trade dollars have to come back into America somehow”…
Says who? This sounds like something heard at a cocktail party that seems intellectual, but is abject silliness. The use of the magic “somehow” is a tell.
“The bigger the trade deficit, the more foreign investment you get”…
That part is the biggest bunch of nonsense ever stated. If deficits were so wonderful, everyone would want them, right? Again, see Africa.
In fairness to Goldberg what is behind his statement is a belief you hear, albeit wrongly stated, all the time. What he’s saying is that dollars spent on purchasing foreign goods come back into the U.S. by way of reinvestment or debt purchase.
However, Goldberg makes a fatal mistake in defining what “foreign investment” means to him; instead of understanding what President Trump means when he says “foreign investment”.
♦Goldberg is defining “foreign investment” as money returning to the U.S. via corporate profits on Wall Street and/or the purchase of U.S. debt via treasury notes.
♦Trump defines “foreign investment” as money spent actually building Main Street factories, physical plants, and creating U.S. jobs.
These are two entirely different reference points.
Under Goldberg’s definition of “foreign investment” Wall Street is the benefactor. That benefit may or may not ultimately end up on Main Street. Under President Trump’s definition of “foreign investment” the benefit ONLY ends up on Main St. See the cognitive difference?
Goldberg is selling the U.S. Chamber of Commerce economic trade fallacies because that’s all he, and his entire tribe, know. They have never questioned the underlying assumptions and have swallowed 30 years of trade nonsense.
This is how pervasive the economic lies have been for almost a generation. It’s pretty darned sad when you witness those who believe it.
Only one person is strong enough to break through these lies….