Tagged Economic Ignorance

Donald Trump Is Not as Bad as We Thought He Would Be. He’s Worse. Far Worse.

Since Donald Trump’s inauguration as president, the following has occurred in the United States of America: Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington had to file a complaint “to notify the new president that he was officially in violation of his lease for the Trump International Hotel down the street from the White House. The lease that one of Trump’s company’s, Trump Old Post Office LLC, signed with the government states that no ‘elected official’ of the U.S. government can share in the lease or derive benefit from it.” Trump heard a sermon from Robert Jeffress, a Trumpkin pastor who tried to invoke God to…

The Worst Possible Inaugural Address, By the Worst Possible President

Donald Trump is now the president of the United States, and on his very first day, with his very first speech, he has managed to redraw the picture of America to which we are used. Before Trump, we were accustomed to an America that engaged the world with confidence and strength. An America willing to trade with the world, understanding that trade is not a zero-sum game. An America that not only honored its alliances, but ensured that its allies would never have any reason to doubt American resolve. An America with problems–because no nation is without problems–but one that…

What Happens when the Minimum Wage Is Raised?

Well, among other things, you get employers looking for ways to replace human workers with automated ones. To be sure, the process of worker automation is inevitable regardless of whether there has been an increase in the minimum wage. But if you are a human being interested in keeping a job, minimum wage increases–especially sharp and sudden increases to $15 per hour–don’t help human beings keep their jobs. The only thing they do is cause managers and bosses to look for ways to cheaply replace human labor.

The Democratic Party’s Failure on Trade Policy

As anyone who follows the news is aware, Barack Obama’s biggest legislative goal for his second term is to pass the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement. He may well get fast-track authority in order to push for passage of the agreement, and the agreement may yet pass. I hope that he does get fast-track authority, and that the agreement passes. But as anyone who follows the news is also aware, the initial attempt to pass fast-track authority failed in the House of Representatives, because Democrats decided to desert and defy a president from their own party:

The Trade Policy Clown Show of 2015

Great nations are not normally in the habit of allowing childish temper tantrums to dictate economic policy. Great nations are even less inclined to sacrifice an excellent economic deal because of a temper tantrum. And yet, when we examine the frantic and immature back-and-forth regarding the Trans-Pacific Partnership Act, we see that the United States–a great nation despite the example often set by its “leaders”–has been flirting over the past twenty-four hours with the option of throwing away an excellent economic deal with both hands, in part because trade protectionists have gotten their feelings hurt. I alluded to this issue…

So Much for Expecting Enlightenment on Trade Policy

I had harbored some hope that politicians would behave like adults when it came to addressing the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement. As noted in my previous post, the benefits of free trade are clear and overwhelming, the American public appears more ready to accept and support trade deals, and there is bipartisan cooperation between congressional Republicans and the Obama administration to ensure that the president will have fast-track authority with which to push through a trade deal. Unfortunately, those congressional Democrats decided to stand in the way by “voting to hold up consideration of ‘fast track’ trade authority unless related measures are…