JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: THE WORLD’S PRECARIOUS ECONOMIC SITUATION – AND THE CONTRIBUTION NOW BEING MADE TO IT BY DONALD TRUMP – ECONOMIC NUCLEAR WINTER COMING?   Leave a comment

John Chuckman

COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE BY NEIL MACDONALD IN CBC NEWS

 

“Winter is coming, and so is an uncharted economic abyss: Neil Macdonald

“The economic situation scares me. But then, I’m not an economist”

 

Neil Macdonald is right, but I think he understates the case.

“Recession” is almost a friendly word, at least compared to the one that I believe might be applied here, “depression.”

America’s financial irresponsibility largely caused the recession in 2008, and that country has since done little, almost nothing, in the way of reform.

Obama didn’t create any worthy financial reform in eight years of smiling. When asked once about the massive debt, he said something to the effect, “Easy, we’ll just kick the crap out of the dollar!”

And now that country has some even more terrible leadership. Busy blowing people up all over the world, just as Obama did for eight years, but endowed with a conviction that it can beggar its neighbors as a route to its own prosperity.

“MAGA” is just ancient, discredited Mercantilism revived and backed up by a new body of threats, sanctions, and tariffs. It is a way to American prosperity no more than the Luddites destroying machines was a way to halt the social ravages of the Industrial Revolution.

But because we have a world tottering on the brink in so many ways, as just for one example the situation in Europe, it comes at a terrible time. Trump’s contribution is to decrease world economic activity and trade, destroy confidence in international arrangements, disparage international organizations of every description, and to destabilize important nations. He tears up international agreements and treaties without a thought.

The poorly-considered and protectionist American Smoot-Hawley Tariff of 1930, played a significant role in the Great Depression. Trump’s activities are effectively a reprise.

Accounting for the impact of Trump also must include the responses of other nations to his economic aggression. China just ended all of its American agricultural purchases. After a poor spring planting season throughout the Midwest, that is going to be the death knell for many American farmers. The Depression had its Dust Bowl, caused by drought, contributing to the general misery, and Trump is managing to copy even that.

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