Imports into the United States are at an all-time high! Everything of any value has a tariff on it. Our largest trading partner has been crippled, reducing our own potential growth drastically, and we risk recession to back Trump’s bluff (They have a lot more things that we need, than we have that they need; and they are patient, and inured to poverty.) But, however this plays out, clearly the most salient feature of Trump’s economic, and foreign, policy has been tariffs.
How much? How much money is collected by the Treasury that goes straight into the general fund of the Treasury Department, where no one knows what happens to it, and where it’s illegal to reveal how it is spent? In a year, approximately 4.5 trillion dollars of goods is imported (legally), and a tithe of that is close to a half-trillion. This has been going on for two centuries.
Typical import duties worldwide are around 10% – usually on very select items. They have usually been about that same average here. But, tariffs have seldom been as high as they are right now, or on as many items. 2018 was a record for foreign imports – a record that has built us a reservoir of ill will in international trade: we cheat on every international transaction and use our economic and military power to back our manipulation and downright theft. And, beyond that, our politicians place a tax on every transaction – to be collected personally by them – and are never called to account for. We call that a “tariff.” Trump would lay 10%, 25%,and even 100% duties on items that he selects. Of course that is extortionary to foreign businesses.
The income from tariffs is bigger than the “discretionary budget.” You can do anything that you want with all that gold. Like, win an election. Or start a war.
Yeah, the world knows that crooked politicians in the States soak you in trade. “Pay To Play!” They have always known. We have always known. But, it’s pretty darn hard to swallow that hundreds of billions; in time, trillions; are going to go straight (or not so straight) into the pockets of the sticky-fingered politicians, sure as you’re born.
America collects hundreds of billions in import taxes each year; but that’s just a tax on the sellers. It doesn’t include that we state-support extortionary shipping fees (Remember Puerto Rico and the emergency supplies;) and usage fees.
If the United States of America seems to be this great global piracy syndicate, don’t worry; no one can do anything about it. We manipulate foreign trade. It’s always been that way. We can’t get caught: international trade is a new, “Wild, Wild, West;” virtually lawless. And with Russia and the United States working tirelessly towards destabilization, it’s likely to get worse .
Donald Trump wants to be the world’s first trillionaire. If “They” get a stranglehold on international trade by manipulating law and policy (and making dark agreements); it will be the biggest “jackpot” ever. The ultimate “perfect crime.”
International trade has become much more complex, relying on endless interrelationships. Worldwide trade will benefit from the adoption of a concept called: “Economic Justice.” That natural evolution could benefit every person on Earth. Or, a few. Or one.