Trump said he wants to build a wall between the US and Mexico. He is going to force Mexico to pay for it in advance or, failing that, with a huge tariff on imported Mexican goods. He claims this will greatly increase America exports and create American jobs. He also claims this will greatly improve US-Mexican relations. Trump is betraying his complete incompetence of both law and economics:
- International law will not permit Trump to extort money for a wall that benefits only him, not Mexico. What he says he plans to do is no different from stealing more for any other purpose.
- Trump can’t just tear up the NAFTA (North America Free Trade Agreement) agreement and start charging tariffs again. That is illegal. He must go through a formal time-consuming process to terminate it. If he were to go rogue and just tear up the agreement, we would destroy American ability to negotiate treaties with anyone.
- The wall goes through ecologically sensitive areas. It would drive many endangered animals extinct. Trump does not care, but his wall would be illegal. It goes through native land. They have vowed to block it. It is far from a done deal.
- After Trump’s tariff is in place, Mexican goods will cost more in the USA. Americans will buy replacement goods from China, Europe, Canada… They will still not tend to buy American goods because they are more expensive than goods from other countries. Wages are much lower in other countries than in America. This tariff will thus produce only a few new jobs in the USA.
- Mexico will certainly counter any tariff with a matching import tariff on US goods. Historically, this is what always happens. Mexicans currently buy a huge amount of American goods. Mexicans will greatly reduce their American purchases (out of emotion, even without the tariff). That means US exports to Mexico will decline (not rise as Trump claims). That in turn means fewer American jobs (not more as Trump claims).
- Trump said of Mexicans They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. Trump has poisoned US-Mexican relations for decades to come. There is no way his insulting and bullying is going to greatly improve relations.
Even grade 8 history students learn this much about tariffs. Trump must have been asleep at the time or more likely, he just can’t stop himself from lying.~ Roedy (1948-02-04 age:69)