What is all the Trump “much ado:” about unbalanced trade balances not being the best deal for US Workers?
There is nothing new under the sun about the subject of trade in the annuals of history. Trade has always been and will always be in the future, a basic human necessity in life. In ancient times a person may have exchanged a horse for a specific commodity such as bushels of corn, a jewel, or even a wife.
Whether or not the exchange was fair to both was a matter of opinion between the two parties. After the agreed trade was made, one or both parties who negotiated the trade may have subjectively believed they made either a fair exchange, or may have obtained the best deal after they walked away. This observation was recorded three thousand years ago in the Bible about what a buyer negotiator would say during a trade negotiation to a seller and then said to himself later..
‘A bad, bad, bargain!”, says a buyer But as he makes off he congratulates himself. (Proverb 20-14)
Verse 14 mirrors with wonderful accuracy and humor the climate and devices associated with the striking a bargain in a commercial context where fixed prices have no place. Haggling is a dour economic contest, but it is also a social occasion with civalties and courtesies, as the Westerner can still discover in a party of the Near East today. It is a war of attrition, for which the buyer is fortified with coffee, and which can be conducted at a leisurely pace and in a civilized fashion. The buyer protests that he is having the worst of the bargain; when he has made it he goes off to congratulate himself as a good stroke of business..I have seen a seller performing just this piece of ritual in the old city of Jerusalem when he complained that the price which was being offered for a carpet was ‘Bread without cheese’ but I have no doubt than in fact hee had the better of the deal. (Proverbs McKane)
Purpose of this Post
I have been exchanging comments, opinions, and viewpoints with two fellow bloggers I respect as men of goodwill. I consider both Citizen Tom and Keith Dehavelle to both be supporters of free trade. I am also a supporter of free, but fair and balanced trade.
I also believe that deficit trade balances are the result of inept US trade negotiators and the result has been folly, detrimental to our nation, and a bad deal for US Workers. Both Donald Trump and myself have backgrounds in actual business negotiations, and recognize the ineptness of US negotiators. Our opinions are based on facts and experience rather than beliefs in failed economic theories about free trade.
I am writing this series of posts to try again to explain and answer Kieth’s questions and concerns how to balance trade without a trade war. If this topic interests you, read a previous post of mine and the posts comments in the sources below for background and questions I will answer in detail..
My Main Points
1.US workers can never compete with foreign workers who are paid $200 a month when a US worker has to pay $800 a month in rent alone.
2, Unbalanced trade is recognized to be harmful to member nations by the WTA, World Trade Association which is the governing body of the trade agreement the US made with China, We have a deficit trade balance of one half trillion dollars a year.
3. You may or may not agree after reading my series of posts that Donald Trump is right that US trade negotiators are stupid (foolish)? That will be for you to decide.
In My Next Post
I will explore various definitions of trade.
Regards and goodwill blogging.
King Solomon, Is Donald Trump a Fool? HERE
What is a Conservative-Hint Not Trump HERE
Fair Trade HERE
( Original Post Date 2/13/16. Re-post Reason HERE)