Trump is not negotiating trade deals! He is setting new taxes! His tariffs raise the price of certain commodities and categories of goods, and also make business and consumers prices higher. Because trade is part of the global supply chain, it resists government action. Building economies of scale is best for a single nation’s interests.
Economic growth is pinned to demand; new production follows a template:
1. Infrastructure in housing/transportation/public services (talk to anybody who has landed a site contract);
2. Business clusters and supply chains (why 5 West Virginia counties lead in US polymer chemical exports);
3. Financing and regulation (West Virginia again, tax breaks must go into research), and
4. Economies of scale (global relations Trump overlooks).
The US political economy also reveals racial thresholds larger than the trade deficits. The black income gap (70%) and the black employment gap (2X/twice the white rate) have remained roughly constant for 50 years. “Together are they the fixed costs of racism?”
Trump’s lower unemployment numbers didn’t change the disparity. Black workers remain unemployed at twice the white rate. Their wages are lower. Structural racism remains–the gap persists in the face of black success.