Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross’ “Let Them Eat Cake” Tariff Defense

Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross’ “Let Them Eat Cake” Tariff Defense September 18, 2018

So we talked about President Trump and his terrible tariff plan to weaken our economy.

For those that missed it, President Best Brain is lobbing a fresh shot across the bow of China, with over $200 billion in new tariffs.

China is retaliating.

It will not go well for American businesses or consumers.

Smarter people have attempted to explain to Trump the destructive nature of his protectionist policies, regarding trade. None of them have been able to penetrate the MAGA hive mind.

Donald Trump’s history, no matter how it has been spun for the consumption of the poorly educated that he loves  – whether they be the gullible rubes that were taken in by his Trump University scam, or the glassy-eyed simpletons in MAGA caps – is not the history of an actual, successful businessman.

Republican strategist, Rick Wilson, relays a conversation with an actual billionaire out of New York, who laughingly describes Trump as “a clown living on credit.”

And now he’s playing with the nation’s credit card. That’s not good.

Sadly, the wise are bailing the administration, fed up with fruitless attempts to keep the ship from slamming into the rocks.

That leaves a White House full of clingers and those who will say and do ridiculous things, just to appease the hay-haired mountebank in the Oval Office.

Speaking of ridiculous, let’s hear from Trump’s pick for Commerce secretary, Wilbur Ross. Surely, to hold such an important seat in the Cabinet, he has something cogent to add to the tariff debate.

Ross told CNBC on Tuesday that Americans wouldn’t notice price differences on the affected Chinese imports, arguing the tax is but a “tiny, tiny fraction” of U.S. inflation.

“If you have a 10 percent tariff on another $200 billion, that’s $20 billion a year,” Ross said. “Because it’s spread over thousands and thousands of products, nobody’s going to actually notice it at the end of the day.”


Pork and soy farmers are already feeling the pain from his first round of tariffs.

Businesses are closing or moving out of the country because of his tariffs.

What Trump is doing and what Ross is defending is anathema to good business and to the economic well being of the United States.

Earlier Tuesday, the Chinese government answered President Trump’s announcement of new tariffs by unveiling another $60 billion in tariffs on goods out of the United States, as well.

Business groups and lawmakers have warned against the Trump trade war, concerned for the damage done to American consumers and businesses.

We have a strong economy now, but the way to keep it strong is not to damage trade relations or inflict higher taxes on the citizens.

Taxes on imports are intended to push consumers toward buying goods from domestic manufacturers by raising the cost of foreign competitor products. A lack of a meaningful price difference between U.S. and foreign goods could do little to bolster American manufacturers against Chinese rivals.

Ross insists that the tax hikes will be “minor,” but he’s a wealthy investor. He lives in a bubble of privilege and doesn’t really grasp how what might seem “minor” to him could cause real pain for the average American. He’s talking about raising the price of a broad host of goods, meaning American consumers are paying more for the things they need.

Neither does Donald Trump, who lives in a bubble if ignorance.

This is a real “Let them eat cake” scenario and we don’t currently have anyone in Congress willing to step up and put a stop to it.



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  • Ellen Elmore

    Susan, you are right that both Trump and Wilbur Ross live in a bubble. They are independently wealthy and have no idea how Trump’s tariff war will effect the average American. Nor do they care. There is no one to stop Trump’s agenda because all of Congress along with Trump’s cabinet are cowards. They are all afraid of Trump’s angry tweets.

  • IllinoisPatriot

    The way things are currently shaping up for the mid-terms, they will be hearing from the voters in November. After that they will be hearing from Speaker Pelosi in the House and Majority Leader Schumer in the Senate.

    Shortly thereafter, I suspect we will see the Mueller report (likely an interim report at the request of Democrats to get impeachment proceedings started with a final report prior to the Senate vote). I’m sure there will be much consternation within the Republican Party and likely cries that Republican voters are being suppressed or lots of illegals voting Democrat, but I suspect the real truth will be that a huge swath of ex-Republicans will simply refuse to support the Republican party at the polls and that #Cult45 has insufficient numbers to win an election on their own.

    I’m sure Trump will claim a conspiracy against him, so belt in – things are going to get more ridiculous before they get any better.

    We are likely to see Trump working with the Democrats to pass his “new and improved” Trump-Democrat agenda (he IS a big fan of both Obama and Hillary and their policies after all as he has tweeted many times during Obama’s administration). This MIGHT upset his base, but Trump will go where the popularity is. It won’t take much before he will see the polling numbers turning against the GOP and will return to his Democrat and roots the rest of his family never left.

    What I’m anxious to see is whether the GOP will ever win another election after their capitulation and conversion to Trumpism.

  • TinnyWhistler

    “There is no one to stop Trump’s agenda because all of Congress along with Trump’s cabinet are cowards.”
    Vote ’em out. Don’t abstain, don’t cast a throwaway vote. Vote. Them. Out. and call the candidates and the local party office to tell them exactly WHY you voted the way you did. That’s how we hold them accountable for this.

  • Ellen Elmore

    I hope you are right about the Republicans, or should I say “former” Republicans. They should lose control because they have proved they are no different than the Democrats. But will the GOP win another election? It seems unlikely since Trump became the head of the party. I don’t trust either party. They should all be voted out of office. Term limits would be the best way to do this.

  • IllinoisPatriot

    I am Constitutionally against term limits as I believe they are the “lazy way out” of the “career politician” problem.

    I believe the only CORRECT way out is for the electorate to re-engage with choosing the leadership of our country and to treat elections less as a “popularity contest”, as “entertainment (bread and circuses)” or “as of little importance to their personal lives” and more like they are choosing people to represent them and their values in forming and managing the government that we all have to live under.

    Since Nov 2016, we have been seeing the results of what happens when people forget the primary purpose of electing representatives to government. #Cult45 especially was voting for “revenge”, for “entertainment”, many for “popularity” (once the manipulated social media started consistently showing Trump “winning” debates), and for “what Trump promised to give me / do for me” as opposed to selecting the person that best represents their values, their judgement, and their principles to represent them in Wash DC as part of our “government by the people”. As a result, #cult45 GOT a person that seems to best represent their principles (none), their values (bad or none), and their judgement (abysmal). Unfortunately, the rest of us also have to live with their choice to select for revenge (successful – Trump stands for nothing if not revenge), and “what Trump can do for them” (nothing much to date – even the GOP tax breaks look like they will be more than offset by Trump tariffs based on Trump’s latest tariff attacks on China).

    Part of the lesson that #cult45 refuses to learn is that when they elect a liar as their nominee/candidate and that person actually wins, they get a liar in office that feels no compunction to fulfill any promises (lies?) he made while campaigning….