August 23, 2019 | Reading Time: < 1 minute

Trump ‘orders’ firms out of China

China issued new retaliatory tariffs this morning on American goods. The president then posted a retaliatory tweet in which he “ordered” US firms to stop doing business with China. That, as a result, spooked Wall Street into a nosedive. It’s rare when cause and effect are so clear in the market. Donald Trump can’t order…

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China issued new retaliatory tariffs this morning on American goods. The president then posted a retaliatory tweet in which he “ordered” US firms to stop doing business with China. That, as a result, spooked Wall Street into a nosedive. It’s rare when cause and effect are so clear in the market.

Donald Trump can’t order firms to do anything, but he can, as the president, make life hard for corporations that make him look bad by not doing what he wants them to do. This is why Trump’s actions here aren’t socialism, though one GOP-sensitive journalist said it is. They’re really fascism.

In socialism—I mean real socialism, not the soft form of democratic socialism—the government would take ownership of a private enterprise, nationalize it, and redistribute value “to the people.”

What Trump’s saying is far more dangerous, because he’s expressing a willingness to push private enterprise around, either by barking at it on Twitter or mounting the full-force of the US government against corporations that “reward” China but “humiliate” the United States (that is, Trump).

However bad real socialism is, it has a goal in mind. A project. Fascism doesn’t have a goal or a project, except accumulating power. It’s far more insecure, chaotic and uncertain. Just like Donald Trump.

Wall Street is right to be worried. —JS

John Stoehr is the editor of the Editorial Board. He writes the daily edition open and available to all. Find him @johnastoehr.

5 Comments

  1. Pat Garofalo on July 30, 2021 at 7:53 am

    Remember how many Republicans were concerned about Obama causing “uncertainty” for businesses and “picking winners and losers” and HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA sob.

    • John Stoehr on July 30, 2021 at 7:53 am

      It used to be funny, right?

  2. Thornton Prayer on July 30, 2021 at 7:53 am

    Hopefully, the geniuses who thought the 2017 tax cuts would have magical effects will finally realize that their boy in the White House is a raging idiot. The toxic combination of stupidity, impulsiveness, crazy advisors like Peter Navarro, and terrible economic outcomes will force their hands to dump this fool and his cronies before their stock portfolios evaporate.

  3. BettR on July 30, 2021 at 7:53 am

    I was bowled over by his tweet asking who was the bigger enemy: Powell or Xi? If folks have not recognized that we are in the age of the American Dictator, they are not awake.

    • MarkmBha on July 30, 2021 at 7:53 am

      Certainly a “wannabe” Dictator.

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