Trump to the Rescue: The USDA’s $12 Billion Bailout Solves a Problem the President Created
American citizens have been impressed into a conflict which is not of their choosing. Unilateral power was used to levy tariffs on the imported goods the president has targeted under the guise of some vague national security threat and unilateral power will now be used to mitigate the damage done to domestic producers who inevitably pay the price for economic protectionism. The $12 billion the USDA will offer to farmers affected by the trade war is being couched by the Trump administration as a positive.
“[T]he farmers will be the biggest beneficiary. Watch. We’re opening up markets. You watch what’s going to happen. Just be a little patient.” the president remarked at a VFW convention according to The Hill.
This is the psychology of a child who has done some wrong to a sibling and attempts to bribe the injured party so as not to raise the ire of their parent.
Easy to be patient when your losses are being bankrolled by the government. And easier, in the face of this rank bribery, to forget that it was the president who created the conditions that require $12 billion in subsidies to begin with.
There is, however, a forgotten character in this white knight charging to the rescue fable the executive branch is spinning.
Caught in the middle are consumers who not only suffer from increased price but whose tax dollars will now go to subsidize farmers. Tariffs represent an attack upon their economic freedom. Government intervention in the machinations of free trade (which, again, is a function of unilateral executive power, imposed from on high) raises the price of goods, which means the dollar doesn’t go as far. Private individuals have less freedom to dispose of their income as they see fit because of the limitations that come in the form of the repercussions of tariffs. Citizens had no say in this policy, which acutely affects their lifestyle. Nor do they have any say in the policies of the USDA — an executive department that develops and executes laws with little oversight from any elected representative — even though the agency’s largess is bankrolled by taxpayers.
Protectionism negates equality. When President Trump speaks of farmers as being the…