Editorial #70 The tariff war
In the world of business there is the fundamental expectation that trust and fairness must be a part of every transaction. When this is missing, logic and good judgment are gone and things operate like a mafia where intimidation and coercion is the rule. This is why the situation regarding tariffs is so important to understand.
The business culture in China and other communist countries do not have the ingredients of trust and fairness. Their government controls everything including their currency, their markets, and where copying, cheating and stealing are not crimes if you don’t get caught.
This approach has existed for so long that diplomats consider it normal and acceptable as long as we can continue to do business with them and don’t upset them by making an enemy. This is part of political correctness where it is not nice to point out other people’s mistakes or call them out as cheaters.
Tariffs are simply another word for taxes. Tariffs are always paid by the end user with the money supposed to be used to do what governments do: Provide security, infrastructure and make laws that preserves our core values of fairness, truth, sustainability and integrity.
Security for our country means: if another country violates one of our core values, we will do whatever is necessary to preserve and protect those core values.
All wars are fought because another country disagrees with our understanding of fairness, truth, sustainability or integrity. They are not fought over losing an Olympic basketball game. They are fought over issues that compromises our way to life or our actual existences.
There is always a price for waging any war. That expense is always be less than the amount of treasure we lose or the price we place on the loss of the lives of our fellow citizens.
Our tariff war cost is considerably less than the loss we experience with the unfair business practices of price fixing, currency manipulation or value erosion of cheap labor, inferior quality or thief of intellectual property.
The value of our agricultural commodities is going to suffer in the short term but unless these unfair practices are addressed, we will eventually die a slow death from a thousand cuts with no way to reverse that damage.
Confronting this is the only way a real leader would do it. Not the timid, uncertain, tenuous approach past presidents have used to address the problem with advice from incompetent diplomates who never seem to ever solve any problems.
I hate taxes and tariffs as much as anyone but anything worth having is never cheap. That is the price we must pay to preserve our economy in the greatest country in the world.
This is Keith Kube wishing you the best in making the world a better place.