“From This Moment On, America First”: Protectionism vs. Isolationism; We Must All Wish Trump Success
Key Sound Bites
- What truly matters is not which party controls our government, but whether our government is controlled by the people.
- For many decades, we’ve enriched foreign industry at the expense of American industry; One by one, the factories shuttered and left our shores, with not even a thought about the millions upon millions of American workers left behind.
- The wealth of our middle class has been ripped from their homes and then redistributed across the entire world.
- From this moment on, it’s going to be America First. Every decision on trade, on taxes, on immigration, on foreign affairs, will be made to benefit American workers and American families.
- We do not seek to impose our way of life on anyone, but rather to let it shine as an example for everyone to follow.
- We will reinforce old alliances and form new ones – and unite the civilized world against Radical Islamic Terrorism, which we will eradicate completely from the face of the Earth.
- We must think big and dream even bigger.
Together, We Will Make America Strong Again. We Will Make America Wealthy Again. We Will Make America Proud Again. We Will Make America Safe Again.
And, Yes, Together, We Will Make America Great Again. Thank you, God Bless You, And God Bless America.”
Short and to the Point
Trump’s 15-minute inaugural address was more concise than most swearing-in speeches throughout history, but far from the shortest.
George Washington’s second inaugural address was just 135 words. The longest ever address was President William Henry Harrison’s 8,445-word speech on March 4, 1841. He died about a month later from pneumonia, believed to be brought on by exposure on the cool inauguration day.
Click on the preceding link for more details of the shortest and longest speeches.
Protectionism vs. Isolationism
If Trump follows his message, we are certainly going to see a more protectionist, isolationist America.
Isolationism, as in not meddling in the foreign affairs of other countries, would be an excellent thing. Political meddling leads to wars, and only makes more enemies.
On the other hand, protectionism, is not a good thing. Trade is not between nations, trade is between individuals. Lower prices are undoubtedly good for consumers.
If it’s good for consumers, it’s good for the US. Neither NAFTA nor China is responsible for the loss of manufacturing jobs. Automation and productivity improvements are to blame.
We Must All Wish Trump Well
When it comes to trade, Donald Trump is fighting a symptom of a problem and not the problem. Income inequality and secular stagnation are also symptoms of the problem.
For discussion and a clear presentation of the real problem facing not only the US but the globe, please see Secular Stagnation Theory: Challenge to DeLong, Summers, Bernanke, Krugman, Keen, Pettis, Edwards.
Nonetheless, Trump is going to try things his way, so we must all wish him well.
Mike “Mish” Shedlock