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33. Tariff Games: What Are the Pros and Cons of Tariffs?

Updated: Jan 21, 2022


Hugh Sifu: [00:00:00] All right, guys, welcome back to Thoughts of a Random Citizen. I am your host, as always, Hugh Sifu. A moment really quick to start off, if you guys like this podcast, it would be a huge help if you reviewed it, five stars, please. If you don't want to give me five stars, you don't really have to review it. Maybe just don't. Or follow, subscribe, whatever. I hate saying that, but at the same time, it really does help the growth of the podcast. Today we are talking about tariffs.

Yes, those lovely, lovely things, that right now corporations are trying to pressure the government into stop having tariffs with China. To me, this is comical for a few reasons, especially when you look at the broader scope of the other policies the government is trying to implement. Let's talk about that, shall we? Yes, sorry, I jumped right into this one, but guys, I'm just really excited for this episode, because I just get to kinda bitch. I promise I do have quite a bit of good information that you might be interested in as well.

First off, why would we make something cheaper for only large corporations, because those are the only ones doing business in China, while at the same time claiming we want to raise taxes on them? Tariffs are killing two birds with one stone here. Why not do that? That is kill two birds with one stone. You're getting a lot of money from corporations who you want to raise taxes on anyway while also hindering businesses that do business and give money to a CCP government and nation that you see as a major threat [00:02:00] to our, the US nation, and allied nations sovereignty.

Second, if we keep tariffs up, it incentivizes those larger corporations to invest in the surrounding areas, like India and Indonesia, that China is also trying to war with. We would be helping those nations who don't have a central government that shuts down companies left and right and takes control of businesses who have too much influence for national security reasons. Yes, I air quoted both of those, if you could figure that out by my voice. During The Cold War, would we have invested left and right in Russian space? No. Did we? No.

It was pretty much well-known that Russia didn't really like the US, but when China is stealing our tech and desperately wants and needs our tech and innovations, we give it to them, even though that's where today's cold/trade war is headed. The government, CCP, jails journalists for national security. It monitors every decision and rates their citizens. It doesn't allow free speech or religion. It's threatening violent expansion. Why do business with the CCP?

Keep the tariffs, hell, raise the tariffs, that way any corporation who wants to support that kind of government, just for their own bottom line, and not find better countries to invest in, can pay back the Americans or allied nations via high price tariffs. Then you can think [00:04:00] about taxes. If you dare get rid of tariffs and raise taxes on the individuals, I'll have lost all hope in our governments. We will have lost it to the greedy serpents that live in our nation's chambers.

I wanted to bring in an article that inspired me to write this. If you want this article, I've pitched an issue and it's below, from The New York Times. "Arnold Kamler, the chief executive of Kent International, a bicycle wholesaler and manufacturer, said that 25% tariffs on bicycle imports from China have been a major drain on the cashflow on his business, forcing him to borrow more from his bank. For the last two years, he has been passing on the cost of additional import duties to retailers."

This is propaganda businesses will use to get you on their side. Their side is when they make more money from you. This is simple. He will pump up the costs while another smarter company will find other, cheaper places that don't have those tariffs, which those tariffs are in place for a good reason, and Mr. Kamler will wish he stayed in business and out of politics, in my opinion. Another piece in that same article says the following, "Robert E. Lighthizer, who was Mr. Trump's trade representative and negotiated the trade deal with China, said in an interview that lobbyists were trying to weaken the executive branch's power to impose tariffs."

He said, and this a quote in the article as well, "People working for China and Chinese importers want to get rid of the last tool that Biden and subsequent [00:06:00] presidents will have to deal with Chinese unfair trade practices," Mr. Lighthizer said. Those lobbyists, Chinese lobbyists, are working with our legislators to help China to change the structure of our governments for Chinese benefit. Any representative who votes for either the president to not be allowed to create tariffs or to get rid of tariffs, while at the same time wanting to raise more money from taxes on the individual, should henceforth be known as corrupt.

There is no other logical reason I can contemplate that our Senator or Congressmen of the United States, at this moment in time, would ever vote those two ways, without attempting to do one of the following. Empowering him or herself, further gaining influence at home or abroad, or getting more money in his or her pocket. Again, I'll say what I've said time and time again. I'm not against China at all. China, I love Chinese culture, history, food, people, and the beauty of that country.

I'm against the CCP. If you somehow don't think we should together, the US and the allies and all of its citizens, against the CCP, I assume you don't do research yourself about who they are, first off. Second, I'd ask, were you a Trump hater? After I assume I would be correct, because anyone who was for Trump most undoubtedly doesn't like China. Then I would ask you to consider the following. Let's take Trump, multiply him by 100, and you get the leader of the CCP. Before Xi Jinping was president, they had term limits in China.

In 2018, [00:08:00] the term limits were abolished. Let me just see if this makes sense to you. Two delegates voted against the change, and three abstained, out of 2,964 votes. Out of 2,964 votes, two said no and three didn't vote, so you can assume they probably weren't for it either. Five, out of 2,964, were against it. When on God's green Earth have that many people ever agreed about anything on a poll size that big? I advise you should probably do some more research before you form concrete opinions.

Luckily for me, I don't know any of those people. Like I always say, if somebody can point good evidence as to why we shouldn't be worried about Xi Jinping and the CCP and anything else regarding trusting that form of government, then I'm all open ears, but until that day, this is my opinion. Referring to those individuals, those politicians, who would stop tariffs while raising taxes on the individual, the Americans as a nation and abroad, you all should realize that it doesn't matter what your party is or if you like a representative so much, you should never be stuck so much on one side of the fence that you blind yourself from logic.

Vote out bad representatives even if they're in your party, and do your own research on those representatives. It's your fucking responsibility to do that. Idea of this episode, someone make a place where you can see every vote any government official has ever [00:10:00] had on any bill, public statements they've made, things they've done. Don't allow those representatives to boost certain things to the top. Make it in chronological order and allow citizens to vet their representatives thoroughly on their own, based on the way those representatives have acted. Why? Because actions speak louder than words.

We can only blame the citizens of America and other nations for its place right now. We continue to elect the same officials year in and year out without doing the duties of investigating those officials thoroughly. We continue to believe their bullshit, US citizens elect the officials then and only then can they make laws. The ball stops with us. I would also like to add however that if there is anyone else to blame, it would be the news agencies and the individual journalists for obvious reasons.

We are the ones who trust in them to find the truth and print it. That's their job not to find the truth only to not print it, that's not good. Something, the truth in printing, that has been seemingly lacking lately in news everywhere, but back to the tariffs. Now, I'm 100% for free trade and open competition with countries and tariffs are not always beneficial in times of peace. However, this isn't really one of those times and I'm definitely not for free trade with countries hell-bent on world domination.

Everyone, it really is that simple. We can trade with the rest of the world, just not the CCP, which is China right now. At this specific moment in time. There are times in life when we all must sacrifice a little bit for the greater good, [00:12:00] for all the reasons previously mentioned. If we have to pay a little extra or wait a little longer for the luxury of our materialistic purchase, so be it. It's really not that big of a sacrifice.

These are some rough numbers, but get this, we're worried about China's ability to spur and get information from the US, hack our systems, wage war, spread viruses, and more. Ironically, the top two imports from China into the US by value are computers and cell phones. It's a bit concerning that all of our tech is made from a country committed to our demise.

In 2019, total trade between the US and China totaled 557 billion, Of that, the US exported 105 billion to China, while China exported 450 billion to the US. That's during a trade war, that's a 344 billion deficit in 2019 alone. Yes, in one year, we have pumped 344 billion more dollars into a CCP regime than we've received. In 2021, this year, after seven months of data that the government's website has put out, we're set to outpace that deficit by at least 30 billion this year. Now I know numbers can sometimes be hard to hear on a podcast, but just bear with me a bit longer.

I promise I'm unbiased here on this, from Trump's run of 2017 until 2019. I'm not including COVID because obviously the numbers are as follows. These are the deficit number alone [00:14:00] in billions, 2017, 375, '18, 418 billion, in 2019, 344 billion, which I already said. Those are the deficits alone, 375, 418, and 344 billion. Under the Obama administration from 2009, it started at a 226 billion deficit of that year and ended in 2016 with a 347 billion deficit steadily increasing year over year.

For 2001 for Bush, it started at 83 billion as a deficit. In 2008, 268 billion. Like we've steadily gone from a deficit of 83 billion and these numbers go back and it wasn't that much, it used to be like less than a billion and it stayed around that for a while and then just shot up obviously, after we went to war in 2001, and now we're at 400 billion every single year in a trade deficit. I want to get back to the current year of 2019, the most current full year of 2019, which was 344 billion.

We all know that the super hot topic is the infrastructure plan, being way too much, it could hurt the economy and all of that crap. The package would add 300 billion to the deficit over the next 10 years. I'm going to say that again, 300 billion to the government's deficit over 10 years. That's not per year, that's a total of 300 billion for the 10 years. We're in a trade deficit of a minimum of 350 billion every year with China, [00:16:00] minimum.

To compare that, I'm going to use the new infrastructure plan proposed of that $1 trillion spent over 10 years. Which there's talks about, obviously going up from that, even though it's been passed and there's another one or blah, blah, blah but this is the plan that has been passed and how it will be allocated over 10 years. Now, a lot of that money is going to go to major states like California, Texas, Florida and the Northeast, and Georgia, which is weird but I digress. The most expensive infrastructure is roads and bridges, which is $110 billion spent over 10 years.

Next is transit and rail with 39 billion spent over 10 years. You've got broadband upgrade for 65 billion, ports for 17 billion, airports for 25 billion, electric vehicles because that's so important to our infrastructure is 7.5 billion. Although, I'm for electric vehicles don't get me wrong, I just don't see why. Anyways, water and power 65 billion over 10 years, environment 21 billion.

The most expensive thing we are spending on infrastructure isn't even 1/3 of our yearly deficit with China. That's 1/3, the roads and bridges 110 billion is the most expensive thing we are spending in our infrastructure package for infrastructure, which I'll get to in a second. Spread out over 10 years, isn't even 1/3 of our yearly deficit with China. Hang on, Hugh, that's only 350 billion. What about the rest? I'll leave that for you to find out, but out of the 1 trillion infrastructure package, like not even half is going to infrastructure. [00:18:00] Have fun finding out where the rest is going on an infrastructure package. Fucking stupid government.

By no means, am I saying I'm totally for or against packages like these? I'm just giving you data. Again, this is about tariffs, remember? Probably not. I posted an article about tapering, where in it, I explained about how our government is buying the bank's crap debt. With deficits like these, who do you think is buying or owning the US's debt? Then they ask, how will we pay for the super expensive package or raise taxes on corporations and individuals, of course? No, your idiotic politicians start with fucking tariffs and ignore the damn billionaires and start doing your job and looking out for the Americans and its citizens. That goes for all of the democracies around the world.

Dude, I told you that was a fun one for me. I don't know about you guys, but I enjoyed it. Anyways please like or review the following. Subscribe, do whatever. Again, it would be absolutely wonderful if you shared or told anyone about this podcast, just for helping me. My website is Toarcunited, if you're interested in anything I post or find any resources on there, I've travel advice. Sometimes I talk about politics guys, sometimes it's about investing, sometimes it's about entrepreneurship, travel. I talk about a little bit of everything on here, so you never know what you're going to get.

However, next week and the week after, I have a two part series coming out with an interview from a super smart gentleman named Alberto, he was part of the European Union for a while. A very successful lawyer, he was just recently for the entirety of COVID [00:20:00] living in Singapore. It's a fantastic interview, guys. Please if you're interested in the structure of European Governments, the EU, Italian mafia, please tune in for that and that'll be coming out next week and the week after. Other than that, thank you so much for listening guys and I'll talk to you next week on Thoughts of a Random Citizen. Cheers.

[00:20:26] [END OF AUDIO]

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