View Full Version : D.Tramp administration proving an old lesson

David G
05-04-2017, 09:29 PM
Right before our eyes, commerce secretary and billionaire investor Wilbur Ross is proving something economists have been trying to tell Americans for years.

That lesson: Business and economics are very different disciplines running a business and running a country are not the same.


David G
05-05-2017, 08:48 PM
And in fact there are a bunch of skills and modes of thought you learn in business that could easily make you really bad at governing.

One of those is the administration's obsession with trade deficits.

"We have the biggest [trade] deficits in the world," Ross complained at Bloomberg's Breakaway conference in New York City on Wednesday, "while protectionist countries have surpluses."

That is why, he explained, the president has "superimposed" handling trade and turning deficits into surpluses "onto the normal duties of his department." That means aggressively enforcing trade deals and slapping countries that "seem (http://www.businessinsider.com/wilbur-ross-canada-trade-interview-2017-4)" to be violating trade rules with tariffs and investigations.

The problem is that trade deficits and surpluses have little to do with the health of our economy.
Ross is making a fairly common mistake. He's acting as if the US government operates like one of the businesses in his vast network of holdings. It does not, and treating it like it does will ultimately do more harm than good.