Trump's steel tariff


It doesn’t matter, Military steel consumption is less than 3% of what we domestically produce.

The Government is not in a position to pick winners & losers, if you do that, you strengthen crony capitalism.

You make economic success about political connections rather than merit.

No different than Obama and has long list of Green energy initiatives.

Protectionism doesn’t work, any read of past experience, or that of other nations, would tell you that.

You argument doesn’t win, when reality has proven it false. You kill jobs, you don’t protect, you bring on economic and innovative decline. You make us more like Japan, France and Brazil, who are all modern economic losers.


No, I am not missing the point. We do not know the entire domestic economic impact. Slim says it will be a net loss of 60 jobs for each steel job saved. I seriously doubt this. The globalist libertarian ideology completely ignores national security. Beer kegs MIGHT be negatively impacted. Many products using steel and aluminium will suffer negligible impact. We don’t even know the extent of the tariffs as there are negotiations in progress.


You ignore actual experience. Which beats everything else you want to call this.

You claim reality, yet can’t bring to bear a single example that proves your idea correct.
I can leverage several that disprove it, and you can read about more than a few of them in that book.

It’s not enough that you think you have a rational idea.

If the evidence doesn’t bear it out, you’re wrong. That’s reality.


BS. WHERE in President Trump’s tariff imposition does it say that the tariffs are intended to be PERMANENT? When China lift’s it’s 35% tariffs on U.S. produced products or India lifts it’s 100% TARIFF on Harley motorcycles, we MAY see our 25% tariff disappear. THAT’S the ultimate aim. We want and deserve FREE trade, but also FAIR trade. You want to sell Americans Christmas tree lights? Fine. We’ll trade you GOOD bicycles and reliable automobiles for them.


No you didn’t answer it. You said “destroys” jobs.


Do you seriously believe our national security is compromised by buying foreign steel? If so, how so?

Are you sure? It didn’t work out well in the past when previous presidents in both major parties tried it.

Isn’t it great! This business of politicians bargaining on our behalf? Reminds me of how certain other countries conducted and conduct their economies.


No. We’re taking about steel prices. That means it costs more to BUY. Tariffs have NO EFFECT on production costs.


If something costs more to buy, it will cost more to make stuff using the something you just bought. It will increase the cost of producing kegs. Tariffs do have an effect on production costs.

If you’ve been buying logs from me for $5 and I increase the price to $6, it will cost you $1 more to build a house.

If you buy batteries from China for $10 each, and a tariff increases the price to $15 per battery, the product I produce with them will cost $5 more – or if I switch to an American-made battery for $14, it will cost $4 more. When my American customers buy my good, they’ll pay more at the register based on the increased cost of production.


It doesn’t matter; you’re making an economic process about political power & connections.

You’re uplifting the people who make steel, over the industries who consume it (btw, the latter group is bigger, and employs more people).

No differently than how the Ex-IM bank uplifted companies who made Bulldozers, over companies who sold construction services.

This is central economic planning, it is folly, and rife with corrupting impulses. Past experience exposes this.
Go look at the aviation industry in the 1920s, go look at the shipbuilding industry in the 1850s.

Heck, go look at the corn/ethanol & sugar industry, today. It’s the same damn argument, with the same damn effect.


There was a day when I spent my time arguing about this with liberal Democrats – on this site – not the conservatives.


Do you know the future? A widespread protracted conventional war needs a lot of steel. If the American steel industry is eventually driven to near extinction do we want our steel to come from halfway around the world?


Singapore is of far greater danger of being wiped out than us (hence their alliance with Israel).

They spent a great deal of their time, industry & energy building up their military:

They still have a free economy. Apparently, they don’t see the contradiction you think there is.


Many products using steel and aluminium will suffer negligible impact.

I mentioned $125 impact on domestic autos. I call this negligible.

It was a different time but tariffs in the 19th century created a world class American steel industry and virtually destroyed British steel.


American businesses still produce a lot of steel, around 82 million metric tons per year. No one imports close to that amount. America has steel. America has the strongest military in the world. It’s 3 percent of the demand for steel. We’re not currently closing steel mills or in danger of losing our steel industry. I’d see your point if American steel were dying. I’d see your point if we had some protracted widespread conventional war looming – and that’s only a problem if we’re losing steel production. But we’re not.


I call it $125 transferred to someone else because the former capitalist party doesn’t like who I buy stuff from. I have a lot better uses for $125 than transfer payments.


I am not surprised that Reason published the opinion of one voice without examining the numbers, as long as the voice is perpetuating their propaganda its “BS be damned!”.

American steel was not 25 percent higher than imported steel, with Mexico and Canada exempt the competition and price point of steel will not move; the recent tax cuts and deregulation will mean America will have a greater share of the Market but claims of finished products rising 30 percent are just red meat for the economically illiterate.

The article admits that the nation’s who are effected by this make up a small portion of the steel that we consume, then they use this as ridiculous springboard to claim massive job losses in manufacturing domestically?

I challenge the assumption that the “author screwed up”, I think his agenda was to misrepresent what this action was for and what it was designed to do.

Much like the lumber tariff that Trump championed this is a strategic trade move, not an economic policy; Trump once again chose an industry that would have little to no impact domestically to send a loud message to our trade partners about what he is willing to do to countries who use government subsidies to pollute the Market.

I expect one of these every year, as I expect domestic operating costs to fall every year as regulations and lower taxes do their thing.

This tariff will be disruptive to nations that redirect profit from Markets that they control to lower the expenses of Markets that they can’t dominate via market forces alone, this doesn’t help us in the larger picture but it does needlessly limit domestic production of raw resources.

When those raw resources are energy, lumber or any of the industrial metals that should concern everyone, depending on foreign countries for resources that are plentiful at home and vital to national defense is foolish.

The price of lumber has not moved since last years tariff and the price of steel won’t move now, but our trade partners will be walking on pins & needles when it comes to the temptation to engage in “creative market manipulation”.

Screwing us in one Market that we cannot compete in and using the profit to kill us in another Market that we can compete in does not equal a “win” for us.

If any country can beat us head to head in any Market then we should respond with “great job, you win and we will buy from you”; but pretending that we cannot compete in Markets like steel, lumber and oil straight up does nothing but cost us growth and security.

Pretending that we do not lessen our security by devastating our domestic resource industries is nothing short of a head in the sand Ideology.

We are starting to do our part with deregulation and cutting taxes, demanding more integrity in trade “or else” is an entirely appropriate thing to be happening simultaneously.

Trump is not ignoring the way some trade partners connect their industries to cripple competitors that they cannot beat head to head, these trade partners being very nervous is the only “effect” that these selective tariffs will have.

Which is good, people tread lightly around a loose canon who fully understands the big picture; Trump creates and uses leverage like few politicians ever have.


It will be disruptive to us.

As Henry George observed:

What protection teaches us, is to do to ourselves in time of peace what enemies seek to do to us in time of war.

That being, isolate your own economy.

Other countries will still end up using the lower priced Steel & aluminum, thus their comparative advantage increases, while all we do is add yet one more roadblock into our own economy.

In addition, other economies damage themselves when they engage in subsidies. It’s not a “win” for them.

If you want an up close example of how this is, look no further than what happened to the Green Energy programs Obama put forth.

Or go look at New Zealand circa the 1980s, and how everything for them changed when they stopped subsidizing their agricultural industry.


We will not pay more for steel, this is not protectionism.

This is picking a non issue to scare the crap out of those who manipulate Markets that we trade in.

It is done for ammunition in trade negotiation, it will work.

Much like Trump choosing to bomb the airbase in Syria, THEN talk about accountability. His predecessors spoke about accountability first then rarely followed through.

Anyone in business understands what Trump is doing, a couple petty tariffs that will have zero effect on our domestic Market is not “Protectionism” but academics only have so many boxes to check so they pick that one.


Don’t disagree with that, but someone calculated that with the President’s new steel tariffs, the price of a car will rise by $45! If doing that will encourage China to start selling their steel without government subsidies to their steel manufactories, it’ll be worth it…and the tariff’s can go away.


Wow, this thread started and blew up before I even saw it.

I don’t like the tarriffs for some of the reasons given already. I do believe in embargoes on human rights grounds, and for that reason, I think China should be at the top of the poop list.