Friday, August 21, 2015

A "President Trump" Would Be A Disaster For South Dakota. Just A Complete Freakin' Disaster.

     Donald Trump and his weirdness would be a disaster for South Dakota should he become
He Cares More About His Hair Than Our Corn
(thanks Cory, at
Looking over an itemized account of his "platform" in the Washington Post the other day, you'd have to wonder where this genius comes up with some of these ideas.  The first one that South Dakotans should take a hard look at is the notion that he'd slap a "25% tariff on all goods imported from China if China wouldn't stop unfair trade practices."  I wonder if that blustering cowboy thinks through the implications of an idiotic notion like that.

     Does Trump think China would just roll over and submit to his bombastic insanity?  First of all, China owns about 8% of America's outstanding debt, which amounts to $1.3 trillion (the Chinese share).  I can't think of anybody who's particularly happy or even comfortable with that situation, but that's the way it is. Peremptorily slapping the People's Republic with a punishing tariff before going through the adjudicating processes created by various tariff agreements and trade deals is a pretty ham-handed way of dealing with this issue, and all it would do is invite a retaliatory response from the Chinese. That they might not be so sanguine about rolling over American debt is one consideration.  Another is a reflexively hostile response toward goods they buy from the United States.  
     And what do you suppose might be one of the first American export industries to feel the pain of a Chinese slap-back to Trump's ridiculous suggestion?  Agriculture, by far South Dakota's
South Dakota Soybeans Headed For China
The Chinese Buy A Third Of Our State's Production
(photo from
largest industry, with exports accounting for a very big share of that industry's revenues.  And just who do you suppose is South Dakota agriculture's largest export market in recent years? Yup, China. In fact, the generally warming trade relations with China since 2003 have resulted in a gain of 453% (as of 2012) in South Dakota ag exports to that country vs. a gain of 121% to the rest of the world, combined. To give it some perspective, a third of South Dakota's soybeans are sold to China. South Dakotans need to think twice before embracing Trump and his bombastically thoughtless plans.

     Trump's frustration with China's problematic trade practices are understandable enough, but from a South Dakota perspective, his remedy is full of it.  


  1. A "President Trump" would be a disaster for the United States. Candidate Trump is already a disaster for the Republican party.

    Democrats should be busy worrying about when Hillary Clinton's campaign will implode. Instead, they're linking their chops at taking on a GOP that can't seem to stop Trump from pissing off every key demographic.

    It's ridiculous that not one viable Republican candidate will call Trump on his unrepentant lunacy. These people aren't fit to lead a parade down Main Street, let alone the United States.

    What the Republican Party needs is leaders who don't just say they love their country, but proven it with they're service; who don't just value business people for their political contributions, but have actually run a business; who don't just make wild claims about improving the economy, but actually understand economics and high finance; who don't just say the first thing that comes to their mind and call that being forthright, but who actually thinks about what they say, and then sayou what they think.

    Sound like anybody you know?

    1. lol. Yeah, but he isn't running for president. Appreciate your comments here.

  2. A wise man once told me that folks who have no answers, don't like differing opinions resort to personal attacks. It's time we Make America Great Again instead
    of selfishly thinking of only ourselves.

  3. Jon,

    A couple of points. First, who knows if a President Trump would in practice be actually be provocative and clumsy when dealing with the Chinese. His approach to calling out the Chinese for their trade practices reminds me of Reagan's approach to the Russians. Reagan called the USSR an evil empire but then negotiated from
    strength. Maybe Trump is no Reagan, but his bellicose comments of today don't guarantee that he would not deal with the Chinese effectively.

    Second, your comments about the narrow interests of South Dakota are exceedingly selfish. Agricultural is perhaps the one American industry that China cannot destroy due to its massive population and appetite. The plain truth is that despite the relatively recent rise in Ag prices, the Ag industry has been and continues now to a lesser extent be the beneficiary of support from the Non-Ag sectors of the economy. I find it appalling and very un-American for you to suggest that South Dakotans adopt an attitude of "Oh Well, a strong China is good for the Ag industry" so we don't care what happens in Urban America.

    FYI: I realize I took some liberties in paraphrasing your specific comments. I don't however think I have mischaracterized the essence of your perspective.