by William Teach | December 2, 2016 6:54 am
Now, let’s just imagine that it had been Mr. Obama who had made the deal to keep Carrier in the U.S. He would have been praised to high heaven. Trump making a deal (even before being inaugurated)? Well, there’s big problems, you guys! And we get this type of Voxsplainin’
This week, Donald Trump has been trumpeting an announcement by Carrier, which makes furnaces and air conditioners, that the company will be keeping about 800 jobs in the United States instead of moving them to Mexico.
This is obviously great news for the 800 American workers whose jobs will be saved, and it has already generated a lot of positive publicity for Donald Trump. But the announcement also illustrates an inherent problem with Trump’s approach to economic policymaking: As he focuses on small-scale, headline-grabbing deals, he’s neglecting the larger policy questions that will ultimately determine the success of his economic agenda.
Does Vox understand that Trump isn’t actually the POTUS yet? Doesn’t matter, because no matter what Trump does, there will be cause to find fault.
But a series of Carrier-like deals doesn’t add up to a viable economic agenda. For one thing, these deals are way too small. There are 150 million workers in the United States, and the US economy needs to create about 200,000 jobs a month just to keep up with population growth. Trump would have to negotiate dozens of Carrier-sized deals every week to have a serious impact on job growth — and so far he’s announced only two deals in three weeks.
He’s not actually President. Anyhow, where was this concern over the last 8 years, when a goodly chunk of economic reports showed less than 200,000 jobs a month created? And I bet the people who kept their jobs do not see them as “way too small.”
The larger issue, though, is that governing through a series of deals creates serious perverse incentives. If Trump starts giving corporate welfare to companies that promise not to move jobs to Mexico, we’ll see a flood of companies threatening to move to Mexico in hopes of getting a handout. Taxpayers would wind up paying to save a lot of jobs that weren’t actually in danger in the first place.
They do have a point on offering incentives. The problem here, though, is that states and Los Federales have been doing this for a long time. Is it better to keep those jobs, or see them leave? For the most part, taxpayers do not pay. They are just tax breaks. Where’s the concern from Vox over the taxpayers actually paying for public and private sector unions?
Conversely, if Trump tries to punish companies that move jobs overseas — for example, by denying them federal contracts — companies will start looking for ways to hide the fact that they’re moving jobs overseas. An overly aggressive campaign could also put US businesses at a competitive disadvantage against foreign multinationals that are free to locate their factories in low-wage countries, resulting in US companies losing market share and eventually going bankrupt.
Has he done this? No. Interestingly, there was no condemnation from Vox or other liberal outlets when Democrats specifically threatened to punish companies that move jobs and/or their headquarters overseas.
All in all, the above and the rest of the article is simply a way to attack Trump for …… keeping jobs in the US. Seriously. That’s their concern. The next four years is going to be fun if we go by this standard. The media still doesn’t get that Trump beat them at the ballot box, and they continue doing the things that helped Donald beat them.
Meanwhile, you have Think Progress saying this was a bad deal. The NY Times finds a way to put a negative spin on the story, as does the Washington Post. Salon is having their usual hissy fit. The NY Times even finds a way to say that this shows that Big Government is great!
And Mr. Obama is probably sitting around in his office going “hey, guys? I’m still president. Have a little under two months left. Guys?”
Crossed at Pirate’s Cove. Follow me on Twitter @WilliamTeach.
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