August 25th 2018

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Articles from this issue:

COVER STORY Current policies leave farmers high and dry in drought

CANBERRA OBSERVED Captain and Lieutenant's $444 million munificence

MEDICAL ETHICS Changes to AHPRA's code of conduct would gag doctors

FOREIGN AFFAIRS Trump delivers for U.S. economy and workers

CHILDREN AND SOCIETY Treating depressed children: How will history judge us?

PRIVACY Big Brother is marketing you

THE FAMILY Humanae Vitae: a prophetic document at 50

SOCIETY AND MORES Novel features of child sexual abuse in our time

EUTHANASIA International expert emphasises palliative care

BIOGRAPHY The trouble with Harry (Freame) is that we've forgotten him

OPINION Just asking ... sauce for the goose ...?

HISTORY Christianity has died. Agreed, and yet ...

MILITARY HISTORY The volunteering spirit proves best in the test


MUSIC Chilly exposure: The sound and the fury

CINEMA Mission Impossible: Fallout: Ethan Hunt, knight errant

BOOK REVIEW A good diagnosis enables the cure

BOOK REVIEW End of the American empire?



OPINION The Victorian ALP observed from up close

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Trump delivers for U.S. economy and workers

by Peter Westmore

News Weekly, August 25, 2018

Following the imposition of tariffs (import duties) on imported steel dumped in the United States, and on imports from the European Union (EU), which restricts U.S. exports, the American economy is now growing at its fastest rate for years, despite threats of reprisals from the EU and China, and relentless negativity from the American media.

The American economy is now growing at an annual rate of over 4 per cent.

Motor vehicles remain a sticking point
between the U.S. and the European Union.

U.S. President Donald Trump says his administration has accomplished “an economic turnaround of historic proportions”, and that, “if economic growth continues at this pace, the U.S. economy will double in size more than 10 years faster than it would have under President Bush or President Obama.”

Contradicting critics who claimed the result would not be repeated, the American President predicted the numbers would grow even more in the next quarter.

He said the rate of private business investment had seen “a tremendous increase” to 9.4 per cent since he took office and the U.S. trade deficit narrowed by $US50 billion.

“I happen to think we’re going to do very well in our next report. I think the numbers are going to be outstanding,” he said, adding that his top economic advisers told him the current rate of growth was “very, very sustainable”.

Trump had threatened a trade war with the EU over its asymmetrical tariffs on American exports and huge trade surplus.

Motor vehicles

Cars are a particular issue. Imports into the U.S. are not quite free, but attract a tariff of only 2.5 per cent, compared with the EU tariff of 10 per cent on U.S. car imports. Agricultural exports are even worse: the EU imposes a 17 per cent tax on apples and a 20 per cent tax on grapes.

Apart from the import duties into the EU, the Europeans also subsidise local manufacturers and lavishly subsidise local agriculture.

After the Trump Administration imposed tariffs on aluminium and steel, the EU responded by imposing tariffs on selected American goods, including soybeans and whisky.

Trump threatened further reprisals, including a 25 per cent tariff on imported European cars, leading to a delegation from the EU visiting Washington at the end of July.

Before the meeting, Trump said: “For years, the U.S. has been losing hundreds of billions of dollars in trade with the European Union, and we just want it to be a level playing field for our farmers, for our manufacturers, for everybody. We also want a big beneficiary, frankly, to be the European Union, and we think it can be good for everybody and that’s what we are here to discuss.”

A two-hour meeting between delegations led by Trump on the American side and Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission, resulted in a backdown by the EU.

Trump announced that he had secured major trade concessions from EU officials, who agreed to expand U.S. exports of soybeans, hit by Chinese import bans, and natural gas, of which the U.S. is now the world’s largest producer. While there was no concession on motor vehicles, the two sides agreed to continue discussions, based on the principle of free trade between the two economic superpowers, which together comprise half of global trade.

Adding to Trump’s conviction, the threat of a trade war between the United States and Western Europe has receded. Juncker said that as long as negotiations were ongoing, “we will hold off on further tariffs and reassess existing tariffs on steel and aluminium”.

Trump said: “We had a big day. We set out to launch a new phase of close friendship between the United States and the European Union, strong trade relationships where both of us will win.”

Further evidence of the growth of the U.S. economy came with the reopening of steel and aluminium plants across the country, following the imposition of 25 per cent tariffs on imports.

On the same day the steel tariff was announced, U.S. Steel chief executive Dave Burritt promised to restart immediately one of two blast furnaces along with its steel-making facilities at Granite City, Illinois.

Then in June, Burritt announced the reopening of the second blast furnace at the plant by October, promising more jobs in a community that had been hit badly by its closure. Additionally, there has been a $US500 million expansion and the reopening of a seamless pipe mill in Baytown, Texas, the restarting of an idle mill in Lorain, Ohio, employing 1000 workers, and the building of a new micro steel mill in Florida.

In the aluminium industry, new or restarted aluminium smelters are firing up in places like New Madrid, Montana; as well as in Kentucky and Indiana.

New or restarted aluminium rolling mills or extrusion facilities are operating in Kentucky, Tennessee, Ohio and South Carolina.

The Trump renaissance is under way.

All you need to know about
the wider impact of transgenderism on society.
TRANSGENDER: one shade of grey, 353pp, $39.99

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