True Free Traders Unite: ‘The Trump of the Tropics’ Is Here to Talk Trade
‘The Trump of the Tropics’ -
Round I We are in the midst of a worldwide anti-globalist nationalist movement. The first major move - was Brexit. Great Britain voting three years ago to get the heck out of the ridiculous European Union (EU). And reassert its national primacy and sovereignty on such things as immigration and trade. Up next was the United States’ election of President Donald Trump. Who ran on…reasserting US national primacy and sovereignty on such things as immigration and trade. Much of eastern Europe has spent the last several years individually resisting the EUs incessant push to knuckle under. And then along came South Americas Brazil. Conservative Jair Bolsonaro Elected President of Brazil Bolsonaro ran for the gig - sounding inordinately Trumpish: “Bolsonaro campaigned against the widespread corruption of Haddad’s Workers’ Party (PT), which ruled Brazil for most of the 21st century.” How do you say “Drain the Swamp” in Portuguese?: “He promised a commitment to imprison and convict politicians found guilty of corruption….” How do you say “Lock her up” in Portuguese?: “…as well as an emphasis on individual freedom, including gun rights; less government spending on gender and sexuality studies in school; fighting the influence of nefarious foreign entities in the country, particularly communist countries like China; and bringing Brazil closer to the West generally and the United States under President Donald Trump specifically.” All very Trumpish - most especially the “bringing Brazil closer to the West generally and the United States under President Donald Trump specifically” part. So much so - Bolsonaro has been dubbed “The Trump of the Tropics.” And today, Bolsonaro arrives in DC to meet with President Trump. Brazil’s Leader Visits to Forge Closer Ties: “Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro is in Washington for the early part of this week. He is scheduled to meet with business leaders today before chatting with Trump at the White House on Tuesday. “The two leaders are expected to hold a joint press conference Tuesday afternoon.” One way the US and Brazil could grow closer - is to remove Brazils massive trade-warping government between us and them: “(Is) trade on the (meeting) menu? The meeting comes less than three months after Bolsonaro’s inauguration on Jan. 1 and as the two countries are engaged in ‘preliminary’ trade talks. “'We are in very initial-stage exploratory talks with U.S., with no scope defined, trying to identify areas where we can work with them on trade,’ a Brazilian diplomat confirmed to POLITICO earlier this month. ‘It’s still very preliminary, there’s no definition where this will go.’” Brazil has long been a particularly big fan of agriculture subsidies for its farmers. Every dollar of Brazil subsidy - is a dollar less Brazils farmers can charge on the global market. Which means the global market - isn’t a free market. And it isn’t a fair market. Anyone who expects unsubsidized US farmers to compete against Brazilian farmers with billions of dollars in annual subsidies augmenting them - is demonstrating a profound problem with basic math. To wit: Brazil Sugar Industry Receives Massive Government Subsidies: “The common perception is that Brazil achieved its international sugar market dominance through a lucky mix of natural resources and sweat equity. Well, time to reconsider that perception with the release of a new report that looks at Brazilian government subsidies – both direct and indirect – that the nation’s sugar industry enjoys.” “International sugar market dominance?”: “Brazil currently controls, roughly, 50 percent of global sugar exports. To put that into perspective, Saudi Arabia controls about 19 percent of the crude oil exports….” Brazil’s sugar government subsidies - are massive: “Even conservative estimates…show Brazilian sugar producers receive no less than $2.5 billion annually in direct and indirect government programs.” $2.5 billion - is on the very low end: “(Report author Patrick Chatenay said)…’Actual subsidies could be much higher than $2.5 billion because they are unreported debt restructuring and tax write-offs. All told, Brazil would need at least a 15 percent increase in the sugar price to compensate for losing those subsidies.’” A 15% government-subsidized-cut in global price - has led to Brazil dominating the global market. Which means the global market - isn’t a free market. And it isn’t a fair market. President Trump should work with his tropical counterpart President Bolsonaro - to get Brazil to massively reduce these massive government subsidies. If Bolsonaro really does want to get closer to Trump and the US - and his repeatedly expressed desire to do so seems truly sincere - this would go a long way towards making that happen. And this titanic less government move - would serve as a titanic visual aide for further global trade improvements. In agriculture - and every other market. Less subsidies. Less tariffs. Lower trade imports. Working ultimately towards zero, zero and zero. America’s farmers - and manufacturers across the board - will be most appreciative. This first appeared in Red State.