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When my dad was born on this day 110 years ago, the period was called "the golden age of farming", and the majority of the workers in our country earned their living as farmers. As I read the story below again this morning, the reference to cranberries caught my eye, and I realized that it is a very relevant topic for today.
As the article mentions, cranberry farmers can't sell their product for enough money to cover their cost of production, so their salvation has come from two sources (1) insurance companies and (2) exports. I took 11 Economics courses in college, and learned long ago that imposing tariffs by most governments is a very foolish thing to do. The Smoot-Hawley tariffs of the 1920's were disastrous, and caused the Great Depression to be much worse than it would have been otherwise.
Vladimir Putin's favorite employee is upending the relationships that we have with just about everybody, and he is not smart enough to figure our that tariffs almost always have unintended, and bad, consequences, and cranberries are one example. Exports represent 31% of our current cranberry production (roughly $300 million a year) and China accounts for $45 million of that total. In 2017, 50% of our imports were to the European Union, and the countries across the pond are not happy about the steel and aluminum tariffs that Trump imposed.
Last April, China started talking about adding a 40% tariff to the cranberries it imports from America. We had virtually no cranberry exports to China in 2010. 7 years later, that total has jumped to $50,000,000.
Dad was a lifelong Democrat, so there is no doubt that he would be just as mad at Trump as I am, but there IS hope for the future. It doesn't take much imagination to notice that Robert Mueller's noose is getting closer to Donald's head, and Mike Pence may well be in jeopardy as well. My prediction is that once the Mueller report becomes public, Trump is going to be forced to resign in exchange for having a multitude of charges against him dropped. If Pence is also forced out, that would make Nancy Pelosi the president of the United States, and Trump has already learned a very important lesson.
You don't mess with Italians.