Good afternoon, friends.
A ray of sunlight has come into our lives today, as President Donald Trump has just repudiated and reversed all of the idiotic shit he’s been saying for two years about the global economy. I feel better right now.
I must confess, Candidate Trump’s notions about currency manipulators and the primacy of coal and his protectionist fantasies had kept me up at night on several occasions this year. I’d lie awake fretting about border adjustment taxes and his ignorance about automation, his utter cluelessness about what China was doing with their currency (They’re propping it up, Donald! Not suppressing it!) and so many of the other things he’d been talking about (nonsensically) since the escalator ride. I make my living helping people use the economy to grow their wealth and a lot of his rhetoric was practically guaranteed to blow the economy up, had he meant any of it.
But fortunately, he did not.
Today he seemingly changed his mind on half a dozen of his most stridently held views, all at once. It’s almost as if the Gary Cohn-Steve Mnuchin-Wilbur Ross contingent within Mar-a-Lago North finally strapped him down and jacked him into a basic economic program, Matrix-style. He is now saying smart things about these topics and taking positions that are conducive to the continuity of America as the world’s lone super power and most critical reserve currency.
A quick review:
– He now prefers low interest rates and has left the door open to allow Chairperson Yellen to stay on when her term is up in 2018. This is quite an about-face from accusing the Fed of working for Obama. As a lifelong professional debtor, I knew he’d come around to this view. Once you explain the gold standard to a “debt guy”, it’s a wrap.
He left open the possibility of keeping Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen once her tenure is up next year, a shift from his position during the campaign that he would “most likely” not appoint her to another term.
“I do like a low-interest rate policy, I must be honest with you,” Mr. Trump said at the White House, when asked about Ms. Yellen.
Asked if Ms. Yellen was “toast” when her term ends in 2018, Mr. Trump said, “No, not toast.”
“I like her, I respect her,” Mr. Trump said, noting that the two have sat and talked in the Oval Office. “It’s very early.”
I would note that Janet Yellen is the only person keeping things under control right now in this country. Congress is f***ing useless to Trump so far, but Yellen is saving his ass.
– He is nudging China on the North Korean nuclear problem – certainly for all of our benefit – and using the carrot of fair trade agreements and the stick of “okay, you’re not a currency manipulator…for now.” This is Trump the Negotiator that we’ve been hoping would emerge. If a few anti-globalists have to get their feathers ruffled, so be it.
– Speaking of globalism, he has just reversed what he said about NATO, thank god, a few moments ago.
I said it was obsolete. It’s no longer obsolete,” Trump said in a joint press conference with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg at the White House.
Somebody call Lithuania and Poland, tell them they can cut back on the Zoloft now.
– He has also gotten religion on the “strong dollar” nonsense and seems to have figured out the game. Check out this quote, also from moments ago:
“I think our dollar is getting too strong, and partially that’s my fault because people have confidence in me. But that’s hurting—that will hurt ultimately,” he added. “Look, there’s some very good things about a strong dollar, but usually speaking the best thing about it is that it sounds good.”
He continued, “It’s very, very hard to compete when you have a strong dollar and other countries are devaluing their currency.”
Honestly, I don’t even care that he’s taking credit for the dollar’s strength in his own inimitable way. I can get past that. The key is that is that he now appears to get it and he’s not listening to the goldbugs and the “we need a hard landing crowd” that frequently pop up on his favorite news-flavored entertainment shows (Infowars, Fox Business, etc).
Lastly, he’s even done an about-face on the Import-Export Bank issue, which Candidate Trump was absolutely stark-raving negative about on the trail. How’s this:
“It turns out that, first of all, lots of small companies are really helped, the vendor companies,” Mr. Trump said. “But also, maybe more important, other countries
Holy shit, it’s almost as if he is actually listening to his advisors and retaining what they’re teaching him about how the world’s gears turn. I absolutely love it.
The last piece of the puzzle – what would really get me excited and optimistic – a bipartisan push to truly fix the flaws of Obama’s healthcare plan rather than “scrap it”, including input from the GOP side, which declined to be of any help at all since inception. Coupling a true agreement on healthcare with a quick strike on corporate income tax reform would be a dramatic success for the administration and would probably even get the Russia heat off of them.
There is such a burning desire all across the country for this man to begin adopting pragmatic legislation and speaking intelligently about it that if he would just do so, it would be, in Trumpanese, very, very tremendous for all of us.
Woke Trump is the best Trump we’ve seen so far.