• Rodney

International politics and economy declines are deeply intertwined with shutdown

As I previously stated, these are big topics when coming down to shutdown. So, let’s take a highlight a couple areas within the international picture.


Declines in the international economy: The second quarter of 2018, US GDP rose by 4.1%. This is actually is a good thing. However, President Trump has been criticized for having reintroduced import tariffs on Chinese goods. In May, over 1000 economists wrote to Donald Trump to challenge his protectionist economic policies and warn him against committing the same errors committed by the United States in the 1930s, which sparked the Great Depression. A quote regarding protectionist trade policies in Polanyi’s book asked the question ,"Can a policy be right which is being unanimously condemned by all experts as utterly mistaken, grossly fallacious, and contrary to all principles of economic theory? The answer was an unconditionally “No.” Even if we assume the economist are wrong, favorable free trade arrangements between countries increases interdependence and lessen the chance of conflict. So, in spite of our current GDP numbers, this does not sound like a healthy trajectory.


International Politics/Imperialist rivalries: Let us start with another quote from Polanyi, “The import tariffs of one country hampered the exports of another and forced it to seek for markets in politically unprotected regions. Economic imperialism was mainly a struggle between Powers for the privilege of extending their trade into politically unprotected markets.” Problems in international trade will increase international rivalries. Protectionism will only make things worse and accelerate conflict.

Additionally, there is a growing right/nationalistic fever in the world that should be watched. We have Bolsonaro in Brazil, Duterte in the Philippines and a growing populist shift in Europe. Personally, I am watching France, Germany and the UK closely. Oh, and don’t forget Turkey. What’s going on in Turkey? However, it seems that I am not the only one concerned. Just recently, Macron in France issued a warning about the nationalist growth in Europe where he labeled it a leprosy.


If you put it all together, you have a very interesting picture to consider.

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