Either way, we’re left with a president whose draft executive orders are being quickly leaked to the press and whose own West Wing staffers are openly deriding him. And that’s all happened within his first week. We have at least 204 more weeks to go.
Being on the brink of a renewed protectionist urge in the US, it’s worthwhile to review the history on this kind of policy.
The Tariff Act of 1930 (codified at 19 U.S.C. ch. 4), otherwise known as the Smoot–Hawley Tariff or Hawley–Smoot Tariff, was an act sponsored by Senator Reed Smoot and Representative Willis C. Hawley and signed into law on June 17, 1930. The act raised U.S. tariffs on over 20,000 imported goods.
The tariffs under the act were the second-highest in the U.S. in 100 years, exceeded by a small margin by the Tariff of 1828. The Act and following retaliatory tariffs by America’s trading partners helped reduce American exports and imports by more than half during the Depression; but economists disagree by how much.
Josh Marshall is following an odd but disturbing bit of news out of Russia. Note that this is going on as Trump officials are being investigated about their ties to Russia. Has someone in the White House “outed” one of the US’s own assets to the Russians?
Last night I noted that a top Russian spy who is the number two person in the FSB department which allegedly oversaw the US election hacking operation had been arrested and charged with treason. Was he a sacrificial lamb and olive branch to Trump? A way for Putin to claim that his spy services had perhaps gone rogue? Or was he suspected of being a source to US intelligence? People who fall from grace in Putin’s Russia are often dealt with with trumped up criminal prosecutions. But treason is a special charge.
Well, now we have reports that Sergei Mikhailov is suspected of being a US asset at the heart of Russian intelligence.
Source: Wow, It Gets Bigger
Astonishing. Not much more to say.
WASHINGTON—Trump sat down with ABC’s David Muir on Wednesday for his first major television interview as president. He showed no sign of abandoning his campaign penchant for littering interviews with false claims. We counted 11 — not including the outlandish but uncheckable claim that he was told he received “the biggest standing ovation since Peyton Manning had won the Super Bowl.”
As a friend wrote derisively on Facebook, “what, Executive Orders aren’t magic?”
The breakneck pace of Trump’s executive actions might please his supporters, but critics are questioning whether the documents are being rushed through without the necessary review from agency experts and lawmakers who will bear the burden of actually carrying them out. For example, there are legal questions on how the country can force companies building pipelines to use materials manufactured domestically, which might not be available or which could violate trade treaty obligations. There’s also the question of whether the federal government can take billions from cities who don’t comply with immigration enforcement actions: Legal experts said it was unclear.