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China finds Trump does have a principle

Niall Ferguson
 

By Niall Ferguson (Original source Boston Globe)

“As presidents go, Donald Trump is unlikely to be remembered for his principles. But he has one. In Fear: Trump in the White House, Bob Woodward describes how the president wrote, “Trade is bad”, in the margins of a draft speech. When his economic adviser Gary Cohn asked why he believed this, Trump replied: “I just do. I’ve had these views for 30 years.”

This is true. In 1987 Trump published an open letter “To the American people” as a full-page newspaper ad. “It’s time for us to end our vast deficits,” he declared, “by making Japan, and others who can afford it, pay.”

In an interview with The Wall Street Journal in 1999, Trump speculated about waging a trade war against Japan. “It’s not going to last very long,” he explained, “because Japan, if they don’t sell to this country, they go out of business, OK?”’

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