The trouble with tariffs instituted out of desperation, ignorance of how the  world works, egoism, and stupidity is that they are… stupid.

As a retail store and e-commerce businessman, I already see the affects of the tariffs that are going to make America great again (it doesn’t even deserve capitalization.) I will let you in on a little secret- it isn’t going to work!

Sales are dropping and will continue to drop as  tariffs begin to affect the supply chain.  Cost increases will be passed on and on and on, until finally you and I will be paying for those 20% tariffs that are going to save America.  Will wages and income increase 20% as well? Highly unlikely.  What will we do? Rework budgets, forego purchases, and try to ride it out.  And what effect will this have on our economy, on the global economy for which we are responsible (yes, we are responsible for it and have been since the end of World War II)?  You figure it out.

Hindsight is 20/20.  If we would have stayed out of NAFTA and GATT to begin with, if we wouldn’t have agreed to so many “free-trade” agreements, we would not be in this mess.  But that is the past.  Today, we are in the thick of it, part of the global mess we have created, for better or for worse.

Big D., if you read this, you cannot make massive changes to an intricately entangled, delicately balanced system and expect the system to adapt in the blink of an eye. Or even over the course of years. A small storm becomes a typhoon easily enough. Typhoons destroy. A big enough typhoon will destroy everything.

Short-sighted, reactionary, and isolationist responses to world-wide economic issues will do nothing but harm to our economy, and by default, to the economies of much of the world.  It will increase the power of dictators such as Putin, and cause countries that are barely holding on to move backwards. The acceptance and support of populist movements in Europe is just the beginning. A return to the nationalism and fascism that lead us into war are next.


How much attention do we need to pay to the “news” to know what is really going on?  I’m asking rhetorically, of course. Being opinionated as I am, I say either you are aware, or you are not. What is happening in the news really doesn’t matter. I have stopped paying attention for the most part, and find that whenever I return to the “news of the day”, the latest “breaking story”, or have a look at the state of the world as reported by just about any outlet, nothing has changed… except maybe the phraseology.

Ben Zimmer, a columnist I can honestly say that I follow, writes in the Wall Street Journal about the origins of the words “crazy” and “crazytown”. His catalyst is a comment published in Bob Woodword’s latest book, “Fear”. Of course the comment refers to our government, to its leaders, to the Big D himself. And while crazytown is a fine reference and takes us right to the point, I think we can take a step closer to the present day with a more contemporary phrase: cloud cuckoo land.

Now for some background: while I avoid not only “news” but as much media as possible- especially television, video, and most anything digital, there are some things I just cannot hide from. One of those is Lego. And of course the Lego Movie. I really am a fan of Unikitty, and think often of bubblegum and butterflies and cotton candy. But sometimes it is just not enough, those days when the line between smiles and frowns blurs, and I realise that cloud cuckoo land and hell might be the same place, with the Big D at the helm, and the whole of civilisation sitting in the boat.

Bubblegum!  Butterflies!  Cotton candy!

D-Day- 20 January, 2017

20 January 2017

The Day is upon us, for better or for worse. The Don, Our Trump, the Big D takes control today. Just a reminder, in case you live under a rock.