35 thoughts on “Victory at Sea: Soybeans heading to China (from Brazil)

  1. pgl

    “Chinese importers have been busy booking fresh purchases of soybeans from Brazil this week, despite the White House announcement that China had agreed to buy up to $50 billion of U.S. farm products annually during trade talks last week. The purchases from Brazil, rather than the United States, show that China is in no hurry to buy U.S. products in the wake of last week’s phase one trade agreement that U.S. President Donald Trump hopes will be signed next month. While Brazil is China’s largest soybean supplier, large purchases from South America are unusual at this time of year with the U.S. harvest coming in.”

    But of course the Chinese are not buying any more US soybeans. Ivanka and the rest of Trump’s cronies do not grow soybeans. The $50 billion in new purchases will be food with either a Trump label on it or a label from one of his other cronies such as Wilbur Ross. This is how trade policy is done these days. As Mick Mulvaney told us “we do it all the time”.

  2. Moses Herzog

    That’s a terrific visual graphic. I mean I’m sure you can get the same idea looking at the numbers, but seeing it presented like that is both fascinating and hammers the point. I assume that’s a premium content thing?? I’m gonna try to hunt that down online. I remember not long ago ZeroHedge used to put up a graphic that showed where the U.S. Carrier fleet was, and it linked to some other blog but I forgot what it was now, I always got a kick out of seeing that.

    This is what we have to think about and something I have repeated on this blog, largely instigated by Menzie’s posts. When does America start to lose permanent predominance in the soybean markets, and Brazil starts to beat America in efficiencies and price even after tariffs are taken down?? That is what we are flirting with, with this weak loser named donald trump.

    1. 2slugbaits

      a graphic that showed where the U.S. Carrier fleet was, and it linked to some other blog

      Probably globalsecurity.org.

      1. Moses Herzog

        ‘preciate it 2slugbaits. I sometimes wish I knew your first name, “2slugbaits” seems kind of cold or inanimate to me. That’s obviously not any kind of pressure as I treasure my relative anonymity on the internet or blog world. Just wanted to say that.

    2. Steve

      Perhaps the worst part of it , especially in terms of the long term, is that much of the Brazilian expansion in soybean acreage is likely to come from lands converted from rain forest. That rain forest ecosystem became established over eons, and what is replacing it will probably not be profitable crop land for more than a few decades. All being done while the planet is slowly heating more than at any time in the past.

  3. Willie

    Trump announces things. Do the Chinese have a similar announcement to make? Maybe not, and even if they have one, how close will it be to Trump’s? Trump has made too many fanciful announcements for me to understand why anybody would believe anything from his administration. Reality smacks down the spin again.

    1. Barkley Rosser

      This is an important point, Willie. From what I have heard there has not been an announcement from Beijing rgarding what they have accepted as the details of this supposed first round trade deal. Trump has made a lot of annoincements of supposed deals that then turned out not to be there or not quite what he announced, and this purchasing of soybeans from Brazil may be a sign of what is up, which may b not much.

  4. pgl

    The quid pro quos keep coming!


    “Notorious Ukrainian oligarch Dmitry Firtash would help Rudy and DiGenova and Toensing cook up dirt on Joe Biden. In return, they’d work with Trump to get US corruption charges against Firtash tossed. Firtash has been fighting extradition to the US on federal corruption charges since 2014.”

    Details can be found here:

    Rudy, Trump, DiGenova and his disgusting wife. Even Satan has to take a bow to this corruption!

    1. Barkley Rosser

      Well, pay no attention to that, 2slug. After all, Trump has assured us that the Kurds are “happy” with this “ultimate solution” that forces them out of an area they have lived in for the last 4,000 years. But if they are not so happy, well, they are “no angels” according to Trump, as well as being “communists” and even “worse terrorists than ISIL,” and we are not talking fake news here, youbetcha. And if somehow they do not accept this “ultimate solution” within the next few days, well, Erdogan has made it clear that his troops will “crush their skulls,” so they had better get happy and moving toute de suite.

      1. Barkley Rosser

        Sorry, that should have been addressed to pgl rather than 2slug. Sometimes I get them mixed up. Shame on me yet again.

      2. ilsm

        Are “the strong on “security organizations” uniting in a “Kurd First Lobby” to mirror the “China First Lobby” which republicans organized, after Dewey lost in 1948, to run a “subversion” screed to end the democrat’s 20 year lock on the White House using Chiang evacuating to Formosa as the great betrayal?

        When do the “who lost Kurdistan” trials start?

        Do you think Trump’s “ultimate solution” is nearly similar to Hitler’s “final solution”?

        Who are playing member of congress Nixon and Senator McCarthy’s roles?

        1. Barkley Rosser

          Well, the “ulitmate solution” seems to involve “crush their skulls” rather than gas chambers.

          But, ilsm, this was a stable situation with a decent secular government in NE Syria, run by people who have lived their for 4000 years. Now we 160,000 people displaced, hundreds killed, at least dozens if not hundreds of ISIS fighters getting loose. Just exactly what is there to defend in all of this? Pleasing Erdogan, a man who now declares he wants nuclear weapoins?

          Even usually Trump supporting senators like Graham and McConnell are opposing Trump on this horror show. Why are you?

          1. ilsm

            A “stable situation” which is at odds with and precipitates military action by a NATO ally, as well as a Russian Ally both of whose “interests” seem to oppose the “stable situation”. One might observe, using a “what aboutism”, that ethnic Russians in Donbass who were there when Kyiv became Polish, have a “stable situation” and Ukraine should leave them be. Or why not have the Saudis leave Yemen alone?

            I do not think a Kurd state in what some observe to be Syria (and Iraq, Iran and turkey can you separate YPG, PKK from parent units outside Syria?) is in US’ vital interests. Some of Trump critics might describe US interests, aside from hyperbole about ISIS rising. The cost of such state could exceed the ongoing cost of keeping Kosovo independence.

            Kurd……. Iranian rooted language, Medes, Scythians, Gordyenes, Persians….. a lot of migration and so forth. Displaced persons, casualties, war crimes (use the Hague) etc are heart rending. Without clear national security concerns these are issues for the UN, matter of fact even with a link to US security the UN is there.

            I have not heard from Graham, Moscow Mitch (eerie Moscow Mitch opposes what Russia, Turkey and Iran want) .or any of the generals about the national security issues.

            If not the UN why not use the Atlantic council to make a case for NATO support?

            Let Trump’s UN/NATO/EU ambassador do the job!

          2. Barkley Rosser


            This is an incredibly garbled pile of utter nonsense.

            The action by our NATO ally contravenes international law and is without justification other than a sheer power grab. It is an aggressive invasion of a neighboring country. YPG is not PKK and Erdogan’s endless whining that they are not separate and that YPG has committed terror against Turkey is simply an out and out lie, not that Trump gives hoo about facts or the truth.

            Presumablty the “Ruusian ally” is Syria, but indeed part of the upset of what had been a stable situation and would have remained as such for at least the near term future if not the illegal and unjustrified and murderous desire of Turkey to illegally invade. This has set up a possible conflict between Turkey and Syria over parts of this territory, with of all things apparently in someplace Russian troops trying to keep them apart. This is absurd and would not have happened if Trump had not greenlighted this odious and unacceptable invasion by Turkey.

            Poland and Kyiv? Are you out of your mind? That was centuries ago. Get real.

            The US had vital interests there, notably keeping ISIS/ISIL/Daesh under control, which the local Kurds and their allies in the SDF were apparently doing a good job of. Now we have a bunch of formerly imprisoned fighters of this group on the loose (exact number seeems unclear, but it well more than zero), although we have Trump dismissing this with idiocies such as “they will go to Europe” and the even worse claim (coming from Redogan whispering in Trump’s ear who is worried about his hotels in Istanbul) that the YPG are bigger terrorists than ISIS/ISIL/Daesh. But now we have Trump saying he might keep 200 US soldiers in that part of Syria to control oil wells, which is both further dumping on the Kurds and also idiotically unsustanable.

            There is nothing defensible in all this, and defending such a horror show with the drivel you have spouted here is truly disgusting.

  5. 2slugbaits

    Trump’s trade war isn’t just bad news for US farmers, it’s also bad news for the environment as Brazil expands soybean production:

    Not just an economic crime, but an ecological & moral one as well.

    When Donald J. Trump finally shuffles off his mortal coil scientists should study his brain in the same way they study the brains of concussed football players. We need to know if Amoral Man is a physical pathology or just the result of bad parenting. And is it contagious? It seems to be.

    1. Moses Herzog

      I suspect his father was emotionally distant and his mother was emotionally abusive. I have no solid evidence to support this, just little crumbs here and there online and newspapers, mostly hearsay. My father talked of his own father in respectful tones, but what we knew of my paternal granddad had to be ferreted out for or pieced. It was a rare day my Dad volunteered anything about him, to the point I felt an almost shock when he did. My head about involuntarily darted back when he said something personal about his Dad. So there’s always these shadows of things you suspect and scenes you play out in your mind. The reason I bring that up is, trump rarely rarely discusses his mother. As public as trump is and blowhard-y as trump is, that’s quite odd–and hints at some things.

      Yeah, everyone has to take responsibility for their own actions in the end, and in the large composite of things. But people of that “nature” (or “un-nature”??) rarely pop out of a vacuum. We could go down the laundry list, but……. I strongly believe if donald trump didn’t have money as a “buffer” and as a “sterilizer” for his behavior he would have been institutionalized a long time ago, or at the very least needed perpetual counseling. And i’m being very earnest saying that, not doing it as a “dig”, I just, that is just what I straightly believe.

      1. Barkley Rosser

        Something I agree with you on, Moses, especially regarding Trump’s mother.

        Well, we do not know what went on there, but it is very peculiar how little he speaks of her, like almost never. This is an especially sharp contrast with practically all other presidents, at least relatively recent ones, who have if anything gone on too much about their mothers, who generally seemed to have great impact on their sons and encouraged their political ambitions, with the sons basiically gushing out praise so effusive to be almost embarrassing. And then we have Trump with this near dead silence. It is definitely weird and also disturbing.

        Of course there is the sad fact that he had a brother who died of alcoholism at a fairly young age, apparently the reason Trump does not drink, although I gather he likes amaretto jellies, or something like that. But clearly the brother had a hard time emotionally.

    1. pgl

      Wake me when soybean prices get back to $10.71 – where they were in February 2018.

      I’ll only applaud when they get back to $11.78 – where they were in June 2016 (when Obama was President).

  6. CoRev

    Let me also add that the growing season has ended in the high production grain states with the HARVESTING season now being impacted with inclement weather. This year has been a trial for those farmers wit5h a late start to planting and average to early harvest season when a LATE growing/harvest was needed.

    Some will not understand nor accept this relationship of farming to weather, which someone here mentioned from the beginning of this epic. Some knowledgeable economists here will also not understand their increased food prices in their inner city locales this year. The real problem is that this same set of deniers will ignore the impact of cooling that caused this latest economic perturbation.

    Let’s hope this is not the started of a new weather trend! We already know what that can do when it is multi-decadal. Of course, there is little hope for those who don’t understand that these cycles are longer than a generation in length, since they tend to focus on the on the intra-cyclical peaks and ignore the valleys. Y’ano like daily/monthly soybean prices and shipping instead of the annual and even longer cycles.

      1. 2slugbaits

        CoRev The real problem is that this same set of deniers will ignore the impact of cooling that caused this latest economic perturbation.

        What the hell are you talking about? When we talk about global warming we’re talking about GLOBAL warming. The summer of 2019 was the second hottest globally on record. Yes, the weather was last spring was wet and cold in the upper Midwest and has been wet for much of the harvest season. But no one has ever denied that local weather might be cool even when global temperatures are hot. This isn’t the first time you’ve unwittingly betrayed your parochial view of issues. But bad weather has tended to increase soybean prices even as it has hurt yields. To some extent those two forces tend to cancel each other out. What doesn’t get canceled out is the adverse effect of Trump’s stupid trade war. No matter how you look at it, Trump’s policies have hurt farmers. That said, I’m quite sure that plenty of idiot farmers will vote for the clown again in 2020. No one ever said farmers were the sharpest knives in the drawer.

    1. pgl

      “Let’s hope this is not the started of a new weather trend! ”

      Like Global Cooling? It is rich that a Climate Change denier accuses the rest of us of not understanding “weather”. Of course we also get your buddy Princeton Stevie pooh wanted to interject DEMOGRAPHICS in every discussion.

    2. Dave

      CoRev illustrates his diminished mental capacities by writing “This year has been a trial for those farmers wit5h a late start to planting and average to early harvest season when a LATE growing/harvest was needed.”

      Dude, all those factors would INCREASE prices.

  7. Paine

    The trade war with the great Han menace

    Strikes better blows as cold war II media hit
    Then actual long term trade pattern changes

    Yes thank God for our agricultural policy since 1932
    And have all the channels in running order to comp
    The victimized ag sector players

    Too bad it’s not targeted more carefully of course

    And more so

    Too bad we lack an equivalent
    industrial policy

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