“We’re getting really bad dudes out of this country, and at a rate that nobody’s ever seen before,” Trump said Thursday. “And they’re the bad ones. And it’s a military operation.”
As the Administration mulls over possible trade actions against China, it is important to concede official trade statistics do provide in some sense a misleading picture of US-China bilateral trade — but not misleading in a way such that if corrected bolsters the Administration’s arguments.
If we count only the import side and not the export side of re-exports, as some in the Administration have suggested, we might as well go “whole hog” and redefine the trade balance completely: Let’s count imports, but not exports.
Figure 1: The trade balance defined as net exports/GDP (blue), and the trade balance excluding exports (red). Source: GDP advance release for 2016Q4, and author’s calculations.
[Correction to title: it’s been pointed out that the National Guard will not necessarily be empowered to actually deport individuals; they can only have “authority to investigate, identify, apprehend, arrest, detain and conduct searches”. The actual deportation (transportation to port or border) would presumably be undertaken by other agencies. MDC 2/18 10:51AM Pacific]
What are the fiscal and economic implications?
Judy Shelton argues that “Free trade needs sound money”:
…[T]he time has come to develop a comprehensive approach to international monetary reform compatible with genuine free trade under free-market conditions. If markets are to function properly, money needs to convey accurate price signals; that won’t happen as long as governments can manipulate exchange rates.
Judy Shelton on currency manipulation.
From the article:
Officials said the raids targeted known criminals, but they also netted some immigrants without criminal records, an apparent departure from similar enforcement waves during the Obama administration. Last month, Trump substantially broadened the scope of who the Department of Homeland Security can target to include those with minor offenses or no convictions at all.