There are plenty of reasons to be generally skeptical of President Trump, and especially to be critical of his trade policy and the recent announcement of seeking to require electric utilities to buy electricity from coal and nuclear power plants (though this particular thing requires separate comment). But Max Boot abuses the privilege.
Here’s his tweet related to his latest Washington Post column attacking Trump’s abandonment of traditional Republican lip service to free markets:
The longer version in the column itself is even worse:
Trump doesn’t care that Canadian soldiers have fought and bled alongside Americans for a century. In Afghanistan, Canada lost 158 troops in a U.S.-led NATO mission. All of that counts for nothing with a president who is determined to rearrange the economy according to his own mad whims. . .
So . . . I guess Max boot has never heard of the U.S. tariffs on Canadian lumber imports from previous administrations that are estimated to have cost nearly 10,000 Canadian jobs. Did Trump’s predecessors also not care about Canadian soldiers? How about President Obama? Did he also not care about Canadian sacrifice when he blocked the Keystone pipeline for eight years?
Also this from Boot’s column:
My heart went out to Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland when she said on Sunday: “So what you are saying to us, and to all of your NATO allies, is that we somehow represent a national security threat to the United States. … Seriously?”
Funny, that’s very close to the complaint Margaret Thatcher made in 1982 of Ronald Reagan’s sanctions on European banks and companies (which Reagan’s own secretary of state opposed) that were building the Soviet natural gas pipeline (a policy that largely failed in the long run, incidentally, enabling some of Putin’s natural gas extortions today—irony alert!). Thatcher publicly called Reagan’s treatment of NATO “appalling,” and “a lesson in how not to conduct alliance business.”
Trump’s tariffs on Canadian steel and aluminum are bad policy, likely to be counter-productive. Why not just argue the economic merits of the case? Never Trumpers who default to hysterical rhetoric do themselves no favors. Boot ought to get a grip. Or get the boot.