Home LIFESTYLE Style News Trump’s Top Economic Adviser Has No Idea What’s Going On

Trump’s Top Economic Adviser Has No Idea What’s Going On

14 min read
0
161

Sponsored links

As director of the National Economic Council, Larry Kudlow is responsible for advising the president on economic matters, turning his stated goals into policy, and managing the implementation of his agenda. Currently, Donald Trump has several major economic balls in the air, from tariff negotiations with China that could turn into a full-blown trade war, to the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement with Canada and Mexico, to the curious case of his decision to save a Chinese electronics maker from losing 75,000 jobs after it violated U.S. sanctions. And in news that will surely help people sleep at night, Kudlow, who left his CNBC talking-head gig to replace Gary Cohn as N.E.C. chief in March, says he has absolutely no idea what to expect from the man in charge when it comes to any of the issues in question.

In an interview with Axios on Tuesday, Kudlow told Mike Allen that while he’s sensed “a little bit of a bromance” between President Trump and President Xi Jinping, and “bromances are always good,” where this ultimately leads, “I don’t know.” Could it translate into a trade deal, perhaps following a round of golf and chocolate cake at Mar-a-Lago, i.e. Trump’s favorite way to bro out with world leaders? Sure. Could the capricious Trump decide instead to jilt Xi and plunge the U.S. in one of those good and easy to win trade wars? Also possible!

And hey, what about NAFTA, which Trump swore up and down the campaign trail was a horrible deal that he would rip up once in office, and which our neighbors to the North and South having been desperately attempting to salvage over tense rounds of renegotiations? Your guess is as good as ole Lar’s, who put the odds of saving the deal at 51-49, admitting in the third person, “That’s not great for Kudlow optimism.”

As for that ZTE deal? Kudlow had approximately zero insights to share re: whether we can expect the president to actually save the Chinese company, but he did suggest that he was one of the officials caught totally off guard by Trump’s Sunday announcement, in which the president said he’s working with Xi to give ZTE “a way to get back into business,” in direct contradiction to the actions taken by his own Commerce Department. In fact, Kudlow appears to believe the Commerce Department was right to punish the Chinese company, which has since effectively shut down. “It’s a very poorly run company,” Kudlow told Allen. “It has many internal flaws. This is principally an enforcement issue. They have been proven guilty not once not twice but three times.”

Obviously, seemingly having no idea whatsoever which way the administration is leaning on major economic issues isn’t entirely Kudlow’s fault, but a product of the unpredictable lunatic he works for who changes his agenda by the hour and informs his N.E.C. director about major tariff decisions right after he’s announced them. One day China “is raping us” and must be punished, the next Kudlow’s boss is going to bat for Chinese jobs with his close personal friend Xi Jinping. In the past, he’s described Canada as a bunch of slippery bastards who’ve been taking us for a ride for too long, but tomorrow he might decide he sees a lot of himself in Justin Trudeau and cut a deal. Given his long track record of rarely being right, Kudlow is actually showing tremendous personal growth in looking at the economic issues of the day and saying, more or less, “F–k if I know.”

Hedge-fund managers are feeling salty about the G.O.P. tax bill

And this is what they’re doing about it!

Although some of the donors have not sworn off contributions to individual campaigns or even the Republican National Committee, all have so far withheld contributions to the House and Senate Republican campaign arms—which are key players in the 2018 midterm elections—as a way to send a message over the law.

Now, these donors are venting their frustration at congressional Republicans who drafted the legislation. The rift has come at a heavy price: since the new tax rules were approved late last year, these donors’ usually generous support for House and Senate Republican groups has noticeably dried up.

Luckily, the G.O.P. can still count on the generosity of its longtime corporate sugar daddies. Just last week, Las Vegas crypt keeper Sheldon Adelson wrote a $30 million check to Congressional Leadership Fund, a super PAC focused on preserving the House majority, and is reportedly “leaving the door open to putting millions more toward the Republican midterm effort this year.”

Will Trump’s financial disclosure forms include any payoffs to adult-film stars?

He chose not to disclose the $130,000 paid to Stormy Daniels in his form last year, but perhaps the president will be struck with a newfound bout of honesty this time around:

The annually filed documents, which reveal the financial interests of federal workers, provide a rare window into the finances of Trump, who otherwise has notoriously eschewed traditions of transparency established by his recent predecessors in the White House.

And in his first financial disclosure form as president—which was filed last June—Trump did not appear to include any mention of his reimbursement payments to Cohen in 98 pages. [Rudy] Giuliani told The New York Times that the payments to Cohen were meted out in $35,000 increments over several months, totaling up to $470,000.

According to former government-ethics director Walter Shaub, Trump must disclose any payments over $10,000 on the form, including reimbursements to his lawyer slash “fixer” Michael Cohen. “The question is whether Trump will disclose that debt, as well as any others he might have omitted,” Shaub wrote in an op-ed on Monday. “The answer should be easy, but the president is in a difficult position. He left out the Daniels-related debt in the financial disclosure report he filed on June 14, 2017. Disclosing it now means acknowledging that he should have disclosed it last year. Disclosure may also lead to damaging revelations if he omitted other liabilities from any past financial disclosure reports or incurred new ones since June. As a result, the president’s team could be looking for a way to justify the omission.”

In the future, Trump will spend at least 10 percent more “executive time” trashing N.F.L. players

Billionaire hedge fund manager David Tepper is set to buy the Carolina Panthers for $2.2 billion, and something tells us Trump will have opinions about the team come Fall 2018:

Tepper steps into a battle between the league and the president, a season after Trump called any player who kneels for the national anthem a “son of a bitch.” Trump constantly launched attacks at the league and jabbed its ratings as more players protested police brutality and racial inequality.

Tepper. . . [has] called Trump a “demented, narcissistic scumbag” and “the father of lies.”

Elsewhere!

CBS Ups Stakes in Feud With Redstones (W.S.J.)

Volcker Rule Re-Write to Drop Trading Burden on Banks, Sources Say (Bloomberg)

Scared and Angry, a Proud Republican Blasts Trump’s China Tariffs (Bloomberg)

Tennis could be the big winner now that sports betting is legal, says FanDuel C.E.O. (CNBC)

It’s a Great Time to Be a Wealthy Heir After Trump Tax Overhaul (Bloomberg)

‘Bonfire of the Vanities’ Author Tom Wolfe Dies At 88 (W.S.J.)

Michael Bloomberg launches China-linked rival to Davos (Financial Times)

Hedge-Fund Manager David Tepper to Buy Carolina Panthers for $2.2 Billion (W.S.J.)

Cohen also tried to get Ford and Uber to buy access to Trump (NYP)

Twitter changes strategy in battle against internet ‘trolls’ (Reuters)

British Airways announced it will celebrate the upcoming royal wedding by operating a flight crewed entirely by people who share the couple’s names (U.P.I.



Sponsored links
Source link

Load More Related Articles
Load More In Style News
Comments are closed.

Check Also

“That Is What Power Looks Like”: As Trump Prepares for 2020, Democrats Are Losing the Only Fight That Matters

WASHINGTON, DC – MAY 25: U.S. President Donald Trump talks to members of the news me…