Riffing on tariffs

Karl Denninger has a plan:

So over the first seven months we’ve collected $41 billion and change in duties over the $22 billion and change last year. That’s $19 billion smackers in additional tariff revenue.

Total ag exports to China are approximately $24 billion a year.

All of them.

Well, so will be the tariffs over a 12 month period.

So with that tariff revenue, should the Chinese decide they would like to try to boycott American agricultural products, we can buy the same amount of said agricultural products and essentially erase a huge amount of starvation in third-world nations by giving the products to them.

It will cost US Treasury zero to do that.

Well, yeah, but what will that do to prices?

BTW $24 billion is about 0.12% of the US economy. That is, the cost to you as a consumer of these tariffs is going to be a grand price increase of about 0.22% (annualized). You won’t even be able to see that in the price of what you buy — even more than doubled it will be less than one half of one percent in price increase, unless US firms try to gouge you — and if they do then your correct response is to destroy the firms and executives who do that and ship their body parts over to China to be recycled by swine-flu infected hogs.


Peter Grant points out:

Right now, the side exporting the most to the other side has the most to lose from increased tariffs — and the USA is exporting far less to China than the other way around.

I’m going to force myself to enjoy the prospect of well-fed Chinese swine.


  1. Fred Z »

    13 May 2019 · 5:07 pm

    None of your links lead anywhere but back to the post.

  2. CGHill »

    13 May 2019 · 5:46 pm

    Weird. They seem to be working at this end. (Not that I’m above loopy behavior, mind you.)

  3. jsallison »

    14 May 2019 · 7:48 pm

    0.22%, eh? What’s the over/under on when price increases well in excess of 0.22% are blamed on said tariffs? It’s all Trump’s fault, don’tcha know?

  4. CGHill »

    14 May 2019 · 8:00 pm

    It’s the same principle that says inflation has been reduced to a minimum, even as your grocery basket costs more to fill every single week.

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