More Trump Foolishness: Trump Reaches Out to AFL-CIO for NAFTA Talks

Trump ignored business leaders and instead reached out to the AFL-CIO for advice on NAFTA and his infrastructure package

President Donald Trump sought input Wednesday from the largest labor unions in the U.S. on trade policy, including the talks to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement.

Mr. Trump met at the White House with Richard Trumka, president of the AFL-CIO labor federation, and the presidents of the Teamsters, the United Auto Workers, the United Steelworkers, the Communications Workers of America and the International Association of Machinists.

The union leaders described the meeting as “very productive,” in a joint statement. “Labor is united in its view that NAFTA is a disaster for working people and must be fixed,” the statement said. “Real solutions for any new trade deal must dramatically improve workers’ rights and raise wages and living standards in all three countries.”

Mr. Trump has said he would walk away from trade deals, including NAFTA, that didn’t benefit American workers.

Labor unions traditionally support Democratic politicians, and Mr. Trumka has leveled sharp criticism at the Republican president in the past year. But the White House has sought to win labor-union support on other priorities, including a legislative package on infrastructure.

More Trump Foolishness

I suppose this could be a ploy, but recent Trump tariff actions suggest this is more Trump trade foolishness guaranteed to backfire.

Instead of inviting the AFL-CIO, Trump should listen to Rand Paul regarding right-to-work.

The country does not need more unions. It desperately needs to get rid of public unions. The place to start would be national right-to-work laws, coupled with an end of Davis Bacon and all prevailing wage laws.

Make Deficits Great Again

Getting the AFL-CIO backing for infrastructure is a guaranteed way to have projects cost more and take longer to deliver, at taxpayer expense.

Trump does not understand trade deficits. The "art of the deal" cannot work when you don't understand essential points.

To understand the math, please see Trump's Tariffs Show He's "Clueless About Trade".

The US is on a path to economic ruin, and Trump refuses to change course.

Mike "Mish" Shedlock

Comments
No. 1-19
shred1
shred1
Stuki
Stuki said: @whirlaway The American worker has gotten more productive over the past 40 years. (At least typical manufacturing workers.) IOW, he creates more value now, than he did back then. Since he is not seeing any of that increase in real terms, someone else is quite obviously seeing it. As its not disappearing into thin air. The proper thing to look for, then, is who has gotten all this increased value add? Who has seen massive gains over the past 40 years? And specifically, who has seen gains over and above what they themselves has produced? Go searching for that, and you’ll find that the gainers have been specifically those who has benefitted from the pumping up of asset prices since Nixon went off gold. Those in banking and other FIRE “industries”(more like rackets…), obviously. But also those in law, as higher asset prices has made squabbling over who “owns the right” to them, more lucrative than doing productive work. And Government, which has grown like a weed since then. As well as “asset owners.” Heck, if workers kept what they added in value, half of America wouldn’t sit around wasting otherwise productive time and resources on reading anything as positively inane as “investment blogs.” Instead, they’d be doing work, as that would be the way to create some value they could keep themselves. Every penny the above guys have made (minus whatever little value is being added by what they are doing), must come from somewhere. It didn’t just grow on the back of freshly printed dollar bills. Instead, it has been produced. By workers. Then, via debasement, mandates, regulations, laws and litigation, it has been taken from the workers who produced it, and handed to the above debasement and regulation theft beneficiaries. That is why workers have suffered. Not because there aren’t enough laws and lawyers “looking out for helpless little them.” But rather, because much of what they have produced, have been stolen from them. And handed to some idle, non productive yahoo, in the form of “home price appreciation,” and the rest of the pathologies that has been part and parcel of America, and every other country following a similar path, in the Fed/Central Banking era.

Excellent post, Stuki.

Stuki
Stuki

@whirlaway
The American worker has gotten more productive over the past 40 years. (At least typical manufacturing workers.) IOW, he creates more value now, than he did back then. Since he is not seeing any of that increase in real terms, someone else is quite obviously seeing it. As its not disappearing into thin air.

The proper thing to look for, then, is who has gotten all this increased value add? Who has seen massive gains over the past 40 years? And specifically, who has seen gains over and above what they themselves has produced? Go searching for that, and you’ll find that the gainers have been specifically those who has benefitted from the pumping up of asset prices since Nixon went off gold.

Those in banking and other FIRE “industries”(more like rackets…), obviously. But also those in law, as higher asset prices has made squabbling over who “owns the right” to them, more lucrative than doing productive work. And Government, which has grown like a weed since then. As well as “asset owners.” Heck, if workers kept what they added in value, half of America wouldn’t sit around wasting otherwise productive time and resources on reading anything as positively inane as “investment blogs.” Instead, they’d be doing work, as that would be the way to create some value they could keep themselves.

Every penny the above guys have made (minus whatever little value is being added by what they are doing), must come from somewhere. It didn’t just grow on the back of freshly printed dollar bills. Instead, it has been produced. By workers. Then, via debasement, mandates, regulations, laws and litigation, it has been taken from the workers who produced it, and handed to the above debasement and regulation theft beneficiaries.

That is why workers have suffered. Not because there aren’t enough laws and lawyers “looking out for helpless little them.” But rather, because much of what they have produced, have been stolen from them. And handed to some idle, non productive yahoo, in the form of “home price appreciation,” and the rest of the pathologies that has been part and parcel of America, and every other country following a similar path, in the Fed/Central Banking era.

Realist
Realist

Mish will criticize stupidity, whether it is Trump, Obama, or anyone else. He is certainly correct regarding Trump’s trade positions. Trump’s protectionist trade policies will harm far more US workers than it will help. He risks starting a trade war which will really hurt economic growth. He thinks he can bring back jobs that were automated out of existence 30 years ago. He just doesn’t get it.

baldski
baldski

Mish was a teenager in St. Louis who lost a job at the local A&P to a union worker and has had a hard-on for unions ever since. Mish get over your teenage angst and grow up.

Stories