As someone who litigated several Section 232 cases in my former life, lemme tell ya: it is AWFUL - an affront to basic economics, separation of powers, good government, & the rule of law.
Trump deserves blame for abusing it, but it's the LAW that lets him get away with it.
What other law can a president basically tell his Commerce Dept to find imported cars (CARS) to be a "national security" threat; refuse to publish (defying Congress) the report justifying the claim; & repeatedly threaten economy-cripplin tariffs based on said secret report?
"local officials have become so focused on pleasing Mr. Xi and fulfilling party mandates that they can neglect their basic duties as public servants, sometimes with dire results"
"Party observers say the drive for centralization in a sprawling nation too often fosters bureaucratic inertia, duplicity and other unproductive practices that are aimed at satisfying Beijing and protecting careers but threaten to undermine Mr. Xi’s goals."
"Historians say Mao was so troubled by the [box-ticking] phenomenon that he repeatedly launched campaigns to shake up what he saw as an ossifying and increasingly self-serving party bureaucracy. Today, under Mr. Xi, the problem appears to have returned with a vengeance."
"Nor is it true that all or even most Americans lose out from globalization, which has on the whole boosted many exporters and helped consumers access a broader array of high-quality goods, both U.S.- and foreign-made."
Pfizer-BioNTech Vaccine Is Highly Effective After One Dose and Can Be Stored in Normal Freezers, Data Shows - WSJ wsj.com/articles/singl…
"The findings provide strong arguments in favor of delaying the second dose of the two-shot vaccine, as the U.K. has done. They could also have substantial implications on vaccine policy and distribution around the world, simplifying the logistics of distributing the vaccine."
"A single shot of the vaccine is 85% effective in preventing symptomatic disease 15 to 28 days after being administered, according to a peer-reviewed study conducted by the Israeli government-owned Sheba Medical Center and published in the Lancet medical journal."
Since a lot of ppl are reading this, lemme be clear: COVID-19 is real and dangerous, but the CDC itself, only a few days ago (& based on data), said schools cld be reopened w real & rigorous precautions (masking, distance, etc). And plenty of schools have done just this. (ctd)
To now tie reopening to funding for broader, longstanding issues - issues unrelated to the immediate, urgent need to reopen & that have not stopped many other schools from reopening safely - is a big problem (assuming, of course, that's what they're doing).
It is VERY chart/data-rich (partially intended to be a longer-term resource).
Quick summary to follow (thread): /1
Both the left & right increasingly justify protectionism & industrial policy not on economic grounds, but on "national security" or "resiliency" ones - especially re China and COVID-19. Notable targets are semiconductors & medical goods, but there are plenty of others too /2
The usual claim: “free markets” & a lack of govt support for US manufacturing crippled the industrial base’s ability to supply “essential” goods during war, pandemic, or other emergency. We thus need big new govt actions (tariffs, subsidies, 'Buy American,' etc) to rebuild mfg /3
As Pfizer and Moderna churn out incredible vaccines on US soil (due in large part to globalization), the Biden admin is apparently worried about our trade deficit in pharmaceuticals. 🙄 wsj.com/articles/biden…?
There are legitimate complaints abt pharma IP rules in US trade agreements. But worrying abt goods trade balances is absurd, esp given the current vaccine situation.
Me: these incredible, life-saving vaccines relied on the free flow of capital, labor, goods, services, & knowledge, and millions of doses are being made on US soil
Them: but the trade balance is bad and workers or something
ICYMI: COVID-19 caused a BIG spike in self-employment & new business formation as workers adjust to the "new normal". It's especially surprising since business creation/destruction ("dynamism"), which drives productivity/growth/jobs, has been declining for decades. HOWEVER... /1
There are a lot of federal/state/local policies that inhibit business formation & burden self-employed workers in many occupations. In fact, the USA ranks poorly in "ease of starting a business"... AND /2
We've been besieged in recent years by state occupational licensing rules, which increased from 5% of occupations a few decades ago to 20-30% & have been shown to harm entrepreneurship - esp in "low income" fields, many of which are part of that "COVID entrepreneur" surge /3
"Pfizer agreed to front BioNTech’s development costs and manage the clinical trials, manufacturing and distribution. BioNTech agreed to pay Pfizer back out of any profits, which would be split." nytimes.com/2020/11/21/us/…
"The government was ready to foot much of the development bill, guide the clinical trials and even deliver supplies to factories.
Dr. Bourla was not interested. As one of the world’s top vaccine producers, Pfizer did not need federal help in developing a new product"
"Pfizer signed a $1.95B agreement in July to sell the federal government 100 million doses of its vaccine if it was successful, guaranteeing it a buyer... It also called on the Trump administration a few times to get access to manufacturing supplies. Otherwise it was on its own."
A bit more seriously here: 1) IPfizer's partner, BioNTech received $ from the German government: biospace.com/article/bionte… 2) Relatedly, CV19 vaccine development has been a truly global effort, & certainly governments have been/will be involved: cato.org/blog/covid-19-…
ICYMI: Yesterday I recapped the recent, and uniformly-negative, assessments of 3+ years of "America First" trade & industrial policy cato.org/blog/checking-…
I didn't get into the weeds in that post and instead let the headlines do the heavy-lifting, but here are the general conclusions for those who don't subscribe and/or are lazy: /2
1) Steel tariffs didn't work: they boosted prices & goosed investment short-term, BUT 1) caused real damage to steel-consuming manufacturers, exporters hit by retaliation, & "rust belt" state economies; & 2) steelcos started shedding jobs/factories when the sugar high faded /3