Ideal Taxes Association

Raymond Richman       -       Jesse Richman       -       Howard Richman

 Richmans' Trade and Taxes Blog

Trump on TPP: "'Why can't they just put it off until I become elected?' -- we're published in the American Thinker this morning
Howard Richman, 10/30/2015

We begin:

In his October 24 speech in Jacksonville, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump discussed the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP), the trade pact which President Obama just finished negotiating.  Trump asked a key question of the Republicans in Congress: “Why can’t they put it off until I become elected?”

If Congress votes it down this winter, then the next President will be able to renegotiate the deal with the same fast-track authority that Congress gave Obama. Trump says that if he renegotiates: “Believe me, it will not be that deal, believe me.”

Last June, the Republican Congress trusted President Obama’s negotiating skill so much that it gave up its power to amend any trade treaty that Obama or his successor negotiates. Maybe they were relying upon Obama’s outstanding success in past negotiations:

In order to read the rest, go to:


Comments: 0

Dick Morris calls for a redefinition of what is conservative trade policy
Howard Richman, 10/29/2015

In his October 28 commentary, Dick Morris called for a redefinition of the word "conservative" as far as trade policy is concerned. He wrote (Redefining the Right):

China and trade. The administration’s refusal to name China as a currency manipulator, as well as its demand for passage of trade agreements that do not circumscribe China in the least, has opened the door to the right. We must not let our commitment to free trade get in the way of a strong attitude toward China; Beijing’s currency manipulation is to blame for much of our loss of manufacturing jobs. By keeping the yuan about 30 percent below its reasonable value, China has, in effect, imposed a 30 percent tariff on American imports and given its own exports a 30 percent incentive. The way is open for the right to occupy this ground. Just as the left has used outsourcing as an issue, the right can cite currency manipulation as a top cause of unemployment....


Comments: 0

Income inequality and the trade deficit
Howard Richman, 10/18/2015

As shown in the chart below, which I just put together, there is a pretty good correlation between household income inequality and the U.S. trade deficits from 1954 to 2012:


The trade deficits began to grow in 1977 and so did household income inequality in the United States. The correlation looks pretty close, except that the trade deficits are much more volatile than income inequality. Due to trade deficits, the jobs lost to imports were not replaced by jobs producing exports. They were simply lost. This graph supports our contention in our 1988 book Trading Away the Future, that the growing trade deficits worsened the income distribution. We explained:...


Comments: 0

Rep. Lynn Westmoreland, R-Ga, one of the candidates for House Speaker, opposed ObamaTrade
Howard Richman, 10/8/2015

With the resignation of House Speaker Boehner and the decision of Rep. Kevin McCarthy not to seek the speakership, the race for House Speaker is wide open. Only one of the candidates currently being mentioned, Rep. Lynn Westmoreland of Georgia, voted against Obamatrade. Here is a selection from an local newspaper article about why he opposed it:

According to Westmoreland, there were basically three reasons why he chose not to vote for the TPA. First, he felt the forthcoming TPP did not seem to have either agricultural and textile trade finalized, two areas of commerce very important to Georgia. There have been many textile jobs lost in Georgia over the years, Westmoreland said, and it is hard to vote for something that will not aid the state’s textile industry.

Second, Westmoreland said he felt like the Obama administration was not following the guidelines in the TPA throughout negotiations. According to the Congressional Research Service, some of these guidelines include – negotiating a trade agreement during the limited time period when the promotion authority is in effect, negotiating with extensive notifications to and consultations with Congress, and the president must submit to Congress a draft of the implemented negotiations.

And last, Westmoreland was not happy with the political maneuvering involving the TPA and the TAA, Trade Adjustment Assistance, which offers financial aid to American workers displaced because of foreign trade. In an attempt to have the TPA passed faster, lawmakers initially had it bundled with the TAA – most Democrats did not support the TPA, but they did support the TAA. However, the bundled TAA and TPA failed to pass in the House....


Comments: 2

TPP Pressure Cooker is On
Jesse Richman, 10/5/2015

A deal has been struck -- The Trans Pacific Partnership is now awaiting Congressional legislation to enact its provisions (ratification is an inappropriate word as the Constitution's 2/3 majority to ratify a treaty is once again being bypassed).  Now the time line for consideration kicks in.  The Washington Post's Kelsey Snell lays out the steps that will lead up to a vote.  Advocates may well try to push for a vote as quickly as possible in order to minimize electoral risks.  Members of Congress, and their leaders, know that a TPP vote is a dangerous vote.  Hence, the effort will be to get such a vote taken as soon as possible in order to give memories as much time as possible to fade before the election, or supporters may try to target the electoral sweet spot between primary and general elections.  

It will be a month before members of the general public are able to view the TPP agreement.  Hence, for some time yet we will all still have to work from leaks rather than final text.  But given what is already known, it is hard to see how this deal can be a good one.  Clyde Prestowitz makes a compelling case in the most recent issue of American Prospect that the deal is not only bad economics but bad politics...


Comments: 2

The Last Time Europe Committed Suicide by Refugee -- Ray and I are published in today's American Thinker
Howard Richman, 10/4/2015

We begin:

The year was 375. The Roman Empire contained about a fourth of the world’s people stretching across Europe from Brittania in the north to Egypt in the south, from Spain in the west to what is now Bulgaria in the east.

Meanwhile, just east of Bulgaria, the Visigoths (Western Goths), fleeing the depredations of Hun horsemen, wanted to cross the Danube River into the safety of the Roman Empire. The Visigoths were also attracted by the glorious wealth of the Roman Empire.

The story of the refugee crisis is told in the final chapter of Edward Gibbon’s classic The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire. About 500,000 Goths, men, women and children, lined the bank of the Danube River for miles, seeking to cross:

To read the rest, go to:


Comments: 0

  • Richmans' Blog    RSS
  • Our New Book - Balanced Trade
  • Buy Trading Away Our Future
  • Read Trading Away Our Future
  • Richmans' Commentaries
  • ITA Working Papers
  • ITA on Facebook
  • Contact Us

    Jan 2022
    Dec 2021
    Nov 2021
    Oct 2021
    Sep 2021
    May 2021
    Apr 2021
    Feb 2021
    Jan 2021
    Dec 2020
    Nov 2020
    Oct 2020
    Jul 2020
    Jun 2020
    May 2020
    Apr 2020
    Mar 2020
    Dec 2019
    Nov 2019
    Oct 2019
    Sep 2019
    Aug 2019
    Jun 2019
    May 2019
    Apr 2019
    Mar 2019
    Feb 2019
    Jan 2019
    Dec 2018
    Nov 2018
    Aug 2018
    Jul 2018
    Jun 2018
    May 2018
    Apr 2018
    Mar 2018
    Feb 2018
    Dec 2017
    Nov 2017
    Oct 2017
    Sep 2017
    Aug 2017
    Jul 2017
    Jun 2017
    May 2017
    Apr 2017
    Mar 2017
    Feb 2017
    Jan 2017
    Dec 2016
    Nov 2016
    Oct 2016
    Sep 2016
    Aug 2016
    Jul 2016
    Jun 2016
    May 2016
    Apr 2016
    Mar 2016
    Feb 2016
    Jan 2016
    Dec 2015
    Nov 2015
    Oct 2015

    September 2015
    August 2015
    July 2015
    June 2015
    May 2015
    April 2015
    March 2015
    February 2015
    January 2015
    December 2014
    November 2014
    October 2014
    September 2014
    August 2014
    July 2014
    June 2014
    May 2014
    April 2014
    March 2014
    February 2014
    January 2014
    December 2013
    November 2013
    October 2013
    September 2013
    August 2013
    July 2013
    June 2013
    May 2013
    April 2013
    March 2013
    February 2013
    January 2013
    December 2012
    November 2012
    October 2012
    September 2012
    August 2012
    July 2012
    June 2012
    May 2012
    April 2012
    March 2012
    February 2012
    January 2012
    December 2011
    November 2011
    October 2011
    September 2011
    August 2011
    July 2011
    June 2011
    May 2011
    April 2011
    March 2011
    February 2011
    January 2011
    December 2010
    November 2010
    October 2010
    September 2010
    August 2010
    July 2010
    June 2010
    May 2010
    April 2010
    March 2010
    February 2010
    January 2010

    Book Reviews
    Capital Gains Taxation
    Corporate Income Tax
    Consumption Taxes
    Economy - Long Term
    Economy - Short Term
    Environmental Regulation
    Real Estate Taxation

    Outside Links:

  • American Economic Alert
  • American Jobs Alliance
  • Angry Bear Blog
  • Economy in Crisis
  • Econbrowser
  • Emmanuel Goldstein's Blog
  • Levy Economics Institute
  • McKeever Institute
  • Michael Pettis Blog
  • Naked Capitalism
  • Natural Born Conservative
  • Science & Public Policy Inst.
  • Votersway Blog
  • Watt's Up With That


  • [An] extensive argument for balanced trade, and a program to achieve balanced trade is presented in Trading Away Our Future, by Raymond Richman, Howard Richman and Jesse Richman. “A minimum standard for ensuring that trade does benefit all is that trade should be relatively in balance.” [Balanced Trade entry]

    Journal of Economic Literature:

  • [Trading Away Our Future] Examines the costs and benefits of U.S. trade and tax policies. Discusses why trade deficits matter; root of the trade deficit; the “ostrich” and “eagles” attitudes; how to balance trade; taxation of capital gains; the real estate tax; the corporate income tax; solving the low savings problem; how to protect one’s assets; and a program for a strong America....

    Atlantic Economic Journal:

  • In Trading Away Our Future   Richman ... advocates the immediate adoption of a set of public policy proposal designed to reduce the trade deficit and increase domestic savings.... the set of public policy proposals is a wake-up call... [February 17, 2009 review by T.H. Cate]