Currency cretinism

When the front-running Republican presidential hopeful agrees with Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY) on an economic policy, you know we have a problem. Unfortunately, that’s the situation we find with former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney agreeing, at least in principle, with legislation proposed by Schumer and Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) which threatens China with trade tariffs if it does not devalue its currency, the yuan.

Indeed, last month a Wall Street Journal blog wondered aloud whether the legislation should be termed the “Schumer-Brown-Romney Bill.” To be sure, Romney has not said that he supports this bill, but his “Believe in America” economic plan is quite specific: In a section entitled “Five Executive Orders for Day One”, Romney tells us that he will “(d)irect the Department of the Treasury to list China as a currency manipulator in its biannual report and direct the Department of Commerce to assess countervailing duties on Chinese imports if China does not quickly move to float its currency.” And nearly half of the “Trade Policy” section of Romney’s plan comes under the heading of “Confronting China.”

Allow me to offer you an analogy:

If Store A sent you a coupon for a ten percent discount on anything in the store, anytime you shopped there, would you scream at the utter unfairness to Store B which is also trying to get your business? Or would you say “Thanks, that savings really helps! Now I have more money left over for a better car or a better school for my kids or the vacation I otherwise couldn’t afford.”

Please read the entirety of my article for the American Spectator at:
http://spectator.org/archives/2011/10/07/currency-cretinism/

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