Let’s do tar­iffs this way in­stead

The Daily Observer - - OPINION -

So, let me get this straight. Don­ald Trump be­lieves that Amer­i­can con­sumers can af­ford and are will­ing to pay 10 to 25 per cent more for im­ported alu­minium/steel be­cause th­ese higher prices will stim­u­late the pro­duc­tion of alu­minium/steel that is nec­es­sary to strengthen na­tional se­cu­rity.

In­stead of fur­ther­ing mu­tual pun­ish­ment via coun­ter­vail­ing tar­iffs, why doesn’t Canada lead the G6 in help­ing Trump by push­ing our pro­duc­ers to in­crease prices by that 10 to 25 per cent on de­liv­er­ies to the U.S mar­ket?

We know that Trump is a zero-game player, but this would truly be a win-win-win-win: Trump ac­com­plishes the same price in­crease in pur­suit of strength­ened na­tional se­cu­rity; Trump, the cham­pion of tax-cut­ting, avoids the em­bar­rass­ment of back-door tax­a­tion via tar­iffs; Canadian pro­duc­ers get a nice tem­po­rary bump in prices to at least par­tially off­set tem­po­rary lower vol­ume; Trudeau avoids pun­ish­ing Canadian con­sumers via a tired old me-too tar­iff war that proved it­self wrong al­most 100 years ago.

John Mor­ris Ottawa

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