Home, with a side of ba­con

But there’s no ap­plause from the sore losers for a job well done

The Washington Times Daily - - EDITORIAL -

Pres­i­dent Trump is home from the hill, and Thanksgiving isn’t far away, but the only words of grat­i­tude from the lib­er­als and the harder left is, “Thanks for noth­ing.” That’s all the pres­i­dent gets from his sore-loser crit­ics fol­low­ing a whirl­wind diplo­matic and deal-mak­ing ex­cur­sion through Asia. When they lock their par­ti­san op­po­si­tion in con­crete and vow never to say an en­cour­ag­ing word, Amer­i­cans are re­minded why they voted to “Put Amer­ica first.”

At age 71, the Don­ald had the im­por­tance of his mis­sion and his own grit to pull him through an Asian jet-lag or­deal that took him to 5 na­tions in 12 days. Dur­ing the first week, the pres­i­dent ral­lied U.S. troops sta­tioned in Ja­pan, matched golf strokes with his Ja­panese coun­ter­part, waved the ban­ner of lib­erty in com­mon cause with the grate­ful South Korean par­lia­ment fac­ing the nu­clear threat to the north, and walked in more or less cor­dial cer­e­mo­nial ac­cord with China’s pres­i­den­tial Bud­dha.

Be­yond the pomp and cir­cum­stance that char­ac­ter­izes state vis­its, Mr. Trump’s pri­mary in­ter­est was the busi­ness of busi­ness, and the pres­i­dent used the spot­light to show his team’s art of the deal. The Com­merce De­part­ment an­nounced that Amer­i­can states and com­pa­nies had signed 37 agree­ments with Chi­nese firms worth $250 bil­lion dur­ing the pres­i­dent’s swing through Asia. The largest is a deal be­tween the state of West Vir­ginia and Shen­hua Corp. to pro­duce shale nat­u­ral gas worth $83 bil­lion. An­other pact be­tween Alaska and China Petro­chem­i­cal Corp. for oil pro­duc­tion car­ries a price tag of $43 bil­lion.

Mr. Trump re­garded his visit to the Mid­dle King­dom as an op­por­tu­nity to di­min­ish the trade im­bal­ance be­tween the U.S. and China, which has bal­looned to $223 bil­lion through Oc­to­ber. Crit­ics saw only clouds with no sil­ver lin­ing. “Trump’s Asia trip high­lights lack of trade deals,” re­ported Politico, the left-lean­ing Washington news web­site, be­cause the ad­min­is­tra­tion has yet to seal bi­lat­eral trade deals with Asian na­tions fol­low­ing the pres­i­dent’s exit from the Trans-Pa­cific Part­ner­ship. Amer­i­can CEOs from Boe­ing, Gen­eral Elec­tric, Gold­man Sachs and dozens of other ma­jor Amer­i­can firms are cry­ing — all the way to the bank.

In Viet­nam, the pres­i­dent taunted his crit­ics by re­fus­ing to re­peat the Washington cat­e­chism that Vladimir Putin in­ter­fered in the 2016 U.S. pres­i­den­tial elec­tion. This is a song with never a new verse. Rus­sia is, too, a threat to U.S. se­cu­rity, the ex­citable, par­ti­san and eas­ily as­tounded James Clap­per, the for­mer di­rec­tor of Na­tional In­tel­li­gence, told CNN. “To try to paint it in any other way is as­tound­ing and poses a peril.” The pres­i­dent is, “for what­ever rea­son, in­tim­i­dated by [Mr. Putin], afraid of what he could do or what might come out as a re­sult of th­ese in­ves­ti­ga­tions,” added John Bren­nan, the for­mer di­rec­tor of the CIA. Replied the pres­i­dent, in the voice of a frus­trated pro­fes­sor, “When will all the haters and fools out there re­al­ize that hav­ing a good re­la­tion­ship with Rus­sia is a good thing, not a bad thing.”

At his fi­nal stop in the Philip­pines, the pres­i­dent an­swered Kim Jong-un’s mock­ing ref­er­ence to his age. “Why would Kim Jong-un in­sult me by call­ing me ‘old,’ ” he asked on Twit­ter, “when I would NEVER call him ‘short and fat?’ ” The re­tort was ef­fec­tive for not wast­ing venom on the in­dulged young tyrant who in­sists on play­ing with matches.

The states­man-cum-en­ter­tainer from Queens did Asia on his terms. He nailed it on the world stage, gave his un­grate­ful crit­ics heck and brought home a nice side of ba­con. No stand­ing ova­tion, not yet, but a good hand for the side is in or­der.

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