James Stuber Contributor The American Dossier Editors Note: Part one of a four part series. After twenty-five years of giving American technology capital and consumer purchasing power to China top Trump administration officials thought they had negotiated an agreement for China to change its ways. Chinas use of forced technology transfers non-recognition of intellectual property rights theft of trade secrets and use of state-owned enterprises subsidies and restrictions on imports and foreign investment all were to be foregone by changes to Chinese law. Furthermore adherence to these changes would be enforceable through sanctions built into the 150-page trade agreement. Then on May 3 2019 the American side received a diplomatic cable in which these provisions were systematically stripped from the agreement. The result has been U.S. imposition of tariffs on $250 billion in Chinese imports and the recent announcement of tariffs on an additional $300 billion effective September 1st. What went wrong? In my view the failure to conclude the agreement can be traced to two kinds of naivete on the part of the Americans. The first is the assumption that agreements once negotiated would be abided by. This is not the Chinese way. The second is a failure to appreciate that the be-all and end-all of Chinese policy is to keep the Chinese Communist Party in control. The CCP has stayed in power through use of the very economic tools they were ostensibly giving up in the agreement. Faced with the prospect of actually changing their laws to do so the Politburo told Xi Jinping they could not. And Xi could not go forward without the Party leaderships consent. The real danger here is not the tariffs it is the prospect of signing an agreement the Chinese would never keep and enduring another 25 years of economic losses while building up our adversary. Thank goodness the Chinese showed their hand. Jim Stuber is the founder of a non-profit organization called Made in America Again (MIAA). MIAAs mission is to create awareness and build healthy American communities by encouraging consumers to buy things made in those communities. His goal is for MIAA is to generate $500 billion in consumer spending enough to balance trade create six million jobs take the slack out of the economy and get a virtuous circle going again. Jim has kindly agreed to share his insights with The American Dossier from time to time. For more information on MIAA visit www.madeinamericaagain.org.
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