Tump, Coronavirus, and China
By Lynn Woolley
March 23, 2020
If there’s one thing I’ve learned about Donald Trump over the past three years, it’s that when he says seemingly outrageous things, he’s often right. Case in point: Back on August 23 of last year, the President invoked a 1977 law to order American companies to – as he tweeted – “immediately start looking for an alternative to China.”
The law cited is the “International Emergency Economics Powers Act,” which exists to deal with an “unusual or extraordinary threat to the national security, foreign policy, or economy of the United States.” After Trump’s tweet, the Dow Jones Average dropped more than 600 points. The President did not back off. He went on to criticize General Motors for its outsized presence in China and suggested that it consider moving Chinese operations back to America.
Trump became the first president to invoke the law – known as the IEEPA –over what was then just a trade dispute, or “trade war” as the media called it. J.R. Reed, in USA TODAY wrote that, if pushed further, U.S. companies would likely challenge Trump’s order in court.
It’s instructive to note that Reed’s article mentioned some very interesting points – likely included to show what a buffoon Trump was for this “order,” and how disruptive it would be to ditch China.
- China makes roughly 25 percent of ALL manufactured goods around the world.
- Boeing would not abandon China (making, of all things, 737 Max Jets there), because it would cede ground to rival Airbus.
- Apple seems totally invested in Chinese manufacturing with virtually all iPhones built in 29 factories in the central province of Zhengzhou.
- 50 percent of Apple’s supplier locations are in China.
- Google was planning to move production of most of its products to Vietnam, and only 3 percent of companies planning to scale down in China were bringing manufacturing back to the United States.
Captains of Industry and other Americans should have listened to President Trump.
His initial directive to ditch China was over trade and theft of intellectual property, but with the advent of coronavirus, it’s now conventional wisdom that we have to make essential products here.
Why didn’t we see this then? Or even before Trump brought it up?
Lots of people in America have sounded the alarm, but the warnings largely came from the political Right. The political Left was too busy hating Donald Trump and railing about Climate Change to notice that we had a big China problem.
Look at what the two sides have focused on during Trump’s first three years:
Trump wanted to “Make America Great Again.” He pledged to bring manufacturing back to America, drain the “Swamp” in Washington, and build a wall to help control our southern border. He championed American energy-independence, and pulled us out of Obama-era deals like the Paris Climate Accords and the Iran Nuclear agreement – both of which were bad for America.
On the other side of the aisle, Democrats focused on ‘Russian Collusion,” the Mueller Investigation, the Ukrainian telephone call, and impeachment of Mr. Trump. On policy, they fixated on a “Green New Deal” that would totally bankrupt the country, and “Medicare for All” that would end up rationing healthcare.
If this country had gotten behind President Trump and implemented his ideas – especially regarding China and the border – we’d be in far better shape to battle a pandemic.
Instead, Democrats have fought Trump on every issue at every level.
Whether it’s abortion, immigration, healthcare, trade, or Supreme Court nominations, the Left has stood against the President and often against the best interests of the country. It’s been said that if Trump cured cancer, the Democrats would accuse him of destroying the chemotherapy industry.
Here’s where that hatred leaves us:
- China produces and controls more than 90 percent of our antibiotics.
- China makes most of our respirators and surgical masks.
- China is well positioned to ban pharmaceutical exports to the United States.
On a whim, China could make our pharmacy shelves as bare as our toilet paper shelves. And guess what? China controls the bulk of technology for the 5G cellphone network. You thought we made that here? Actually, no major U.S. companies make the equipment for 5G. It all comes from China.
Most thinking people now understand that this has got to change.
Ask yourself this:
How did we ever think it was okay to cede manufacturing of essential medicine, pharmaceuticals, ventilators, computer and cellphone technology and so much more to a repressive country that considers us its enemy? Think about that every time the Left coddles China, or when celebrities like LeBron James and others in the National Basketball Association stoop to lick the boots of the Communist Chinese Party so they can make money.
Video: LeBron addresses Daryl Morey’s tweet and Lakers’ trip to China | NBA on ESPN
What about Trump’s “travel restrictions?”
On January 31, President Trump instituted travel restrictions – not a ban – on travel between the United States and China due to coronavirus. He later added Europe to the edict. Travel was restricted to “foreign nationals who had been in China in the last 14 days.”
Why not a stricter order – one that would keep anyone who’d been in an infected area from coming here until they test negative? Don’t get me wrong; this order certainly helped to slow the spread – and certainly none of the Democrats that ran for the nomination would have done this. The Left, acting in their usual groupthink, considers it racist to even refer to the disease as the Chinese Flu or the Wuhan Virus. Being woke is far more important to them than saving lives.
A little item on CNBC may hold the answer to why Trump did not institute a total ban. Back on February 27 of this year, as the coronavirus was in full bloom in some parts of the world, Trump expanded a travel ban to six majority-Muslim African countries. Eight civil rights groups attacked the policy as racist.
Trump must deal not only with the Communist Chinese government and its obvious, lies and propaganda campaign accusing the United States of starting this pandemic, but he also must fight political correctness, wokeness, and an opposition party that cares more about defeating him than it does saving lives.