Trump Tariffs

Avocado Boom Boom


cjones06042019

I give my conservative cartooning colleagues a lot of crap over their devotion to Trump, producing cartoons that are based on fear, hate, propaganda and conspiracy theories while being totally devoid of facts. Mostly, I give them hell for abandoning principles they held decades before Trumpism, such as patriotism, law and order, family values, democracy over fascism. But now I’ve seen at least three of them go against Trump and his tariffs.

Republicans have traditionally been against increasing tariffs, knowing that when we increase tariffs that they’re paid for by Americans. They are basically tax increases. Donald Trump continues to say the nations he raises tariffs on will pay them, which isn’t just fundamentally wrong, but a lie.

So, to those conservative Trump supporting cartoonists who have publicly expressed opposition to Trump tariffs, in all seriousness without making fun of you, kudos. Oh, and if you’re one of those conservative cartoonists, “kudos” means congratulations.

After increasing tariffs on China, Trump got into the tariff zone and is now proposing a five percent increase on tariffs on Mexico to pressure them on an unrelated issue, immigrants from Central America. The five percent increase will take effect June 10 and gradually increase to 25 unless, as the White House issued in a statement, “Mexico substantially stops the illegal inflow of aliens coming through its territory.”

A report by the right-wing group the Tax Foundation says Trump’s new tariffs will be the largest tax increase on Americans in three decades.

The study says that with the five-percent increase alone, “GDP would fall by an additional 0.50 percent ($124.82 billion), resulting in 0.33 percent lower wages and 387,041 fewer full-time equivalent jobs.”

Mexico is the United State’s biggest trading partner and is the largest market for U.S. corn and pork and supplies one out of three fresh fruits and vegetables consumed in the United States. Yet, Trump tweeted that they are an “abuser” that takes but never gives to the U.S. In his announcement that he was running for the presidency, Trump accused Mexico of sending rapists and murderers to the U.S. Throughout the disaster of his presidency, he’s accused Mexico of sending us an “invasion” of drug dealers, cartels, human traffickers, people smugglers and immigrants.

Some U.S. business groups are considering lawsuits against the administration, questioning the legality of mixing immigration policy goals with trade retaliation.

This strategy is as useless as the proposed racist wall and monument to Trump since the majority of undocumented immigrants, drugs, and weapons enter through legal ports of entry.

U.S. farmers are already feeling the pinch of reduced sales after Trump increased tariffs on China and they retaliated. Now, the Mexican market may dry up for them as well. Will Trump throw them another bailout with money borrowed from China to pay farmers not to sell to Mexico and China?

If you are a freak over avocados, get ready to pay more. While California produces the fruit, they do so for only eight months of the year. Mexico produces avocadoes year-round, and the U.S. consumes 74% of that nation’s exported avocadoes. Mexican farmers believe we’re such devotees of the fruit, that Trump’s tariffs won’t hurt them. Apparently, avocadoes are like crack. You’ll keep purchasing for your fix no matter how high your dealer raises the price.

If China and Mexico are smart, and they are, they’ll follow Nancy Pelosi’s lead in negotiating with Trump. The man has a history of bailing on his promises and walking away from a negotiating table with significantly less than he argued for…or nothing at all.

I expect the avocadoes to blow up in Trump’s face.

Be Complicit

What kind of person would want to be part of something that disparages, slanders, and disrespects Dear Leader and his sycophantic followers? Hopefully, you. 
Making a contribution supports my work and keeps the cartoons, columns, and videos coming. My income is from newspapers that subscribe to my work and small contributors. George Soros hasn’t sent me a million dollar check in weeks. Making a contribution of any amount, or buying a print for $40.00, makes you part of this specific resistance, and a member of Team Claytoonz (we’re still working on the name). You are complicit, an accomplice, and in cahoots (and whatever gangster terms we can think of) with this political satire pointing out that the stupid emperor has no clothes. Contributions can be made through PayPal, checks, and wads of cash exchanged in back alleys.
Whether you can help support, can’t, or just choose not to, please continue to enjoy and keep reading my work. Thank you!!! 

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Watch Me Draw.

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Farmer Bang Bang


cjones05152019

During the 2016 presidential campaign, Donald Trump said he could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot someone and he wouldn’t lose any voters. He was right, but at that time, he would have lost support from his party. Today, he could shoot farmer after farmer and the GOP would only yawn (unless it was a black guy and then they’d get excited).

Trump’s not going to shoot anyone on Fifth Avenue. If he shoots anyone, it’ll be in a soybean field in Iowa, and then maybe a stockbroker on Wall Street.

Republicans used to be all about free trade and anti tariffs. They’ve always argued that tariffs are taxes on American consumers and nobody wins a trade war. They were right. Today, they’ve sacrificed their previous position, just as they’ve expunged their positions on law and order, patriotism, defense, morals, etc. as if they underwent a political colonic.

Today, after China retaliated by raising $60 billion in tariffs on American goods, Trump said he “likes the position we’re in.” You have to remember, this is a guy who “liked the position he was in” when he shut down the government for 30 days before losing a negotiation with Democrats. We are putting our stock, our businesses, our economy, our farms, and our people in a guy who won’t accept that Americans pay for tariffs.

A trade war will hurt both countries, but it will be felt more by American consumers and the politicians they vote for. In case you’re a Republican, nobody votes in China and there’s not a free press that can criticize President Xi Jinping or even report facts that are critical of his positions. The only pressure President Xi is under is, don’t lose a trade war with an orange shitgibbon. Xi is basically president for life, but losing a negotiation to an idiot like Donald Trump could very well shorten that life.

Farmers who voted for Trump are typical Trump cultists. They’ll continue to believe in Trump, even as soybeans from last year are rotting in storage because there’s no longer a market for them. But maybe around the point that they’re literally losing the farm, they might realize this entire Trump experiment isn’t working out. They may actually realize that Donald Trump is a malignant narcissist who only cares about the malignant narcissist. His current welfare plan for farmers is only designed to uphold their support of him, but that won’t last. How long can you borrow money from China to help farmers not sell their crops to China?

Unfortunately for me and you, nearly everything we own is made in China. If we could buy crap made cheaper in Vietnam, Thailand, and Indonesia, we would. We are cheap consumers. We haven’t been holding off from buying products made in thirder-world nations than China because of loyalty or ethics. We’re cheap. We would have already been doing it.

Trump may not feel any pressure from other consumers because fortunately for him, his supporters aren’t known for shopping at Wal-Mart (insert eye roll here).

Be Complicit

What kind of person would want to be part of something that disparages, slanders, and disrespects Dear Leader and his sycophantic followers? Hopefully, you. 
Making a contribution supports my work and keeps the cartoons, columns, and videos coming. My income is from newspapers that subscribe to my work and small contributors. George Soros hasn’t sent me a million dollar check in weeks. Making a contribution of any amount, or buying a print for $40.00, makes you part of this specific resistance, and a member of Team Claytoonz (we’re still working on the name). You are complicit, an accomplice, and in cahoots (and whatever gangster terms we can think of) with this political satire pointing out that the stupid emperor has no clothes. Contributions can be made through PayPal, checks, and wads of cash exchanged in back alleys.
Whether you can help support, can’t, or just choose not to, please continue to enjoy and keep reading my work. Thank you!!! 

You can purchase a signed print of this cartoon.

Watch the video.

Tarified Farmers


cjones07282018

While speaking to the VFW in Kansas City Tuesday, Trump told his followers now to believe what they read and see. So, farmer who voted for Trump, those aren’t food stamps in your wallet or frightening socialism in the heartland. They’re compensation for your sacrificing in MAGAing.

Not only are we “tired of winning,” but there’s so much MAGA all over the place, you’re bound to step in it. America’s farmers stepped in it by voting for Trump. Now, they’re rolling around in it by still supporting him. That’s not fertilizer you smell.

Trump’s trade war will be felt on American farmers in red states who supported him. Tariffs enacted by China in retaliation will hit this Friday while a lot of our trading partners are finding new partners to avoid Trump’s tariffs.

Farmers for Trump are betting the president’s self-indulgent trade war will pay off and the pain that’s coming will be rewarded. They’re placing their bets on a billionaire who campaigned on “buy American,” while his entire product line is made overseas. They may want to take off those MAGA caps and check the labels. Irony is literally sitting on top of their heads.

Tariffs were raised by Bush in 2004 and Obama in 2009. Today, it’s hard to find an economist who believes America won with those actions. Trump isn’t trying to help America’s economy as much as he’s acting out of spite and hubris. I expect Trump and our trading partners to eventually cut a deal that brings us back to our previous tariff rates and the administration will call it a win.

Even Republicans in Congress don’t believe Trump understands how tariffs work or that nobody wins a tariff war. Trump has abused the power to raise tariffs by citing them as a threat to national security as if Canadian cheese poses a threat equal to that of ISIS. A few Republicans are now working on a bill that will redefine “threats to our national security” and limit the president’s power to raise tariffs.

Republicans are campaigning for the midterms on their tax cuts while their states and districts are being hit by tax hikes that are tariffs. This fall around election time, voters will be paying higher prices, losing their farms and businesses while watching Trump greet Vladimir Putin in the White House. Good luck, Republicans.

In the meantime, Trump is giving $12 billion in aid to America’s farmers. I don’t remember that from the campaign trail. I do remember better deals and that Mexico would pay for a wall, not “I’ll bail you out with welfare and you’re paying for the wall.”

Unfortunately for America’s farmers, none of them is the president’s daughter. Ivanka’s product line (which she’s going to discontinue soon), was exempt from the trade war.

Thank you for your support. Reader contributions really do help and are appreciated in a time of dwindling revenue for political cartoonists. You will also be supporting free speech and the First Amendment, and independent journalism while those in power are doing all they can to suppress it. You can also support by purchasing a signed print for $40.00. Just look at the right of this page and click the PayPal button, or you can email and make other arrangements. Thank you!

Watch me draw.

Trump Trade War


cjones04092018I watched Anderson Cooper interview Roger Stone last night on CNN, and Stone said that Trump is his own wordsmith. Are you kidding me? Trump can’t even spell “Smith.”

Someone commented on this blog earlier this week and took issue with the first sentence where I wrote about Trump’s stupidity. The reader leaving the comment said I’d probably have more readers if I didn’t start my columns with such a biased statement. That person might want to stop reading today’s entry right now.

Donald Trump is stupid. I don’t think it’s biased to believe he’s stupid. The man doesn’t know the difference between vocational schools and community colleges. He believes there are invisible airplanes. I’m still amazed people can support him, as being dumb is just a part of his collection of horrible traits. When you add corruption, treason, nepotism, lies, self-obsession, thin skin, immaturity, bad taste, and racism, the stupidity just compounds the danger our nation is in. And then, you have the illiteracy.

Donald Trump cannot read. OK, that’s not fair. He can read, but it’s at a third or fourth grade level. We decided to take the issues of national security, the economy, trade, Russia, North Korea, immigration, and hand it off to be solved by a guy who can’t read.

Sycophants support this. They support just about every dumb thing Trump does, and they make excuses for it, lie about it, or rejoice in it. Now, they can excuse, lie, or rejoice in the fact that many of them will be the hardest hit by Trump’s trade war with China.

In retaliation for Trump’s increased tariffs on that nation, China has imposed large sanctions on American products and agriculture. The bulk of these tariffs hit red Trump country. Trump has always complained that China’s leaders were smarter than ours. Well, they are now.

Trump is right that the disparity in trade between us and China is an issue, but he’s not the first politician to notice this. It can’t be dealt with as a challenge to his ego. He claims we’re not in a trade war, while he raises, tariffs, China retaliates by raising tariffs on us, and then he talks about raising them even more. Have you seen the stock market this week?

Trump’s policies are creating a trickle-down that’s going to trickle on all of us. But, it’s not going to be the good kind of trickle. It’ll be more like the kind Trump paid prostitutes for in a Moscow hotel room.

Nobody wins a trade war. Unfortunately, we have a president too stupid to understand that.

Here’s the video.

Please consider making a donation to keep the cartoons, columns, and videos coming. Reader contributions, small and large, really do help and are appreciated in a time of dwindling revenue for political cartoonists. You will also be supporting free speech and liberty while those in power are doing all they can to suppress it. You can also support by purchasing a signed print for $40.00. Just look at the right of this page and click the PayPal button, or you can email and make other arrangements. Thank you!