Made In China

For several decades, a post–World War II bipartisan consensus has held that reducing tariffs and other barriers to trade would promote prosperity in all trading countries. Thanks to the issue’s resonance in industrial battleground states and presidential candidate, Donald Trump, howling on the subject, trade and trade agreements such as the TPP and NAFTA have played an outsized role in this year’s US presidential politics.  Trump uses an aggressive style of rhetoric by making statements like “They do it to us,” to gain support for his potential implementation of harsh trade barriers with China. He also uses this style of rhetoric to expose any policy weakness in his opponent, Hillary Clinton.

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Trade War

 With China, Trump says he would impose a 45 percent tariff on Chinese imports. For example, if an American consumer goes out to buy a stove from China. Let’s say that the stove normally costs about $100. Under Trump’s trade policy, that stove from China would now cost 45 percent more, or $145. The thinking behind a such a harsh tariff is that the American consumer  would be more inclined to purchase the American-made stove selling for less. Trump believes this will stop China from “raping our country.”  Trumps use of the analogy should be named as an example of faulty rhetoric style in regards to his trade policy with China as a result of his previous remarks he made about Hillary Clinton that critics are calling sexist and for promoting the endorsement of boxer Mike Tyson, who was convicted of rape in Indiana.

 Trump Rally In Manchester, N.H.

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Trump has long blamed broad trade agreements for harming U.S. workers. But the rally in Manchester, N.H. marked a rhetorical shift as Trump used his aggressive temperament to eject members of both parties who have supported trade deals as anti-American and in league with having “special interests.” For many Republicans in particular, the rhetoric amounts to an assault on core ideological beliefs of conservative economic policies that have been in place for years. Ultimately, Trumps aggressive rhetorical style has not been popular with those of his own party, but feuding with powerful business interests makes him an attractive candidate for many rebellious working-class voters, including some who have supported Democrats in the past.

Below is a link to the full speech: