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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Rand View Post
    Thing is, that whilst China has just under the GDP of the US, it's got 4.3 times the population. So it isn't all that rich on a per capita basis.
    Yeah but ... in the US, 1% owns 80% of everything. I can agree that it's time China came off the poor nation list.

    They aren't snivelling tho ... at least nothing I have heard. They are fighting back against Trump's stupidity (Canadian farmers are hurting, hee hee) but that's not snivelling. Snivelling is what I read here -- "It's not fair !"

    Sheesh.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Rand View Post
    Thing is, that whilst China has just under the GDP of the US, it's got 4.3 times the population. So it isn't all that rich on a per capita basis.
    If Bill Gates walked into a bar packed with people they'd all be millionaires - ON AVERAGE.

    I've been wondering for a while why the possibly richest country in the world has so many poor and so many living in poverty.

    The top 15 countries with the most billionaires, ranked - Business Insider

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Rand View Post
    Thing is, that whilst China has just under the GDP of the US, it's got 4.3 times the population. So it isn't all that rich on a per capita basis.
    And so?

    It's still no longer a developing country IMO. It's a 21C industrial powerhouse.

    PDW

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gordon B. Clarke View Post
    If Bill Gates walked into a bar packed with people they'd all be millionaires - ON AVERAGE.

    I've been wondering for a while why the possibly richest country in the world has so many poor and so many living in poverty.

    The top 15 countries with the most billionaires, ranked - Business Insider
    Interesting question Gordon. I found this.

    World’s richest countries with the highest poverty levels | lovemoney.com

    For all the concern here in the US little is happening to improve things. The homeless is the noticeable thing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gordon B. Clarke View Post
    Most of the BS you post is what you get from internet links. Try posting now and then about what you know from personal experience.

    VAT isn't a special currency abbreviation, it's a percentage.

    Value Added Tax Rates (VAT) By Country – USCIB

    What is VAT? | Taxation and Customs Union


    "I don't have a problem admitting it when I get something wrong."

    That helps explain why you write so many posts
    Since you went back and edited...

    It is not a percentage in this case. This is de minimis value. It means the threshold by which you do not have to pay customs duties or VAT. For this, it is not a percentage. Do you understand that? The percentage sign that you added is incorrect. It is 22 EUR, not 22%. Re-read what I said above. Now you look stupid. AGAIN. Congrats.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gordon B. Clarke View Post
    Most of the BS you post is what you get from internet links. Try posting now and then about what you know from personal experience.
    Right, because you have personal experience with how UK/EU customs works precisely for everything, you have personal experience working at the EU deciding where funds go like with the Turkey-EU thing, you have experience in every contentious thread that you're involved in.

    Oh, wait, no, you don't. If the Practical Machinist forums were a village, you would definitely be the idiot.

  7. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by EmanuelGoldstein View Post
    They aren't snivelling tho ... at least nothing I have heard. They are fighting back against Trump's stupidity (Canadian farmers are hurting, hee hee) but that's not snivelling. Snivelling is what I read here -- "It's not fair !"

    Sheesh.
    They have been doing a lot of sniveling. Kang and others get up and make speeches saying "fighting protectionism", etc., when they are more "protectionist" than the US is. They don't want the playing field leveled, they don't want to open up their markets the same way the US is, and they have good reason for that. But they absolutely are lying and sniveling by trying to minimize it to cheap journalistic words like "protectionism" and blah blah blah.

    I don't have a strong, strong opinion whether the key issue is much more tackling wealth inequality and making sure profits flow down more to workers, or whether it is that as much as it is unfair trade and a neglect of protecting and promoting our markets as much as we should have. The key thing that is never really made clear in the media discourse is that we are all protectionists, just to a different degree depending on geography, important industries for employment, etc. Free trade is like free lunch; it does not exist.

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    Even if the Chinese are assessed regular US postal rates, instead of the discount they get now, there is no reason to expect that they still wont be drop shipping, direct from China, an enormous amount of crapola to the USA.
    Right now, an amazing 40% of the sellers on Amazon are in China, and they mostly direct ship from China to your door. So if you order a cheap laptop case or cat bed or bag of screw eyes, its coming direct, in an envelope. (yes, I have gotten cat beds, vacuum packed, in a big manilla envelope when I ordered from Amazon).

    Right now, the shipping is so cheap, its practically free.
    But when the choice is between chinese stainless ball bearings, at a buck a piece, and US made ones, at fifteen bucks each, a few extra dollars in postage is not going to suddenly shift all american buyers over to the domestic stuff.
    Very often, for consumer goods, the choice is- made in China, shipped direct, for five bucks, or, made in the same factory in China, shipped by the 20,000 pieces in a container to long beach, then trucked to Indiana, then mailed to you, from a "USA" company, for 20 bucks.
    So, if the postage goes up, and the chinese direct version is 8 bucks, people will still be buying it.

    Pretty much 3/4 of consumer goods at Home Depot of Target or Amazon are from China or Vietnam or Bangladesh- and they will be even if we drop out of the global postal union.

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    I believe the issue is with something like 99 cent headphones from a Chinese seller in China vs an American seller shipping Chinese goods or maybe even American goods. I agree that I don't see it dropping the trade deficit way down, since most of the goods shipped out of China do not get this treatment from the UPU.

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    Quote Originally Posted by nyc123 View Post
    They have been doing a lot of sniveling. Kang and others get up and make speeches saying "fighting protectionism", etc., when they are more "protectionist" than the US is.
    What does the Korean trade minister have to do with packages mailed from China ?

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    Quote Originally Posted by EmanuelGoldstein View Post
    What does the Korean trade minister have to do with packages mailed from China ?
    Lu Kang (diplomat) - Wikipedia

    Lu Kang (Chinese: 陆慷; born May 1968) is a Chinese diplomat who currently serves as the Director of the Department of North American and Oceanian Affairs of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People's Republic of China.

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    Quote Originally Posted by nyc123 View Post
    Oh, Mr Lu. I didn't know you were on a first-name basis. He retired from giving speeches several months ago, I don't see how he could be snivelling about this mail thing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by EmanuelGoldstein View Post
    Oh, Mr Lu. I didn't know you were on a first-name basis. He retired from giving speeches several months ago, I don't see how he could be snivelling about this mail thing.
    Not specifically about the UPU thing, but about the broader trade policy stuff. They all "snivel". Everybody is sniveling and using blank, vague words to describe a complicated issue.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Trueturning View Post
    Interesting question Gordon. I found this.

    World’s richest countries with the highest poverty levels | lovemoney.com

    For all the concern here in the US little is happening to improve things. The homeless is the noticeable thing.
    I didn't see Denmark in there but not I'm complaining LOL

    Here unemployment benefit is around $2,500 a month and I suppose it very much depends on what you were used to being paid as to whether it's a disaster or not. Even if "your better half" is working it won't affect your unemployment benefit.

    To some poverty is a question of life or death. To others it's "envy" that your neighbours seem to be able to afford more than you can. It very much depends on what country you live in.

    In 2016 the average wage for a Dane was $46,000. For married couples (both working) the average was $73,500. At just how much below the average do you feel "poor"?

    Escape route from poverty shortest in Denmark: OECD - The Local

    As with most things it's a question of "What is usual or normal" for you?
    Neither my wife or I own big, new cars (we have one each) but we do like to take exotic vacations as often as we can afford. Not all have the same priorities as to how they spend their money. We also eat better than what's average here.

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    This is good to see what is considered as the poverty level in the US.

    Poverty Guidelines | ASPE


    Not a extensive list for sure just a couple of places.

    This one is more understandable.

    Federal Poverty Level: Definition, Guidelines, Chart

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    Quote Originally Posted by nyc123 View Post
    I believe the issue is with something like 99 cent headphones from a Chinese seller in China vs an American seller shipping Chinese goods or maybe even American goods. I agree that I don't see it dropping the trade deficit way down, since most of the goods shipped out of China do not get this treatment from the UPU.
    The Trade deficit has been going UP under Trump's Tariffs- its just been shifting to other countries besides China. This year will be the highest Trade Deficit EVER.

    Raising Chinese postal rates will help a few US companies, mostly distributors who import chinese products, but it wont do diddly squat about the trade deficit- people buy chinese goods because they are 1/10th of american made products, not because they save 3 bucks on shipping.

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    The dollar is over valued. But there's not a lot that can be done about that unless anyone else can come up with a reserve currency.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Rand View Post
    The dollar is over valued. But there's not a lot that can be done about that unless anyone else can come up with a reserve currency.
    Could come up with an agreement between countries to devalue the dollar. It's been done before. However, China has made it clear that it is pretty specifically not going to do this. Lookup the Plaza Accord and the US-Japan trade issue, or if you like the hysteria from the media, the old US-Japan trade "war". What's interesting is that despite them doing this, the US-Japan trade balance was not significantly affected over the long term. Japan continued to run trade surpluses with the US, and still does today.

    There's also a bunch of options that some thinktank I saw gave. One was taxing foreign purchases or holdings of Treasuries, or otherwise offsetting the effect of keeping earned dollars in dollar assets. The former could in theory have some effects on interest rates, though, in terms of hiking rates faster than the Fed wants.

    What kills me about the media is the constant focus around tariffs and only on tariffs, much of the time even then only looking at trade-weighted tariff averages, which does not take into account specific sectors that may have very high tariffs to protect from imports, because that average only measures those goods traded. You could have 1000% tariffs on every single line in the HS, and have one good being the only import with a 0% tariff, and your trade-weighted average would be 0%. Even worse is that a lot, or even arguably most, of the protections now have nothing to do with tariffs, but rather with non-tariff barriers, i.e. other regulations and subsidies. I almost never hear the value of the dollar brought up like you did - dollar being overvalued by 20% against another currency is basically the same as a blanket 20% tariff on all imports to that country from the US. If I remember correctly, Elizabeth Warren has talked about this for a while.

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    Quote Originally Posted by nyc123 View Post
    What kills me about the media is the constant focus around tariffs and only on tariffs,
    They are only following the lead of the orange-haired one, who is too stupid to actually negotiate over trade frictions. Art of the Deal my ass, he's an effing maroon (assuming he is actually trying to achieve something for the country, not using this as camouflage for a different purpose.)

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    Quote Originally Posted by EmanuelGoldstein View Post
    They are only following the lead of the orange-haired one
    Disagree. They are just as guilty. I don't believe this exempts them from fairly and accurately covering the issue.

    Quote Originally Posted by EmanuelGoldstein View Post
    who is too stupid to actually negotiate over trade frictions.
    Also disagree with that. The important thing to note is that Lighthizer and Ross are the ones spearheading most of the trade policy directives. And they are definitely not stupid. Meanwhile, he's likely just sitting there doing something else, or drinking diet coke and watching Fox News or something. The strategy is pretty obvious:

    1. Threaten tariffs or actually impose them to get people to the negotiating table

    2. Send in Lighthizer and Ross to actually work out an agreement

    3. Make some changes but herald it as a huge, huge change

    To be fair, they could do this "through the WTO" as so many pundits claim, but what they don't mention is that this is a very, very long and bureaucratic process that may or may not even move in the desired direction, especially based on the past behavior of the WTO body.

    I'm not saying he's right on his ideas nor how he is going about them, just simply that that is what he does. The focus is not only on tariffs once he lets the people who actually work on this work on this. The labor and content requirements in the "new NAFTA", the voluntary export restraints in the new KORUS, etc. It goes beyond just tariffs. News is doing a disservice there.

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    Quote Originally Posted by nyc123 View Post
    1. Threaten tariffs or actually impose them to get people to the negotiating table

    2. Send in Lighthizer and Ross to actually work out an agreement

    3. Make some changes but herald it as a huge, huge change
    Well, in the case of China, which is the biggest imbalance, this is not going to work. Therefore, it is stupid.

    An intelligent person can tell the difference between a bolt, a nail, a treenail, a jungle vine, and a pot of glue. You can't just haul out the hammer and expect it to work in other cases.

    The man is a frigging maroon (again, unless his goal is actually different than what he claims. I grant you, he could be doing all this posturing just to make himself look like a star, no matter what the outcome for the country. In that case, he's doing a great job -- in certain segments of society)


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