Donald Trump will hinder America’s relations with many countries through his aggressive foreign policy and unprofessionalism if elected
By: David McDonald
People think that Trump will transfer his business savvy into helping America’s economy “Become Great Again”, but what many people don’t realize is that the President has little control over the economy. Rather, it is Trump’s plan for America’s foreign policy that will have a more profound impact on the superpower.
Trump plans to build a wall along the American-Mexican border
Whenever Trump is brought up in a conversation, it is likely that the border wall along Mexico will be a popular topic of interest.
He makes his intentions clear, which resonates with people. However, Trump’s statements about Mexican immigrants show his lack of respect for Mexico and its people; this is not a quality that a possible future President should have.
During the announcement of his presidential candidacy in June 2015, Trump let America know that, “When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending the best. They’re sending people that have lots of problems and they’re bringing those problems. They’re bringing drugs, they’re bringing crime. They’re rapists and some, I assume, are good people, but I speak to border guards and they’re telling us what we’re getting.”
In this instance, it isn’t his foreign policy strategy of building a wall that is so concerning, it is how he is treating Mexican immigrants.
The fact that Trump is trying to make it as difficult as possible for Mexican immigrants to start a new life in America speaks on his controversial foreign policy rules. It is one thing to build a wall to ensure only legal immigrants come into the country, but it is another thing to call Mexican immigrants “rapists” and “drug dealers” in an attempt to make them look like bad people. It is this combination of Trump’s unprofessional demeanor, and a highly aggressive foreign policy that will hinder America’s relationship with Mexico if he gets elected into office.
This isn’t the first time Trump has signaled out a group of people and attempted to deny access for them into America.
Back at a rally in Charleston, D.C. Trump let everyone know that he is, “calling for a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States”, due to the fear of terrorist attacks on American soil.
Again, Trump points out a group of people, this time a religion, and attaches a stereotype that will perpetuate fear in Americans. He claims that ISIS is a major threat to America, and how they must ban Muslims from entering the country due to terrorist threats.
It is clear that Trump injects fear into the hearts of Americans and uses that as fuel to gain votes. Although it has worked thus far, the concern is how he will act if elected into office. It is likely that Trump will continue to place stereotypes on various ethnicities and religions and by doing so, he will jeopardize America’s relationships with various countries.
He is aggressive, disrespectful, and unprofessional. However, the most worrisome of all is Trump’s ability to act without thinking about the consequences.
Trump will establish China as an economic threat to America
A large portion of Trump’s foreign policy is targeted at China, as he sees them as an “economic threat” to America. Probably because China appears to be on track to surpass the United States as the world’s largest economy sometime in the 2020s. In fact, China may pull ahead of the U.S. as early as 2016, which has Trump and the rest of America on high alert.
If elected into office, Trump will implement a foreign policy strategy that will ultimately slow down China’s economic progress.
Trump’s word choice is aggressive. He doesn’t want to ‘negotiate’ with China, he wants to “retaliate”. This aggressive nature transfers to every aspect of his foreign policy, and is precisely what will jeopardize foreign relationships.
It is essential to understand the Chinese currency system before making any assumptions on Trump’s strategy. China’s economic policy is based around managing the yuan exchange rate to benefit its exports. China does not have a floating exchange rate that is determined by market forces, as is the case with most advanced economies. Instead, it pegs its currency, the yuan (or renminbi), to the U.S. dollar. The yuan was pegged at 8.28 to the dollar for more than a decade starting in 1994. It was only in July 2005, because of pressure from China’s major trading partners, that the yuan was permitted to appreciate by 2.1% against the dollar, and was also moved to a “managed float” system against a basket of major currencies that included the U.S. dollar. By doing so, foreign buyers could buy more renminbi and, therefore, purchase more Chinese goods. This means more business for Chinese producers and more jobs for Chinese workers in those industries.
Basically, China de-pegged its currency in order to increase their exports, and boost their economic production, not to intentionally rob America of jobs and revenue.
So why does Trump oppose this idea?
Trump blames cheap Chinese products for stock market turmoil in the United States, as well as the assumption that they are robbing American workers of jobs because domestic companies can’t sell enough goods.
Trump has stated that China is “robbing Americans of billions of dollars of capital and millions of jobs” by manipulating their currency, and that America needs to “retaliate”. When in fact, China still remains a great economic ally to America, regardless of their currency value. He even argued that China’s declining currency will hinder American exports, yet American exports to China continue to rise. From 2005 when China de-pegged its currency to 2015, American exports to China have risen from $41.9 billion to $116.19 billion, yet Trump insists that they are ruining their economy.
America’s top trading partners
The best way to visualize what Trump wants to do is with the diagram above. Notice how China exports triple the amount of products to America that it imports from them. Trump wants this to change. His strategy consists of:
Make China look like the enemy.
Apply a tariff on Chinese and Japanese imports into the U.S.
Reclaim American jobs that China has obtained through outsourcing efforts.
Trump’s plan generally makes sense. On the surface, he wants to limit foreign growth and initiate domestic growth by bringing jobs back to the homeland. However, Trump should not need to create enemies in order to get what he wants. His attempt at trying to make China seem like the bad guy is unprofessional, and is not the best way to achieve his foreign policy goals.
America and China rely heavily on one another, so to jeopardize that relationship would be detrimental for America.
Through his campaign, Trump has singled out two of America’s top three economic partners as enemies to the nation. Who knows how many more enemies he will create if elected into office.
So the questions arise, can the U.S. really afford jeopardizing these relationships? Will electing such a power-crazed and unprofessional businessman into office be a detrimental decision?
The answers to these questions will have to wait, but if there is already so much scrutiny attributed to Trump’s possibly presidency, what future beholds the mighty superpower?
Only time will tell, but for now, the future of America and it’s allies are in the hands of U.S. voters.