It must be tough being a Never Trumper these days. The election is over, the GOP has proven their dire predictions completely wrong and Trump is dong better than anyone could have expected.
At the same time, the Loony Left is a constant source of amusement and joy for right-minded people.
Yet the Never Trumpers can't partake in the feast of schadenfreude because if we'd listened to them, Hillary would have won and we'd be getting ground under her orthopedic heel.
Nowhere is this clearer than in the Carrier deal. Obviously, there is the deal itself, which greatly helps the employees and their community. Then there is the fact that President Obama said it was impossible. Enjoy the crow, Barack.
And yet, the grumpy eunuchs at National Review have to throw shade on the whole affair. I give them credit for at least reworking the diktat they got from their masters at the Chamber of Commerce into something resembling an argument, but it's pretty weak.
Let's start with accepting the reality that there is no such thing as truly free trade - all trade between nations is regulated in a variety of ways, including safety and pollution laws, tax rates and so forth. The notion that it is somehow improper for states to put their thumbs on the scale is therefore completely disingenuous - the thumbs are already there, it's just hidden.
The way things were going, Carrier was going to close the plant, move the jobs to Mexico and the locals were simply screwed. The elites - both on the left and right - would shake their heads sadly but remark that there was nothing to be done. Sure, Indiana was screwed, but everyone else would get cheaper furnaces. And of course the shareholders would be very pleased, and their political donations would flow accordingly.
To offer an incentive to save those jobs would be wrong because economics or something.
But here's the part that always gets left out: why Mexico is the destination of choice?
In a truly "free trade" environment, Mexico would lose. The workforce is cheap but not particularly skilled. The cost of building a plant from scratch and establishing infrastructure is hardly trivial. Then there is the cost to ship everything back into the US.
The reason it makes economic sense is that Mexico has put its own thumb on the scales in a variety of ways. For one thing, there is the pervasive political corruption, which means all rules are negotiable. Environmental standards essentially don't exist and worker safety is not a priority.
Then there's Mexico's social safety net, which is actually the US taxpayer. As a matter of policy, Mexico exports its poor to the US, where they can receive a good living, free education and - should they obtain employment - can send money back home. Those costs are always ignored when looking at these deals.
The Hated Instapundit has a post linking to fake Libertarian Megan McCardle where she decries the corruption of our "principles-based" market system.
It's an echo of the NR piece and both ignore the obvious problem with their position: The American people never voted for this system.
At no point were the people of Indiana or anywhere else given a chance to vote their jobs overseas. Everything was sold to them as expanding markets and the economy. Taking over the welfare system for Mexico and every other overseas dirt-poor labor market was never placed on the ballot.
The principles everyone sees are that the rich get richer and keep importing ever cheaper workers - some of whom (in the case of H1B visas) are no better than indentured servants.
McCardle is particularly insulting when she brings up the housing bubble and implies that it was the blame should be placed on the homebuyers who foolishly believed we had an open market - apparently the crooked banks and their government partners who created the bubble in the first place were simply impersonal market forces.
The bubble was created by the government in partnership with the banks and their "public-private" entities (who ensure that both sides get rich while the taxpayer absorbs any losses).
When it burst, it didn't just hurt improvident borrowers, it destroyed the property tax base in countless communities. It wasn't just the "truck driver" who found himself with too much debt, it was state and local government looking at a massive collapse in property tax revenue in addition to the cyclical fall in sales taxes.
And people wonder why Trump was able to make hay by pointing out the system is rigged.
Let there be no mistake - the Carrier deal is a temporary fix, a bandage staunching a gushing wound. What is needed is widespread trade and business tax reform.
Trump is probably the only one who could achieve it. He owes nothing to Congress and they owe much to him. A lot of GOP seats will be up in two years and those who oppose his agenda will feel the heat. Even the Dems have reason for fear because Trump will (correctly) be able to claim they are supporting off-shoring and mega-corp conglomerates at the expense of the middle and lower classes.
Like so many other issues, this issue is once again showing the true loyalty of Conservatism, Inc. It's to their social class and corporate masters, nothing more. The sooner they die off, the better.