I get that you might have a difficult time believing that Sarah Palin was right on the whole “quantitative easing is a really bad deal” thing, Barack, but would you believe, say, the entire G-20 summit when it turns out they aren’t so excited about your plan to print tons of money and keep the value of the dollar so as to gain the upper hand in international trade.
Leaders of 20 major economies on Friday refused to
endorse a U.S. push to get China to let its currency rise, keeping
alive a dispute that has raised the specter of a global trade war amid
criticism that cheap Chinese exports are costing American jobs. …
The biggest disappointment for the United States was the pledge by
the leaders to refrain from “competitive devaluation” of currencies.
Such a statement is of little consequence since countries usually only
devalue their currencies — making it less worth against the dollar — in
extreme situations like a severe financial crisis.
Yeah, obviously the world isn’t thrilled with this development. There’s a reason we’re always pissed at China’s refusal to devalue the Yuan and it has absolutely nothing to do with the fact that they are hoarding the shit out of the world’s lumber. It’s because, as Nobel-prize winning economist Joseph Stiglitz pointed out at a competing forum in Hong Kong, QE might strengthen America, not because it’s increasing our growth capacity or legitimately increasing our competitiveness, but only because it f***s over basically everyone else, especially emerging economies that we’re totes friends with like South Korea and Taiwan. It’s definitely not making us friends with people who expect us to float their economies by gobbling up their overpriced, shoddy consumer goods. Yes, Stiglitz is kind of a socialist, who’d prefer that the US issue a second stimulus to build high-speed rail, but that’s cool. He still makes sense. Plus, let’s face it, the last person we should be taking economic advice from is China, which is the general opinion of the G-20.
This sucks for other reasons, too. It means that, on the world stage, we’re not exactly viewed as economic superstars. It also means that everyone sort of hates him. Peeps don’t want his autograph on dog-eared copies of his book, they’d rather not hug him if they don’t have to, and he’s been ticking off lists of people who still might like him to world reporters. If the world is just one big high school cafeteria, Obama’s the kid eating alone in the corner with the pants that are too short. Some might even say that there’s been a quantitative easing of someone’s personal as well as federal currency.
The question is pretty obvious: is it better to have the world hate you because you stab them in the back of because you’re just flat out crazy? Does it matter if you’re trapped in a currency war that could cause everyone to throw up crazy tariffs and send us careening back into the great depression?
I have no idea.