For someone who’s supposed to be such a brilliant businessman, President Donald J. Trump seems to have no understanding about how business really works.
Why does this man think that General Motors is going to fold when he huffs and puffs and threatens to pull grant money? GM is in the business of making money and pleasing its investors. That’s what corporations do. And if that means idling plants that produce small cars in the U.S. and not idling plants elsewhere, well, that’s how GM rolls.
Conversely, Trump doesn’t have to suck up to the Saudis for them to produce oil and buy American arms, because, well, that’s how they roll. Where else are they going to go?
If I were Trump, I’d be less worried about the role of supremely rational Federal Reserve chairman Jay Powell and rising interest rates in the recent GM layoffs and bumpy stock market and more concerned about his own tariff war with China and its effect on those GM workers who were laid off and probably voted for him. (And wouldn’t more oil drive down gas prices, making SUVs and pickup trucks more attractive than small cars? So doesn’t Trump’s Saudi policy have some bearing on the layoffs?)
If I were Trump, I’d also be fretting about those Senators who are expressing bipartisan indignation at the failure of CIA director Gina Haspel to show on Capitol Hill Tuesday for a briefing on the Saudi-orchestrated murder of dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
Might his grisly death be the incident that brings the Senate together? I certainly hope it gives serious consideration to sanctions against the Saudis and to extricating us from the Saudi war in Yemen. Khashoggi died a horrible death. It should not be in vain.