A local commentator urged Taiwanese to understand the basic philosophy of U.S. President-elect Donald Trump on Sunday, saying billionaire real estate mogul Trump benefited from U.S. President Ronald Reagan’s economic policy in the 1980s and became a true follower of Reaganomics.
Hsieh Chin-ho (謝金河), chairman of Investment Media and Wealth Magazine, offered his take on why Trump took a historic call from President Tsai Ing-wen on Friday and the possible impact of that 10-minute phone talk.
China was initially relieved – and even happy – that Trump won the U.S. presidential election, believing he would be “easier to deal with” than Hillary Clinton, Hsieh said in a Facebook post. Beijing remains highly uncertain as to what Trump’s policies will be, he added.
To better understand Trump as he heads to the White House, Hsieh suggested much can be learned from recalling that in 1980 the U.S. was still reeling from Vietnam and experiencing stagflation resulting in a basic interest rate of 20 percent.
When Republican candidate Ronald Reagan hit the campaign trail, his slogan of “Let’s Make America Great Again” resonated well with the American voters, Hsieh said, recalling that Jimmy Carter suffered a resounding defeat at the polls.
After taking office, Reagan immediately cut taxes, increased government spending and undertook wide-reaching deregulation to free up the economy, helping the U.S. weather the downturn of 1981-1982, according to Hsieh, who also hosts a TV program on finance and economy.
It was Reagan’s tough defense policy, boosted by an uptick in military spending, that forced then-superpower the Soviet Union to back down and laid the groundwork for the fall of Berlin Wall and the collapse of the USSR, in 1989 and 1991, respectively. Reagan stepped down in 1988 after serving two terms as president.
Trump has modeled his economic policy on Reagan’s – from the main slogan to tax cuts, deregulation and boosting infrastructure spending, according to Hsieh, who noted that Trump made his fortune in the 1980s through real estate investments, making him a real beneficiary of Reaganomics.
Reaganomics prevailed during the cold war between the U.S. and the USSR, and now Trump is trying to “make America great again” before China surges ahead of the U.S. economically to become a superpower, he said, adding that world affairs will be dominated by that contest over the next 10 years.
In the face of rapid and huge changes, all countries are seeking to be strong economically and if Taiwan continues to allow the pursuit of “justice and fairness” to blunt its economic competitiveness, “it may not have a future.”
Hsieh’s Trumpian economics, Reagan style, drew some criticism from his online fans, with one asking “what’s wrong with seeking social justice and fairness?”
“Does not our current economic system, which features an unfair tax system (placing too heavy a burden on the salaried class), favor the capitalists enough?”
Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel