Tariffs: Playing with fire
Updated 11:53, 03-Aug-2019
Zoom In with Zou Yue

Here we go again… the United States plans to impose 10 percent tariffs on an additional 300 billion U.S. dollars' worth of Chinese imports. And it happened just days after the two sides sat down for talks on a trade deal. 

Wow, this trade deal is very hard to make. It's like sewing a silk blouse while taking a roller coaster. The world has seen tariffs spike and drop, time and time again. It's become a toy that has been played with too much in a futile game of business.

Every time trade has been toyed with, it's created a cycle of self-infliction, deep pain, mutual hurt and prolonged recovery. And all for what? Another round of foul play.

The Trump administration's insistence on maximum pressure as a strategy to land a trade deal is not a panacea for problem solving; it's a toxin for the players involved and very possibly a tinderbox that may spark fires. 

It has led the U.S. nowhere in the DPRK denuclearization talks, the Iran nuclear deal, or immigration reform. 

And in this case, it's unlikely to force the hands of the Chinese, who won't be bowing their heads in shame.

It's time President Trump should surround himself with fresh thinkers that really understand China and the Chinese. 

Playing tough may seem to work for a while, but in the end, one can only get to where his or her strength dictates. 

America's output has been shrinking and its economy is now in danger of a recession… even the Fed is thinking of placing more buoys.

It's true the Chinese economy has also slowed down, but to a comfortable rate of around 6 percent. But there are surprises in store for Uncle Sam should the Fed drop the interest rate again, which has already spooked investors. 

Should the American politics be riled up by the extremely uncertain policies in an election year? Will America's waging of trade wars or armed wars against other countries lead the world into chaos?

Nobody knows for sure, but what's evident is the current American administration's obsession with playing with fire, not realizing it may one day be outplayed. 

Script: Zou Yue

Video photographer: Zheng Xiaotian

Video editors: Wu Chutian, Wang Zengzheng, Li Linxi

Designer: Li Linxi

Producer: Bi Jianlu

Supervisor: Mei Yan

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