Editor’s Note: Guest columnist Edward Alden is filling in for Kimberly Ann Elliott, who will be back next week.
The first rule when you find yourself stuck down a hole is to stop digging. After more than three years of the Trump administration’s go-it-alone “America First” strategy, the United States now finds itself in a very deep hole indeed.
Trump has alienated once-close allies in Europe, Japan, Canada and Mexico by imposing tariffs on their exports to the U.S. and threatening more. His administration has pulled out of major international agreements like the Iran nuclear agreement and the Paris climate accords. Trump’s trade war with China resulted in a weak “phase-one” deal with fantastical targets for China to buy U.S. goods that will not come close to being realized, despite all of Trump’s cheerleading. A new study by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York suggests Trump’s trade war has shaved $1.7 trillion off the market value of U.S. companies.