The House of Representatives sent a unusually confrontational signal to the Chinese leadership on Wednesday, voting overwhelmingly to give President Obama the authority to impose tariffs on all Chinese imports — more than $300 billion this year — in retaliation for Beijing’s refusal to revalue its currency.
The vote was 348 to 79.
The bill is unlikely to become law because the prospects for Senate approval are dim.
The administration has been of two minds about the legislation. It has often used the rising public anger over China’s trade advantage to argue to Chinese leaders that the United States would no longer tolerate deliberate currency manipulation.
But in conversations with Congress, Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner and other officials have warned of the danger of touching off a trade war...
The risks go beyond trade. President Obama is pressing China for help on cutting exports to Iran, managing a dangerous leadership transition in North Korea and coming to some kind of accord on curbing carbon outputs that contribute to global warming.
Polistra was named after the original townsite of Manhattan (the one in Kansas). When I was growing up in Manhattan, I spent a lot of time exploring by foot, bike, and car. I discovered the ruins of an old mill along Wildcat Creek, and decided (inaccurately) that it was the remains of the original site of Polistra. Accurate or not, I've always liked the name, with its echoes of Poland (an under-appreciated friend of freedom) and stars. ==== The title icon is explained here. ==== Switchover: This 2007 entry marks a sharp change in worldview from neocon to pure populist. ===== The long illustrated story of Polistra's Dream is a time-travel fable, attempting to answer the dangerous revision of New Deal history propagated by Amity Shlaes. The Dream has 8 episodes, linked in a chain from the first. This entry explains the Shlaes connection.