March 24, 2019 — Donald Trump has postponed until April the supposed deadline for a conclusion to China-US trade negotiations. A good outcome for both sides would have China agree to better protect private property rights and to reduce the role of the state in its economy; the US agree to strengthen national saving and public investment; and both sides agree in the short-term to reverse their recent tariff increases and the resulting shrinkage of international markets. Unfortunately this deal is not likely to happen.
February 28 — US Democrats are moving to the left, we are told. It is not yet clear that the median voter is in fact moving left, nor the median congressman who was elected last November. But it is clear that many of the candidates for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination are experimenting with “bold new ideas”, or at least bold rhetorical formulations. They are receiving what seems a disproportionate amount of attention for doing so. Many of the policy proposals, if interpreted literally, are not entirely practical, either economically or politically.