❝ School children learn that Adolf Hitler repeated Napoleon Bonaparte’s great mistake by attacking Russia at the onset of winter. But Donald Trump hasn’t grasped that history lessons apply to trade battles as well as military campaigns. Instead, he is angering the farm belt with his tariff wars, reminiscent of two White House predecessors.
❝ To control domestic prices, Richard Nixon restricted soybean exports to Japan, a maneuver that accelerated Brazilian soybean production and gave the Japanese people a lasting penchant for food self-sufficiency—all to the grief of American farmers.
To punish Russia, Jimmy Carter halted wheat exports during the Afghanistan war of the 1970s, prompting a farm revolt and inspiring Ronald Reagan to promise “never again.” Meddling with farm exports helped neither Nixon nor Carter, and it won’t help Trump…
“Those who don’t know history are destined to repeat it.” — Edmund Burke, 1729-1797 — and quoted by many more since.