Diary

Cramer's Remorse, XII: The (Trade) Warmonger in the White House

It’s been a while since Jim Cramer of CNBC fame has turned out to complain about the actions of Barack Obama, the man whose candidacy and election he whole-heartedly endorsed.  In fairness to Cramer, though, epic market rallies (over 50% in six months) will tend to mollify a person for whom the markets are, for practical purposes, his life.

Nevertheless, the honeymoon couldn’t last forever, and Cramer is once again calling out the President, albeit not on any of the issues most RedState readers are focusing on, but one which may nevertheless prove vital in the months to come.

It stems primarily from a decision made over the weekend, while Obama was dodging tea-partyers, to impose stiff increases in the tariffs on Chinese-made tires.  As with most things done over the weekend by both government and business alike, it’s something that was hoped would go unnoticed.  But there are far too many workaholics on Wall Street for that trick to work, and sure enough, the issue is getting plenty of play on CNBC, if not anywhere else as yet.

As the Reuters article states, the tariff is “not… meant to spark a trade war”, but pretty much everyone in the financial media, Cramer included, is thinking that to be the likely result.

Cramer does not go so far as some commentators, who invoked the specter of the Smoot-Hawley Tariff, the infamous legislation widely blamed for prolonging the Great Depression, in describing the administration’s action.  Nor does there seem to be a whole lot of attention that this isn’t even the first time Obama has strained trade relations in the name of supporting the unions, or whatever his goal actually is.

But what’s really ticking off Cramer is that this tariff decision is being followed up by one of Obama’s patented speeches to Wall Street today.  You remember how those go, right?  If not, here’s Cramer to remind you, in today’s Money Quote:

Wall Street…now view[s] Obama as a meddler in places he doesn’t know all that much about. Will he give us the “now is not the time for profits” speech? Will he call a recovering Wall Street an unregulated cesspool still one year after Lehman?

Will we be scolded? Probably in some form or another.

…[I]t’s 5 a.m. EDT[, and already] I can’t wait for this day to be over.”

So far the stock market seems to be shrugging all this off.  But the day is yet young.