Mass Shootings, China & Currency Manipulation, ICE Raid, Castro Tweets Trump Donors

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This week, Mike and Kristin discuss news of the tragic shootings in El Paso, Texas and Dayton, Ohio. As the nation sinks deeper into political divide, what transpired was a conversation about white nationalism, whether political parties are “responsible” for hate and tragedy. Mike thinks President Trump should be held accountable for his ramped-up rhetoric, while Kristin says that both parties must take responsibility for violent language. Kristin and Mike both bring up points about mental health and gun control, as well as Red Flag laws and assault weapons bans. They agree that they aren’t hopeful anything would transpire – but that we should work towards solutions. 

Next, they talk about the Treasury Department declaring China a currency manipulator. Mike thoroughly explains the terms and says that China may have manipulated currency in the past, but that recent devaluation of currency isn’t manipulation. Kristin brings up the fact that all nations engage in currency devaluation, and mentions President Trump’s increased tariffs on Chinese goods. Both Mike and Kristin maintain a “wait and see approach” – will the tariffs work to level the trade playing field, or will this declaration lead to a trade war? Time will tell. 

Mike and Kristin often find themselves discussing immigration law, and this week is no exception. After ICE officials raided seven plants in MS and arrested 680 undocumented workers, both agree that the system is broken. Mike remains skeptical that anything will be done, citing powerful business interests. He also argues that businesses are often put in positions where they are forced to hire undocumented workers, who are then mistreated and separated from their families. Kristin agrees and both say that there must be a middle ground, an easier pathway for obtaining work visas or citizenship. Kristin argues this would help everyone – the government could vet immigrants and account for them, and the workers would be kept with families and they would have recourse for payment disputes and unsafe working conditions. 

Finally, they move to the topic of Rep. Joaquin Castro’s alleged “doxxing” of Trump donors and their businesses in his district. Was it an effort to be transparent, or was it “dog-whistling”? Mike thinks that Republican critics are being overly sensitive, and mentions that this information is public record and easily found. Kristin brings up motive and the fact that these donors and their employees are constituents, but Mike argues that the tweet won’t affect businesses much. They discuss connections Castro made between the El Paso shooter and Trump donors. 

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2 thoughts on “Mass Shootings, China & Currency Manipulation, ICE Raid, Castro Tweets Trump Donors”

  1. Your discussion about low skilled workers was so superficial it drove me crazy. How could you discuss this without pointing out that by removing illegal unskilled labor, business would have to pay more in wages to attract legal workers.

    In a time that inequality gets worse and worse, the easiest way to drive up wages for all workers is by restricting the amount of workers. WHY would we want low skilled worker visa’s to keep wages artificially low?

    This isnt a novel argument- the fact that you completely ignore it, and neither of you brings it up is troubling. Why cant you find anyone that can intelligently argue populist points? It would make your podcast far more interesting.

    1. Thanks for the comment. You are, of course, absolutely right that by hiring only legal workers businesses would have to pay more.

      The reason we want more workers is because without them, many of these jobs would go unfilled. As I mentioned on the show, the idea that there are a lot of jobs that American citizens would do if only there weren’t undocumented workers doing them doesn’t hold up to analysis. (There was an excellent study of this out of North Carolina, I believe, not too long ago.)

      I’m always willing to look at good data and reconsider my views in the light of convincing, data-driven counter arguments. It’s just that most of what I’ve seen clearly suggests that we desperately need more low-skilled workers, especially at a time where the labor market is so incredibly tight. Here’s an interesting article on this from Vox:

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