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"Death by China," Directed by Peter Navarro

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A looming "Trade War" is front-and-center in the nation's news. So who's the gentleman who has been carrying this trade war flag into battle for years?
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A looming “Trade War” is front-and-center in the nation’s news.

There is – specifically – a gentleman who has been carrying this trade war flag into battle for some time. He is likely a driving force behind the latest steel and aluminum tariffs.

On February 25th, 2018, the New York Times carried this story.

“President Trump could soon promote Peter Navarro, a trade policy adviser, to a more powerful position in the White House, elevating a longtime trade skeptic who has found himself sidelined by more pro-trade voices inside the White House.

Mr. Navarro’s ascendance may signal that the balance of power is shifting toward those who have backed Mr. Trump’s get-tough approach to trade policy and away from those who have sought to restrain it.”

So, we could have seen this (and him!) coming.

Who is Peter Navarro?

Here is a short bio--

Peter Navarro was born on July 15th, 1949, making him 68 years old now.

He was a professor of economics and public policy at the Paul Merage School of Business, at the University of California-Irvine. Navarro holds a Ph.D in Economics from Harvard. He received multiple teaching awards for MBA courses.

Prior to teaching, Navarro served in the Peace Corps in Southeast Asia and worked in Washington, D.C. as an energy and environmental policy analyst.

Navarro ran for office in San Diego, CA three times. In 1992, he ran for mayor, finishing first in the all-party primary, but losing to Republican Susan Golding in the runoff.In 1996, he ran for the 49th Congressional District as the Democratic Party nominee, but lost to Republican Brian Bilbray.  In 2001, Navarro ran in a special election to fill the District 6 San Diego city council seat, but lost in the primary.

In 2016, Navarro served as a policy advisor to Donald Trump’s presidential campaign. On Dec. 21st, 2016, Navarro was selected by President-elect Trump to head a newly created position, as director of the White House National Trade Council.

He then submerged into a subordinate role – reporting to Secretary Wilbur Ross at Commerce – until surfacing a few short weeks ago.

Now, turn the clock back to a specific time.

In 2010, famous actor Martin Sheen spoke to 18,000 young student activists at Free the Children We Day, saying,

"While acting is what I do for a living, activism is what I do to stay alive."

On April 10, 2016, a very popular Netflix documentary, “Death by China” was uploaded to YouTube.

Click the link below to access it:

Death by China: How America Lost Its Manufacturing Base (1 Hour, 20 Minute Official Version)

Martin Sheen narrates!

The film is based on a book by Peter Navarro and Greg Autry and directed by Mr. Navarro – and it is as blunt as it can be in working the premise:

Admission of China to the WTO in 2001 has been catastrophic for the USA.

An influx of Chinese goods has left American manufacturers unable to compete, the film says.

And Chinese leaders have been brashly ignoring rules about things like currency manipulation to make sure that their country’s products remain artificially cheap.


John Blank

Zacks Chief Equity Strategist

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