It's a disruptive, external shock to the global trading system… (But) I actually think that this [Trump's tariffs on aluminum and steel] will have positive effects in the long run. It makes people in the United States who have not stood up to support free trade much more anxious to do so now that they see the possible consequences of the benefits of free trade being taken away.
The United States can't keep a completely open system if the rest of the world is less open. The United States may have to take a leaf out of the book of Japan, China, and Germany, and have protectionism inside the system.
The benefits of a tariff are visible. Union workers can see they are "protected". The harm which a tariff does is invisible. It's spread widely. There are people that don't have jobs because of tariffs but they don't know it.
Many people who have lost out in the last few decades voted for Trump. Trump will have a difficult time turning them into winners. The jobs of these people are not at risk because of Chinese or Mexican workers, but because of robots and computers. And new trade barriers and higher tariffs are not going to change that.
Any time you read that your government is erecting tariff barriers, supporting threatened industries with subsidies, or interfering in any way with free trade between individuals or nations, you must realize that your standard of living is being lowered as a result.