Wilbur Ross Shows Up On CNBC With A Can Of Campbell’s Soup To Defend Tariffs

Listen up you hysterical fuckers, your reaction to Donald Trump’s decision to start a global trade war is irrational in the extreme, ok?

Sure, it seems to suggest that Trump knows even less about trade than we thought (and really, it’s not entirely clear that he understands what a “deficit” even is) and yes, the entire world is furious, but what you need to focus on is the actual, ground-level impact for consumers.

And when it comes to people who are well “grounded” (i.e. people who aren’t talking about building gas stations on the moon) and also people who are in touch with everyday consumers and thus have a solid grasp on how rising costs impact those consumers, no one has his ear to the proverbial street like Commerce Secretary (and man who took some time away from being asleep to be awake on Friday), Wilbur Ross.

Ross showed up on CNBC this morning where he was pressed by David Faber on Trump’s tariffs and one thing that was abundantly clear from the outset was that Wilbur is not really in the loop here. At one point, he didn’t even seem to know as much as Faber knows, although then again, it now seems as though Ross was in part responsible for this.

But the real comedy came when Ross proceeded to explain how rising costs aren’t actually rising costs because the the price of things most people buy won’t be affected all that much.

To illustrate his point, Wilbur brought along a series of literal props including a can of Campbell’s soup and a can of Coke, both of which he said he bought at a local gas station in Florida this morning.

The Twitter reactions were hilarious:


Now for one thing, Wilbur is worth something like $750 million, so who the fuck is he to say what a “material” increase in prices on a can of chicken noodle soup is? I mean, if that can of soup cost went from $0.90 today to $90 tomorrow, Wilbur wouldn’t notice the difference.

But more to the point, this is the Commerce Secretary on national television, downplaying the impact of a global trade war by holding up a can of fucking soup. This as CEOs, industry titans, foreign governments (some of them staunch U.S. allies) and economists almost universally say this is a horrible idea.

In fact, just seconds before Wilbur’s ghostly image materialized on the screen, Wilfred Frost reported that according to someone who is probably Jamie Dimon, the tariffs are a “huge, huge” mistake:

But look, who you gonna believe, right? Everybody who knows anything about what they’re talking about or Wilbur and his can of chicken noodle soup?

It’s up to you.


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24 thoughts on “Wilbur Ross Shows Up On CNBC With A Can Of Campbell’s Soup To Defend Tariffs

  1. You’re not taking Wilbur’s extrapolations out far enough to see the benefits. Campbell’s and Coke won’t increase the price by 3/10th’s or 6/10th’s of a cent, it’s just not feasible. So they’ll shrink the size of the packaging to compensate for the higher costs so that they can still sell for the same price. And little Johnnie and little Susie will then be consuming less of each product, simultaneously helping to combat America’s obesity problem. BOOM! On the path to great again. Thanks, genius leader!

  2. Not one of Heisenberg’s better articles. Seems he is more interested in trashing Trump and his administration then adding anything of value. For example, why is Trumps argument that steel and aluminum are essential to National defense wrong. As Ross points out for most products the cost of steel and Aluminum is not that material. How much will a 10% tariff on a few products add to inflation. Is a Trade war in the making, and why is Trump wrong in asserting that, since we have trade deficits, other nations have more to loose than the U>S and on balance the U.S. has more to gain or less to loose.

    1. LOL. “why”? have you been paying attention for the past year? this has been explained here, there, and everywhere by literally everyone over and over and over and over. if you don’t understand the “why” here, you are a fucking moron.

      1. I have read your articles since they have been posted on seeking Alpha and do not remember one rationately adressing these issues. You obviously believe anyone who dares to questiion conventional wisdom is a moron. It seems to me you are incapable of defending your position and instead resort to name calling What a shame.

      2. Heis, may I jump in here to verify what I think about why assface wants to “declare” a “national security risk” and start a trade war? The only way the president can start a trade war without a Congressional vote is only in a case of a national security threat – otherwise Congress must vote and agree on a trade war – and the president does not have the sole power to start a trade war without a national threat. I’m sure someone else can say that in a more governmental way but I believe that is the essence of why he is taking this route. It is also why he cannot explain this alleged national security risk – there is none – but he needs to say there is to enable his sole power to start a trade war. AND NO ONE SEEMS TO FORCE HIS HAND ON HIS LIES. Hello Paul Ryan!

        It is his quickest way to bring upheaval to distract from the very serious criminal allegations, maybe even criminal charges on members of his family and himself.

        In your column Have Genius Will Travel I inserted several links to information dated Oct 2016 that he purchased the steel for his construction from China while elaborately hiding those purchases – rather than buy and use US Steel. Everything he does is phony.

    2. anon, perhaps you should outlay why Trump’s argument that steel and aluminum are essential to national security is right. I think a lot of readers (myself included) are intrigued in your rationale, especially since the Trump administration hasn’t even given its own rationale.

      1. I am interested in making money, not in Heisenbergs potitical rants. Heisenberg has more time and access to information and analysis. My response to him was to encourage him to write something useful. I did not intend to imply that I have a strong opinion on the issues. I know “”everyone” knows and agrees that “free” trade is great for all. Just as “everyone “knows Central Banks are smart people and must have been correct in flooding the market with liquidity and are just as right now in QT. Just Kidding.

      2. If you are interested here are the reports from the Dept of Commerece to Trump recommending tarriffs. They conclude that it’s in the Nations interest to impose tarrifs.
        While I do not believe this settles the matter, it at least shows reasons for Trumps actions.

        Today, Secretary Wilbur Ross released reports on the U.S. Department of Commerce’s investigations into the impact on our national security from imports of steel mill products and from imports of wrought and unwrought aluminum. These investigations were carried out under Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962, as amended. All classified and business confidential information in the reports was redacted before the release.
        Steel https://www.commerce.gov/sites/commerce.gov/files/the_effect_of_imports_of_steel_on_the_national_security_-_with_redactions_-_20180111.pdf

        1. trump did not read that crap — not even the table of contents. Maybe not even the title page. And if anyone else tried to explain it to him, he would become frustrated and full of anxiety and lash out to release that energy … wait, that explains his ridiculous behavior when he made his rash decision. Yeah, that’s your trump.

          trump is a danger to this Nation – he should to be removed asap.

    3. OMG! Stop drinking the Kool Aid ! How on earth do you continue to believe any words that fall out of his mouth – nothing he says is true – nothing is based on any facts – nothing is reliable – but you show up here not really asking stupid questions, you show up to tell us how smart he is and tell us to prove he isn’t. There is another great column Heis has right now that you need to read – specifically on the steel comments you just made, I refer you to read the facts I just posted with the printed data to back them up – your man is a chicken shit liar and there is plenty of evidence on any subject you can throw at us. He is nothing – he is a big wad of bullshit – he is fucking crazy! And if weren’t for people like you, he would not be in the WH!

      So read https://heisenbergreport.com/2018/03/02/have-genius-will-travel/comment-page-1/#comment-20027

      and fuck off with your constant love trump trash! Fed up with your shit!

      1. Wow. I’m not a Trump supporter. You should learn to listen or in this case read, whithout your hate and biases. Except, perhaps for asking “stupid questions” nothing you attribute to me is accurate. I know Heisenberg is a left wing zealot and appeals to people of the same ilk. I am responding to you in the hope that your links provide some useful information, rather than more hate Trump cheerleading. And if it does. Thank You.

        1. this happened once before — I am commenting to one of the two anonymous posters on this thread — if you go to the Anonymous just above Heis’s that begins LOL and ends with fucking moron — THAT is who I am talking to — is that you, so be it. If that is the Other Anonymous, then you have commented to me in error. I really wish one of you would change your stupid name. I think the last time, one of you did change your name …. to Ed maybe? which one are you, try a new i.d.

  3. First the Japanese screwed us in the 1960s and ‘70s by selling steel below cost and dumping it into the US. Then in the 1980s and ‘90s the Chinese way overproduced steel and in order to generate jobs dumped it into the US below cost. Our politicians loved it because it kept inflation down while our government overspent and subsidized proxy wars in the Middle East for our “special friends” which resulted in huge deficits.
    Now Trump says “enough” and best of all does something about it. The pundits who have been moaning about the loss of high paying jobs and stagnation of middle class income are apoplectic and hysterical about trade wars.
    Trump will hopefully raise gasoline taxes next which will pay for infrastructure, reduce pollution, and encourage consumers to get out of monster cars and drive something efficient like the rest of the world.
    By restructuring corporate taxes, Trump has done more for low/middle income workers than Obama achieved in eight years. And now he appears to be facing down the NRA!
    What a guy!

  4. You know what is a real threat to our national security? Russian interference in our elections. Their orange puppet has no issue with it.

  5. Taking economic advice from Almer Fudd AKA Wilbur Ross is like getting slam dunk advice from Danny Devito. How are the American people not calling for impeachment? This has gone from a bad reality Tv show to a serious risk to global security and financial stability.

    1. The “people” of America would happily help him pack and move out of the WhiteHouse tomorrow but that is not how it works. Congress makes all the moves necessary and fortunately or unfortunately, depending on which side you are on, the Republicans have control and he is a Republican so they are not in favor of removing him — at least not yet! In a nutshell that is why the U.S. is divided on opinions and the upcoming elections are critical to either Democrats gaining control or at least coming close to a balanced group of Republicans and Democrats.

      Millions of Americans, in fact based on polls, about 70% of America want him removed. The pittance of 30% are still what we refer to as his “base support” — what they see in him is a mystery to me!! It is said his extreme chaotic behavior the past few weeks is because he knows his house is falling down! And yes, every day that goes by and he is still in charge, is not a good day.

      The Republicans that are sitting on their hands and not taking action to get him removed are at a high risk of losing their government job to a Democrat – who will take care of removing him! That is all a really simple explanation of a very complicated problem!

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