After promising that the Great Again US of A would have a "physical, tall, powerful, beautiful Southern border wall", costing $US21 billion paid entirely by the
The only thing I will ask you though is on the wall, you and I both have a political problem.
My people stand up and say, 'Mexico will pay for the wall' and your people probably say something in a similar but slightly different language.
But the fact is we are both in a little bit of a political bind because I have to have Mexico pay for the wall — I have to. I have been talking about it for a two-year period, and the reason I say they are going to pay for the wall is because Mexico has made a fortune out of the stupidity of US trade representatives. (…)
Some people say that the business of drug trafficking is bigger than the business of taking our factory jobs. So what I would like to recommend is — if we are going to have continued dialogue — we will work out the wall.
They are going to say, 'who is going to pay for the wall, Mr President?' to both of us, and we should both say, 'we will work it out'. It will work out in the formula somehow. As opposed to you saying, 'we will not pay' and me saying, 'we will not pay'.
Because you and I are both at a point now where we are both saying we are not to pay for the wall. From a political standpoint, that is what we will say.
We cannot say that anymore because if you are going to say that Mexico is not going to pay for the wall, then I do not want to meet with you guys anymore because I cannot live with that. I am willing to say that we will work it out, but that means it will come out in the wash and that is okay. But you cannot say anymore that the United States is going to pay for the wall. (…)
You have a very big mark on our back, Mr President, regarding who pays for the wall. This is what I suggest, Mr President — let us stop talking about the wall.
I have recognised the right of any government to protect its borders as it deems necessary and convenient. But my position has been and will continue to be very firm saying that Mexico cannot pay for that wall.
Me: Evidently, either El Presidente is a tough hombre, or he did not get what The Donald said. :-)
But you cannot say that to the press. The press is going to go with that and I cannot live with that. You cannot say that to the press because I cannot negotiate under those circumstances.
I understand you well, Mr President. I understand this critical point and I understand the critical political position that this constitutes for your country and for you, Mr President. Let us look for a creative way to jump over this obstacle. It does not mean that this is not an important issue — this is an important issue. (…)
Okay, Enrique, that is fine and I think it is fair. I do not bring up the wall but when the press brings up the wall, I will say, 'let us see how it is going - let us see how it is working out with Mexico'. Because from an economic issue, it is the least important thing we were talking about, but psychologically, it means something so let us just say 'we will work it out'. And if you want to do that, then we will go back to the negotiation table with Jared and Luis.
Me: Plenty talks and negotiations, for a matter that was settled, John Wayne-style, period.
I, too, know a Keynesian when I hear one, I can also smell bullshit. The two things often come together.
There was at least one Keynesian there.:-)