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‘I don’t need lessons in economics’: Dobbs and Gasparino battle over China trade amid coronavirus

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A Fox Business discussion quickly escalated as host Lou Dobbs and senior correspondent Charles Gasparino locked horns over the economy in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak.

Dobbs led the panel talk Wednesday on the economic impact of the flu-like illness that started in the Chinese city of Wuhan, discussing whether the outbreak and the U.S. response internationally would mean any change in China’s intention to fulfill its trade deal agreements.


(Source: Fox Business)

“I think part of it, do we really want to torch them economically? Is it bad for us long term?” Gasparino said on “Lou Dobbs Tonight” Wednesday.

“At some point, we need China to have a decent economy so they continue to buy our stuff. So do we give them a break on this? There should be some wiggle room in this and I think that’s why you see what’s going on in the White House,” he added.

When Gasparino noted the argument over tariffs and the gross domestic product numbers, Dobbs quipped that there is no debate as it is “settled.”

“Actually, it’s not settled. When you see the GDP’s numbers, you will know it’s not settled because we had a manufacturing recession because of it,” Gasparino replied.

“Why don’t we just take a look at the deficit numbers over the course of 50 years?” Dobbs said.

“Which deficit, budget deficit? Does trade impact GDP, Lou? Did I miss that economic lesson?” Gasparino asked.

“Did you miss that?” Dobbs replied and tried to make his point as Gasparino talked over him.

“May I finish? Dobbs asked, to which Gasparino shot back, “I don’t need lessons in economics.”

“Yes, you do. You must get through that delusion,” Dobbs shot back, as the debate continued.

Fox News and Fox Business anchor David Asman interjected in an attempt to “pull out of the weeds” but Dobbs wanted to clarify the discussion.

“I want to complete this thought so that everybody understands what we are talking about,” he said, telling Gasparino, “When you have a trade deficit, it reduces national savings.”

“Sometimes,” Gasparino said.

“No, it always does,” Dobbs insisted.

“You also have people making more money buying stuff from overseas,” Gasparino argued.

As the two continued to wrestle over the issue, Dobbs grew increasingly frustrated that he wasn’t able to make his point, asking again if he could finish his thoughts while sarcastically adding, “I don’t want to impose with rationality and knowledge.”

“As the national savings rates decline, that reduces GDP and therefore, a deficit is to be avoided,” the Fox Business host explained.

“When people are working, they spend more money and they buy stuff from overseas. Thus it hurts the trade deficit,” Gasparino argued. “That’s what happens! It’s happening right now!”

“Your anecdotal fantasyland is not a substitute…” Dobbs began but Gasparino continued to make his point.

Even as Asman and other panelists attempted to steer the discussion forward, Dobbs and Gasparino continued to spar over their positions.

“Do you have any sort of knowledge?” Dobbs shot back at one point before the heated segment moved on.

Frieda Powers

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