President Donald Trump made an existential threat to Mexico yesterday, saying he would “destroy their economy and shut down their government if they don’t agree to fund my wall…rapido!”
According to the president, he would make good on his threat to America’s southern neighbor by “not eating Mexican food ever again, including tacos, enchiladas, and quesadillas. And anyone who knows me can tell you that is going to weigh heavily on Mexico’s economy.”
Dietary experts and food analysts who have been monitoring Mr. Trump’s intake of fast food and high-calorie, low-nutrient snacks since the beginning of his presidency say that the danger to Mexico’s economy if the president were to carry through on his ultimatum is real:
“The president does have a prodigious appetite and pretty frightening diet,” said Carla Malone, a Certified Nutrition Specialist at Mt. Sinai Hospital in New York. “In fact, his intake of junk food is legendary, so I have no doubt he could make a significant dent in Mexico’s prosperity by cutting off his daily consumption of tacos.”
Dr. Landow Tomlison, who holds a PhD in economics and a Masters in Food Science from Cornell University, added, “We estimate that if President Trump were to suspend his ingestion of foods sourced in Mexico, that he could personally inflict a $2.4 billion hit to the Mexican economy per annum — that’s billion with a ‘B.’ While this would be enough to cripple their economy over time, we don’t think the president is factoring in the damage he would do to the American grain industry, which could also suffer a multi-billion dollar shock due to the reduction of corn exports to Mexico.” Corn is a major ingredient in many Mexican foods.
But one food industry expert takes a different view of Mr. Trump’s “taco termination threat,” saying it could ultimately work in Mexico’s favor.
“Yes, he could shake up the Mexican food industry for a time by curtailing his ravenous appetite for nachos, burritos, huaraches, fritadas, chalupas, and chorizos,” says Carlos Mendes, a food analyst at Jefferies, the global investment firm, speaking from Los Angeles. “But the disdain most people have for President Trump could actually start a movement in support of eating Mexican food. Our analysis indicates that for every billion that the president withholds from Mexico’s economy by dropping tacos from his daily diet, there would be five billion dollars in increased customer consumption of Mexican foods, mostly by coastal liberals. In the end, we see a boon not a bust for Mexico. And we don’t believe Mr. Trump’s threat will have any impact on the country’s decision not to fund his border wall.”
Mexico’s president Enrique Peña Nieto reiterated a statement he has made many times over the past year saying, “Absolutely not — Mexico has no intention of paying for President Trump’s wall, no matter how many tacos he claims he’ll stop eating.”
Vicente Fox, a former president of Mexico, also repeated his strong repudiation of Mr. Trump’s bullying of his country regarding a U.S.-Mexico barricade, stating, “My proud country will never, ever pay for that crazy egocentric’s stupid wall. Read my lips Mr. Trump — go fuck yourself.”
In a tweet on Friday night, President Trump demanded an apology from Mr. Fox “for using the F word,” or else, he said, “I’ll build my wall 100 feet higher!”
Thanks to all the many readers, fans, followers, and even my frenemies, for reading and commenting on my posts throughout the year as I continue my commitment to post every day, 7-days-a-week until the Orange Accident is no more.
I read every comment. And I try to answer.