Clinton prepared to pay the price

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 06 June, 1993, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 06 June, 1993, 12:00am

IT IS hard to know where to begin with your editorial (Sunday Morning Post, May 30). Let's look at a few of the issues you raise: Most Favoured Nation status (MFN): whatever one's view on the merits of this subject, US President Bill Clinton has not shown weakness. He has, as promised for over a year, reversed the Bush administration policy of ''ignorance is bliss''. The inclusionof Tibet may have been a surprise to the Sunday Morning Post, but has been much discussed in the United States for the past year.

House of Representatives vote: Mr Clinton's deficit reduction plan (which includes both higher taxes and spending cuts) only squeaked by in the House. The Senate vote will be even more difficult. The reasons are simple - no-one likes more taxes and fewer goodies.

What is important is that, for the first time since President Jimmy Carter, the US budget deficit will begin to shrink. This is an extraordinary political success and will, over time, lead to a renewed American economy.

Trade policy: it would be foolish to discount the Clinton trade policy as the result of uncertainty. Instead, it represents a determined attempt to have the major trading partners of the US open their markets and eliminate non-tariff barriers.

As Hongkong people know, it is a different matter to sell the same product in Japan, China and the US.

There are three keys to understanding the Clinton administration: Mr Clinton believes that America has for too long ignored or inadequately addressed major issues such as the budget deficit, the health care crisis, the trade imbalance, education and welfare; Mr Clinton's style is pragmatic - he is not ideological about methods or solutions. He will take half a loaf rather than none.

Mr Clinton is willing to be a one-term president, if that is the price of beginning the process of saving America. WILLIAM A. WILSON The Peak