A Slice of American Pie

America’s large, loud trumpet that is Trump knows only one tune: “Wrong.”

The following is an excerpt from his speech on trade, corrected by me so that it actually addresses trade.

“We allowed foreign countries to subsidize their goods, devalue their currencies, violate their agreements and cheat in every way imaginable, and our politicians did nothing about it. Because these countries are sovereign states and as a sovereign state ourselves, we respect that fact and have no right, nor power to tell them otherwise. Trillions of our dollars and millions of our jobs flowed overseas, while trillions of dollars flowed into and millions more jobs were created in this country as a result of globalization, an unstoppable wave that crashes against the walls that separate the Us and Them. At the same time I have visited cities and towns across this country where one-third or even half of manufacturing jobs have been wiped out in the last 20 years, to be replaced by even more jobs in high-paying tech, finance, and service sectors.

Today, we import nearly $800 billion more in goods than we export because we are a major consumption power and have a huge economy that generates enough income to support this spending (or have established enough credit to be able to finance it). We can’t continue to pretend as if we can stand to be an autarky, as if we can survive the world we are in now by raising up walls made of taxes and restrictions. This is not some natural disaster, it’s a hodge-podge of globalization, technology, and cultural evolution. Very simple. And it need not be corrected because trying to do so would endorse isolation, reversion, and the undoing of everything the years after the two World Wars and the Cold War has taught us. It would mean turning our greatest trading partners, China, Mexico, and the European Union into our adversaries and losing out on over 40% of our country’s total trade volume. It would be the consequence… It would be the consequence of a leadership class that worships Americanism and perversely sacrifices its diverse economy and position as a world economic superpower to satisfy its dream of becoming an endless field of corn as yellow as Donald’s hair. This would be a direct affront to our founding fathers, who wanted America to be strong. They wanted this country to be strong. They wanted to be independent and they wanted it to be free. This means not building a cage around ourselves.

Our founding fathers understood trade much better than Donald, believe me.

George Washington said that the promotion of domestic manufacturing will be among the first consequences to flow from an energetic government. That was in the 18th century, in an era where the posterchild of the world was Britain due to the first industrial revolution. Alexander Hamilton spoke frequently of the expediency of encouraging manufacturing in, in, in the United States. He died in 1804, had he witnessed the birth of the Internet, and the dawn of Big Data, he might have focused on that instead. Might I remind you, that we live in the 21st Century?

And listen to this. The first Republican president, Abraham Lincoln, warned that, quote, “the abandonment of the protective policy by the American government will produce want and ruin among our people.” This was under the context of an American torn and shattered by the Civil War that lasted during his presidency. And as anyone who has taken a political science or history course, Abraham understood that in order to hold America together, resources must be focused inward to rebuild the nation’s infrastructure, economy, and cohesion. He understood it much better than Trump, that’s why he was Abraham Lincoln, I guess.

Yes, our original Constitution did not even have an income tax. Instead, it had tariffs emphasizing taxation of foreign, not domestic, production. Yes, because the original Constitution was signed in 1787, when America just hopped onto the industrial revolution choo-choo train and it needed to protect its fledgling manufacturing sector from its major competitor, Britain.

Today, 240 years after the Revolution, we’ve turned things completely upside down for good. We tax and regulate and restrict our companies because they are the biggest users of the America’s resources, and we allow foreign countries to export their goods to us tax-free so the American people can enjoy a higher abundance of goods at a lower cost.

As a result, we have become more dependent on foreign countries than ever before, just as they have become more dependent on us. Ladies and gentlemen, it is time to embrace co-operation and winning together.

That means not voting for Donald Trump.”

Now, I say this because I love you, America. And also because I want you to keep making cream cheese and apple pie.

Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit,

but with humility of mind regard one another

as more important than yourselves;

Philippians 2:3

Creme Brulee Apple Pie-Stuffed Cheesecake

Creme Brulee Apple Pie-Stuffed Cheesecake

Butter Biscuit Crust:

  • 1 sleeve maria biscuits, broken into pieces
  • 1/2 c butter, melted
  • 1 tsp salt
  1. Place the maria biscuits into a food processor, and pulse until they become uniform fine crumbs.
  2. Add the butter and salt and pulse until mixture is moistened.
  3. Line the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan with parchment paper and press the cookie mixture firmly into the pan to form the crust. Chill for 30 minutes in the fridge.
  4. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 375 degrees F and. Bake the crust for 15-20 minutes, or until lightly golden. Cool.

Cheesecake Batter:

  • 500 g full fat Philadelphia cream cheese, cubed (2 bricks)
  • 1 kg cottage cheese
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3/4 c white sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla paste
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tbsp cinnamon
  • 1 8-inch apple pie (store-bought)
  1. Place cottage cheese in a blender and blend on medium speed until thick and creamy. Add the salt, sugar, vanilla, and cream cheese brick by brick, then the eggs, one at a time.
  2. Divide the batter in half, and whisk in the cinnamon into one half.
  3. Pour the cinnamon cheesecake batter over the crust. Gently put in the apple pie, and pour the plain vanilla cheesecake batter on top to completely cover the pie.
  4. Bake at 300 degrees F on the middle rack for 45-50 minutes, or until almost set (with a slight jiggle in the center). Place a tray of water in the lower rack to prevent cracks from forming.
  5. Cool completely before chilling overnight.

Brulee Sugar Top:

  1. To serve, slice the cheesecake into 12 slices, running the blade under hot water between each cut to get the cleanest slices.
  2. Sprinkle the top of each slice generously with 2 tsp white sugar. Using a blowtorch, brulee the top until sugar is melted and caramelized.
  3. Chill for another 15 minutes to let the sugar harden a bit more for extra crunch.


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