The art of the deal guy — President Donald Trump — has done it again, with the headlines from news sources telling us that he’s secured concessions from the Europeans to avoid a trade war!
And it poses the question: will this most hated President end up being an achiever whom Americans could actually respect over time for his achievements?
I know this might be hard to read for some. It’s even harder to me to write but Donny boy is racking up some achievements that could go down well with the voters of the USA. And this could ultimately help the Yanks rewrite the ‘Trump in the White House’ experience.
This is even harder for me to say as yesterday I interviewed another of my high achieving ex-students for My Coffee with Switzer video — Brett Solomon, the Executive Director of AccessNow and the founding CEO of GetUp!
Bret will be horrified at this story. He’s no Trump admirer, but, as you know, I try to be objective and historical rather than hysterical. And the reassessment of former President Ronald Reagan has always surprised me.
Living through the Reagan years, to the conservative voter, Reagan was a gift from heaven. To the more left and social justice-inclined, he was a curse from hell.
His economics was tagged ‘rational’ being anti-government, pro-business and fiercely against the USSR and those who thought Communism was a good idea.
While the value of economic achievements are always debated by economists, depending on their bias, his role in seeing the Berlin Wall come down and the success of the likes of Mikhail Gorbachev can’t be ignored.
When it came to the USSR, he was like a dog with a bone. And while he had some wild and wacky ideas, like Trump, he had some big wins.
It reminds me of what George Bernard Shaw said about people who can affect change: “The reasonable man adapts himself to the world: the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man.”
Ignoring George’s lack of perspective on women in this consideration, I think history has shown us that big change happens when someone steps up and does stuff, which reasonable people see as unreasonable.
I asked Brett if he’d ever reflected on his work at the time at GetUp and wondered if he’d ever thought: “Gee, did we go too far then?”
He couldn’t recall such an event but wasn’t sure if after his time at the political agitation, social reforming outfit, if they’d ever overstepped the mark. I asked if the ends justified the means and he virtually said yes, as long as ethical standards were respected.
But what else would you expect of someone like Brett Solomon, who founded AccessNow that fights for the rights of freedom and privacy on the Internet?
He looks like a very reasonable man but his history shows, this trained lawyer and son of a judge, Ron Solomon, is everything but a reasonable Aussie living in the Big Apple, with an army of ‘employees’ in his not-for-profit outfit.
Back to Donny, and his latest get together with the EU has resulted in the President proclaiming a new US-EU relationship, as they work towards, wait for it, “zero tariffs!”
Yep, the unreasonable tariff guy — Trump — is now championing no tariffs, which is a typical oddball routine straight out of the Donald Trump playbook.
The most consistent characteristic about Trump, aside from his tweeting, is that he consistently claims that most outcomes that come his way were actually what he really wanted.
This guy is a master salesman who has flogged:
• himself as President.
• huge tax cuts.
• a deal that gets US companies to bring back hidden profits in low tax countries.
• lower company regulations that in part, with the uplift of the US economy, helped Wall Street’s Dow Jones index rise around 33% since his win.
• a rethink by Kim Jong-Un on his connection with the West and his love for nuclear showing off; and
• a big infrastructure spend that includes the crazy idea of a wall between the States and Mexico, and as the Eagles sang: “Jesus, people bought it!”
All his social problems aside, this guy might not crash and burn (as someone like Brett surely would love to see) but he just might sell himself as a credible, unreasonable President, who got a lot of stuff done.
You might not want it but a majority of Yanks and business people might, and they could help rewrite the Trump experience for history.
This year’s mid-term elections on November 6 should just be another nail-biting experience of our encounter with Donald J. Trump.
By the way, after the Europeans agreed to lower industrial tariffs and buy more soybeans, the Dow Jones Industrial Average ended up 172 points.
Homer Simpson once asked the question: “Donuts, is there anything they can’t do?” And when it comes to Trump, you have to ask: “Is there anything he can’t do?”
Please don’t answer this question, as I was being a tad ironic.