Donald J. Trump brought a number of powerful talents and gifts to the White House, traits that have served the nation well, but master strategist was not among them. I say this as a Trump voter.
And yet, as he descended Trump Tower on High via the escalator in June of 2015, he was anointed as such by his hard core and instant base. In almost monolithic fashion, millions adopted him immediately and assured us he was a political force the likes we’ve never seen before – a man who would be nine steps ahead of his opponents at all times. After all, they were unanimously convinced it was strategic genius that had built his empire out of nothing. They took the notion of ’The Art of the Deal’ and assumed that he was playing 9-D chess – while mere mortals were playing checkers.
Ironically, that millions projected all of this onto him without a whiff of biographical backing, is itself his greatest gift, and it’s a political nuke. It was astonishing to see so many Trump supporters who somehow knew what he was thinking, who were convinced that every foible was really a trap set by the wizard of all wizards. It’s how he beat Hillary, and I’ll take it, but it’s not strategic brilliance.
Frankly, the master strategist stuff was bullshit from the get go. His business empire was built largely on a massive inheritance, connections, natural schmoozing abilities, plus an eagerness and talent for crony capitalism. When his properties were beset by chaos – which they often were – they were salvaged by his name. The value was his showmanship and an inexplicable, yet undeniable, charisma and presence. That’s not a criticism by the way. Play to your strengths.
Trump was his own paid endorser. Few can do that. His strength is simply being Trump, a man with uncanny instincts at times, who clearly loves America and the American Dream, and who commands attention in every setting. And oh, he was blessed with a last name that is itself a power verb. Trump Resorts and Trump Tower are not valuable because of how they are managed. They are valuable because they are TRUMP properties.
This is akin to how he routed the field in the GOP Primary season. When Trump appeared on stage in the GOP debates, the other 16 candidates magically disappeared – or might as well have. He won the debates before anyone said a word. And this is a good thing, because he rarely said anything that made much sense on stage, but it worked because HE SAID IT. If you were to score the written words said by, say, Ted Cruz versus those said by Trump, Cruz wins by a landslide. That’s not how this works. Drudge knew this, and started taking votes on who “won” the debates BEFORE THEY STARTED. Trump did.
You can’t teach this. You can’t explain it. Nor can you deny it. It’s his gift. It’s why he turned the simple phrase “you’re fired” into a multi-billion dollar TV franchise – and made his name so powerful that it injected instant equity into his oft-plagued real estate empire. It’s a gift he will need to dig himself out of his Fauci hole, because he has frankly been a failure at the “strategy” part of this admittedly difficult, and unprecedented, chapter in American life. This is not so much a criticism as it is an assessment. I’ll give Trump a break because there is no playbook for this kind of situation. But we must admit where we are, and why.
Where are we? On two major points, Trump has been played for a fool by the media, the Democrats, and gallingly, the contemptible Chuck Schumer in particular.
POINT 1: FAUCI
Trump has bungled the handling of the mega god Anthony Fauci, the hobbit sized bureaucrat of some 50 years who apparently is the most wise and powerful person ever to trod the soil of this humble planet. He ostensibly replaces the Lord Barack Obama in that role. At least Obama was elected twice. Fauci just kind of appeared from the heavens.
Suffice it to say that the Fauci effect, which would take a full book to examine, has bamboozled the ostensible master strategist from New York. Trump appears to fear no one on the planet – but tiny Tony Fauci. And the media – even that despicable low IQ mouseketeer Jim Acosta – has painted Trump into a corner on this one. So worried was Trump that he would be seen as anti-science, seen as a boob, that he latched onto Fauci’s white lab coat early on and has, until recently, clung to little Tony F. like his lifeline. Bad, bad move.
The media sensed this weakness, and took advantage of it. They quickly painted a picture of a White House task force at odds with each other, with Fauci and the ultimate unknowable truth on one side, and Trump and his hick ignorant gun and Bible totin’ deplorables on the other. Trump fell for it, and quickly did everything he could (in March, April, May) to make it clear he “and Tony” were friends. He and Tony were tracking. They were at war together, on the same side. Meanwhile, there was a huge disconnect between Trump and his base, for the first time.
(Not that most of the hard core base noticed, but more on that later.)
Well, Mr. Trump, there are two problems with that. First, Tony Fauci is not your friend. He never has been and never will be. And second, no one who gives a damn what Fauci has to say is going to vote for you ever, period. Not gonna happen. Trump will never ever win re-election in a nation that continues to fall for a national masking, and continues to believe Fauci’s version of what’s best. No way that happens.
Which leads us to POINT 2: TESTING.
Trump has been played here too. Chuck Schumer and others on the left kept harassing the Trump administration on testing testing testing…..until by God, with Trump’s help, we got testing. We got massive testing. Trump bragged about all the testing. And guess what? Massive testing has led to massive “cases” of the virus. A new massive “outbreak” is what we’re told. And now Trump is blamed for the results of the testing he bragged about getting, after he was blamed for not getting the testing done.
Trump was flat played. He was nine steps behind the Democrat/media complex on this one.
There’s not a lot of death. And for the most part, not a lot of sickness….but man, do we have cases….cases and cases and cases. And the media, all Democrat Governors, and some Republicans, many CEOs, are using those “cases” as a way to re-mask us, to shut us down again, to make this wimpy weak virus the black plague all over again. They set a trap for Trump, and he walked right into it, and now it has him trapped again. It has us trapped again too.
So what to do? Well, it’s not complicated. Trump has to be Trump, in short. The Trump of March 24th needs to re-appear. The Trump of 2016 needs to re-appear. How does this look?
Of the three paths he can take, he must jettison two of them. Obviously, he can’t take the path of panic porn, and try and lead the “woe is us” bandwagon. That won’t work, and besides, the math doesn’t support it. By the way, no one who is into the panic porn is a Trump voter any way. Not one. His notion of being a “war President” over Covid was a bad idea. He kinda trapped himself with that one.
Also, Trump must immediately stop trying to take this absurd “middle road” he’s been trying to take – as if he could thread the needle somewhere between the Fauci approach of mindless permanent non-life – and the Trump base voter approach of “screw it, open everything back up now.” That middle ground won’t work. That’s exactly the kind of flapdoodle GOP strategist stuff that Trump ran against so successfully in 2016. It’s likely what Jared and Ivanka have talked him into doing. It must stop. It won’t work, and it’s intellectually bankrupt.
He must take door number three. Trump has to go back to his roots….which, ironically, is where his base has been all along. His base has been the population that knew from the get go that this was an over blown scam. His base has been the ones to want to re-open the country. They have been the ones exposing the phony death stats, the phony “case” stats, the extremely low lethality stats. All the while, Trump is trying to be friends with Tony – his base has wanted to string Fauci up, or at least, fire him.
Again, I mention March 24th, when Trump said – so correctly – that we “must not let the cure be worse than the disease.” WTF happened to THAT Trump? That’s the Trump we’ve needed, because the cure has most certainly been ten fold…a hundred fold….worse than this relatively wimpy disease.
That Trump disappeared, and this is Trump’s fault. There’s no law in the planetary system (the one that conjured up the wizard Fauci out of thin air), that says Fauci can’t be countered with other experts on the White House Task Force. Or even fired. And these experts are out there. Hundreds, if not thousands, of them, yet Trump has not called on them. He’s failing the strategy test on this, and it will cost him the election – and us much more – if he doesn’t correct it.
One piece of good news is that the math is on his side. I also think his instincts are in this direction, as we saw briefly in March. But he has to move now. He’s been played the fool – and now is the time to fight back. If he doesn’t, we’re in for our entire lives being masked – in every possible way – for a long time.
The other good news is that he does indeed have within him the gifts and talents to pull this off. But he has to realize it, and do it. NOW.
#CommieVirus2020 #ShitShow2020 #EAnon