Last week I wrote about Malcolm and my platonic love for him. Now it’s time to turn our attention to the Don.
From having zero interest in the political landscape other than being a mad fan of House of Cards (killer show by the way)… Now I’m a crazy fan of the US Presidential race.
Donald Trump’s tilt at the Republican nomination and the US presidency is giving everything a shake and I can’t stop watching.
Republicans can’t handle his brash, bombastic style. Democrats hate the idea of rich people in power. Ferals hate his clean shiny suits (of is it just that he’s clean?). The Occupy Wall St Movement hates him because he actually owns a fair chunk of Wall Street.
Everyone hates him. Everyone, that is, except the voting public. He’s leading the race for the Republican nomination and my bet is that’s he’s going all the way to the White House.
And no one understands why. No one can explain why this rude, arrogant big-haired buffoon is so popular.
But I know why.
Want to know the secret..?
Trump is a genius.
Sounds ridiculous right? But hear me out.
It might sound strange to lump Trump in the same basket with DaVinci, Gallileo and Elton John. But Trump does have a talent that approaches genius.
And that talent is negotiation.
Remember Trump literally wrote the book on Negotiation. It’s called ‘The Art of the Deal.’ He is a master of persuasion.
And if you look at his presidential run as a negotiation rather than a campaign, then his mastery becomes obvious. Let me spell it out for you.
The first point is on Trump’s character and style. People wondered if he would change his “big buffoon” style for politics. He didn’t. He didn’t budge an inch.
Why not? Especially when literally everyone in the media was saying that the OTT Trump style wouldn’t fly with the voting public..?
Because Trump knows that it doesn’t matter. If people think he’s a fool, great. Let them. It’s a classic play in negotiation. Under-sell yourself and the other party let’s their guard down. They stop resisting you and start humouring you.
But a good sales-person has you there. Once you start humouring them, you’re listening. Once you’re listening you find there’s actually a lot of things you agree with. Actually, maybe I do need a new dishwasher.
And once you agree with someone, you tend to like them. Suddenly “rude and obnoxious” becomes “honest and authentic”. 250 million Americans are currently in the middle of this transition.
And because Trump has spent a lifetime cultivating an over the top style, he can go to town with it. He can say whatever he wants, create media story after media story, and it’s all part of his rude-to-honest transition.
And that’s why his ‘style’ hasn’t changed. It’s central to Trumps success. It always has been.
And while certain aspects of Trump’s style are funny, his brand association with success, wealth and power are rock solid. They’re untouchable. The Trump brand has “winner” written all over it. That has been years in the making.
Think about the reality TV show, ‘The Apprentice”. In this competition, waning-star celebrities had to squabble, connive and even beg for the right to what? To be Trump’s apprentice.
The most ‘successful’ and popular people in America had to fight to be Trump’s lackey? That’s genius. In the American public’s mind, Trump is already the boss. He’s the boss of all bosses.
‘The Apprentice’ wasn’t an accident.
And a lot of people also think he doesn’t have the smarts to be President. But right now he’s schooling us in media manipulation. He is incredibly quick on his feet… if you know what to look for.
For example, someone tried to embarrass him by asking him if he knew who the leader of Hamas was, or the leader of Hezbollah was. It was a blunt attempt to make him look stupid.
Most politicians would get defensive and try to fudge it.
I’ll know when I need to know. And when I do I’ll know more about it that you do, and believe me, it won’t take long.
This is the CEO answer. The CEO doesn’t need to know everything. That’s not his job. His job is to lead and make decisions.
Suddenly the only people looking down at Trump are the people who actually know who the leaders of Hamas and Hezbollah are. And how many of them do you think there are in America? 5? Everyone else just think’s he’s the boss.
Or what about this one? Someone asked Trump what he thought about the Pope’s comments that corruption was endemic in capitalism.
Trump saw this for the trap that it was. Either he disagrees with the Pope, and there’s no points there, or how says there’s a problem with capitalism – the system that made guys like him rich. It’s lose / lose.
And so what does he do?
He says, “What I would tell the pope is that ISIS is coming to get him, and they have plans to take the Vatican.”
It doesn’t matter that this has almost nothing to do with the question. The image of ISIS taking the Vatican is so vivid, so exciting, that’s it’s going to be the only thing to stick in people’s minds. At the same time, it says Trump is alert to the dangers. He’s on to it.
Boss answer, Donald.
And then what did he do yesterday? He says he’s boycotting Fox news.
Fox news! How does a Republican candidate say he’s not going to go on Fox? Who has the balls to do that?
He knows that he’s a media machine. And if Fox won’t toe the line, they’re cut off.
And even if you don’t like him, what do you think about someone with the balls and power to boss Fox News around?
The Trump strategy is so deep that most people don’t know what’s happening.
Everyone thought the Trump run was going to be a joke. That he would stumble from one gaff to the next. But as far as I can see, he hasn’t stumbled once. And the longer it goes on, the more that people find they actually agree with Trump on a few things.
Actually, everything he says makes sense.
Actually, I really quite like his honest and authentic style.
Actually, Go The Donald!!
I have no idea if President Trump will be good for America or the world. It could be a disaster.
But right now, Trump is giving us a master-class in negotiation and persuasion.
And the most amazing thing about it? Almost nobody realises.
Anyone else falling in love with the Donald?
You reckon Donald will go all the way?
Do you love him or hate him?