April 15, 2011
That Donald Trump Is Pretty ShrewdBy Kyle-Anne Shiver
Well, I don't even pretend to know everything there is to know about Donald Trump, but from what I've seen over the past several weeks, I can easily declare that that man is one pretty shrewd guy. "The Donald," as I've heard him referred to by businessmen I know, hasn't amassed a fortune as a builder/developer/real-estate tycoon without knowing precisely how to acquire the land he seeks, how to demolish any existing buildings and how he plans to develop the property into another golden chunk of Trumpland.
Now that we can pretty well assume Mr. Trump is running for president, it's obvious that he has done a prerequisite full survey of Obamaland. He has, as all successful builders are wont to do, gotten the plans of the existing structure and knows precisely which cornerstone and support beams are holding President Obama's house upright. And as any truly great builder would, Trump has carefully, critically, logically listed every risk/benefit ratio of every strategy we now see him publicly employing.
Every time Donald Trump attacks a piece of the Obama narrative to a dumbfounded interviewer, he knows exactly what he is doing. He has considered the risk beforehand and calculated its rewards. He knows the media is most vulnerable because early on in 2008, the collective media declared these Obama truth-searches out of bounds for respectable people, who were obliged (in the media elitists' minds) to give Obama's blackness all benefit of doubt in every instance. For nearly three full years now, the media has held its locked grip on every tidbit of missing or discordant information regarding the Obama narrative and are now shocked -- shocked, I tell you -- that anyone would dare to broach these media-deemed taboo subjects.
John McCain accepted these media-imposed, stacked-deck rules and the rest is history.
But Donald Trump is no John McCain. Donald Trump is a great American entrepreneur. And he is the quintessential builder/developer.
I've a great deal of respect for builders. I grew up in a family of them. And even as a child, I delighted in just listening to these men deliberate over whether to take on a new development project. The problem-set of each individual undertaking was immense and I loved observing how the builders never, ever allowed problems to take them by surprise if they could possibly help it beforehand. To this end, they each played devil's advocate on every detail -- from how hard and expensive it might be to acquire the land, to how formidable the permit obstacles might be, to how much it would cost to demolish existing structures.
In my mind, as I grew older, I began to believe that these brothers were successful builders not due to any great vision or design skills they possessed, but because of their ruthless willingness to preemptively tear their own plans apart if they could not determine feasible solutions to every conceivable problem in advance -- before the first penny was ever laid down upon the banker's table.
I think Americans can be fairly certain at this point in Donald Trump's presidential bid that he knows precisely which beams in the Obama-built house are providing the only support this president has. In poll after poll after poll, actual Obama policies have the approval of only about one fourth to a third of the American people.
But on the likability factors, Obama continues to hold a steady plurality of support. (I personally think these figures are unreliable owing to a Bradley-effect cultural bias, however.) Trump -- being the consummate builder/developer -- understands better than any other Republican out there that you don't bring down a house if the community isn't ready to let it go -- no matter how dilapidated the house may be or how terrific your own plans may look on paper.
For example, let's say a developer wants to build a lovely seniors' community on some unused-for-eons farmland, but that on this property, close to the main road, sits a dilapidated house that the folks have been fondly using as a directional landmark for longer than anyone alive can remember. The community has an emotional attachment to that farmhouse. Over the generations, a great deal of lore has been created regarding the family who built it. They may have actually been a gang of horse thieves. Or the family scion might have been a gambler, a boozer, and a wife-beater, but by the present day, he has acquired the status of imagination-built secular sainthood. And any attempts by an outsider to tear down what remains of his house is seen by the locals as close to blasphemy.
What's a builder to do in such a circumstance? You can bet your last quarter that Donald Trump has faced very similar scenarios in many a place where a building now bears his name.
Unseating the first black president mid-way through his legally allowed tenure in the White House presents precisely this obstacle to any and every Republican candidate. It's obvious that although the economy is heading for a double-dip recession, terrifying inflation on the necessities of life, and a debt crisis of Greece-like proportion, the first black president still holds a place in American hearts. Despite the fact that Obama has committed America's armed forces to a third Mideast war, his symbolic presidential tenure still holds sway in the national psyche.
Just as that dilapidated farmhouse has become infested with rats, rattlesnakes, and termites, the Obama administration is crumbling and now threatens the health and safety of us all. But tearing that house down to pave way for a genuine winning of the future is not going to be easy.
The other Republican candidates think they can just bring out an army of suits bearing building-code inspectors' licenses and the public will logically welcome the necessary demolition of Obama's dilapidated house.
But Donald Trump, the developer, understands that facts alone can take one only so far. Trump has calculated that the whole Obama house is resting upon the public's acceptance of that emotional and utterly contrived Obama narrative. And Trump is determined to disabuse America of its sentimental attachment to an Obama presidency.
Because, truly, unless that spell can be broken, Obama's house -- crumbling and varmint infested though it may be -- will stand.
Yes, that Donald Trump is one smart guy.
And I, personally, wish him Godspeed. Whether Trump is ever elected president or not, he will have done America a great favor if he simply cuts Obama back down to the size of mortal man and helps all of us see the folly of our 2008 blinders.
Putting blinders on a horse in public can save lives.
Humans, who willingly put blinders on themselves, are not worth even a single horse's behind.