For those out there who got a little sea-sick last time, buckle up. It’s about to get rough!
Last Tuesday night, US time, President Trump formally announced his run for the Presidency in 2024. His speech was more State of the Union in vibe than his rallies, which are about energising the base. He laid out his successes during his time in office, from a booming economy with low inflation to secure borders and energy independence with low fuel prices. There were no new wars, the first President to do that in decades. Signing the historic Abraham Accords normalising peace between Middle Eastern nations and Israel and for four years North Korea ceased lobbing missiles at its neighbours.
No new wars and the fact that we had four quiet years with no missiles being lobbed was due to President Trump’s direct intervention with Kim Jong-un and showed he was neither “isolationist” nor a ‘warmonger who eschewed diplomacy’, as the media narrative falsely claimed. Iran and its nuclear program were stalled. He did what the globalists said couldn’t be done, bringing businesses back from China to the US. It created much needed jobs for all those “deplorables” thrown on the Democrat scrapheap. I recall Obama sneering at Trump’s promise to create these jobs, saying “what’s he got a magic wand or something?”
Magic wand or magic touch, by the time Trump left office and despite COVID, things were still in excellent shape with average Americans better off than they had been in decades. President Trump’s speech painted a picture that celebrated achievements and at the same time created a stark contrast to how far and fast America has fallen under the Biden Administration in only two years. This is now the most precarious time since the 1930s. With what’s happening in the Ukraine, we’re also the closest we’ve been to nuclear war since the 1960s.
President Trump made his pitch for what he’ll achieve if given office again in 2024. It was a positive vision. While much of it will be resurrecting what worked in 2017/2018, swiftly getting the country back on its economic feet, he also threw down the gauntlet to the permanent political class, the weaponised institutions, rampant corruption, lobbyists and international actors, such as China. He just picked one almighty fight. If you’re inclined towards squeamishness, you might want to hide under the duvet for the next 2 years, and more.
Media moguls and other wealthy Republican donors have hit out at Trump’s decision to run, apparently already deciding that it should be Florida Governor, Ron DeSantis. It’s their prerogative to put their chequebook away, of course. Ultimately, they only get one vote just like everyone else. They would do well to remember that it isn’t them who gets to ‘pick’ the President but all the people who vote in the primaries and elections. I’m sure there are plenty of people and businesses out there who are longing for a return to the economic settings of the Trump era.
President Trump is the figurative head of the America First movement. At its core it’s about reclaiming the country for the people of America. It isn’t going to be easy with all those entrenched interests who like things just the way they are, including on the Republican side. This is about power and control and the right of ordinary American people to have their interests represented and politician promises fulfilled. This is far from subversive as some would like to insinuate. As a guiding principle it directly channels Abraham Lincoln’s 1863 Gettysburg Address, below
that these dead shall not have died in vain—that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom — and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.
This is a perennial battle and not peculiar to America, nor this period of time as Lincoln’s words suggest. The sabre-rattling of moguls and donors will simply reinforce to Trump voters that the fight against The Establishment is real, if not existential.
Whether America or here, the people we elect are there to serve us, not rule us. They are not there to indulge in internal politicking for their own power, nor to grow their own wealth portfolio with insider knowledge, nor jockey for the next career move on the world stage, at our expense. They, being The Establishment and all the special interests internal to America and externally, will throw everything at President Trump – they already have. So far, water-off-a-duck’s-back.
The favourite of the media is DeSantis. It would split the Republican party and that’s likely a big motivation from the corporate media perspective. Many others want Trump to step aside so as to ‘tamp down the temperature‘. I have absolutely no doubt the media would turn all that fire and spit from Trump to DeSantis in a heartbeat! If Trump were out of the way and DeSantis runs on even half of what President Trump wants to achieve, they will be gunning for him just as hard.
Before he ran for President, Trump was a left leaning media darling, appearing on Oprah and Letterman shows where the tone was nothing like the bizarre, outright hostility it is now. Watching him then and now, he’s still the same person. He hasn’t changed but the left sure has. You can see where his policies came from, the New York humour and gritty self-belief. In 1988 Oprah asked Trump if he would ever run for President. I guess it never occurred to her he might run for ‘the other side’?
The media have been caught time and again spreading false narratives from The Russia Collusion Hoax to Hunter’s laptop being “Russian Disinformation.” They’re not about to abandon their tribe simply because DeSantis isn’t Trump. He’s an American First Republican, just like Trump. Given the outright lies the Democrat media peddle to gin up their base, I’m not surprised the temperature is raised. Case in point, the BLM riots of 2020. It’s just that Trump hits back. As Aneurin Bevan said, “politics is a blood sport” and the corporate media are partisan actors in it.
For his part, Gov. DeSantis has hosed down speculation he’ll throw his hat in the ring.
At least the Republicans have a deep talent bench. You could almost hear the groans when Biden said he was going to run in 2024. I can’t see that happening, on either capacity grounds or with damage that will be inflicted as Republicans embark on investigations into influence peddling with his son, Hunter Biden. They’re more likely to endorse someone else like California Governor, Gavin Newsom. He has the movie star looks with the great hair. He’s also presided over the decline of California – high taxes, drugs, homelessness and crime. For the first time California has a greater number of people (and businesses) leaving than arriving. Not to mention the hypocrisy of Newsom being caught out flouting his own draconian COVID policies.
Ron DeSantis has the clean-cut image and would bring the crucial Hispanic vote with him. He’s very Florida, in that he’s clearly in charge of his state and has led his state successfully. In my view Ron DeSantis needs a few more years of weathering and transitioning from state centric politics and operations. It’s not dissimilar to managing talent in large corporations. Just because someone performs well at one level doesn’t mean they’re necessarily ready to leap up the ladder. Move them too quickly and they’ll stumble, failing to transition from tactical operations to strategic leadership.
Think about what he would need to take on. This is the most precarious time since the 1930s. If China invades Taiwan and the world goes to war, would DeSantis have a Churchillian level of gravitas and fortitude to handle it? Would he have been confident enough to break protocol, as Trump did when he met the leader of North Korea? Recall the hyperbolic condemnations. Could DeSantis have convinced Kim Jong-un to cease lobbing missiles as Trump did? Ron DeSantis is talented, sure, but that doesn’t mean he’s ready to do battle to fix the deep corruption, weaponized institutions and structural problems in America, whilst taking on China, North Korea, Iran and Russia.
Trump operates very much as I would expect a CEO to operate in a large company. The higher up you get, it’s all about vision and strategy and less about being across the detail, everywhere. It’s just not possible. From the reports I’ve heard, he sounds like an auditory learner. He listens to everyone around him, setting up round tables where views are contested. He’s watching for the best argument to prevail. This is similar to what President Kennedy did after the Bay of Pigs fiasco, where the world came close to nuclear war in part due to Group-Think.
What senior leaders rely on are good people at the next level down who are across the detail in their segments. Leaders need to trust those people and the information they feed up. Their job is to ask the right questions and assimilate quickly the key bits of information right across the organisation, then articulate direction. They generally ask for the top-line because they don’t have time to spend 10 hours pouring over the numbers in 10 different reports. That’s what micro-managers do and they tend to fail in senior positions because they end up being too slow to make critical decisions in a world that increasingly demands agility.
Trump transcends state borders and country boundaries. His first four years in office were a learning ground and he made some mistakes, especially in who he trusted. He’s not a political insider but an outsider businessman who was relying on insiders, who didn’t always have his back. In 2017 President Trump made the mistake of assuming that all of those reporting to him were there to do their jobs and ensure success. They weren’t. It’s not just the politicians that play politics in Washington.
Trump was dealing with Democrat holdovers still loyal to Obama, leaking and doing their best to create even more chaos as the new administration was trying to find its feet. The left media lapped it up. He had people on his own side playing a double game to sabotage him. With the antics of James Comey, former Director of the FBI et al, he was dealing with a weaponised security state also.
This time around I doubt he’ll make those same mistakes. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that those Republicans most vocal in not wanting President Trump to be endorsed this time around, were also the saboteurs on his own side last time around. Paul Ryan and Chris Christie are two names that spring to mind. Most of the others, such as Liz Cheney, lost their seats during the primaries or chose not to run.
After everything they’ve chucked at him, President Trump is tempered like steel. He’s one tough New Yorker with a track record, detailed above. If I were DeSantis, I’d stand back and get things done in Florida with that deep red majority. Leave the Hornet’s Nest kicking to President Trump because he isn’t phased by the inevitable swarm.
2024 is two years away. If DeSantis ran beside Trump as VP it would be a good transition to the top job and simultaneously deflate the media narrative that’s desperately and transparently trying to drive a wedge through the American First movement. There are other possibilities for VP with good performers in the Senate.
There are left-field options such as Tulsi Gabbard. She’s split from the Democrats and is now an independent. Would America First/MAGA accept her and could she pull in all those disaffected moderate Democrats? It’s not inconceivable.
So buckle up. We’re in for a wild ride. Don’t believe everything the left and corporate media tells you either.