I posted this one year ago on Facebook.
When Donald J. Trump floated the idea of running for president in 2011, I thought it was a bad idea. All I knew about him was that he was rich and famous. I thought, “You give a man riches, fame, AND political power and you’re asking for trouble.” Human nature can’t handle it, I opined, that a Trump presidency would surely be a scandalous disaster.
I subscribed to Trump’s Youtube channel, mostly for the entertainment value. Around my father and brother, I would occasionally perform a Trump imitation. I would put my hand over the back of my head and let my fingers lay to the side on my forehead to implicate his legendary hair.
This summer (2015), I didn’t give any thought to whether he would run, though I did notice that in the prior months as candidates announced their candidacy, he was talking more politics and less of everything else. Before, he seemed to have an opinion about everything.
Then came the announcement. I watched it. I wasn’t very impressed. Random people in the crowd hollered at random times. When the moment came when he spoke the words of his announcement, he paused to look at his notes several times. It was very odd. I posted on facebook that he was probably reading some self assuring words like, “you are going to make a great president” or something like that. I thought it would be a short lived, tragic, ego busting week or two. Then he moved up in the polls.
My opinion was that we needed a governor as the president. Rick Perry was my guy, but I didn’t have high hopes that he would win, but I was optimistic. Perry was able to get some good news coverage several times and I thought he would be positioned very well for the campaign. I wasn’t 100% against Jeb Bush either. I watched his announcement and it made Trump’s look like a backyard barbeque. Bush had a very excited crowd. However, as I had made known on a Facebook post shortly after his announcement, by getting in, Trump essentially neutralised Bush’s campaign. I was questioned as to how that was so. My answer was that with a virtually endless supply of money, Trump took away the only real advantage Jeb had. I thought they would cancel each other out and someone more favorable would take the lead. I had underestimated Trump by a long shot. Trump took Jeb’s lead position and hammered away at him until he was irrelevant. Not only did Trump lead everyone in the polls, but he lead by a huge margin. He accomplished all this while spending less than any other candidate. This was very impressive to me. “This guy is beating a dozen other candidates at their own game!” I expressed to my political buddies. If he could do this, I thought, he deserved the presidency.
Yes, I had gotten swooped up in the excitement. If any other candidate was saying the things that Trump claimed he would do as president, I would know they had no idea what they were talking about. The president can’t do much on his own. He has to convince congress to go along with what he wants to do. Yet, I believed Trump. This is the guy who wrote, “The Art of the Deal.”
Many of my friends became very sceptical of Trump as I had been initially. Using his own terminology, he’s very weak on Christianity. Any real Christian can see right through his attempts to identify with the Christian faith. He brought a Bible to one of his earlier rallies. He handled it as awkwardly as a liberal democrat would likely handle a gun. I haven’t seen him bring it to any other rally, and I’ve watched just about all of them.
What is it that won me over? Well, after my being impressed by his juggernaut of a campaign, I knew, I had to understand what we would be getting with a Trump presidency. One of the things that concerned me at first was his talk of foreign trade. It sounded very isolationist. It sounded like he wanted to raise tariffs on everyone. I was comforted by the fact that I didn’t think he would actually go through with it. I’m convinced he would negotiate to a situation where things were more balanced.
Currently, we’re running a nearly $700,000,000,000 trade deficit (now nearly 800 billion as of 2016). Now Milton Friedman preached that there was no such thing as a trade deficit. Both participants in trade get something in return for the trade so how could there be a deficit? What is happening is that money, almost a trillion dollars, is leaving while goods are brought in. What is happening with all that money? The countries who are selling goods and accumulating US currency are in large part buying US debt, gold, and with the rest, just holding the money or buying property in the U.S. So when Trump claims that China is taking fortunes of money from us and that we in turn owe them fortunes, a deal that sounds too good of a position to be true, he’s correct. Imagine if we could balance that trade by; 1. not selling any more bonds and 2. negotiating trade better so that our companies are allowed to sell to other economies without prohibitive tariffs and currency manipulation. That alone would be a huge boost to the economy; representing an extra $5,691 dollars for every household in America. This addition being accumulated every single year would be a huge benefit.
Then add to that, the initial boost of bringing the $2.1T back that was made overseas but stopped short of the US border because of our highly misguided 35% corporate tax and you have a realistic short term (and long term) explosion in the US economy within a first term.
I’m not a huge fan of the five bracket tax plan. I’m for a flat tax. (actually I’m for a consumption tax but that’ for another time) However, some things that are best in reality, are not best in political reality. Trump understands this. As a side note, I thought it was highly ignorant of the press to scream about Trump not sharing any details when he wrote a book about his political views just a few years ago. He had a tax plan in there not much different than the one he recently proposed. Even after his recent book, the medea still ignored the book and cried about a lack of details, even though he has all the details they seemed to want in his book. Yes, I read them both.
Then of course there are the conspiracies that don’t make any logical sense and just reveal people’s phobias about Trump. “Trump is running so that Hillary will get elected.” Did he publicly back McCain so that Obama could get elected? Did he back Romney so that Obama could get re-elected? If we all agree that Trump has perhaps the biggest ego anyone could ever dream of (which I don’t hear anyone disputing) why would he purposefully run to lose?
“He’s really a democrat running as a republican” This strategy doesn’t make any sense. Did he know that in 8 years the democrats would be in trouble, so he switched over to the republicans 8 years ahead of time to prepare to infiltrate the republican party so that he could run against a democrat, win and do the democrat’s bidding? No logic, just fear and accusation.
As for the accusation that he isn’t a true conservative, I understand this sentiment. However, He’s for reduced regulations, reduced taxes, and reduced spending. Aren’t these the core of the Tea Party’s mantra? If nothing else we need a guy who knows how to dig his way out of massive debt. Trump was once 9 billion dollars in debt and dug his way out without giving up and filing personal bankruptcy. Most people hear that he filed bankruptcy 4 times and think that he went broke four times and started over. I too used to think this. Most people don’t know the difference between chapter 7 and chapter 11 bankruptcy. Furthermore, most people don’t think there’s a difference in filing personal bankruptcy and buying a company that is insolvent, “throwing it in a chapter” (as the Donald has said), renegotiating the terms of the debt and making the company solvent again. Which is what Trump actually has done.
There are many problems in our country. My biggest concerns are government debt in excess of 20T and running a deficit every year, wasteful spending, growth and expansion of federal power, and even though everyone claims that there is gridlock in Washington, the Democrats get a hefty gift every Christmas. We need an extremely smart, relentless, energetic, juggernaut of a president on our side. This is the time for Trump. I underestimated him in the beginning along with everyone else. I also don’t want to overestimate him like every enthusiast seems to do with their candidate, but I’m not completely sure I’ve seen his limits yet and I can’t imagine anyone working harder who is also more capable than he is. And that is why I would like to see a Trump presidency.