Dealing With Donald Trump

640px-Donald_Trump_by_Gage_Skidmore_3A businessman once told me that in business, when things are not working, sometimes you have to “throw a brick through the window.”

Sometimes shock is the only thing that will shake up an entrenched status quo. A brick smashing through glass might be the only thing that will get attention.

Donald Trump is a businessman who understands this. This is what he is doing and it’s working.

There’s a lot of frustration in America today, and there should be.

America is a nation with enormous problems. And practically all of them trace back to politicians kicking the can down the road.

Republicans could have dealt with escalating health-care costs, and large numbers of uninsured Americans, before Barack Obama was elected. They didn’t.

Republicans could have dealt with government policies that led to the huge financial and real estate collapse in 2008. They could have dealt with Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, the Department of Housing and Urban Development — government programs that use taxpayers’ money to subsidize the purchase of housing. They didn’t.

Republicans could have dealt with the enormous problems with our broken entitlements programs — Social Security and Medicare. President Bush added another trillion dollars in commitments to Medicare with the prescription drug program. To his credit, President Bush tried to reform Social Security, but, despite Republican control of both the Senate and the House, failed. However, that doesn’t mean one should stop trying, which is what happened.

The changing demographics of the nation were obvious years ago. Republicans could have been aggressive in reaching out to poor minority communities to help them understand that freedom and markets would solve the problems that the welfare state was making worse. They didn’t.

And, of course, we didn’t get more than 10 million illegals in America overnight.

This is the result of years of Washington ignoring this problem, as it got worse and worse.
In response to neglect, in response to lack of real vision for the nation, Americans opted for change in 2008. But change in the wrong direction.

So now, for the past seven years, we have had the hard left running America, taking some of our major problems and enacting left-wing, big-government “solutions,” making these problems worse.

We now have government-run health care that is already making health care even more expensive, less innovative and more of a drain on taxpayers. We have major new government control of our banking and financial services industry, creating more protection for big banks and less innovation.

We sit with government more bloated than ever, growth rates below historic averages, employment below historic averages, no solutions in sight for the, by some estimates, $100 trillion of unfunded liabilities of our entitlement programs.

And now the USA is about to conclude a nuclear deal with a nation that chants “death to America.”

No wonder we have frustration.

But Trump’s campaign bluster, a cross between a Veg-O-Matic infomercial and Ringling Brothers, is just another attention diverter. His campaign website is devoid of any policy. Trump offers no new vision for America, no more clarity about what our health-care, education, retirement and housing policies should look like. And despite the hype about immigration, I have heard no practical solution on how to deal with 10 million illegals.

Trump has done us a favor by throwing a brick through the window. But no good can come out of destructive slander of fellow Republicans. Americans need a country and a future, not the World Wrestling Federation.

Anyone in the current large field of Republican candidates would be far better for America than another term of left-wing control.

For these candidates dealing with Trump, the best strategy is to offer powerful visions of their own, explicitly tackling our big challenges — that will excite Americans and restore their faith in America as a free nation.


Photo credit: “Donald Trump by Gage Skidmore 3” by Gage Skidmore. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

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