Honest observers will admit that in many ways, Donald Trump was his own worst enemy. Far too often, he engaged in pointless disputes – which gained nothing, but cost him politically. “Punching below his weight” was an impulse he couldn’t seem to resist. Conservatives were all in favor of mocking John McCain – but not for his military service. Donald J. Trump was the George S. Patton of politics. In many ways, he achieved greatness. But he slapped far too many PVTs along the way. However, there are some valuable lessons to be learned from those instances of “greatness.”
Celebrate America unabashedly
Here’s a news flash for Democrats: Most Americans don’t want to feel ashamed of their country. Similarly, immigrants who come here in pursuit of the American dream didn’t choose America because it’s a horrible place. Americans, and those seeking to become Americans, want to be proud of their country.
The US has never been perfect. But no other country on Earth has done as much good for the world as we have. Americans ended slavery in our own country – something unheard of until we did it. Americans ended the Nazi domination of Europe and the genocide that accompanied it. America ended the communist expansion of the Soviet Union. Finally, America has always arrived first when there are humanitarian needs – and we’ve never asked for anything in return.
“America First” is a winning message.
- First to defend liberty
- First to lend aid
- First to show the world the path to prosperity
Make conservatism fun
This will inflame the liberals, but it’s a true statement: Most conservative policies are supported by facts, empirical evidence, and logic. Most liberal policies are supported by feelings and emotion. It feels good to fight racism – as long as one doesn’t notice that the policies being employed create more division and hatred. It follows then that conservatives will never convert liberals with rational debate. The conservative movement can only grow by making it feel better to be part of it.
The Donald grew the movement by making it fun.
- Boat parades
- Motorcycle rallies
- Pickup truck convoys
- Mega rallies with a sea of happy screaming people waving flags
- Even Amish horse and buggy parades
People wanted to be part of the movement for the sheer excitement of it. They had an emotional longing to join any group having so much fun. If you doubt the effectiveness of this approach, consider that Trump added 10 million voters between 2016 and 2020. He also added votes among minority groups. While the Republican share of the minority vote still needs to improve, the trend is not in a direction the Democrats are happy about. Once people become comfortable with the conservative movement, the policy discussions can follow.
There is no downside to doing battle with the press
The MSM have become unapologetic propagandists – and everyone knows it. The industry can only spike so many stories about Hunter Biden before people start to notice. Playing nice with them will not convince them to be honest reporters. They have a narrative and they intend to stick to it. Facts and pleasantries are irrelevant. George W. Bush treated the press with respect for 8 years. They continued to eviscerate him at every opportunity – even to the point of falsifying information.
However, doing battle with them is a winning conservative tactic. First, it will enrage them and their fellow leftist travelers. An angry opponent is an error prone opponent – just look at Speaker Antoinette. It will drive them to act silly and display their biases.
Second, doing battle with the media will energize the conservative base. The base has hated the MSM for years. They’ve been waiting for a champion to stand up for them. One of the things that angered conservatives about “W” was his passive treatment of the press. As the press promoted ever more outrageous claims against Bush, he never pushed back. He refused to defend himself – in the name of being presidential or something. But in so doing, he also failed to defend his followers. Trump defended his followers – and they love him for it.
When you need something done fast, engage the private sector
COVID-19 revealed the foolishness of looking to the government for salvation during a crisis. Ronald Reagan famously said, “Government is not the solution. Government is the problem.” The pandemic laid the wisdom of that statement bare for all to see.
We’re learning now that Dr. “Two Mask” Fauci may have contributed to the creation of the virus, and certainly interfered with the investigation of its origin. Leaders of the NIH and CDC have treated us to 18 months (and counting) of conflicting and often nonsensical guidance which had no basis in science. The same leaders discouraged the use of therapeutics to treat the disease, simply because Trump had endorsed those treatments. Finally, the data on COVID-19 cases that the CDC tracks has been so corrupted that nobody really knows how many people have caught the virus or died from it. Our government’s response to the pandemic has been inept at best, and perhaps downright malicious.
President Trump did something no other President has done in a crisis. He unleashed the private sector. Merely by removing regulatory barriers, industry was energized to respond. When hospital ventilators were in short supply, auto makers found ways to make them out of car parts. When store shelves were bare of sanitizers, breweries and distilleries all over the country converted to produce them. Finally, when the CDC, Joe Biden, and the propaganda ministry said it was impossible, private industry created not one, but three vaccines in under a year. They not only developed the vaccines but produced millions of doses for distribution by the end of 2020.
Certain principles must be adhered to in negotiations
First, negotiators must treat the other party with respect. Donald Trump was widely criticized (even within his own party) for showing respect to the North Korean leader, Kim Jong-un. But his treatment of Kim kept the dialog open. This is something that San Fran Nan never learned. She opened every negotiation with Donald Trump with a personal insult. Perhaps she should have read The Art of the Deal.
Second, never compromise on key objectives. Even though he treated Kim with respect, President Trump never compromised on his objective to stop North Korea’s nuclear ambitions. He sought to convince Kim that it would be in his best interest to become a mainstream member of the global community. He was providing Kim with a vision of wealth and prosperity for North Korea, if only they would drop their weapons program and cease being the “hermit kingdom.” We’ll never know if this approach would have worked. We do know that all other approaches had failed. But Trump stayed true to his objective.
The difference between the approaches of President Trump and his predecessor couldn’t be more striking. While the Donald wanted a deal with North Korea if we could find mutual benefit, Barack Obama wanted a deal with Iran at any cost. We wanted to end Iran’s nuclear ambitions, but he legitimized their nuclear program. We wanted to stop their sponsorship of terrorism, but funded them to expand it. Unlike the Donald, Barry did get a deal – we’ll give him that.
As with all humans, Donald Trump is an imperfect person. The leftists and their propaganda ministry would prefer that we focus on his faults rather than his flashes of genius. Those on the right need to recognize that the 4 years of his presidency provided numerous lessons that conservatives can use to win. If those lessons are embraced by someone more politically polished than Trump, there’s no limit to what they can accomplish. Perhaps that’s what scares the Democrats the most, and why they’re so determined to destroy his legacy and the movement he built.
By John Green
John Green is a political refugee from Minnesota, now residing in Star Idaho. He is a retired engineer with 40 years of experience in the areas of product development, quality assurance, organizational development, and corporate strategic planning. He currently writes at the American Free News Network (americanfreenewsnetwork.org). He can be followed on Facebook or reached at email@example.com.