The Wrecking Ball Is About To Swing
The Wrecking Ball Is About To Swing by Monty Pelerin – Economic Noise
When Donald Trump was declared the president in the last election, I described him as the wrecking ball that was coming to Washington. A wrecking was coming, albeit it was not clear what would be wrecked:
… there has never been an inauguration speech like this one. Contrary to Pogo, Trump defined the enemy and it was not us. This wrecking ball clearly differentiated between the average man and the parasites who inhabit Washington.
The speech was populist all the way. It was anti-establishment all the way. Clear demarcation lines were drawn. I sense that war was declared on Washington, DC today. There will be no compromise. Either Trump will be destroyed or he will dismantle much of the Washington establishment. [emboldening added]
Trump supporters were overjoyed with his win. Few understood that a Death Match had begun and their candidate was overwhelmingly favored to be destroyed.
The Wrecking Ball’s Secret Weapon
Donald Trump is unpolished and crude. He is not dumb. His multiple business successes were more than just luck.
To understand Trump, the Austrian School of Economics concept of “entrepreneurship” is useful. For Austrians, the definition of entrepreneur is narrow and pertains to vision. An entrepreneur possesses an acute anticipative understanding of the future.
The following suggest that Trump has this unique “entrepreneurship:”
- Trump is viewed as a great negotiator. But what is a great negotiator? It is someone who understands the opposing side’s needs, wants, strengths and weaknesses as well or better than they do. These are not provided; they must be discovered. An “acute anticipative understanding of the future” is necessary to ascertain them. Then, the ability to play off these to obtain your objectives (the easy part of negotiating) comes into play.
- The 2016 Republican primary field was arguably the strongest in history. Despite this, Trump saw something and decided to make it his first foray into politics. What others saw as stupid or grandstanding, Trump correctly perceived as an opportunity.
- Once in the primary race, Trump employed a style and method of debating and campaigning that violated every accepted norm. Political experts ridiculed him and said he wasn’t serious. No one gave him a chance of getting the nomination.
- Then pundits were sure he could not win using his self-designed tools and methods against Hillary Clinton. Ms. Clinton was considered a certain winner and deemed likely to embarrass Trump who was expected to lose by historic proportions.
Few are entrepreneurs in the Austrian sense. We cannot see what true entrepreneurs see. To us, Trump’s decision to run for political office seemed foolish, likely an ego trip.