Let me start by making it clear that my values don’t align with Trump’s. But this isn’t about that. This isn’t about him resigning because he’s a bad person or is doing shitty things. This is a purely strategic article about how he’ll ‘win’ by resigning. How it would be a strategic master stroke if he did. And, before you get too excited, why it won’t necessarily be good news for America or the rest of the world if he does.
Will it actually happen? Who knows? The variables right now are far too great to be certain of anything. This is simply me sharing my theory on what’s going to happen next – so when it happens I can say “I told ya so!”. Well, maybe it won’t happen next, but soon-ish.
I recently read a fascinating article about how America is actually in the middle of a coup. If you haven’t read it yet, it’s well worth a read. But let me put it in slightly different terms. Trump terms: America is in the middle of a corporate take over. Possibly a hostile one. Look at in business terms, that is, Trump’s terms, and it’s surprisingly easy to see what’s going on: You see an organisation you want to control, you make your move, rally support, move in, get rid of any resistance in the form of people who don’t share your vision, and install you own management team to run it the way you want things run. Then what is the job of any good leader? Get out of the way and let those people do their job. Which is why if he does resign, it’s not necessarily good news, because you’ve still got a management team working to his original vision, sharing his values. Bummer.
OK, sure, it’s not an organisation, it’s a country, right? Except not really. It’s an organisation. Just a different type. And right now, everyone’s sitting around scratching their heads saying “but you can’t do that, that’s not how it works. It’s against the rules”. Except you can do that. Because he’s doing it. Just like any good business disrupter. Just ask Uber if you can do that. Or Air BnB. Or Virgin. Suddenly, what’s happening isn’t so weird or unfamiliar or unthinkable at all. It’s classic disruption. And it’s a corporate take over, plain and simple.
Rules are only ever as good as your ability to convince everyone to follow them, and your ability to enforce them. They’re not universal law. They’re not gravity, that works regardless of whether you believe it or not. They’re man made constructs that can also be un-made. And that’s what’s happening right now. The POTUS can’t tweet! Hey, guess what? Yes, he can. That was just a rule, and it’s been changed. Like so many other things. It’s a powerful reminder that just because things have been a certain way up until now, for better or for worse, it doesn’t mean they will, or have to be, that way forever.
So what does Trump do… soon? Possibly in about 12-24 months time, assuming he lasts that long. Let me propose this: He’s already the 45th president of the United States. No one can take that away from him ever. He won. It’s now part of history. He’s now part of history. Mission accomplished. Ego well and truly stroked. And if you’re already insanely wealthy, what else would motivate you to become president? A desire to Make America Great Again? Possibly. But then, if that was his main motivation, wouldn’t he have been doing a bit more in that department before now rather than grabbing women’s pussies? Or was this, like so many other things in his world, about the thrill of the chase? Perhaps a little bit of both. But from here, he actually has everything to lose, and very little to gain.
The likely outcomes from here are that he’ll go on to lose the next election, and I doubt he wants to be a loser, so for him it would make much more sense to stay a winner, having never lost an election. Like a sports person retiring while they’re still at the top of their game, it would be a strategic master stroke. In fact, let’s take that one step further. Again, in business terms, if once he’s installed his team, he steps aside, and lets them get on with running the country the way he wants it done, it’s classic textbook good business. Something most, if not all, of the best business leaders do. Hire people better than themselves, then let them get on with doing it. Besides, if he stays, and loses, he’ll be a loser, and he won’t want that. But if you resign, you make history again. Watergate aside, not too many presidents have ever willingly stepped aside for the good of the people and country. More history made.
Another likely outcome is that he would be impeached. Stepping aside would also likely avoid that outcome as well. And let’s not forget his own person interests. I’m pretty sure he’d actually have much more freedom, and privilege, as an ex-president than he would as a current one. Suddenly all those pesky conflicts of interests he has to at least pay some attention to, would be a thing of the past. He could go back to doing whatever he wants. Not that he’s not mostly already doing that, but he’d have even less hurdles, regulations and Attorney-Generals to sack.
Stepping aside would have the added benefit of hand balling a sinking ship for someone else to worry about, should that be the outcome. It’d be pure genius. He wins the presidency. Installs his people. Gets everything he wants. Then moves on as he would in a corporate situation, explaining it’s the best, most selfless thing he can do as a leader of the people, and go back to life as it was before. Only with the added credentials of, you know, being a President of the United States. #Winning #TigerBlood
So there ya go. Maybe it will happen. Maybe not. But as a strategist myself, this is the agenda and path I’d be pushing. And why I think he should, and will, resign.