Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Profiting the Wrong Way

You want a bold prediction about the Donald Trump presidency?  How about my belief that he will be the last person from the "private sector" to seek the office.  People with no previous political experience have been in the White House before--but the process that Trump is going through--and still faces--will pretty much guarantee that only those already in the system will run for President from now on.

The demands to divest one's self from every single investment, business venture and endorsement alone would be enough to deter any business person from seeking the highest office in the land.  George Washington and Thomas Jefferson both retained their plantations during their presidencies and I'm pretty sure they made decisions that benefited those businesses (like not barring slavery, for instance).  Today, political watchdogs are howling that everything Trump does in office will somehow benefit only his business holdings--and that somehow he is supposed to give up all of those investments.

I had to laugh when pundits were discussing who might make a good Democratic challenger for Trump in 2020 and Oprah Winfrey was listed as a possible candidate.  She has since shot down the idea, but President Winfrey would face the same impossible task of divestiture as Trump does.  She has her own name on a TV network and magazines!  Besides, a woman that has a road built across the island of Maui that only she is allowed to drive on isn't going to be any more forthcoming with her personal financial information than Trump has been so far.

Those in the political system already have a great way to enrich themselves that none of the activists seem to worry one bit about: the business of being famous.  Take a look at President Obama's sales numbers for his two auto-biographies before he ran for President--and then after joining the race.  Did anyone demand that the books be taken out of print during his term?  Look up the advances that both President Bill Clinton and First Lady Hillary Clinton were promised to write books on their way out of the White House.  Who picketed outside bookstores to protest those money grabs?  And folks like Mike Huckabee and Ron Paul only exist to be in the Presidential arena for a couple of months and cement their position as "Former Candidate" to put on their "slate of expertise" for big speaking fees and TV appearances.

As much as they want you to believe that they are "simple public servants".  Everyone in the political system is looking to make money just like the folks on Wall Street.  They just do a great job of convincing us that they are "helping us"--when they are really just helping themselves.

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