” Adversity is the Trial of Courage ” – September 7, 2018.
US President Donald Trump has been served two well crafted ‘bouncers’ scraping his helmet and racing to boundaries with the audience sitting on edge(s) of their seats looking shocked and shattered in the last couple of days.
Reference here is to highly reputed writer/journalist, Bob Woodward’s book that reveals the ‘crazy town’ atmosphere in White House, and NYT’s anonymous op-ed piece – ” I am part of the Resistance” by a senior official.
That President Donald Trump has been pushed aside for quite sometime is a fact, though it was not clearly visible to all common men. He has been leading the country dangerously – is the opinion of a major chunk of analysts, intellectuals, media personnel, experts, past administrators, opponents, and even ordinary citizens. Few are out to get him out of the position he holds now for his flawed strategies and bad decisions – justifiably or otherwise.
1. President Donald Trump wanted to transform the normal order of governance. (It requires great amount of sacrifice and changing aspects that people hold dear to their hearts in terms of privileges and benefits. It requires a new kind of adaptation to life that is often detested or resisted by individuals. People seem to be unwilling at this juncture.)
2. President Donald Trump talks about the growing economy, low unemployment, deregulation, tax reforms, and military build up as some of his accomplishments since he took charge. ( These may hold good in short-term; these may also be viewed as camouflaging the real big mistakes impacting the society in the long-term.)
3. President Donald Trump, as one leading the change, has been treading the path of thorns without being oblivious to the threat to his power and position. His leadership style and character (tweets, insults,. … … heaped on opponents to his policies and opinions) have been under constant attack, more so during the last eight months, to the risk of even losing his support base and with potential to distract from his proclaimed goal of nation’s security and prosperity. (Result has already started manifesting in disorder and disequilibrium making the leader further more vulnerable to attacks.)
4. What he does, perhaps,disturbs the status quo; what he does, perhaps, makes people feel more insecure combining a sense of personal and collective loss; what he does, perhaps, causes uncertainty requiring levels of adaptation that seem unwarranted and unworthy by most citizens. (People who have prided themselves in their customs, means, and habits possibly could feel the change difficult.)
5. President Donald Trump tries to do things at his own command with rigid plans and programs hoping to bring about disruption in governance. (The real world of today is far removed from the effectiveness that can be brought about by the above method. Keep allies and foes closer to you is today’s dictum. Malaise ought to be erased quickly.)
Will the following three things open a strategic window in tackling the criticism and assault while making amends ?
1. Saying what he means : Convince aides and other people, those beyond his own constituency, that you really mean what you say in respect of programs and people. Each program will have plans of actions and courses. As one walks through the programs unforseen elements are likely to show up contrary to what is anticipated in implementation and peoples’ reactions. The implementer (agency) and people benefiting/impacted by the program will need to make some changes in behaviour, lifestyle, and social interaction. Leader needs to keenly watch if the actions are encouraging his broader perspective or otherwise. This is where the leader needs to excel in ‘communications’ reflecting his attitude to embrace the change himself and alter the plans suitably to fit the needs of society. This is what will signify saying what one means.
2. Faults are thick when love is thin : Avoid/minimise tweets and insults; instead embrace the gracious act of acknowledging responsibility for what goes wrong setting a new standard that people on both sides of the aisle would feel proud to follow. You may feel disappointed, but it has the tremendous potential to seek the same behaviour from the people in return to boost the leader’s plans, actions, and programs to a new level. It also sends a clear signal that you are ready for changing your image while spending less time, energy, and effort on unwanted criticisms and conflicts. You will also protect yourself from attacks of various hues undermining your authority and style. Your disadvantages turn to become advantages even while the opponent’s negative potential converts itself into a positive agent. Hope and not fear engages people. It is imperative that you seek to relax the constraints that may have already engulfed the minds of those who want to play a significant role in defending you. Your faults will be dismissed easily as people start loving you.
3. Little said, sooner mended : Answer with facts and less in time to questions, and concentrate more on work and problem solving. President Donald Trump has been in position and authority because of his promises to people on, (a) enhanced quality of Life, and (b) a change in the way of Governance. Whether the economic growth witnessed is a continuing sequence of the earlier policies, or of his own – President Donald Trump is in a situation where he can deliver what is promised. Rather than risking the narrative to slip into a tit-for-tat rebukes and counteraccusations, reorienting the primary task to solving people’ problems; getting Canada on board in his new deal with Mexico replacing NAFTA; and scripting development strategies for mid-term elections vigorously can take the heat away from the wound inflicted now. A small identified group can engage in defusing the bomb with other damage control measures to bring a sense of order. Highlighting prominently the strategic partnerships that US has forged with India in the last couple of days ( Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo; US Defense Secretary, Gen James Mattis; with Indian Foreign Affairs Minister, Ms Sushma Swaraj; Indian Defense Minister, Ms Nirmala Sitaraman ) may well serve as the mithridate in this context.
These above will make clear that the present environment is apt to concentrate on work in progress and not for indulging in distractions resulting in distress and disaster to people and the nation. These will constitute the real answers to any and all charges.
P.S. This is not an expert view, this is just a common-sense view for info/edn.
“Dieu avec nous”
Friday, September 7, 2018 – 7.29 p.m. (IST).
Tidbit : ” The only man who never makes a mistake is the man who never does anything.” – Theodore Roosevelt.