GQ’s voice of The Resistance, Keith Olbermann, destroys the myth of Donald Trump’s business acumen in episode 9 of his webshow. Examining the circumstances surrounding Trump’s widely condemned Carrier deal, Olbermann comes to the very reasonable conclusion that,
“We have elected a shitty businessman. Amid everything else from the psychosis to the orange bull in the nuclear china shop, we have elected a guy who doesn’t know the first thing about the U.S. economy.”
— Keith Olbermann (@KeithOlbermann) December 7, 2016
First going over Trump’s twitterstorm of December 4 where he threatened companies that build things outside the US and then try to sell them back into the US would get nailed with a 35 percent tax, Olbermann pointed out,
“First of all, that’s exactly what he did not do with the Carrier company in Indiana, the thing he is still boasting about, as if instead of a tax break for some rich guys what he had really done was give everybody eternal life.”
Pointing to the failure of Trump to punish Carrier and rewarding them instead, Olbermann pressed his point home:
“But of course it’s far worse than that. Consider for a moment what would really happen if he really was able to unilaterally and immediately impose that 35 percent tax. Don’t think about the thousands of jobs at the hundreds of Carrier-style companies around the country right now. Think about the jobs as yet uncreated. Trump, shitty businessman, is telling companies domestic or international that if they open new plants in the U.S. or hire more Americans in their operations already in the U.S., there’s no going back. Those jobs had better be forever. If another company in Carrier’s position, let’s call them ‘Shmarrier’ hires one new employee in this country and then something happens to the economy or country or just of the Shmarrier company, and they have to fire that one guy and move his job to Canada or somewhere, suddenly according to the Trump Shitty Businessman Plan, there could be a 35 percent tax on all Shmarrier products sold in this country.
“Explain to me the motive now for Shmarrier or anybody else ever to expand their U.S. business again. Explain to me the motive for Shmarrier or anybody else ever to hire another American worker again. Add to that, this idiot Trump states as if there were no laws, as if there was no Congress, as if there were no courts, that ‘there will be a tax’ like he could make one up as and when he wants it. What kind of business wants to invest in a country where the economy is predicated not on regulations or even just patterns but on the whims of one shitty businessman?
“And as if to underscore this, the vice president-elect, the one whose home state just bribed Carrier with 7 million dollars of our taxpayer money so Trump can boast about what a ‘super genius’ he is, Pence went even further. When it comes to punishing companies that move jobs out of this country Mike Pence says ‘the president-elect will make those decisions on a day-to-day basis.’ Again, it ain’t his call.
“There’s no reason for Trump to know that: he’s just a shitty businessman. But Pence has supposedly been the governor of a state for nearly four years, a state with laws and a legislature and courts, and he has just told all those businesses that are considering hiring Americans great, but don’t ever try to fire them because if he’s in a bad mood, Generalissimo Shitty Businessman will slap you with a 35 percent tax because the guy who got 2 million fewer votes than the other candidate is convinced he’s Moses coming down the mountain with the Goddamn commandments in his hands.”
“Generalissimo” is a good title for a president-elect who thinks he has dictatorial powers, who thinks he can impose taxes and punishments at will. Olbermann is right: we do have laws and legislatures and courts – and O by the way, a Constitution too.
And yes, Trump is a shitty businessman but here Olbermann is wrong: shitty businessman or no, Trump should know this. It’s Civics 101. Children have a better understanding of how our government works than Donald Trump.
Trump’s attacks on the First Amendment are frightening enough. Here Trump seems to be saying that he can impose laws and taxes and fines on a whim without recourse to our laws, to Congress, or to the courts, or to the Constitution he will have to swear to protect as the price of holding office.
Ignorance of economics aside, that is not how America works. Trump is repeatedly telling us he thinks he is above the law. He is not a king, fortunately (yet) but if he was, he would be a shitty king, because, as Olbermann says, he is a shitty businessman.
Hrafnkell Haraldsson, a social liberal with leanings toward centrist politics has degrees in history and philosophy. His interests include, besides history and philosophy, human rights issues, freedom of choice, religion, and the precarious dichotomy of freedom of speech and intolerance. He brings a slightly different perspective to his writing, being that he is neither a follower of an Abrahamic faith nor an atheist but a polytheist, a modern-day Heathen who follows the customs and traditions of his Norse ancestors. He maintains his own blog, A Heathen’s Day, which deals with Heathen and Pagan matters, and Mos Maiorum Foundation www.mosmaiorum.org, dedicated to ethnic religion. He has also contributed to NewsJunkiePost, GodsOwnParty and Pagan+Politics.