He said he was a winner. He said, “Believe me, I’ll fix the problems and make us rich again.” He had bold ideas that were often considered to be taboo by the establishment. He pitched his successes in business as the core reason that he had what it took to be the strong leader they needed. “He” was Donald Trump and his pitch was to become the leader of an airline.
They bought into him. They saw that he was a winner and they embraced his bombast and common sense ideas. As a result, Trump Air was born. It didn’t take long before his common sense ideas started taking turns for the worst. His proposals that got a ton of people to buy into his campaign proved to be foolish when executives at his airline started exploring them more deeply. Many of his plans were never implemented. The ones that were implemented proved to be disastrous. Other airlines, scared of him entering the space, ended up laughing at what he tried to do with the airline. They said that the airline industry is much more complicated than just making deals, buying real estate, or using his brand to bolster the company.
Trump Air was a complete failure. Its assets were sold off three years after he sold his ideas to the industry.
The problem we’re faced with today is that running an airline is much harder than running a real estate conglomerate, but running the country is much harder than running an airline. Moreover, he was able to cut his losses three years after taking over. That’s not a valid option as President.
Still, there are plenty of people who are willing to buy into his Presidential sales pitch hook, line, and sinker, just as they did in the airline industry.
If this were an isolated case, it could be chalked up as a learning experience. It wasn’t. In fact, any time Donald Trump ventures outside of his core skills in real estate, entertainment, or marketing, he has been an utter disaster. Trump Vodka was a joke. Trump Mortgage, which was his closest endeavor to real estate, fell apart after a year. Even his venture into buying a USFL team proved to be bad for everyone. The league was thriving and on the verge of a breakthrough when he bought the team. He convinced the other owners to abandon their plan which was working and to follow his lead down a different path that included suing the NFL. They followed him. They sued the NFL. They won. Their judgment: $3 (as in 300 pennies). The league collapsed a year later.
Time and time again, Trump has pitched himself as a leader outside of real estate and entertainment. Every time he does, his endeavors failed and people were hurt as a result. The same thing will happen to the Republican party if enough people fall for his very compelling but ultimately disastrous sales pitch.