We are well past taking any words that come out of Donald Trump’s mouth as a sign of comprehension, sincerity, or anything else other than reflexive emission of gas in the presence of a microphone.
However, in an interview with AP’s Julie Pace on Friday, before rambling off into another self-serving exaggeration, Trump managed to string together words that more sincere observers may use to rebut the notion that we should run government like a business… or at least like Donald Trump appears to run a business:
AP: You’ve talked a little bit about the way that you’ve brought some business skills into the office. Is there anything from your business background that just doesn’t translate into the presidency, that just simply is not applicable to this job?
TRUMP: Well in business, you don’t necessarily need heart, whereas here, almost everything affects people. So if you’re talking about health care — you have health care in business but you’re trying to just negotiate a good price on health care, et cetera, et cetera. You’re providing health. This is (unintelligible). Here, everything, pretty much everything you do in government, involves heart, whereas in business, most things don’t involve heart.
AP: What’s that switch been like for you?
TRUMP: In fact, in business you’re actually better off without it.
AP: What’s making that switch been like for you?
TRUMP: You have to love people. And if you love people, such a big responsibility. (unintelligible) You can take any single thing, including even taxes. I mean we’re going to be doing major tax reform. Here’s part of your story, it’s going to be a big (unintelligible). Everybody’s saying, “Oh, he’s delaying.” I’m not delaying anything. I’ll tell you the other thing is (unintelligible). I used to get great press. I get the worst press. I get such dishonest reporting with the media. That’s another thing that really has — I’ve never had anything like it before. It happened during the primaries, and I said, you know, when I won, I said, “Well the one thing good is now I’ll get good press.” And it got worse. (unintelligible) So that was one thing that a little bit of a surprise to me. I thought the press would become better, and it actually, in my opinion, got more nasty [“Transcript of AP Interview with Trump,” AP, interview 2017.04.21, posted 2017.04.24].
I agree that government requires heart… perhaps better translatable as a sense of obligation to all citizens and, in the case of a nation as powerful as the United States, obligation to all humanity. But does Trump really believe that “almost everything affects people” is true only in government and not in business? Does he really think that the actions businesses (telecoms, banks, homebuilders…) take after he deregulates them won’t affect people? If Trump really believes that, he’s not only heartless but clueless.
But that assumes Trump means any of the words tumbling out of his mouth, a proposition that is sketchy at best.
p.s.: In other cluelessness, Trump tells AP that “The wall will stop the drugs“—all of them, apparently, even though a lot of drugs enter the United States by boat and through those big holes in the current fence called checkpoints.