I get it, I get it. Donald Trump has no attention span, doesn’t read, doesn’t listen, obsesses about the media, eats fast food, watches too much TV, speaks before he thinks and acts impulsively. That’s what commentators have concluded on the release of Michael Wolff’s “Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House”. I’ve now read the book, and it’s certainly true that Wolff does everything he can to present Trump in that way.The trouble is no story is ever that clear.
I had great fun reading a 1982 novel called A Very British Coup by a former UK politician Chris Mullin. It charts the stunning rise (and fall) of Harry Perkins, a left-wing anti-establishment leader of the Labour Party. It may not be the most well-written book and some bits are dated, but its plot seems remarkably prescient in a world where the UK’s Labour Party has Jeremy Corbyn as its leader and the US is led by Donald Trump.
It’s easy to stereo-type the supporters of American presidents. I remember when Obama was in office his supporters were called “latte-drinking, Prius-driving, Birkenstock-wearing, trust fund babies”. I’ll leave it to your imagination on what the stereotype is for Trump supporters, but a new research report questioned 8,000 Trump supporters to determine how they could be characterised. Using cluster-analysis, the report found there are 5 types of Trump supporters: Continue reading “The Five Types Of Trump Supporters (3 min read)”
China’s President Xi Jinping gave a striking defence of globalisation at Davos in January. This stands in contrast to US President Donald Trump’s attack on globalisation. I thought I’d splice President Xi’s Davos speech with Donald Trump’s key quotes on the topic to produce a remarkable conversation between the two men: Continue reading “An Imagined Conversation Between China’s Xi and Trump”
I gave the speech below at a central bank conference on 24th November in Asia.
De-globalisation is not the dominant theme
De-globalisation is the word of the year thanks to the victories of the Brexit vote camp and Donald Trump. It is a convenient catch-all term, but I think it can obscure more than it reveals. For example, it does capture the campaign messages of many elections in the West, yet it fails to capture the mood in Asia. Countries like China, India and Japan are still eager to participate in free trade agreements, but have still experienced a shift away from its earlier political order. I think rather than de-globalisation, the more appropriate narrative is re-establishing trust in government. This provides a better way of preparing for investing in 2017 and beyond. Let me explain. Continue reading “Understanding the New World Of Politics (8 mins)”
I can’t help but write about Trump! This time I’ve looked into other instances of celebrities that have become leader of their nations in their first elections. I can only find two cases: Sweet Micky of Haiti and Silvio Berlusconi of Italy. If you know of any other, let me know, but here are the details of how they did it and what happened during their leadership:
The one thing we have learnt from the US election campaign is that social media (and regular media) can easily paint a one-sided picture of the “other side”. Donald Trump exploited this to his advantage to ensure he was able to get the coverage needed to become president. But using the image of Trump seen in that medium would then by definition be distorted. To get a better handle on who Trump really is, I thought it would be better to trawl through all his views and show them in his own words. Thankfully I came across a book called “Trump on Trump” by George Beahm that collated much of his speeches and interviews since 2015. I’ve picked out the bits I thought most relevant for us all, and you’ll find Trump is not who you imagined to be: Continue reading “The Real Trump In His Own Words (5 min read)”