Up until last night, I was feeling pretty good after Trump’s defeat of his latest border wall initiative. The government is open again, people are again getting paid and all politicians have been put on notice to never try to use that tactic again. Then last night I turn on 60 Minutes, and low and behold, I find out some billionaire liberal ideologue named Howard Schultz, president and CEO of Starbucks restaurants, who I didn’t know existed until that interview, has decided to be a third party candidate for President of the United States. This is why Mr. Keynes, or whoever the person who invented the income tax was, decided that we must have a way to keep otherwise average people from becoming too wealthy. He understood that when people have money far in excess of what’s required to satisfy their basic needs and desires, they use that wealth to get themselves and all of the rest of us, into all kinds of trouble. This is why we’re in the trouble we are today.
Excessive wealth begets an arrogance that causes us to decide that only we know what’s best for the rest of the world. That fact that I’m writing this blog is evidence that I feel that way – we all do on some level. The difference between us and the people who really should be making those decisions is that those people have been willing to do the hard work of testing their ideas through proven, time tested, established methods of testing and presenting their ideas by moving up the latter of the party that most exemplifies their ideas, and thereby attaining higher and higher leadership roles that eventually can end in a bid for president of the United States. For goodness sakes, lets see how you perform as U.S. representative or senator before you go strait to president of the United States, where your incompetence can literally end the world, as we know it.
Mr. Schultz was asked straight up at the beginning of the interview if he thought his candidacy would dilute the vote of the Democratic Party and thus guarantee Donald Trump a second term as president. Of course he never answered the question. Instead, he went on to extoll the virtues of his ideas and why he is exactly what the country needs to right itself. Sound familiar? That was exactly Donald Trump’s message throughout his campaign for the presidency. According to him, the established order didn’t know what they were doing and only he could fix things. To be clear, Mr. Schultz’s agenda was almost exactly what the Democratic Party is trying to accomplish, which is why his wealth and power is so dangerous to advancing those ideas. He can use social media, print media and broadcast media to lure more than enough voters away from what our mission, as Americans should be at this point. We all need to be focused on getting our government out of the hands of the radical and irrational 30% of Americans who are now running it. If he really were a patriot, he would use his wealth and power to assist the Democratic Party in doing just that. We understand the Party is not perfect. But in our system of government, it is the only way to effect meaningful change. Its nature is to allow gradual, sometimes painful and frustrating change rather than radical change. Radical change tends foment revolution, chaos and disorder, like we have now. Yes there are issues that demand radical change, such as climate change, infrastructure and environmental destruction, but those are issues that the overwhelming majority of Americans have called for. We don’t need Mr. Schultz to single handedly make that happen. Any sensible leader is going to make those things happen. What’s missing is having such a person in position to do so. That can only be accomplished by the concerted effort of an established political party. Presently that happens to be the Democratic Party and not Mr. Schultz on his own.
If I could advise Mr. Schultz, I would tell him to keep in mind that people of his financial stature tend to be somewhat narcissistic. You almost have to be so to attain that level of wealth. Your narcissism can blind you to some of the basic realities you learned to make you successful. I would remind him that the process of trial and error, success and failure, is what made him an expert in the sale of expensive coffee. Success in that field of endeavor does not make you ready to become President of the United States. One wrong move as president can be the death of us all in so many different ways. In fact, we may not survive the one we have in office now. Also consider that if you run for office, whether you want it or not, Vladimir Putin will be you biggest supporter. There’s a reason for that. Think about why.
To the rest of you, let me just remind you that part of the reason Donald Trump is in office today is that several “useful idiots” (see Chapter 66 for context) besides Donald Trump were running for president. Don’t make the same dumb mistake this time into believing that you can use your vote to make some kind of statement of morality or principle as you see it. Your vote is serious business and is used to put the people in office who can best represent your interests and carry out an agenda that you approve of. Above all, the person must be able to win the office they are seeking. As Americans, we must give up this childish idea that someone is going to ride in on a white horse and come to the rescue. If our republic is to survive and thrive, it will be because we as citizens did our due diligence in selecting our leaders and holding them accountable for the results they produce. I’m sure Mr. Schultz and all of us who endeavored to be entreasures had to rid ourselves of that hero fantasy that we were going to pick the right stock, or find a check in the mail from some unknown relative or hit the lottery to extricate ourselves from the financial trouble we all get into at some point in our rise to the top, before we can learn to do the hard work that’s required to save ourselves. The hard work required by Americans today is to get Trump and his Republican allies out of office on all levels – local, state and federal. To do that, we must work with the Democratic Party, like it or not. Only then will we be able to create a more ideal situation that perhaps Democrats and Republicans can agree on.