THE TWELVE MOST IMPORTANT THINGS DONALD TRUMP HAS TAUGHT ME (Thing No. 3):
When a campaign presents you a choice between a career politician and someone whose entire experience has been in private enterprise, always vote for the career politician.
One of the most overused appeals in Republican political campaigns goes something like this: “My opponent is a career politician. Vote for me because I have created jobs and made payrolls. I know how to work within a budget.”
First of all, there are all kinds of businesses. I think we can quickly dismiss the kind of business Donald Trump operated as being in any way relevant to the common defense or general welfare of the republic. Other more ethical business people can claim a little more relevance but when a retailer or manufacturer claims credit for creating jobs, it is well to remember that entrepreneurs without consumers are nothing. There is no payroll for them to meet if there is no one shopping for goods and services. Consumers make jobs.
Besides, government is not a business and trying to operate it like one will have the result of a lot of very bad policy resulting from the misapplication of the common practices of the workplace. You wind up with an education system that is oriented toward production – just like in business. But, production of what? The product turns out to be answers on standardized tests given by a child who has learned, by rote if necessary, how to take tests.
But what about career politicians? Republicans have been putting the smear on people in career public service for many years. Bureaucrats take a pretty good drubbing from the politicians of both parties really. They are safe, apolitical targets since the Hatch Act discourages them from participating in partisan politics. Democrats even jump into the game when they try to compete by moving closer to Republican positions. But Donald Trump essentially went to war with the career civil service or, as he called it, the deep state.
I contend that your best bet in that typical race between the “career politician” and “the businessman,” you are better off casting your lot with the career politician. They are more likely to understand the purposes of government, its mechanics and the importance of its standards and traditions. Donald Trump had no understanding or appreciation of any of these key KSAs and the result has been a near disaster.
So, America, if you wish to staff your government with something besides career politicians, maybe you should look to one of the professions. But don’t trust our fate to “businessmen” with no experience in government at any level.
Suggestion: Go with a school teacher. A teacher creates jobs every day of his/her life. Thinking young people who will be both producers and consumers in a capitalist economy are its most precious capital. And teachers build that base.