The Trump Presidency: Go Big or Go Home

Joe Scudder
Written by Joe Scudder

In stark contrast to Obama’s two terms, the Trump presidency is marked by high risk and high reward.

With North Korea it has become obvious that the primary strategy of the Trump presidency is to take long shots. You can’t win big unless you try to win big.

Contrast this with the presidency of Barack Obama. While he did promote the gargantuan “stimulus” bill and got Obamacare passed when the Democrats controlled congress, he certainly didn’t try big changes in foreign policy. Even Libya was Hillary Clinton’s project. Obama let it happen.

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In this difference of attitude we see the difference between someone who was a community activist and someone who was a business entrepreneur.

The Associated Press reports, “Trump’s high-risk doctrine? Swing for the bleacher seats.

The way President Donald Trump sees it, why go for a solid single when you can swing for a home run?

Trump’s upcoming summit with North Korea’s Kim Jong Un is only the latest example of the president’s go-big strategy. From tax reform to international trade to foreign policy, Trump has pursued a high-risk, high-reward approach that advisers say can help produce results on longstanding problems — and that critics warn could trigger dangerous repercussions all the way from a trade war to global conflict.

Drawn to big moments and bigger headlines, Trump views the North Korea summit as a legacy-maker for him, believing that the combustible combination of his bombast and charm already has led to warmer relations between North and South. As he welcomed home three Americans who had been detained in North Korea, Trump early Thursday used a televised, middle-of-the-night ceremony to play up both his statecraft and stagecraft.

“I think you probably broke the all-time, in history, television rating for three o’clock in the morning,” Trump told reporters on the tarmac at Joint Base Andrews.

Trump has also played the disruptor’s role in recent weeks and months by withdrawing the U.S. from the Iran nuclear deal, imposing sweeping tariffs on allies and announcing he’s moving the U.S. embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, which is claimed by both Israelis and Palestinians.

It’s all a sharp contrast to his play-it-safe predecessor.

“You hit singles, you hit doubles; every once in a while we may be able to hit a home run,” President Barack Obama said of his own foreign policy. “But we steadily advance the interests of the American people and our partnership with folks around the world.”

Not all of Trump’s attention-grabbing gambits have worked — and the potential risks going forward are daunting.

[…]

Critics say Trump sometimes focuses on bold gestures first — and fallout later.

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The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by EagleRising.com


About the author

Joe Scudder

Joe Scudder

Joe Scudder is the "nom de plume" (or "nom de guerre") of a fifty-ish-year-old writer and stroke survivor. He lives in St Louis with his wife and still-at-home children. He has been a freelance writer and occasional political activist since the early nineties. He describes his politics as Tolkienesque.

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