Posted by David Oates 1 year, 11 months ago


President Trump’s latest angry tweet targeted a prominent female television journalist. It drew sharp, bipartisan condemnation, and rightfully so. Many now ask when will these endless vitriolic messages from 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue end?

I project that the anger will subside in about a year when Trump resigns from office. He just can’t keep it up much longer.

I’ll admit that my prediction carries little weight. I neither work in nor am privy to any inside knowledge. By all accounts, Trump’s support base continues to strongly back his actions. Nevertheless, I can state with absolute certainty that the President’s brand will erode over time. I know this because I can unequivocally say that hate, as a moniker, is relatively short-lived.

Maintaining a brand built on divisiveness and bullying takes a lot of energy, more so than hope and inclusiveness. It requires an incredible amount of energy to battle multiple fronts simultaneously and for extended periods of time. Though a hate-fueled persona grabs lots of attention and can dominate the discussions of the day, it eventually fizzles.

History backs up this claim. Celebrities using anger as their schtick tend to flame out rather quickly. Morton Downey, Jr., father of the modern “trash TV” talk show format 30 years ago, lasted only two seasons on what was, at first, a wildly popular and nationally syndicated program. Charlie Sheen went through a period where rage fueled his popularity but resulted in two failed projects; a one-man theater performance and a television show appropriately called “Anger Management.”

Politicians like our President who utilize anger as the cornerstone of their brand also don’t last too long. Disgraced former City of San Diego Mayor Bob Filner was notorious for dressing down colleagues, rivals and civil servants. He held on to his “dream job” for less than a year as a result of more than a dozen women coming forward with claims of sexual harassment. This event would not have occurred had Filner not created so many enemies in the nine months he served as the chief executive of the eighth largest city in the country. 

Even Gordon Ramsey can’t leverage hate as the sole element of his brand. Though famous for launching tirades against fellow chefs who fail to demonstrate passion and attention to detail in their work, he can show a deep caring side to those in need of it. Simon Cowell also shifted his public persona over the years in similar fashion and now is viewed as a great supporter of the underdog.

When you think about it, the only one that successfully maintains a hate-laden brand is renowned comic Lewis Black. The reason — we know it’s an act

Trump’s continued tirades against reporters, political rivals and just about anyone else he feels crossed him will ultimately be his downfall. It detracts from his policy agendas and, as a result, will eventually erode his small, but fiercely loyal base when he and his administration fail to deliver on their promises. If I were advising him, I’d strongly recommend he take a playbook from his predecessor, Barack Obama. It served him well for the eight years that he occupied the White House.


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