Donald Trump: How to Destroy a Brand
The Trump name used to stand for opulent, rococo luxury. For most people with some taste, it was always over the top; kitsch, but quality kitsch. He’s always been a colorful public figure, brash and opinionated. Unfortunately, this year, he has taken the Trump name and essentially thrown it in the toilet.
He has now supplanted Orly Taitz as American birther-in-chief. His recent anti-Obama public political pronouncements have been offensive and loaded with thinly veiled racial animus – claiming that the President is foreign, socialist, evil, doesn’t have America’s best interests at heart. Even many Obama detractors who think his policies are wrong would concede that he hasn’t led the country over the last four years like the Bolshevik some make him out to be.
It’s telling that Mitt Romney doesn’t rebuke or distance himself from Trump’s awfulness, but instead uses him as a surrogate.
Not Trump though – he’s become Carl Paladino with more money, a bigger mouth, and more fascinating hair. His beclowning became final last week when he offered to pay a paltry-for-him $5 million if President Obama would disclose certain personal records to Trump’s “satisfaction”. As any normal person would do when confronted by a bully, Obama has pretended that Trump doesn’t exist, except while mocking him on the Late Show.
Yesterday, Trump Tweeted something about how Obama was going to somehow force Chrsyler parent Fiat to send all Jeep production – even domestic production – to China. (Why would Obama do that? Because he’s as communist as the Red Chinese? Even though Red China has been only nominally communist for a generation?) Even though Romney has made a similar claim, it was handily debunked by Chrysler itself. It’s easier for Romney to lie about Obama – it’s much harder for him to lie about 3rd parties who have more flexibility publicly to debunk the lie.
Chrysler’s VP of product design, Ralph Gilles, is also on Twitter. Here’s how he – appropriately – responded to Trump.
Take a look, by the way at how many people re-Tweeted and favorited Gilles’ Trump rebuke. Now compare to Trump’s original Tweet (as of 6:00 am Friday):
That, folks, is how you ruin a brand – you take a crazy, fringe political viewpoint and broadcast it in a way that is equal parts arrogance and ignorance. As for economic stewardship, Trump companies have gone bankrupt four times, avoiding legally binding debts. So, he’s exponentially worse than Paladino, who at least has the good business sense to remain afloat.