Sta Hungry Stay Foolish

Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.

A blog by Leon Oudejans

Main Street vs Wall Street

24 March 2016


I have just read the transcript of the Donald Trump interview with the Washington Post on 21 March 2016. The transcript of that interview is headed by the offensive and suggestive title: “Donald Trump’s interview with the Washington Post is totally bananas“. The ridicule towards Donald Trump following this WP interview is entirely misplaced. Note: bold markings are mine.

Let me make something clear first: I am not a Donald Trump supporter. I have written several positive and several negative blogs about his Presidential ambitions. This interview was actually far from bananas. It gives a marvelous picture inside Donald Trump’s mind and his thinking. 

This interview makes me realise the reasons for the huge internal Republican opposition against Donald Trump. Donald Trump is clearly no Republican. In several ways, Donald Trump may even be closer to President Obama and closer to Bernie Sanders than Hillary Clinton is.

Actually, this Trump interview reminds me of one of the story lines from the 1990 movie Pretty Woman (IMDb). Richard Gere is a venture capitalist who buys low valued companies, breaks them up, sells parts to the highest bidder, and dumps the rest. Hooker Julia Roberts makes him remind of his father who used to build “things”. Essentially, Wall Street versus Main Street.

Donald Trump sees the USA as it really is: a highly indebted and even poor country which – like Hercules – takes on the problems of the entire world while ignoring and/or neglecting its many domestic problems. His solutions are not Republican at all: American jobs by American companies must be insourced back to the USA, infrastructure (eg, airports, schools) must be rebuild, and the US allies in NATO should pay their fair share to NATO and must no longer be free riders

During the interview, Donald Trump always uses his personal experience with the construction industry as a metaphor to address the many domestic problems in the USA. Despite his colourful language, Donald Trump clearly understands what’s going on in Main Street, USA.

WP: “Wall Street may have reason to be wary of Trump. He has repeatedly said that hedge fund managers, the masters of the universe of today’s New York financial world, are getting away with “murder” under the current corporate tax code, and he has attacked companies that move their headquarters overseas to lower their tax bill”.

Bernie Sanders has repeatedly claimed that Hillary Clinton represents Wall Street and that he represents Main Street. Actually, Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders have much more in common than they would both be willing to admit. Voters recognise this. To a large extent, the USA is voting to rebuild Main Street with the unwilling assistance of Wall Street.

A Donald Trump interview quote: “But at the same time it can be solved to a large extent with jobs. You know, if we can rebuild those communities and create incentives for companies to move in and create jobs. Jobs are so important. There are no jobs. There are none. You go to those communities and you can’t – there is nothing there. There is no incentive for people. It is a very sad situation. And what makes it even sadder is that we are spending so much money in other countries and our own country has vast pockets of poverty and a lot of this is caused by the fact that there are no jobs”.

This Donald Trump quote deserves respect. Ultimately, it’s indeed about Main Street.

Bob Seger & the Silver Bullet Band – Mainstreet (1977) – artist, lyrics, Wiki-1, Wiki-2


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