Who is the stronger leader? President Trump, with his dictatorial style, happy to barge in front of world leaders to get to the front of a photo and sack anyone who stands in his way? President Obama, who took 6 years to get his health care bill through, who dithered on Syria and seems to have picked the losing side in the US and Brexit elections.
President Trump is definitely a fighter and has a managerial style that shows he has always got his way. When you are handed $100 million dollars to start your own business, and can make a success of many of those businesses, this will breed a certain arrogance that you are always right. In business this can work, as he has shown, and he deserves credit for this. Yet this style also brings the narcissist where he treats women appallingly, where he bullies the people around him and where he gets what he wants at any cost, generally to the detriment of others. He is finding the mechanisms of a democratic government do not allow for this style, to stop the dictatorships that he would bring. Imagine if at the start of his four years in charge he was banning Muslims from entering the country, where would he be by the end of the 4 years. Expelling? Or just building enough resentment so that local thugs would do the job for him and run them (anyone who opposed him) out of town like the lawless west.
What about Obama then? For me his biggest failure was Syria and his fear of a military build-up was not needed. A no-fly zone would have helped the rebels, without soldiers on the ground, then a consensus in the UN would have allowed peace keepers in to keep control and protect the civilians. It is always easy with hindsight though.
If you look at the Healthcare bill he introduced and ask why did it take so long to get through. The simple answer is he wanted consensus. He tried to work with Democrats and Republicans so that what was achieved would stand and benefit the poorest people in America. So, it took longer, but less enemies were made doing it. The fact that right wing zealots fought this every step of the way, says more about them. Racist or genuinely uncaring about the poorer society in the US?
So, which is the better leader? Calm, assured and an ability to work across the spectrum of political thought as Obama did. Someone who was happy to look weak, because democracy and functions of government were more important to him than his perception to the wider public? Or the ego driven, domineering, self-publicising narcissist that is Donald Trump. For me, 6 months in his presidency, most people are clear that Trump is no President of any worth and brings uncertainty and instability with every minute, to all parts of the globe.
So, does this help us with our own election? It highlights the obvious question that Labour do not want to ask. Is Jeremy Corbyn a domineering leader? The answer is obviously no. But is that what we want at this moment in time. There is a trust issue with politicians at the moment and an ever-increasing apathy towards what they say and the process itself. This is bad for democracy and the one thing I would say about Corbyn is that he will try and do what he says. Whether this causes more debt for the country is another matter, but he will hold to his principles. This is why he looks comfortable in the campaign. He is not trying to be someone different for the public and people are starting to respect that. If this is what you want from your politicians then you should vote labour.
Theresa May on the other hand is strong and stable. Strong and stable. Strong and stable. No policies and the ones she announces will be rescinded in a week, but strong and stable. She will not call a snap election, but here we are all snapped and opportunistic to take advantage of a perceived Corbyn weakness. Of course, the argument goes that if you have to say it so often it can’t be true. It is just a political game to try and embarrass Corbyn. But it is starting to backfire on her and she is looking anything from strong at the moment.
Which answers the question why so many people are undecided about the election? It is because not one of the leaders who could run the country, stand out as a leader. Corbyn has been sold as the loony left, which no one wanted 30 years ago, never mind now. May says she is the best person to help us in our Brexit negotiations, but let’s be quite frank, it was the Tories who got us into that mess with no plan of what to do afterward. Even after a year there is no clear plan.
What the country is desperate for is a centrist leader, who stands up for liberal values and works hard for the country. The likes of David Miliband and Nick Clegg. Some may baulk at Nick Clegg, but he tried to bring in PR and tried to remove tuition fees. He failed to do this for a variety of reasons, but mainly because the Lib Dems were the minor party in the coalition. He paid the price though for the poor political decision of separating themselves from the Tories at the election. They should have stuck closely to them, however bad they thought the smell was. So, I am waiting for this person to come forward and deliver us to the centre of British politics. With Brexit, the economy and Trump, they may well have a mess to clear up in 5 years.