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Opinion: Trump is a bully, not a leader
04202020 Trump 2
President Donald Trump speaks about the coronavirus in the James Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House, Monday, April 20, 2020, in Washington. - photo by Associated Press

These are times when we want/need our government to succeed. Regardless if you voted for someone in office or not, government needs to succeed these days. A "We the People" thing. Thus, my dismay in the nightly speeches by POTUS. No, they're not news conferences. They are speeches. I'm surprised the president hasn't dislocated his shoulder patting himself on the back every time he speaks. 

So these suggestions moving forward. 

1. Here's what President Eisenhower had to say about leadership: “Leadership consists of nothing but taking responsibility for everything that goes wrong and giving your subordinates credit for everything that goes well.” 

When he was supreme allied commander during D-Day, he had a letter prepared in case the invasion failed, in which he shouldered all the blame. Thankfully, the invasion was a success. Ike made sure to give credit to all those who made it possible. 

2. It was President Theodore "Teddy" Roosevelt who coined the phrase "bully pulpit." Wikipedia describes the term as a "conspicuous position that provides an opportunity to speak out and be listened to. No office in the world has a bigger one than president of the United States. 

But let's look at what "bully" means. Roosevelt used the term often. He used it as an adjective meaning "superb" or "wonderful." Before we started saying "cool" Roosevelt was saying "bully." Bully for him. 

But the president is acting like a bully. Using it as a verb to at least try and intimidate those who he perceives as vulnerable. Name calling. Yelling at reporters doing their jobs. It goes on and on. 

Exactly what we don't need these days. So Mr. President, be like Ike. Google Teddy. You might learn something. 

Brian Olson


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