Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Trump vs Schultz: 2020

The 2020 Matchup

On Tuesday November 8, 2016 Donald Trump won 303 Electoral votes to win the White House.  On December 1, 2016 Howard Schultz announced that he will be stepping down as CEO of Starbucks (http://www.cnbc.com/2016/12/01/howard-schultz-stepping-down-as-starbucks-ceo.html).

These two apparently unrelated events are, in fact, connected.

According to a Starbucks Press Release, "The transition will occur on April 3, 2017, and it will allow Schultz to focus on turning Starbucks' Reserve-branded coffee bars into destination restaurants."

What the release is NOT telling us is that Schultz is stepping down as Starbucks CEO because he has clear presidential aspirations for 2020.  Trump's election proved that the American electorate was willing to trust an experienced business person with no political experience over a career politician with many years as an elected official.  This message was not lost on Howard Schultz.

In 2016 the glass ceiling for billionaires was shattered into a million pieces.  Buffett is too old.  Gates is too nerdy.  Soros is too Hungarian.  Schultz seems to tick most of the boxes -- an has no email scandals that we are aware of.

It is no secret that Schultz has a tremendous ego.  Schultz is also a committed liberal Democrat who grew up in Brooklyn.  He has championed health care for Starbucks employees frequently citing the fact that his working class family lacked the same.  Schultz has a net worth of nearly $3 billion.  He has been a major donor to Democratic candidates.  He will turn 67 years of age in 2020.

Starbucks has been hugely successful and is a favorite watering hole for college educated liberal Democrats.  Among businesses Starbucks is a liberal darling -- they don't make guns, extract fossil fuels or ruin the environment (excepts a bit of garbage).

If Schultz can convince someone to pay $5 for a cup of coffee maybe he can also convince them that higher taxes and increased regulation will jump start the economy?

The election of Donald Trump has created Revolutionary change in the unlikeliest of places -- even in the corporate offices of Starbucks.

A few years ago Christopher Hitches remarked that "the American Revolution is the only revolution that still resonates."  The French Revolution and the Russian Revolution belong to history.  The American Revolution is the only major Revolution that possesses enduring relevance for the world.  Trump, even before his inauguration, has revolutionized American politics.




Unknown said...

I suspect, now that the cat is out of the bag, a long, long line of business candidates will want to capitalize on what many liberals anticipate will be a disappointing presidency; Mark Zuckerberg is maybe another one to watch; he controls a considerable portion of the social media platform which, is going to be even more important in future elections. The next 4 years will not be boring.

Marcus said...

I will take this article as mostly tongue-in-cheek. The question is, do you think Donald Trump will be a good president? It's not partisan to presume the odds are long. He likes to sow chaos and is not a fan of intelligence briefings. We have already seen some of that at play. This is important in understanding if Trump is part of a new trend or an extreme exception. 2016 is more akin to 1976 when the voters wanted to try something very different, very new, in that case a DC outsider who was a "good man" as opposed to the sleaze of Nixon. Now we've placed bets on a non-politician to bring back jobs that aren't coming back and to "shake things up". If Trump implodes, or at the least remains unpopular, that will stain future "business candidates" of either party. Schultz is intriguing, not least because his corporation has more of a soul than others, but I'd put better money on a younger Dem between 40 and 50 to give the left the "feels". At the end of the day, Clinton lost due to youngsters not turning out in key states.