T Nation

What is Leadership?

It’s all about the benj… I mean the base.

This seems like a very plausible scenario for what Trump is doing:

To the question in the title: leadership is being able to manipulate people into following your lead. There are many ways to do this and there are good, bad and indifferent leaders. There isn’t one size fits all.

I guess I mean what Americans were and should be. Not the spineless mush we’ve become.

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This is another one of those ideological questions where you and I will not agree because we don’t view life the same way.

How about this, what are a few examples of a good, effective leader?

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"Trump will eventually have taken every possible inconsistent position about the virus. That will let him test which polls best, and his supporters can then pick that one as the position he took all along".


Donald J. Trump.

Case closed.

Pretty much every public official for the past 3 months.

Humor aside though, who would you say is a good leader?

How many Americans do you know? How many humans?

There’s a reason why we can’t have nice things.

You really are a one trick pony. We get it, you were raised by wolves.

Depends on the task.

You can define “leadership” in many ways. A simple test, I believe, is to count the number of “followers” a person has. I think it is fair to call anyone with a decent number of followers a “leader”. You may not believe Trump to be a leader, but I’m not sure what else to call someone with so many followers.

I think you’re probably talking about “good leadership” here, which is a little harder to pin down. I don’t believe any historians will be talking about Trump as a great leader in times of crisis when they sit down and study his media appearances and tweets. He is not a very good speaker, to say the least. He is, by far, the most documented president ever, including the most self-documented. There is NO shortage of material that you can use to make him seem just about any way you want to portray him.

What the jury remains out on, and will for some time, is how the outcomes of all of the various policies and executive decisions will play out. Then you can play the make believe of “what-if” we had Hillary, Bernie, Romney, Cruz, Beto, Bono, Neil DeGrasse Tyson, The Rock or any other likely “leader” would have somehow produced a better outcome, and then debate about how that might take place. Some people are already of the opinion that we’d be Taiwan if their guy was in charge. Maybe, who knows?

That’s basically the game I’m expecting people to play as we lead up to the election. I’m not expecting much good leadership. Not from our candidates, not from anyone in “journalism”, and not from anyone who will be given much attention over some form of poop-flinging that sells better.

It is tough to compare leaders of today with leaders of yesterday, especially ones in the distant past who tend to get idealized.

Imagine if we had Twitter during the Civil War, and Lincoln was the type who’d get fired up and feel compelled to post unfiltered thoughts throughout the day during his crisis. Would we still judge Lincoln for the outcomes produced, or would some really nasty stuff pop up in his feed that couldn’t be forgiven?

Hell, imagine if Churchill had twitter, and was prone to posting unfiltered thoughts when drunk.

It might require a global pandemic for any level of national agreement to be reached on what good leader would look like, apparently. Things were too far in motion for this election, but I hope to see better overall candidates in the next election.

Dan Crenshaw is a conservative who I believe has good leadership qualities. I think we will see him on the ballot in the next decade or so.

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I don’t see why this is. We both live in a nation where we have a President. Why wouldn’t we want that President to be a good leader?

Everything I’ve read about Lincoln would lead me to believe this wouldn’t happen. Having Twitter throughout history only matters in that context if you can’t control yourself. We can look at how the last President used it versus the current one.

I have Twitter and facebook. I don’t use either much to post. I have zero problems not posting unfiltered thoughts.

Who knows? The point of the exercise is to pretend Lincoln was a guy who would get fired up and post like Trump, but things still played out the same historically speaking. Would he be judged by his tweets or by the outcomes?

Either way, historical twitter accounts seems like a great comedy opportunity for the creative and intelligent.


I think if he posted like Trump the outcomes would be vastly different. I think Trump’s outcomes would be different if he didn’t post in the manner he does. Being unhinged and unable to control your thoughts and emotions as a leader will change the outcomes.

If you think about it our period and especially the last 30 years will be for distant historians like going from black-and-white to color in the Wizard of Oz. So much is documented so much more thoroughly than ever before about every facet of life today.

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(Good post, @twojarslave)…

I agree with the post also. This has the potential to be the nastiest, most contentious election ever; with the Conservative Machine adding to it’s War Chest on almost on a daily basis, with the expectation that they will reflect their standard bearer.

Then there is the Liberal Standard bearer…a man easily flustered; who spouts off incomprehensible babble when he does (or doesn’t) get flustered; who will be facing a man used to flinging shit. I personally think Biden is doomed. Trump, the Conservative Machine, Russian Disinformation and FOX are going to eat Biden for lunch. Corn-Pop won’t be able to save him.

A funny thing about History and Presidents (which I have also studied for some time); history tends to view them more favorably than how they were viewed during their tenure. I think that Trump will likely be one of the most scrutinized and written about President’s in History.

Twitter would have won the war for the South?