August 1, 2016

I am Declaring My Candidacy for President of the United States

Before getting started, let me reiterate my policy: I don’t do politics in business. I don’t promote political parties, ideologies, or candidates. As hard as it’s been to restrain myself the past few weeks during both the Democratic and Republican conventions, I don’t share my political opinions and have refrained my tweeting editorial thoughts. I’ve rarely, if ever, seen a political argument end well, and it’s simply too great a risk to mix politics and business. Now having gotten that disclaimer out of the way, let me state that this post, and this declaration isn’t political in any way. There is no sub-agenda; I’m not trying to advance either major party or their suboptimal (being gracious) candidates. And I have no illusion that this will help my business. Frankly the opportunity cost from the distraction I’m creating and fallout from those who will likely be offended will probably cost me business. So be it.

It is out of complete exasperation, frustration, confusion, and disappointment that I have come to this weighty decision. Compelled by love of country, civic duty, and absolute bewilderment that Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are the choices facing American citizens come Election Day, I am offering myself as a candidate for President of the United States.

Like many of you, I have tried to find a way to support either of these candidates. I watched hours and hours of conventions and political shows and read commentary from all sides. Neither candidate is qualified to serve as leader of our great nation. There is no need to prosecute the case against each candidate here. You know all too well the charges against them both. Even if you’re currently advocating for one of them, be honest, you’re doing it holding your nose with your conscience in great distress.

This much I will say now and should I make it onto the debate stage, I’ll be be glad to punch at these candidates with every piece of truth available. Neither is trustworthy and neither has the character to be president. I got physically sick yesterday watching “The Donald” attack the Khan family on the Sunday morning news shows. How small a man must you be to have to answer every critique made against you? How foolish, insensitive and clueless would you have to be to publicly challenge Gold Star parents whose son paid the ultimate price fighting on behalf of our country? How dumb and thin-skinned is Donald Trump? Too dumb and thin-skinned to be lead our nation – for sure. My wife’s been telling me for months that she cannot vote for Trump because of his character and persona, but it wasn’t until seeing him attack the Khan family yesterday that I fully realized he simply cannot be our president. He’s too foolish, too petty, too small a man, and frankly, too childish.

But for a few dozen reasons with which we’ll all very familiar, Hillary is not a viable alternative. While the democrats certainly know how to put on a great show – what a powerful convention with incredible speeches (particularly from both Obamas) with so many lessons for salespeople and businesses – unfortunately, the picture they painted of Hillary doesn’t align with the truth we know about her. Like Trump, she is not trustworthy. I do work for a highly respected company in the defense sector. That’s all I’m allowed to share, because you see, when it comes to matters of defense and national security, confidentiality is kind of an important matter. You know, just a little important. When I arrive at this client’s facilities, I’m given an “Escort Required” badge. I’m not permitted to take pictures or use a USB drive, and at ALL TIMES, someone from the company must be side-by-side with me. When we take a break during a workshop, they are even required to escort me from the conference room to the men’s restroom.

People at this company have varying levels of security clearances. They often cannot tell me about programs and products they’re working on. Honestly, I’m humbled by the opportunity to be a trusted resource for them. Over the past month, I’ve had lunch with a handful of different folks at this company. Because I was curious, each time I brought up Hillary, her “private” server and the classified emails. To a person, I heard the same response. Each one told me that if they did any of things with classified info that Hillary did, let alone all of them, they’d be immediately fired then prosecuted, and likely imprisoned.

Friends, I’ve never run for office, am not sure how this all works, and only made this decision yesterday. My wife is none too pleased. I’m not excited about the prospect of my kids having to have men in dark suits with earpieces trailing them around their college campuses should I get elected. But I feel compelled to offer my services to our country. Should this campaign get legs, we’ll put together a legit platform in the near future. For now, here’s a little bit about me and what I believe:

  • I love this country and am unashamedly a proud patriot.
  • I make/earn a very good living as a consultant, speaker and author. I pay a lot of taxes, and we give a healthy chunk of money to a variety of charities and ministries. And unlike Trump, am happy to disclose my full tax returns should we get to an appropriate point before the election. There is nothing to hide.
  • Speaking of taxes, did you know that the past few quarters the US Treasury has taken in record tax revenues? It doesn’t get much coverage, but our federal government is raking in the dough. So if you want to know where I stand on taxes, it sure seems to me that our government has a spending problem, not an income problem. However, I do think hedge fund managers and people with multi-million dollar investment incomes should pay more taxes, because that’s just common sense. But don’t even think about trying to pass on tax increases to families making less than a $1 million per year. And please stop pandering to the public (almost half of whom pay no federal income tax) that the rich must pay their fair share. Honestly, there are a lot of people who feel like we’re paying a whole lot of people’s fair share!
  • I mentioned earlier that when at my defense client, they have to escort me to the bathroom. While on the topic of bathrooms, can I ask all sides to stop with the hyperbole and hysteria about the bathroom-gender issue. Honestly, everyone looks like crazy ideologues on this topic and this verbal bomb-throwing isn’t helping anyone – just ask my clients in North Carolina who are living with the consequences of their state’s political Battle Royale on the topic.
  • Men and women should be paid equal pay for equal work. Period.
  • The federal government has lost it’s mind regarding CAFE (corporate average fuel economy) standards and is senselessly driving up the price of cars and creating obscene complexities for the auto-industry. Cars today are getting twice the mileage they did a couple decades ago. Let’s call that progress and move on. washed boxsterBesides, have you compared the sound of the new four-cylinder Porsche Boxster to the traditional six-cylinder that I have in my mine? Just hand-washed it – here’s a pic. And, yes, I will be doing timed hot laps around the White House perimeter road should that become our residence.
  • Congress is dysfunctional and out control – regardless of which party has the majority. The fact that Nancy Pelosi had the audacity to tell Americans that representatives didn’t need time to read the 2600 pages of the ACA bill (Obamacare) and that we’ll all find out what’s in the bill after it’s passed says it all. Well, no. The whipped cream on the sundae was when congress exempted its own members from Obamacare. How great was that? Idiots passing an incomprehensible law with enormous consequences for all citizens and 20% of the economy, yet exempting themselves from the law’s policies. That really does say it all. You know the founders created two-year terms for the House of Representatives so normal people could take a two-year sabbatical from their day jobs to serve in congress and then return home. Sure seems like a good idea now, doesn’t it. Term limits, anyone?
  • While I’m not for the government intervening in business, I’ve got two  topics that I think we can all agree need addressing: First, American Airlines could not be any slower at turning around planes at the gate. Until they can figure out how to get a plane in and out of a non-hub airport (STL, for example) in less than an hour, they should be forbidden to sell connecting flights through CLT or ORD with connection times of less than 90 minutes. These bogus 35-minute connection times going through CLT border on criminal and are at least negligent. The public (meaning the moron frequent traveler writing this post) can’t be trusted not to choose the tight connection time when offered by the airline. We must put a stop to this madness. The second business issue that warrants government intervention has to do with the usurious payment terms big companies dictate to their small company suppliers. It is patently unfair and wrong that a behemoth like Anheuser-Busch wants to pay its vendors in 120 days. Why should small companies be forced to “bank” their large customers? There’s nothing fair, right or American about that practice. When it comes to payment terms, might does not make right, I am committed to defending the small business from these predatory practices.

Here’s the deal. The bottom-line is that I’m me. What you see is what you get. If you want to know more, there are a couple hundred blog posts on this site and my two books have lots of reviews on Amazon. You’ll at least know my view of sales and sales leadership. No, I’ve never gone bankrupt, and I pay my bills quickly, particularly to small businesses. I have a track record in business, and real clients who get real value from my services. I have one wife, who I love dearly, and to whom I’ve been faithful. As I like to say, she’s still the best proof that I can sell.

While I have always admired the presidency and lusted after Air Force One, the honest truth is that I love my life and have no ego need to be president. I’m tossing my hat in the ring because the current candidates are undesirable and the thought of either of them as president is untenable.

Should you elect me as president, I will only serve one term. That way I can tell the truth from day one, completely unconcerned with getting reelected, solely focused on doing what is right for the nation.

A final word to my clients: Who knows if this candidacy will take off. We’ll see if I end up sitting with Mika and Joe on Morning Joe next week. Just please be assured, that if you’ve got a date booked on the calendar with me, I’ll be there. And if the date is after January 20th next year, even though our agreement says that you pay for my travel expenses, I promise not to bill you for the cost to bring the big blue 747 and the secret service protection detail to your event 🙂

Let’s see if #ILikeMike gets any traction. Even if it doesn’t, I feel better giving myself and the rest of you a more likable, more trustworthy option for president.

Have a great week ahead. Lead well and go sell something.