Donald Trump as master persuader

Scott Adams, creator of the Dilbert comic strip, thinks Donald Trump will be nominated and elected by a landslide.  He explained why on his blog.

Donald Trump is a con man.  He’s also a fraud, a liar, a snake-oil salesman, and a carnival barker.  Clearly he is running a scam on the country.

Trump calls himself a “deal-maker.”

I call Trump a Master Persuader.

Trump_1_21_againagainIt’s all the same thing.  Trump says and does whatever he needs to do in order to get the results he wants.  And apparently he does it well.  Given the facts, you can either see Trump as highly skilled or morally flawed.  Maybe both.  I suppose it depends which side you are on.


Trump completely ignores reality and rational thinking in favor of emotional appeal.  Sure, much of what Trump says makes sense to his supporters, but I assure you that is coincidence.  Trump says whatever gets him the result he wants.  He understands humans as 90% irrational and acts accordingly.


Trump knows psychology.  He knows facts don’t matter.  He knows people are irrational.  So while his opponents are losing sleep trying to memorize the names of foreign leaders – in case someone asks –  Trump knows that is a waste of time.  No one ever voted for a president based on his or her ability to name heads of state.  People vote based on emotion.  Period.

 You used to think Trump ignored facts because he doesn’t know them.  That’s partly true.  There are plenty of important facts Trump does not know.  But the reason he doesn’t know those facts is – in part – because he knows facts don’t matter.  They never have and they never will.  So he ignores them.

Right in front of you.

And he doesn’t apologize or correct himself.  If you are not trained in persuasion, Trump looks stupid, evil, and maybe crazy.  If you understand persuasion, Trump is pitch-perfect most of the time.  He ignores unnecessary rational thought and objective data and incessantly hammers on what matters (emotions).


DonaldTrumpInstagram(JPEG Image, 1160 × 629 pixels)We all understand that a president has to be the leader of dumb people as well as smart people – and there are far more dumb people.

So how does one kind of message get through to two totally different types of voters?

Trump’s solution, so far, is to influence the dumb people via emotion while winking to the smart people so we know he is smart and not crazy. The wink is what tells you he probably isn’t Hitler. The wink says he is doing what he needs to do to get elected.

I saw the wink sooner than most of you because I study persuasion. So none of his crazy behavior looked crazy to me. It looked skillful to the extreme. So skillful, in fact, that he got to the point where he can literally say any damned thing and his supporters don’t care how true it is.  They care that he is on their side and doing whatever it takes to tear down the money-puppets in Washington.

Via Scott Adams Blog.

LINKS to Scott Adams blog posts

Donald Trump – Con Man.  (Hat tip to Rod Dreher)

Trump’s Linguistic Kill Shot for Hillary Clinton.

Strategic Ambiguity.  One of Trump’s techniques.

Clown Genius.  The basics of Trump’s techniques.


Photos: The Week, Politico.

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2 Responses to “Donald Trump as master persuader”

  1. 61chrissterry Says:

    Reblogged this on 61chrissterry.


  2. S Brennan Says:

    Pretty much any pol has, or aspires to have such talents, so this article is akin to casinos tossing a card counter out of their facility because he’s better than your average slob trying to pull the same trick. Still, that is not what sets Trump apart, I know it’s tedious & uncool, but for the answers you have to look at the past…you know…uhm, like history.

    What Trump really has is, the tailwind of frustrations caused by the hokum hopum conjured in 2008 by Obama’s media team…and then to have the genie bottle smashed to pieces in…QE for the wealthiest, 24/7/365 domestic spying, wars eternal, imprisonment of whistle blowers revealing criminal behavior by US officials, trade deals that profit only mega-corps…et al.

    The people who cheered Obama’s idiocy now say we need more of the same and the enlisted class disagrees. The lies of the last three presidents, but particularly Bill Clinton’s policy of de-industrialization in favor of Wall Street financialization of the economy have come home to roost. The enlisted class understands fully what the “creative class” intends, hence Trump…and if Trump fails attain office, or to deliver, there may be blood.


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