What makes the “Art of the Deal” these days? Keep changing the deal -- as many times as possible. Can media organizations learn anything from this?
President Trump's previous, and current, life focuses on big real-estate deals. It's a business that forever changes the terms of the deal to wear down your opponent until you get what you want. Or maybe they just quit in frustration.
Hey, it’s only business. But does it work with governing?
Here's something that is possibly in Trump's favor: Two Republican Senators have now said "enough" -- they aren’t running for re-election. Weeks ago, Bob Corker of Tennessee said he was out; yesterday, Jeff Flake of Arizona called it quits. Both have expressed regret and concerns over Trump.
Trump has been publicly critical of these senators and many others, amid his frequent and often radical changes of opinion. If you can’t make senators from your own party yield to your views, just continue to make them uncomfortable.
What about doing the same with the media -- with regard to news consumers? Two days ago, Trump tweeted: “It is finally sinking through. 46% OF PEOPLE BELIEVE MAJOR NATIONAL NEWS ORGS FABRICATE STORIES ABOUT ME. FAKE NEWS, even worse! Lost cred.”
Trump was citing a Politico/Morning Consult poll that asked: "Do you believe the nation’s major news organizations fabricate news stories about President Trump and his administration, or not?"
Nearly half of the respondents -- 46% -- said yes. Another 37% said no, and 17% said they didn’t know. The catch: The Morning Consult poll is conducted online; unlike traditional polling, it doesn't contact people randomly. That method is believed to reflect the public at large.
Several weeks before the Politico poll, it posted a story about the growing trust in news, citing a Reuters/Ipsos poll that found 48% of people had a great deal or some confidence in the press. A Quinnipiac survey also reported that 54% of respondents said they trusted the media more than Trump to tell the truth about important issues.
Either way, scores of media organizations will not stop finding the truth -- whatever rough roads are ahead. For them, it won’t be about the “art” or a “deal.”