Not only did the winner get far fewer votes than the loser, the winning votes numbered barely 100,000 which were spread across three states often considered a firewall by the loser. Strange, indeed. And now we get word that a titan of technology thinks the President-elect reminds him of someone who was president back when said titan was in elementary school.
Other than film-maker Michael Moore and a few others, not many expected the recent election outcome to go the way it did; an election that took a womanizing, billionaire real estate developer and reality TV show host, to the fame, fortune, and glory of the nation’s top office.
Microsoft founder and mega-billionaire Bill Gates thinks the President-elect could be like President John F. Kennedy (who took office when Gates was in elementary school). I’m not sure how to take that. Kennedy was a rich man, too, and, like Trump, a known womanizer. He was also a leader and national figure who squeaked by to victory, and was not well liked by the other political party.
Similarities do exist, no?
Bill Gates on CNBC:
But in the same way that President Kennedy talked about the space mission and got the country behind that, I think whether it’s education or stopping epidemics … [or] in this energy space, there can be a very upbeat message that [Mr Trump’s] administration [is] going to organise things, get rid of regulatory barriers, and have American leadership through innovation be one of the things that he gets behind.
Interestingly, Gates supported Hillary Clinton in the election, but ever the pragmatist, technology executives often travel wherever the wind blows.
It remains to be seen how he will fare during his presidency, and Kennedy’s term was cut short thanks to someone exercising 2nd amendment rights gone too far, but if Donald Trump is John F. Kennedy, then Tim Cook is Steve Jobs.
And Tim Cook is not Steve Jobs.
Jobs picked Cook to run Apple because he wanted Apple to continue to run properly– which Cook had handled often during Jobs many breaks during his illnesses– but expected the company and its executives to chart their own course.
The problem here is that no one seems to know what Cook’s course really is. What is it? Apple no longer grows, neither revenue nor profits, and new product introductions seem fewer and farther between. Kennedy was passionate about putting a man on the moon. Jobs was passionate about putting a dent in the universe.
What is Tim Cook’s passion for Apple?
To be fair, I see similarities between Trump and Kennedy, and there are a few between Cook and Jobs, but no more than the similarities we might see between any two politicians or between any two technology company leaders. Kennedy believed in science and technology and made it an important cornerstone of his presidency. On the other hand, Trump has said climate change is not real, vaccines cause autism, modern light bulbs cause cancer, fracking is not a risk to the environment, and wind farms are bad for people’s health.
Kennedy was an articulate, well spoken president. Trump speaks at a fourth grade level. Jobs was a passionate spokesperson and leader for the future of technology. Cook is a manager’s manager but does not seem particularly visionary.
Folks, I wish it were not this way, but Trump is no Kennedy, and Cook is no Jobs.