If You Want to Beat Trump, You Need a Coach

Good friend, Dave McElhaney, writes for LiberalResistance. We’ve known each other for years — battled in the progressive political trenches together. He forwarded one of his articles, which introduced me to this eZine. Excellent group of writers. Dave passed my information to Michael Jay Tucker, who serves as an editor.

Michael contacted me asking if I was interested in contributing. I said possibly but what is the focus on your work?

What are we trying to accomplish? Uh, er, stammer…to get Trump out of the White House.
Michael Jay Tucker, sort of a volunteer editor, LiberalResistance.net

He asked me about my publishing history. I’m a political scientist, undergrad in economics with PhD work in healthcare and environmental policy. Provided research to the Department of Defense, EPA and Department of Education. Served a United Nation’s policy committee on sustainable development.

Notably, worked with Republican Governor Gary Johnson in 2000. First governor in the nation to call for legalization of cannabis. Used my criminal justice reports in part. The research showed State of New Mexico housed about 20 percent of their prison population for non-violent cannabis possession.

In today’s dollars, that sums to about $60 million per year. Johnson was a libertarian conservative. He wanted smaller government and lower taxes. He was also an IronMan triathlete. He knew his body well and ate properly, trained regularly, and didn’t consume alcohol or junk food. He broke his back in an accident and had used medical cannabis.

Big Pharma options left him lethargic and full of side effects. Through personal experience, he learned the truth about America’s War on Americans who use cannabis. It’s been a lie since 1970.

Johnson wanted to save money. He wanted additional tax revenue — from voluntary sources. He knew it made no sense to incarcerate people who were using a substance arguable safer than alcohol — and definitely more safe than opioids. Again, this was 2000. Colorado was the first state to legalize recreationally in 2014. The state has earned over a billion dollars in tax revenue to date.

Colorado is funding schools — not criminal drug dealers. Today, eleven states have legalized recreationally. Some 33+ states, the District of Columbia, and the U.S Department of Veteran Affairs authorize medical cannabis. Canada has legal cannabis; Mexico will be fully legal in October 2019.

A handful of Democratic presidential contenders now call for national legalization of cannabis — twenty years since Gary Johnson first made the request. He was ridiculed. Called stoners. Simply wanted to save taxpayers money and stop funding criminals.

Tell this story, as it shows how locked our society is in old, outdated and broken thinking. As a people, we are gridlocked, overly-emotional, and kind of like the dinosaurs. At this rate, we’re not going to make it. We’re on the road to our own extinction.

“Failure is not fatal, but failure to change might be.”
Coach John Wooden


Every Team Needs a Coach

How about the women’s U.S. Soccer team? Amazing collection of phenomenal athletes. I’m a former pro athlete. In 1984 I was on the training squad that prepared the U.S. men’s  basketball team. This was Michael Jordan’s rookie year. He had just graduated from UNC. Yeah! My claim to fame — I got to play against Mike.

Head coach was Bobby Knight. Wow! What an asshole. Mess up and he would scream at you for an hour it seemed. Stands could be packed and you’re standing there one-on-one with this guy yelling so loud and passionately his spittle was hitting you in the face. Players worked very hard never be on that side of a discussion with Coach Knight.

Yet that team won gold. Coach Knight was the reason. Historical team. Last USA team of amateurs to win gold. Players executed flawlessly. It was beautiful to watch. The 1988 team failed to bring home gold. The U.S. men’s team in 1992 was called Dream Team. This was the first U.S. men’s Olympic team to have NBA professional players.

“I think that in any group activity—whether it be business, sports or family—there has to be leadership or it won’t be successful.”
Coach John Wooden

Good coaching is the key to success. Let’s say I have eleven A-level soccer players from around the world. Put them in a match with eleven B-level soccer players from around the world. The A-team doesn’t have a coach; the B-team has an experienced coach. Who do you believe will win?

If you put your money on the team that is coached, you’re making a smart bet. Players know. You don’t see any pro athletes, even in individual events, competing without a coach. To be successful, everyone and every team needs a skilled coach.

And, what did Michael Jay Tucker say their group is trying to accomplish? Uh, er, stammer…to get Trump out of the White House. As liberal, progressives, Democrats … whatever label you use, what are you trying to accomplish?

Uh, er, stammer…to get Trump out of the White House.

Trump is in the White House. An incumbent has advantage over the challenger. He’s the A-team. You’re on the B-team. Who’s your coach? You don’t have one. How do you expect to defeat the most powerful guy in U.S. politics playing on the B-team without a coach?


How Do You Pick the Right Coach?

OK, you agree you want a coach. Bobby Knight is a screamer. Won’t go well with Millennials. They’re our tender brothers and sisters. Gotta find someone a bit more mellow and empathetic. The one that comes to mind for me is Yoda from StarWars. He’s gentle, kind, funny, compassionate, wise — and can fight if need be.

“I’m no wizard, and I don’t like being thought of in that light at all. I think of a wizard as being some sort of magician or something, doing something on the sly or something, and I don’t want to be thought of in that way.”
Coach John Wooden

Not many Yoda’s around in our society. I was coached by John Wooden. Some called him the Wizard of Westwood, as this is where UCLA is located in the Los Angeles area. Coach is the closest thing to Yoda in real life to me. Gentle, kind,  funny, compassionate, wise — and is tough as needed.

goold-wooden
Training with Coach

Coach left us a few years ago. The Force was very strong with him. He taught many his Jedi skills. I consider myself fortunate to have learned from him. Have used his methods in the classroom, in business and on the court. His teaching has never let me down.

In 1994 Jenny Lang Ping received an offer to coach the Chinese National Volleyball women’s team. They were ranked 10th in the world. China wanted her to prepare the young squad for the Atlanta ’96 Olympic games. She had never coached. She knew I was experienced. She asked me to join the team.

The Chinese women were smart, hard-working, dedicated and willing to listen to everything Jenny told them, yet most people doubted we would even qualify for the Olympics.

chinese_vb_team
Chinese Olympic Women’s Volleyball Team 1996

We started with Coach’s first principle:

“If you believe you can or believe you cannot, you are correct.”
Coach John Wooden

We believed. And, day-by-day, month-by-month we moved up in world rankings. We had ups; we had downs. We we never gave up. Most importantly, we never gave up on each other. We trusted our players; players trusted the coaches. We laughed, we cried. We won some; we lost more in the early days.

We played for gold in Atlanta ’96. We were a complete success. We shattered all expectations. We learned a second principle from Coach.

“You can lose when you outscore somebody in a game. And you can win when you’re outscored.”
Coach John Wooden


Players Must Desire to be Coached

Jenny coached the U.S. women in 2012. Hated every minute. Players were arrogant, didn’t want to practice or work hard, and focused more on money than being the best they could be. They criticized each other; thought they should be the one coaching; and didn’t want to work as a team. The U.S. women learned a third of Coach’s principles.

“I had three rules for my players: No profanity. Don’t criticize a teammate. Never be late.”
Coach John Wooden

Jenny returned to China to coach their women in 2016. They worked hard, believed in her, trusted each other. They won gold in Rio. Teaming together, they earned their place in history. They demonstrated a fourth key principle we learned from Coach.

“Earn the right to be proud and confident.”
Coach John Wooden


Liberals v. Conservatives

Progressives have better ideas than conservatives. It’s natural. The conservative wants to preserve the past. Yet he world is constantly evolving and changing. The conservative can’t come up with good ideas, as the conservative wants to remain in place.

“We can have no progress without change, whether it be basketball or anything else.”
Coach John Wooden

Yet progressives, liberals, Democrats, let’s use liberals going forward, seem to lose more often to conservatives. Conservatives account for about 20 percent of the population — they control the other 80 percent.

Conservatives and liberals are totally different groups of people. In general, conservatives are hierarchical in personality. They follow CEOs, generals or remain in line with Republican party officials, for example. One person offers an plan or idea and they fall in line to get to work. They are extremely efficient.

Liberals are extremely bright people for the most part. This strength is a core weakness. In a group dynamic, each individual believes they are “right.” They all seem to have good ideas. Thus, gaining consensus is difficult. They argue amongst themselves, divide, and storm off in different directions. Divided they fall.

It also takes time to create excellence. Liberals tend to be younger in age, as well as young in spirit. They want to do it now and change immediately. Facing the Great Recession 2007-2008, Tracy Morgan played a character in a SNL skit. “Fixit,” he screamed. “Just fixit now!” Hilarious, but doesn’t work that way. Reminds me of another Coach lesson:

“It takes time to create excellence. If it could be done quickly, more people would do it.”
Coach John Wooden


Retaking the White House in Election 2020

As of today, there are about 460 days until Election 2020. You have time. To succeed, you must work together. But don’t be fooled. As of today, Donald Trump is going to win re-election. You’ve suffered four years. Can you and this nation tolerate another four?

“Failing to prepare is preparing to fail.”
Coach John Wooden

Liberals need to begin preparing for victory now. Today is Day 1 of the second round of presidential candidate debates. The second group battles tomorrow. There is great risk here. With 20 hungry candidates, this format creates a circular firing squad. Each jab, criticism and attack is simply cannon fodder for Trump and Republicans. Whatever they say can be and will be used against them later in the general election.

The danger is the final candidate standing will be so bloodied and weakened, and with liberal ranks exhausted and divided, it will be an easy path for the incumbent president.

You need a coach. You must agree to listen to someone. I am not running for office. I do not have a desire for power. I am not here to pick the final candidate. You must do this. I am not the one to set the political agenda. Together, all of you must do this. I am just one who knows how to coach and build a team. As Coach said:

“I am just a common man who is true to his beliefs.”
Coach John Wooden

You must be willing to compromise. You may want Plan A; Bob may want Plan B; Jaime wants Plan C. This will not win. This is a divided electorate. You will have to agree to compromise. Nobody gets everything; everybody gets something. You decide to champion Plan D.

Plan D gets you to the White House. And, always remember this important quality of liberal people.

“Well, your greatest joy definitely comes from doing something for another, especially when it was done with no thought of something in return.”
Coach John Wooden

I will not coach you for free. You must have skin in the game. You must be willing to work hard; have faith; compromise with others; recruit your friends and family; and put the ultimate goal, defeating Donald J. Trump, ahead of any selfish pursuit.

“Nothing will work unless you do.”
Coach John Wooden


If interested in being coached and beating Trump, join with us. Part 2 coming soon.

Served national political campaigns: Clinton 1992, Clinton 1996; Gore 2000; Kerry 2004; Hillary primary 2008; Obama 2008; Obama 2012; Bernie 2016. Tulsi 2020. Provided rapid response editorial writing and commentary; data and trend analysis; polling and survey research; leadership on GOTV campaigns.

Remember you heard it here first. Please leave your comments below and be sure to FOLLOW ClearHeath Life Strategies. We provide News of the News You Wish You Knew.

Ko’olau of Kaua’i. I am the Defiant One
“I Believe We Can”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s