In my business, I always tell my staff that we have to be our harshest critics. We have to pick apart every aspect of our operation and how we do everything, because better we do it and make the necessary adjustments than we release a product or perform a service and receive that harsh feedback from a customer.

The same is true of President Trump. He was our President for four years, and could be again. Some conservatives morphed to NeverTrumpers while others believe he walks on water. The answer, of course, is somewhere in the middle.

The Bubbler gives President Trump a B- grade for his four years. Here’s our assessment.

The Plus Side

There are lists of President Trump’s accomplishments all over the place, and I’m not going to attempt to echo that. Instead, I’m going to cite the greatest impacts he had on this country.

  • Millions of disenfranchised middle Americans who previously checked out of the process were attracted to the voting booth.
  • After decades of letting a biased media define them, Trump not only pushed back on corporate media but went on offense, calling them out as “fake news” and “enemies of the state.” Both of which are entirely accurate.
  • He also took to social media to share his thoughts and accomplishments, removing the media’s filter.
  • We didn’t enter a war for four years.
  • Five Middle Eastern states signed peace agreements with Israel.
  • With significant deregulation and tax cuts, Trump created the most capitalist-friendly economic environment in recent history, and the economy thrived, as a result.
  • Trump engaged minorities in ways the Republican Party couldn’t previously be bothered to in my lifetime. As a result, the Republican Party’s story of fighting racism, slavery, and segregation finally started to be told.
  • The economy reached record low unemployment for women and minorities.
  • Raw, unfiltered conservatism was finally given a strong, confident, brazen, and unapologetic voice for the first time since we all took it for granted as the best way to live one’s life. (And the Republican Party learned nothing from it.)
  • He defined the problem of illegal immigration succinctly and motivated millions to vote, as a result. Then, he built a wall.
  • For the first time in history, America became a net exporter of oil, becoming energy independent. The importance of this can’t be understated, as it represent a big lesson learned during COVID – we can’t be dependent on other nations when our country is at stake.
  • China was finally exposed as not only the threat it represents, but that it’s intentions are to defeat the United States.
  • Trump had the guts to withdraw from many deals that were bad for the United States – Paris Climate Accords, and the Iran deal, to name a few.
  • After eight years of Obama’s reality-based pessimism of how things are, President Trump reintroduced optimism and the American “can-do” spirit that had been intrinsic to our national personality. Fact checkers didn’t even understand the concept of optimism and confidence, frequently fact-checking Trump’s aspirational assertions as “false,” before events were even allowed to play out.
  • Probably most importantly, he exposed the corporate and foreign-run Washington establishment, from the politicians to the unelected bureaucracies to the media to the law enforcement agencies – all of whom colluded against him for five years. This woke up the country to what their tax dollars are really paying for, and people are saying, “enough!”

Every President has a list of accomplishments at the end of their tenure. And those lists always feature some version of the same things. What makes this special is that many of the items on Trump’s list have never before been seen in American politics. He took on the entire establishment, and did significant damage.

Unfortunately, the “swamp,” or “deep state,” had the final say. And that brings us to the down side.

The Negative Side

By sheer quantity, President Trump’s accomplishments far outweigh the negatives. But the quality of his mistakes unfortunately overshadowed many of his accomplishments and ultimately doomed him.

  • Being new to Washington, it’s understandable that Trump didn’t know who to trust. The answer was, unfortunately, no one. He should have done clean sweeps of the most important agencies, firing career bureaucrats wherever he could find them. Instead, they undermined him at every turn.
  • COVID was an unforced error, and a huge one. He should never have closed the economy, and he should have removed, or minimized Fauci and Brix as soon as possible. (We said this at the time, to be sure.) He brought on Dr. Scott Atlas far too late, and could have found an entire team of people just like him at the very beginning. This didn’t just cost him an election. It costs millions of people their livelihoods and jobs.
  • FBI Director Christopher Wray should have been fired as soon as it was obvious he wasn’t going to move on the Russia collusion hoax. Likewise, Bill Barr should have been removed when it was clear he was slow-playing the investigation into Biden, Comey, Obama, and the rest. With this story buried, Americans were never able to see the proof available.
  • Under Trump’s administration, American cemented the notion that there are no consequences for any illegal actions. Hillary walked. Comey walked. Schiff walked. Obama walked. Biden walked. Antifa protesters destroyed with impunity. Kamala Harris bailed them out. BLM vandalized cities, surrounded cars, stood in highways – all without consequence. All Trump did was tweet “LAW AND ORDER,” which was, quite frankly, embarrassingly irresponsible as the country was burning. The Insurrection Act was there to be used. He didn’t.
  • As many as Trump attracted, he may have repulsed a similar number. Trump is unafraid and knows how to fight. This was the four years I’ve been waiting for my whole life. Unfortunately, he doesn’t really understand conservatism or how to articulate it. He’s prone to unnecessary lies and exaggerations that obscure his points. And he entered the office with a reputation of being shifty, obtuse, and all about himself from when the press arguably liked him.
  • Many Trump supporters lost sight of the shared principles and causes we are fighting for at the expense of Trump’s cult of personality. Unfortunately, for too many, this fight became about whether or not President Trump was right or wrong, lying or not, or sent by God. But Trump is temporary. The cause is eternal. We’re always going to have to fight for freedom and liberty. If Trump supporters check out on the process now that Trump is gone, it will prove it was all about him, and not the cause of winning back the country from the establishment.

One of the classic measures of a President is the answer to the question “Are you better off than you were four years ago?” As we reach the last day of his four year presidency, and we look ahead to what’s coming, the answer is, decidedly “no.”

Conservatives are definitively, and with impunity, losing their free speech rights. They’ve also learned nothing from the past 30 years and are already retreating back to ridiculous expectations that the Republican Party will even remotely represent them in any way, shape, or form. (They won’t.)

The Democrats have full power and will erase the Trump years and sweep them into the memory hole in weeks, if not days. A full assault on the Constitution is just beginning, and far too many Americans still don’t see it coming.

While Trump was right to call out the media, it never occurred to him to solve the problem by revitalizing a version of the Fairness Doctrine, and he never got serious about breaking up tech monopolies until they were already positioned to destroy him.

Trump’s personality is unfortunately polarizing, and while I think it’s strong enough that he can win another election, I’m concerned that by focusing our attention on keeping him propped up, we’ll miss an opportunity to find a new and younger leader with more credibility who’s willing to fearlessly take the fight to Democrats.

President Trump accomplished things even I didn’t think possible in such a short time. I appreciate him for that, and happily voted for him in 2020. But he also missed many opportunities to finish off those who ultimately rose to defeat him, instead settling for tweets that did nothing but build hopes that are now dashed.