As we proceed towards the end of the Donald Trump’s honeymoon period in the White House, it is appropriate to understand why a man who won a hotly contested election in November now has a record low approval rating for a newly installed President. The reason may be found in two words.


The man who entered the White House after the January 20th Inauguration was a businessman whose whole life had been dedicated to running his own company and had never had any experience in politics, diplomacy or the military. Donald Trump was the first President to enter office with no experience of any of the roles that form the central platform of the Office of President of the United States.

As his modus operandi as an entrepreneur was to expect his orders to be followed blindly by his assistants President Trump then took this attitude into the Oval Office from the first day. No dissention is allowed from staff members and any criticism directed towards the man in the political hot seat, from any source, is greeted within undisguised intolerance from its subject.

While these tactics may work in boardrooms, they do nothing to ensure proper administration of the system of government of a major democracy. These differences can be summarized by looking at two words that are the difference between Democracy and Dictatorship.


According to the Oxford Dictionary to govern is to “Conduct the policy, actions, and affairs of (a state, organization, or people) with authority.”

On the other hand “to rule” is defined as “have a powerful and restricting influence on”.

In most commentaries on forms of government the first form is that used towards a Democracy and therefore by elected officials, whereas the second verb is commonly used in reference to monarchies and even dictatorships. Effectively the verbs define the essential differences between a Democracy and any form of unelected government.

In the same manner they define the difference between a person who runs his or her own business and those who run the Administration of a country.


Since his first day in office Donald Trump has been running the country as though the Oval Office was the boardroom of Trump Tower rather than the place of an elected official with the added responsibilities and duties tied to the position.

These differences in attitude explain the intolerance towards court challenges to his orders, just as they make us understand the criticism of the judges who decided in favour of the challenges. These differences also allow us to understand his attitude to the personal Conflicts Of Interest as he sees his the Oval Office as his new business and thus he considers there is no conflict between the private businessman and the public official.

In this he shares many similarities with the other businessman become politician, Italy’s Silvio Berlusconi, who once answered criticism of his own conflicts of interest by saying “If by acting in my own interest I am also acting in the interest of the country, where is the conflict?”.


Donald Trump would do well to look at the example provided by Silvio Berlusconi because the entrepreneur from Milan paid the ultimate price for his mistaking governing for ruling. The former Italian Prime Minster was expelled from the Italian Senate and has been banned from public office.

Nobody wishes this fate on President Donald Trump but it should serve as a warning to make the businessman understand that the stakes for anyone in politics are much higher than those of a private entrepreneur and the price to be paid is much higher and also much more public.

Finally, now is the time for the Republican Party to play its true role as Berlusconi’s own party was unwilling to do; to provide the assistance and direction that will allow the businessman to become the governor of the country. Is the GOP capable of doing so?