Advice to Trump: Pull a Crazy Ivan

 

CrazyIvan_Logo Back in the day — long before Ronald Reagan ended the Cold War with determination, character, and sheer personal strength — Russian submarine commanders had a signature maneuver called “the Crazy Ivan.” Essentially, it meant doing something sharp and unexpected, like a hard turn to port or starboard, or another course change that wasn’t anticipated by American or NATO submarine hunters on the surface.

There will be a lot a tense and coiled-up candidates on the platform during today’s debate. They’ll be nervous and maybe even a little over-prepared for whatever curveball the frontrunner, Donald Trump, decides to pitch.

So, what if he doesn’t? What if he pulls a Crazy Ivan and simply presents his ideas in a moderate and statesmanlike fashion instead? What if he spends his television time presiding over the proceedings, complimenting Scott Walker, say, on his union reforms, or Jeb Bush on his Florida record? What if he acts like a relaxed and confident grown-up who knows he’s way, way ahead-in-the-polls? What if, in other words, he acts like he’s already president?

There’s plenty of time for him to go back to being the incendiary and colorful flamethrower. But on Thursday night, my advice to Trump is to go Crazy Ivan. Take it down to a moderate five or six. No one will doubt for a moment that he’s undergone a personality change, or that the consultants have gotten to him. They’ll just see it for what it is: brilliant psy-ops.

It will drive everyone onstage — and everyone in the media — full-on bonkers.

There are 60 comments.

Become a member to join the conversation. Or sign in if you're already a member.
  1. Tom Meyer, Ed. Contributor
    Tom Meyer, Ed.
    @tommeyer

    Rob Long: So, what if he doesn’t? What if he pulls a Crazy Ivan and simply presents his ideas in a moderate and statesmanlike fashion instead?

    It would ensure that things stay interesting here. ;)

    • #1
  2. Eustace C. Scrubb Member
    Eustace C. Scrubb
    @EustaceCScrubb

    Firefly. Many of you know what I mean, even if Rob doesn’t.

    • #2
  3. Leigh Inactive
    Leigh
    @Leigh

    On one level that might be brilliant… on another level, then he’s just another guy on-stage talking calmly about policy, and his whole persona is built around not being that.  If he’s complimenting Walker on Wisconsin, for instance (awkward since he said the other day he didn’t know what it was all about), why would anyone go with Trump over the guy who actually did it?  If you want a not-politician over a doer, why would you go with Trump rather than Ben Carson?

    I do think he’ll play it more calmly and probably won’t give out anyone’s cell phone number, for instance.  I suspect he’ll try to steal everyone else’s best lines, with complete shamelessness as to consistency.

    • #3
  4. Tommy De Seno Contributor
    Tommy De Seno
    @TommyDeSeno

    That would take a guy who has some care for the party itself in his DNA, and he does not have it.  I’m not saying that’s a bad thing; I’m just making the observation.  I don’t think he’s ever heard of Reagan’s 11th Commandment.

    Also Rob that would be counter-current to what’s got him where he is in the polls, so a strong argument can be made that he should not go the full Crazy Ivan just yet.

    Prof. Rehe said on a previous thread that Trump’s numbers are where they are because he went full throttle  on a subject that the base really cares about and the party has basically ignored.   As usual, the Prof cleared the air so I could see that.

    If the others give some attention to the issues Trump is hammering, Trump will have nothing left but his warts.

    • #4
  5. FightinInPhilly Coolidge
    FightinInPhilly
    @FightinInPhilly

    He always goes to starboard in the bottom half of the hour.

    • #5
  6. Casey Inactive
    Casey
    @Casey

    I’m all for this. Discomfort is fun to watch.

    Although there’s no chance I’ll actually watch.

    • #6
  7. Pseudodionysius Inactive
    Pseudodionysius
    @Pseudodionysius

    That should read Crazy Ivana.

    • #7
  8. Richard Anderson Member
    Richard Anderson
    @RichardAnderson

    I now have this mental image of Donald Trump in a nuclear submarine with Sean Connery.

    • #8
  9. FightinInPhilly Coolidge
    FightinInPhilly
    @FightinInPhilly

    Richard Anderson:I now have this mental image of Donald Trump in a nuclear submarine with Sean Connery.

    Would Rob’s criteria be met if Trump did the whole debate in a Scottish accent?

    • #9
  10. Pseudodionysius Inactive
    Pseudodionysius
    @Pseudodionysius

    Richard Anderson:I now have this mental image of Donald Trump in a nuclear submarine with Sean Connery.

    Let It Snow.

    • #10
  11. The King Prawn Inactive
    The King Prawn
    @TheKingPrawn

    Tommy has it. Trump isn’t capable of such things. I’m starting to think his most successful negotiation technique is to just be himself, and those he’s bartering with just give him what he wants so he’ll go away.

    • #11
  12. Brian McMenomy Inactive
    Brian McMenomy
    @BrianMcMenomy

    Your advice is sound, Rob.  That’s partially why he won’t take it.  Mostly, it will be because he doesn’t have anything close to the discipline on his tongue that the Crazy Ivan would require.

    Love the “Hunt for Red October” reference.  Does that mean we’re the ones dropping torpedoes on him?

    • #12
  13. Jules PA Inactive
    Jules PA
    @JulesPA

    Eustace C. Scrubb:Firefly. Many of you know what I mean, even if Rob doesn’t.

    seriously, just watched that episode the other day. Crazy Ivan.

    • #13
  14. 9thDistrictNeighbor Member
    9thDistrictNeighbor
    @9thDistrictNeighbor

    Same basic advice that Frank Lunz was giving out last night…and he did so well last time around.

    Save for the bombast, Trump on paper is little different from Mitt…family money, business acumen as main selling point, light on specifics.

    • #14
  15. Manfred Arcane Inactive
    Manfred Arcane
    @ManfredArcane

    Brilliant idea.  Had the same yearning, if only to insure he wouldn’t end up tarnishing the Republican brand by acting or doing something too outlandish, but also to see someone rise to the occasion, to exceed expectations rather than disappoint them.

    On a more general note, that is what we want for this occasion, isn’t it?  Someone to exceed expectations.  Mr. Long’s program is what it would take for us to say that of Trump, as it would show a different side of his character, a presidential side.  But acting thus still leaves room for a bold idea or two from him.  And if he, and his fellow contenders, were pointedly collegial while aggressively making their respective cases, giving credit where credit was due…that would be swell.

    • #15
  16. Pencilvania Inactive
    Pencilvania
    @Pencilvania

    I saw Trump talking to O’Reilly the other night, O’Reilly kept pressing him to explain how he’d build a wall on the southern border and ‘make Mexico pay for it.’ Trump wouldn’t tip his hand, he is after all a businessman, but I think he’ll give some plan tonight that will sound surprisingly good.  (might not be legal, but it will zing) I also think he’ll make some allusion to delegating intricate problems to the best & brightest people that he’ll put in place, and that if they don’t perform, he’ll fire them.

    There will be an audience tonight, I assume? That works in Trump’s favor.  I wish they’d debate without an audience, so you could decide for yourself which answers float & which sink.

    • #16
  17. Jager Coolidge
    Jager
    @Jager

    I am not sure that this would help Trump. I don’t think this is why he is ahead or the role he is playing in the Primary. Newt got his bump in numbers and stayed around based on his treatment of the media. Trump has his bump in numbers based on his treatment of Republicans. He is attacking the places where most Republicans were ignoring, the places where the “base” and the elected officials are not on the same page.

    Maybe he needs to turn the “intensity” from a 10 to an 8 or 9. Smart attacks and calling out the others lies or weaknesses. But I don’t think real moderation helps him.

    Frankly he should be helping the other candidates. If you can not handle Trumps attacks on you or your record, how are you going to handle the combined attacks of Clinton and the Media.

    • #17
  18. Casey Inactive
    Casey
    @Casey

    Here’s my prediction – Trump will be his usual self and everyone else will go Crazy Trump and tomorrow we’ll all be explaining why we don’t really hate Mexicans.

    • #18
  19. Illiniguy Member
    Illiniguy
    @Illiniguy

    Someone needs to bring up Trump’s efforts to get Atlantic City to file eminent domain proceedings against the lady who refused to sell her home so he could build his casino, and then bring up the fact that Trump told Neil Cavuto that he was 100% in favor of the Kelo decision. He’s not going to get brought down by trashing illegals, but Kelo struck a nerve when it was issued, and it’ll strike the same nerve now.

    • #19
  20. Pencilvania Inactive
    Pencilvania
    @Pencilvania

    Sounds like Politico’s trying to light a fuse under Trump’s hair right before the debate.

    • #20
  21. Pseudodionysius Inactive
    Pseudodionysius
    @Pseudodionysius

    A Crazy Ivan for Trump is for focus groups to say “he sounded very reasonable.”

    If that happens, another political consultant kitten dies inside.

    • #21
  22. Jimmy Carter Member
    Jimmy Carter
    @JimmyCarter

    Advice to Trump: Walk out on stage, Right behind ¡Jeb!, and give Him an atomic wedgie.

    • #22
  23. Dustoff Inactive
    Dustoff
    @Dustoff

    If Trump really wants to win, the Crazy Ivan (or as Jager mentioned a sort of moderated version) seems a logical move. Question is, does he really want to win? At this point I’m not convinced. Comments?

    • #23
  24. Dustoff Inactive
    Dustoff
    @Dustoff

    Actually, either way JIMMY CARTER’S atomic wedgie is the better move.

    • #24
  25. Casey Inactive
    Casey
    @Casey

    Advice to Trump: Ditch the ball caps.

    Presidential Candidate Donald Trump Tours U.S. Border In Texas

    • #25
  26. Jim Kearney Contributor
    Jim Kearney
    @JimKearney

    One ping only!

    • #26
  27. Manfred Arcane Inactive
    Manfred Arcane
    @ManfredArcane

    Casey:Advice to Trump: Ditch the ball caps.

    Presidential Candidate Donald Trump Tours U.S. Border In Texas

    Wait, wait, are you sure?  Remember what his hair looks like!

    • #27
  28. Guruforhire Member
    Guruforhire
    @Guruforhire

    Man oh man are you guys are living in a world of your own.

    Nobody in this debate is applying for the job of policy analyst.

    Literally nobody except a few voyeuristic policy perverts actually care at this point about policy minutia.  Seriously, its kind of gross.  It yields no useful information about any candidate except their ability to lose sight of what is important and waste money.

    There will be plenty of time to employ policy analysts that give great powerpoints on any given issue later, when the information is useful.  Hell the president whoever they are will have an army of people to provide varying strategies and their full implications to achieve various desirable ends.

    So what if trump hasn’t been spoon fed pablum by consultants at this point?  What does that tell you besides the fact he considers his and your time valuable.

    Do you think policy perverts are the audience?  Sure they are A audience, but not a very important one.  Do you think the audience has a preference for impenetrable jargon over clear vernacular?

    Seriously?

    The most effective thing trump can do is keep talking about problems that he thinks people have and that he would like to do something about them.  Talking about vehicles to achieve the same is interviewing to be the guy who works for trump.

    A few grenades tossed out at entrenched politicians can’t hurt either.  Nobody likes those guys.

    • #28
  29. Umbra Fractus Inactive
    Umbra Fractus
    @UmbraFractus

    Rob Long: So, what if he doesn’t? What if he pulls a Crazy Ivan and simply presents his ideas in a moderate and statesmanlike fashion instead? What if he spends his television time presiding over the proceedings, complimenting Scott Walker, say, on his union reforms, or Jeb Bush on his Florida record? What if he acts like a relaxed and confident grown-up who knows he’s way, way ahead-in-the-polls? What if, in other words, he acts like he’s already president?

    He’ll lose 90% of his support.

    Which is fine by me.

    • #29
  30. Leigh Inactive
    Leigh
    @Leigh

    Yes, stopping the rise of the oceans worked pretty well.  Short on realism, but vaguely inspiring.  Roughly in the same category as making Mexico pay for a wall and having everything else be wonderful.

    • #30
Become a member to join the conversation. Or sign in if you're already a member.

Comments are closed because this post is more than six months old. Please write a new post if you would like to continue this conversation.