How it must have killed the New York Times’ editorial board to see this on the front page of their newspaper.
But President Trump’s performance at this week’s business meetings in Davos, Switzerland was so triumphant that there was no way to say otherwise – no matter how much the Times’ powers that be must have wanted to.
No one was declaring President Trump a changed man. Privately, executives and global leaders who had gathered in Davos continued to worry that the American president could yet indulge his worst instincts — and his penchant for shock on Twitter — to deliver a geopolitical crisis, open up a new front in trade hostilities or offend a vast group of people.
But a rough consensus emerged over Mr. Trump’s two-day visit that his administration had shown itself to be more pragmatic than advertised. Many were inclined to view the president’s most extreme positions as just aggressive bargaining postures.
“There’s a very constructive mind-set in the Trump administration to find the best path forward,” said Vas Narasimhan, global chief of drug development for Novartis, who attended a dinner Mr. Trump hosted on Thursday night with leaders of more than a dozen European companies. “I’m optimistic that, with other world leaders, most of these issues can be tackled in a productive way for the global economy and for global businesses.”
During the dinner, Mr. Trump made the rounds, stopping to ask executives how they plan to increase investment in the United States, according to attendees.
In his speech, Mr. Trump took credit for a booming American stock market and strong economic growth, pointing to the regulations his administration has slashed, as well as the $1.5 trillion package of tax cuts he championed and navigated through Congress. He left the impression that he was above all eager to woo foreign investment, as if he were leading some amped-up American Chamber of Commerce.
Wooing international business leaders. Winning them over with a positive economic message – not just blathery words but actual deeds.
That is a triumph. Not a fleeting triumph of diplomatic dancing but a triumph of major companies with huge assets now wanting to do business in the United States of America…..which means jobs and growth for us.
Too bad the folks who write editorials over there will almost certainly learn nothing from it.