Some people are made for business, some people aren’t, and that’s okay.
Some people are made for money, some people aren’t, and that’s okay. Some people if they had a lot of money, I think they would have no idea what to do with it. But you have to have some money. It’s important to have enough money. With money, it gives you the freedom to respond however you want to the unexpected.
Plus, it’s fun. You can have a lot of fun with money.
The economy is a big game. Anyone can play, if you learn the rules of the game. It’s a matter of talking the talk. It all comes down to people in a room, people on the telephone. Look, you have to understand: we’re all playing the game because it’s fun. That’s what most people never understand. But it’s the most fun thing humans have ever put together, this huge game called the economy — and it’s most fun when people aren’t losers about it.
Look, you’re playing chess, and it becomes clear your opponent doesn’t give a shit. They don’t care about winning. Their heart isn’t in it. They’re distracted. They’re making stupid moves. It just isn’t fun anymore. You never get that really great moment where you’re sitting in your office, and they’re sitting in their office, and you each know the other knows exactly what you’re thinking, and you’re each appreciating how the other forced you to this point… It’s one of the deepest connections there is.
My point is, if you’re not a loser about it, even if you do lose, you know you lost because your opponent really beat you, because they saw past you, beyond you, discovered something really new. You can learn from that. You can appreciate that, there’s a beauty to that. So really, you win, even if you lose.
A worthy opponent is a friend. The game is most fun when you have a worthy opponent. If you’re playing the game and just fucking around, it’s not fun for the rest of us. It’s no challenge to take you down.
Look, I say to anyone who objects to this. They say, Oh the problem with the game is that everyone is forced to play it. So don’t play. Go live out in the woods. That’s where we used to be, and it was really fucking boring, and that’s why we invented the game in the first place.
But more seriously. Just do your thing. Stop worrying about it. Care for people. Teach. Train for the marathon. Make art. If you work honestly, and give yourself generously, people will give back and support you. Maybe they’re playing the game themselves, and can offer you some luxuries. But let me tell you: the game invented luxuries, luxuries invented the game. Luxuries are the prize for winning the game. Winning the game, you don’t have to work so hard, you can rest on your laurels for a bit, while everyone else is clawing their way up. The game wouldn’t be fun if the losers weren’t denied luxuries and the winners weren’t granted luxuries. Don’t expect to live in luxury if you don’t play the game.
We call the game “the real world” because if it weren’t real, it wouldn’t be fun. And it is the real world, because one of the rules of the game is that the players have to protect the game. Like you’re playing chess, and your brother tries to knock over the board, and you knock him in the face instead. Go play elsewhere, dipshit. Business is where we have our fun.
I’ve always liked the idea of the zen master.
The zen master lives in the zen temple, which is his domain. And the zen master is the master of the zen temple since he was the most zen of everyone at the temple. You could never trap him in anything. He always wriggled free.
Apprentices come to the zen master because they want to understand themselves. Because they’re not having fun, and they realized it’s not the world, it’s something in them. And the zen master makes them do all these hardships and tasks, and gives them these riddles and stages contests between them. And the apprentices start to learn about people, about themselves. They start to trust their own judgement. They start learning how to judge, because they see how they’re being judged, and they identify with the zen master’s judgement. Because he’s always right. He’s always right because he really listens to them and judges with clarity, because he understands it’s not personal. That’s why he’s the zen master. Soon the apprentice stop being afraid of their own judgement. Bit by bit, the zen master breaks them down, until they realize they can do anything. They can always find a way to win.
The winner of all the tasks becomes the next zen master. You become a zen master because you were tested by all the other zen masters, and you beat them. Really, the game is just a way for zen masters to totally test themselves against all the others. The best part is that once you’re a zen master, you get to make up the rules of the game. Those are the rules until someone is able to rise up and find a way to game them. Then, you lose, and someone else gets to make up the rules for a while.
People come to me and want to join my business. And I test them, because a lot of them, I don’t think they really want to join my business. I don’t think it would be fun for them. I don’t think they’d be good at it. Because really, they’re after something else. But how can you tell? How can you let them see they’re not right for the job?
I want people who have the confidence in their judgement that comes from having passed every test I can come up with. That’s the kind of confidence you need in deal making. You need to understand yourself, you need to understand people, and you need to have proved it to yourself. The zen master helps the apprentice by helping him prove himself to himself.
I’m a big fan of transparency. When I’m president, yes I’m going to have a reality show, yes it’s going to be The White House Apprentice. And any citizen is going to be able to be on this show. There’s going to be a selection process, maybe a bit of a lottery. And people from all over the country will come, and they’re going to compete against each other to complete a number of tasks, like running a DMV, like administering Social Security, like collecting taxes, like doing environmental protection. And everyone at home is going to see exactly what these things are really like, and what kind of people are doing these jobs, and they’re going to trust the people in these positions because they’re going to see exactly how they got there.
Any citizen is going to have the chance to rise up in the ranks, and become my right hand guy or girl. Maybe that’s how I’ll fill my cabinet. The point is, people are going to come on the show because they trust my judgement. That’s why they’re going to elect me president. They’re going to have hope that they can rise up, and it’ll be true, they really can, and then we’re only going to have winners in government.
Maybe we won’t actually have a show. But that will be my process either way.
Some people have a calling. All they want to do is perform their music. All they want to do is cook. More power to them. Some people have a calling, and that calling is business. If you’re calling is business, I can drop you in any situation, running a car wash, running a beauty paegant, running a restaurant, running a literary agency — and you’ll come in, use your judgement, identify the key players, organize them, and make your profit. A businessman can make a profit on anything. That’s the beauty of it. It’s the game we love. The deal making. It doesn’t even really matter what it is we’re selling. So we help out those who have other callings, because really, they don’t like selling things, and we do.
Once you feel you can make a little money in any situation, you get a zen calm. You aren’t a slave to money anymore. No matter what happens, you know you’ll find a way. The actual amount of money you have doesn’t even matter anymore. You’re above money. That’s when you’re really playing the game.
That’s what I feel I can teach people. If you are suffering because money is, I don’t know, a charged psychological thing for you, come to me. I will help you lay it to rest. Then you can start having some fun. You’ll find out if you really care about the game. And if you really don’t, you can find another line of work, and not feel bad about it. Or you can really start having some fun.
The reason people trust my judgement is because they know for me, it’s not personal, it’s just business. Maybe I like you as a person, maybe I don’t. But I make up the rules, and it’s pretty clear to everyone who didn’t do such a good job, and when I fire you, nobody is surprised. They get it. Because people see that I listen to them. And they respect the fact that I don’t break my own rules.
We both know when you’re bullshitting because you have to. There’s a way to bullshit so well it’s as good as winning — it’s another way of proving yourself. People know I know that. So they aren’t embarassed by it. You learn to put your feelings at the door, and when you enter the board room, you are really willing to play.
When I become president, it will validate every contestant who has ever appeared on The Apprentice, and everyone who ever trusted my judgement on the show. When I become president, we are going to make the best deal for the American people, and the people are going to understand that. They are going to understand that I don’t care about theories, liberal, conservative, Republican, Democrat. I care about what works.
For example, there’s a proposal to save a huge amount of money, and I won’t say by whom, but the idea is that we could dramatically shrink the size of government, much of which is bureaucrats pouring over data about you the citizen trying to figure out if you are worthy of this or that social benefit. The proposal is to cut social security entirely, put all the paper pushers out on the street, and instead give everyone a lump sum every month, across the board, absolutely enough to live on, indexed to rent and food and childcare and health and everything important.
And it’s going to eliminate the really not fun things that happen at the low end of our economy, help the people in the middle have greater freedom in their lives, maybe taking on a little less work, maybe doing a little more work they really love, and the people at the top, it’ll be a blip because they’re taxed enough that the government is really just going to get it back anyway. Not only are we going to get rid of all the bureaucrats and waste of taxpayer money, but we’re going to free people up to do what they want with their lives, which means more things for business people to sell.
Not only is our economy going to be huge, like you’ve never seen, but I think it’s going to help people psychologically. People can decide for themselves if they really want to go into business or not, and experience the luxuries that come from it. Because every American is going to have some basic luxuries that come with being a citizen. A roof over your head, and the chance to play the greatest game in the world. We can actually do this.
If that’s what it takes to keep the game going, then that’s what we’re going to do. I’ve been around for a while. I’ve seen the way the computers are taking people’s jobs. Look, if computers are going to automate the jobs of most average Americans, we ought to be glad about that. Most of these jobs are not exactly jobs people want to do. But I understand why people are afraid. If the computers are going to take all the well paying jobs for average Americans, how is the average American going to have enough money in the bank to buy what the computers make? It doesn’t make sense. Not only will Americans have no money, but American businesses are going to go under. Even if the computers can’t do every job now, people are already worried. And because they’re worried, they’re not spending, because everything is precarious. We’re going to fix that.
Either a person has a useful talent that computers can’t do, which is not going to be easy to develop — or a person somehow convinces someone to give them a loan, which they’ll use to buy some products and sell them at a higher price in a favorable market, do business, make deals — but, as I said, not everyone finds that fun. So instead, let’s just give people the money instead of loaning it to them. Then they can pay for what they need while they take the time to figure out what it is they can do that is both fun and also no one else, not even a computer, can do it.
I think it’ll make the game more fun for the rest of us, since the only players in the game will be serious. They’ll be playing because they want to play.
There’s going to be no problem paying for it, either. We’re going to make the government so efficient, you’ll barely notice. And the whole economy is going to be much more productive, and that’ll increase revenue as well.
It makes sense. It’s what I did on The Apprentice. While you’re playing the game, I let you live in the mansion, I let you live on the grounds, even if it isn’t so nice, I give you a place to stay so you have the chance to test yourself. Because it’s better for me that way, too.
Nobody in America is going to go hungry when I’m president. Not only that, but no one is going to take advantage of us either. When I’m the zen master, that’s how I’m going to change the rules of the game. We’re going to be a nation of winners.
Why do people go to jobs anyway? If they love their job, it’s because they want to be around a certain kind of person, to do a certain kind of thing. It’s not really about money.
America, you need the money president to rise above money. And I’ve proven to you, that unlike these guys in Washington, I really don’t care about it.