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Making Mexico Pay for the Wall - Dilbert Blog

Making Mexico Pay for the Wall

I can think of several ways a future President Trump could get Mexico to pay for (some) of the wall.

In a prior post, I talked about turning the border into a tourist opportunity that creates enough money to pay for the wall, but that’s the hard way.

The easy way goes like this:

President Trump: Mexico, pay for this wall!

Mexico: Um, no. That’s crazy talk.

President Trump: Here’s your first busload of illegal immigrants.

Mexico: Wait, what?

President Trump: Here’s your second busload.

Mexico: Maybe we could chip in a little, just to be good neighbors.

President Trump: Here’s your third busload.

Mexico: Here’s your check! Is it enough?

Under this scenario, Trump accepts some flexibility on handling illegal immigrants from Mexico in return for (some) construction funding for the wall.

The public will cry, “President Trump, you promised us that Mexico would pay for ALL of the wall, and you promised you would deport ALL of the illegal immigrants.”

And President Trump will say, “No, I told you I would negotiate the best deal. This is it.”

This is not a prediction because there are several ways to get Mexico onboard with the wall. My only point is that from a negotiating perspective, Trump has a stronger hand than you think. He can’t explain it like I did because it would make him less effective. So don’t interpret Trump’s lack of specifics as a lack of a plan. His history suggests he has a plan for negotiating this thing from strength.

Note for new readers: I’m not endorsing Trump or anyone else. I am not smart enough to know who would do the best job as president. But I do have a graduate degree in business from the Haas School of Business at Berkeley, and one of the things I learned is that you can always make a deal when two parties want different things. The only time you can’t make a deal is when people want exactly the same limited resource.

The United States and Mexico want different things, generally speaking, so according to my business training, a deal is possible. If you think Trump can’t make a deal in this situation, you have to ask yourself if this is the exception to that business rule. I haven’t seen that kind of exception in my life, and I make deals for a living (licensing, angel investments, syndication, publishing, etc.). So while I have not seen an exception to that rule, I have met plenty of people who didn’t know the rule.

Now you know it. Trump already did.