Power Suits & Pol­i­tics N


O ONE SHOULD BE ABLE TO TELL YOUR POL­I­TICS BY how you dress. In a per­fectly stylish world — a sharper world — lib­er­als and con­ser­va­tives, Repub­li­cans and Democrats, would all wear suits that fit, shoes that draw just the right amount of at­ten­tion, and have com­pa­ra­ble pops of colour on their lapels. In this world, we can all agree on cer­tain in­alien­able truths — right or left, we can all have a crush on Aya Cash (pg. 112) or en­joy a good Mark Wahlberg (pg. 104) movie.

But th­ese days, it’s hard to avoid the po­lit­i­cal, and you might no­tice it creep­ing into this is­sue a bit more than usual (with an eye to bal­ance, of course). In fact, the first time I read Alex Nino Ghe­ciu’s in­ter­view with Kevin O’leary (pg. 58), the Dragons’ Den star and blus­ter­ing voice of con­ser­va­tive frus­tra­tion in Canada, I came away im­pressed. Or at least calmed. For a man who is cap­i­tal­iz­ing on his fre­quent com­par­i­son to Don­ald Trump, I was happy that he seemed to have core val­ues and opin­ions that — even if I don’t agree with them — are at least in­formed. Plus, un­like the man he’s said to be the Cana­dian ver­sion of, he has em­braced his hair­line in a dig­ni­fied, Cap­tain Pi­card-es­que way. See, we’ll al­ways com­ment on style.

In that con­text, we feel com­pelled to pick a side in the Amer­i­can elec­tion; not as ex­perts on pol­icy or pol­i­tics, but as men in­ter­ested in style. We of­ten praise lux­ury in th­ese pages, but we’re quick to ex­plain that there is a dif­fer­ence be­tween cost and qual­ity. The lat­ter should al­ways in­form and jus­tify the for­mer. A Rolex is ex­pen­sive, but with good rea­son. A solid gold cell­phone, stud­ded with di­a­monds, is costly for cost’s sake. Trump’s brand of lux­ury is an ex­am­ple of the lat­ter. Big gold signs are os­ten­ta­tious, whereas true lux­ury is of­ten sub­tle, even silent, like hav­ing the time to read, the means to travel, the re­fine­ment of taste. And that’s re­ally it: a man as wealthy as Trump should have bet­ter taste. His suits should fit bet­ter. His hair, or what­ever that is cling­ing to his head, should look bet­ter. His gram­mar, even in offthe-cuff in­ter­views, should be ac­cu­rate (never mind true, but his sen­tences should be syn­tac­ti­cally sound, or at least com­plete).

Let pun­dits talk about his tem­per­a­ment and qual­i­fi­ca­tions (or lack thereof ). Let them de­bate whether his pro­pos­als are vi­able or dan­ger­ous. We won’t speak to that — at least not un­til he se­ri­ously pro­poses to build a YUGE wall along our bor­der (and make us pay for it). But — and I re­al­ize this is a pretty con­tro­ver­sial state­ment, which I’m pre­pared to de­fend — Trump could re­ally stand to up his style game.

Be­cause, de­spite how he acts, this elec­tion thing isn’t a game at all.

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