When a business leader who you once considered for a high-ranking government position burns you, that's really bad.
Once upon a time, JP Morgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon was rumored to be a contender for the position of Treasury Secretary under President Donald Trump. After first indicating that he wasn't interested — and then flat-out declining the position — Dimon reportedly found himself on the receiving end of one of Trump's characteristic petulant insults.
Trump has also called Dimon "the worst banker in the United States."
Now Dimon is speaking out about the problems in Washington in his own distinct fashion (which involves candor sans the Trump-ian bullying).
"It's almost an embarrassment being an American citizen . . . and listening to the stupid — we have to deal with in this country," Dimon said during a quarterly earnings conference call on Friday, according to a report by CBS News.
After negatively contrasting the ineptitude of America's gridlocked government with the comparative competence of other nations he has visited — including France, Argentina, Israel, Ireland, India and China — Dimon pointed out that those countries recognize "that practical policies that promote business and growth is good for the average citizens of this countries, for jobs and wages, and that somehow, this great American free enterprise system, we no longer get it."
Dimon added, "The American business sector is powerful and strong, and it's going to grow regardless. What I'm saying is, it will be much stronger growth had we made intelligent decisions and we were not gridlocked."
This isn't the first time that Dimon has sent out a message calling for Americans of all political persuasions to put country over party. Shortly after Trump's election in November, Dimon released a memo saying "we have just been through one of the most contentious elections in memory, which can make it even harder to put our differences aside. But that makes it more important than ever to bind the wounds of our nation and to bring together Americans from all walks of life."
As Dimon observed, "America is best when we come together with clear leadership, expertise and the political will to take on difficult challenges and get things done."
Despite his advocacy for bipartisanship, this hasn't stopped Dimon from criticizing specific Trump administration policies. In his annual letter to shareholders in April, he criticized the president's policies on immigration, trade, climate change and defense spending.