September 15, 2016

How to deal with the Don con

Sam Smith - There are so many things repulsive, dumb and cruel about Donald Trump that it is easy to get distracted from the business at hand: to insure that this rampant con artist doesn't make it into the White House. 

The basic rule that should be followed - and isn't - would be that the Democratic campaign concentrate not on Trump's offenses against his opponents - liberals, blacks, latinos etc - few of whom will be voting for him, but instead on the stories and facts that show how he has betrayed the very constituency of white male workers and small business people who are forming an important part of his base. 

The pitch needs to be that Trump is a highly successful con man of the sort that have ripped off Americans throughout their history. And that the important thing is not to argue with what he is saying but show how he doesn't believe or practice it himself. And how he has harmed the very people he claims he wants to serve. 

This puts his critics not in opposition to many of his supporters but in the role of someone who has uncovered the fraud in his arguments and doesn't want others trapped in them. 

Here are some examples of such incidents:  
  • ·       Trump’s casino bankruptcies, which left investors holding the bag while he skedaddled with their money
  • ·       Trump’s habit of refusing to pay contractors who had done work for him, many of whom are struggling small businesses
  • ·       Trump University, which includes not only the people who got scammed and the Florida investigation, but also a similar story from Texas where the investigation into Trump U was quashed.
  • ·       The Trump Institute, another get-rich-quick scheme in which Trump allowed a couple of grifters to use his name to bilk people out of their money
  • ·       The Trump Network, a multi-level marketing venture (a.k.a. pyramid scheme) that involved customers mailing in a urine sample which would be analyzed to produce for them a specially formulated package of multivitamins
  • ·       Trump Model Management, which reportedly had foreign models lie to customs officials and work in the U.S. illegally, and kept them in squalid conditions while they earned almost nothing for the work they did
  • ·       Trump’s employment of foreign guest workers at his resorts, which involves a claim that he can’t find Americans to do the work
  • ·       Trump’s use of hundreds of undocumented workers from Poland in the 1980s, who were paid a pittance for their illegal work

And some others:

  • ·       Political Wire -  Donald Trump “has run an unusually cheap campaign in part by not paying at least 10 top staffers, consultants and advisers, some of whom are no longer with the campaign,” Reuters reports.
  • ·        Neil Barsky, NY Times - Amid all the self-made myths about Donald Trump, none is more fantastic than Trump the moneymaker, the New York tycoon who has enjoyed a remarkably successful business career. In reality, Mr. Trump was a walking disaster as a businessman for much of his life. This is not just my opinion. Warren Buffett said as much this past week. . . .His list of real estate accomplishments were minuscule compared with those of more successful New York developers who garnered far less publicity, and he lied a lot. He made up the prices he was getting for his condominiums, the value of bids he had turned down for various properties and his prospects for luring corporate tenants to his buildings.And, of course, he lied about his wealth.
  • ·       USA Today - Nailing down the number of legal battles involving Donald Trump and his businesses is a moving target, and the USA Today Network's ongoing review of his empire's litigation continues surfacing new cases. In early June, the analysis had found at least 3,500 cases — a figure that has now surpassed 4,000 ... Trump uses the lawsuits to negotiate throughout his business relationships. He turns to litigation to distance himself from failing projects that relied on the Trump brand. And he uses the legal system to haggle over his property bills and contracts with vendors.
  • ·        According to the Tax Policy Center analysis of the Trump tax plan, “the highest-income households would receive the largest cuts, both in dollars and as a percentage of income.” People at the bottom of the economic ladder would receive, on average, a $128 tax cut under Trump’s plan, while the top 0.1 percent would take home an extra $1.3 million.
  • ·       Daily Beast -Consider the Trump National Golf Club Westchester, located roughly 33 miles north of Trump Tower in Manhattan. It features a 50,000 square foot, $20 million clubhouse that Trump built after he acquired the 140 acres in the late 1990s. There are 18 holes and a majestic waterfall that Trump says is 101 feet high. Trump boasts that “no expense was spared” in creating a “world class” golf course. In his presidential disclosure Trump valued the golf course and its massive clubhouse at more than $50 million. In tax documents Trump valued the same property at just $1.35 million. That is a 97% variance, an irreconcilable difference that raises yet again questions about Trump’s integrity, not to mention the size of his fortune, which he has testified he values differently as his emotional state shifts, regardless of objective facts. Trump’s presidential disclosure indicates he made $10.3 million off the golf course last year and early this year. That alone should sound alarms since businesses normally sell for multiples of their profits, not a tiny fraction of profits.
  • ·       Donald Trump's own line of men's wear, the Donald J. Trump Signature Collection, is manufactured in China. -Salon


Anonymous said...

A sound strategy, but who will make the case? Hillary can't because of two decades of support for similar scams at the policy level. Sanders was the natural antidote to exactly this sort of chicanery, but was railroaded. He never attacked Hillary like she deserved, so that didn't help his cause.

The best hope is that demographics will sink Trump, that he's pissed off too many people and the numbers simply don't work. But if close the election can again be stolen, thanks to DNC and DLC neglect of state-level efforts for a few decades.

Charlie Pierce at Esquire gave Trump credit for seeing weakness in the Republican field, but not in the Democratic Party as accomplice to the destroyed hopes and lives that fuel Trump's otherwise laughable candidacy.

It's been a lengthy, oligarchic set-up for this punchline on American government. Maybe we still can avoid it

Tom Puckett said...

This and many other TPR articles are calls to action and offer how-to-do advice, in this case, "to insure that this rampant con artist doesn't make it into the White House."

Since the corporate-backed and possibly controlled media seem fascinated with stories about Trump and present him in one way or another to the exclusion of all else, except his rival Clinton, maybe we can all start thinking about some what-to-do actions if he does get into the White House.

If the media really didn't want him in as President, based on their assertions of how bad he is, they might talk less about him, for a start. (You see that? I just painted the media as hypocrites!) Why alert that part of the electorate who hasn't already intuitively or logically come to the decision that Trump is some sort of unnecessary product which Cuthbert the Cat has brought home after a ramble among the local garbage bins that there even is a person called Trump? When most of those types get a ballot maybe they will think he is actually Forrest Trump and mark a different box.

I therefore conclude that he's was only there as a shill for Clinton, at first, but has now gotten beyond that original strategy, coupled with her predictably poor showing. Or maybe he paid off better and is now being shilled by the deteriorating Clinton! Neither are what we want or need. But media tells us that we must have one or the other. To digress a bit further, when we are told that we must have only one candidate... well, its no longer a "magic" act.

But aren't there supposed to be two other branches of government to take care of an aberrant third branch? Are those other two so weak or corrupt that they couldn't quickly remove a bad president for real cause, as soon as he got out of line? Maybe we can anticipate such a situation and help them out with a few sound strategies!

Certain people say the glass is half full, other say the glass is half empty. Following an engineer's thinking, I submit that the glass is twice as big as it needs to be and, at any size, doesn't contain that which is critical for the planet, at this time.

Let's work on that!

Cheers, Tom

Anonymous said...

Good advice, but the system can't follow it, for much the same reason it can't reign in abuse of police: it risks discrediting the entire system. Rich White businessmen ripping off the country is too close for comfort.

Find a dead girl or a live boy in his bedroom instead.

DC Reade said...

Sam, you've been giving sound, sensible, practical advice to the people who run the political campaigns of Democratic Party nominees for decades.

They don't listen, do they?