Patterico's Pontifications

9/11/2017

Trump Organization Breaks Promise Not to Deal With Foreign Governments

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 9:00 am

McClatchy reports that the Trump Organization has broken one of the first promises Trump made after his election: to ensure that the organization does not do business with foreign governments.

A major construction company owned by the Chinese government was hired to work on the latest Trump golf club development in Dubai despite a pledge from Donald Trump that his family business would not engage in any transactions with foreign government entities while he serves as president.

Trump’s partner, DAMAC Properties, awarded a $32-million contract to the Middle East subsidiary of China State Construction Engineering Corporation to build a six-lane road as part of the residential piece of the Trump World Golf Club Dubai project called Akoya Oxygen, according to news releases released by both companies. It is scheduled to open next year.

The companies’ statements do not detail the exact timing of the contract except to note it was sometime in the first two months of 2017, just as Trump was inaugurated and questions were raised about a slew of potential conflicts of interest between his presidency and his vast real estate empire.

The Chinese company, known as CSCEC, is majority government-owned — according to Bloomberg and Moody’s, among others — an arrangement that generally encourages growth and drives out competition. It was listed as the 7th largest company in China and 37th worldwide with nearly $130 billion in revenues in 2014, according to Fortune’s Global 500 list.

At a news conference on January 11, 2017, Trump announced that he would be the beneficiary of a trust holding his assets in the Trump Organization. I cannot find the actual language of the trust agreement online, but the arrangement with the Chinese-owned company violates the terms of the trust agreement as laid out in a white paper prepared for that press conference. The white paper states:

[T]he Trust Agreement prohibits The Trump Organization from entering into any new transaction or contract with a foreign country, agency, or instrumentality thereof, including a sovereign wealth fund, foreign government official, or member of a royal family, the United States government or any agency or instrumentality thereof, or any state or local government or any agency or instrumentality thereof, other than normal and customary arrangements already undertaken before the President-Elect’s election.

Obviously, a contract signed “sometime in the first two months of 2017″ was not signed before Trump’s election. Trump defenders may claim that, for all we know, the deal was struck in principle before the 2016 election, and merely set down on paper in the first two months of 2017. But in the press conference, Dillon said already pending deals not yet finalized had been terminated, at great expense to Trump and his family:

Through instructions in the trust agreement, President-elect trust — President-elect Trump first ordered that all pending deals be terminated. This impacted more than 30 deals, many of which were set to close by the end of 2016. As you can well imagine, that caused an immediate financial loss of millions of dollars, not just for President-elect Trump, but also for Don, Ivanka and Eric.

There is really no excuse for this arrangement. It is a financial arrangement made after Trump’s election with a foreign government by the Trump Organization. It violates Trump’s promises to the American people. Trump is simply banking on the notion that nobody will call him on it — or if they do, his supporters will shrug their shoulders, as they shrug at all his ethical lapses.

By the way, in that same press conference, Dillon also claimed:

President-elect Trump has decided, and we are announcing today, that he is going to voluntarily donate all profits from foreign government payments made to his hotel to the United States Treasury. This way, it is the American people who will profit.

It hasn’t happened yet. Color me skeptical that it ever will.

I know it makes Trump supporters angry when people point out things like his broken promises and questionable ethical arrangements. That attitude makes it even more important to talk about them. Were this Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama, these exact same people would scream to the heavens and never stop — so I’m not terribly interested in listening to them whine about how we should ignore this.

Donald Trump was elected in part on the argument that he could “drain the swamp” — that he could uniquely limit the influence of lobbyists and foreign governments on the workings of government. He promised specific ways that he would deal with the issue of retaining a financial stake in his businesses while occupying the Oval Office. Now that we are learning that he broke that promise, those who actually care about draining the swamp should raise hell.

[Cross-posted at RedState and The Jury Talks Back.]

161 Responses to “Trump Organization Breaks Promise Not to Deal With Foreign Governments”

  1. It puzzles me that these stories never go anywhere. The media always wants to jettison them in favor of the latest Russian snipe hunt.

    Appalled (d07ae6)

  2. How could anyone at Trump have veto power over the contractors DAMAC hires?

    That’s a totally separate company.

    This is fake news.

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  3. “CNN has dismantled its vaunted Trump-colluded-with-the-Russians investigative unit in a wretched concession to reality. The only thing the unit found was an empty well for stories, surrounded by a crust of fake news. The whole caper damaged the network’s credibility, and the public just wasn’t buying it anymore. So the whole unit had to go.”

    http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2017/09/cnn_throws_in_the_towel_on_fake_russian_news.html

    Colonel Haiku (933076)

  4. Two of Trump’s sons came to Dubai to open the golf course in February, and DAMAC has built 3,100 units out of a total of 10,000 planned at the development. DAMAC pays a licensing fee to the Trump Organization to use the Trump brand.

    Trump World Golf Club Dubai, a second golf project planned by DAMAC, is set to open by the end of 2018, Sajwani said.

    He said that no more projects were planned with the Trump Organization.

    so the Trump Organization has nothing to do with this road at all

    sleazy-assed McClatchy’s just doing fake news all up in it!

    :(

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  5. How could anyone at Trump have veto power over the contractors DAMAC hires?

    Serious question, evidenced by the fact I am saying “corporate veil” and not “Chinese wall”: How thick is the corporate veil? How far is the Trump family removed from the management of DAMAC, as compared to, say, Hobby Lobby which is basically the alter ego of the owners?

    nk (dbc370)

  6. OK, you answered it in #4. The Trump brand is just another vendor. Of goodwill.

    nk (dbc370)

  7. it’s like if somebody wanted to open up a restaurant called happyfeet tacos and they said happy we want to use your name for our taco stand and in exchange we’ll give you a card where every tenth taco you buy you get one free!

    Which sounds like a great deal right?

    But that won’t give me the right to tell them who all their suppliers are going to be even if I had strong opinions about that (for example i’d be kinda upset if a taco stand with my name served those nasty pickled jalapenos).

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  8. As we learned at the very site during the run-up to November 2017, most stuff that has Trump’s name on it is not owned by him, he has merely licensed his name.

    And at the bottom of the article, they fess up:

    An official with the Trump Organization, which is run by the president’s adult sons, confirmed the company licensed its name and brand to DAMAC Properties and has entered into an agreement to manage the Dubai golf course.

    So if Trump Organization did break its promise and hire a company majority-owned by a foreign government, this article is not evidence of that.

    Frederick (64d4e1)

  9. DAMAC Properties is a company founded in Dubai in 1992, which owns things and builds things all over the world. It’s not part of Trump Organization, it’s a publicly traded company.

    Frederick (64d4e1)

  10. I don’t think this counts as a violation. This isn’t what they were talking about. Now the Chinese government controlled company may have underbid, or mkight be in position to hold something else hostage..

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  11. @fREDERICK

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  12. And that’s another thing: This isn’t even a Trump-controlled company.

    It’s like trying to find a problem with the sale of Starett City (now called Spring Creek Towers) something Donald Trump inherited from his father Fred Trump, who had bought a large pecrcentage of it. In an interview Donald Trump once called that something like the greatest tax shelter ever made.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/09/06/nyregion/starrett-city-housing-complex-trump-sale.html?mcubz=0

    The investors collectively put in $22 million, or roughly 6 percent of the $382 million cost of building the project. The state housing agency provided $360 million in financing. The investors benefited from existing tax laws that allowed them to use losses at one project to shield profits from other investments from taxes….

    “I generated so many tax losses for them that they did better than any other tax shelter in the history of America,” Mr. Rosenberg said. “Because of Section 8, I had enough money to keep the place in good shape.”

    In a 2007 interview, Donald J. Trump called Starrett City “probably the greatest tax shelter ever made.”

    Looking for conflicts of interest is the true snipe hunt.

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  13. #9…I’ve never seen a more contentious 60 Minutes interview, narciso. CBS bias on full display. EFF ’em.

    Colonel Haiku (933076)

  14. It would seem to me that as it becomes more and more widely known that all Trump is doing is licensing his name, and that he has nothing at all to do with making or delivering the product or service, that his brand will become worth less. Or is that overestimating the intelligence of the bourgeois consumer?

    nk (dbc370)

  15. 9, but honestly Bannon’s answer to that question can also be deconstructed as “I’ve done my time, so to speak, in an integrated setting, I know from first hand experience it doesnt work”. Hell as my handle indicates, I did mine so sometimes I get the frustration when encountered with “what more can you do…”

    urbanleftbehind (5eecdb)

  16. Teh Pantyfa Lamester 7 of Portland…

    https://static.pjmedia.com/user-content/1/files/2017/09/Antifa-819×1024.jpg

    Colonel Haiku (933076)

  17. @nk: Or is that overestimating the intelligence of the bourgeois consumer?

    In the modern world, a lot of brands don’t make what they sell. The brand is distinct from the product.

    For example, if you go to Costco, and buy the Kirkland Signature whatever, you have no idea who made that and in fact it is made by more than one producer. What the Kirkland Signature brand says is that Costco set the specifications and negotiated the price. And they have to change producers all the time because it is very hard to make money selling to Costco, because they want maximum quality at a low price.

    Frederick (64d4e1)

  18. Esquire

    How in the world could Rose have this guy on and not even mention the Mercers, the wingnut billionaire power couple without whose bankroll Bannon would be just another Alex Jones hawking brain pills and chemtrail remover? How could he let Bannon, who made his pile at Goldman Sachs and then made another pile in Hollywood, use the phrase “limousine liberals” without picking up a banana from the fruit bowl and throwing it at him? And how in the name of god could he hear Bannon say this without then picking up the phone and calling his bosses at 60 Minutes and telling them they by god better not send him out to interview anymore of these basket cases without a HazMat suit.

    STEVE BANNON: –don’t– don’t give me– this is the thing of the leftists. Charlie, that’s beneath you. America’s built on our sys– on our citizens. Look at the 19th century. What built America’s called the American system, from Hamilton to Polk to Henry Clay to Lincoln to the Roosevelts. A system of protection of our manufacturing, financial system that lends to manufacturers, OK, and the control of our borders. Economic nationalism is what this country was built on. The American system. Right?
    If there’s one thing the 19th century is known for, boy, it’s how we controlled our borders. That’s why all those Irish fleeing the Famine ended up in Madagascar. Yeesh.

    Ben burn (ad9fa0)

  19. There is really no excuse for this arrangement. It is a financial arrangement made after Trump’s election with a foreign government by the Trump Organization. It violates Trump’s promises to the American people. Trump is simply banking on the notion that nobody will call him on it — or if they do, his supporters will shrug their shoulders, as they shrug at all his ethical lapses.

    He’ll just say he was merely president-elect, not actually, officially the President at the time and in the midst of divesting himself from his ‘yuge’ and complicated business enterprises worth billions and billions. Remember the presser with the lawyer and a four foot stack of papers? Believe the Air Force calls it ‘chaff;’ on farms it’s called fertilizer; in business it’s known as bullsh-t.
    _________

    “If you talk about branding, no brand has improved more than the United States Coast Guard.” -President Trump

    So the USCG is a ‘brand’ to market.
    You know who talks like that?

    Mad Men.

    “You old men love building golden tombs and sealing the rest of us in with you.” – Don Draper [Jon Hamm] ‘Mad Men’ AMC TV, 2007-2015

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  20. @19. Every bar in America has a Bannon perched on the end stool at 2 AM closing time.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  21. That’s because the USCG brand has consistently operated with integrity ,first- line courage and hard work St Donaldus..

    Ben burn (ad9fa0)

  22. Bannon has been beaten about the head but his TRex size skull makes him impervious to concussion.

    Ben burn (ad9fa0)

  23. Not long ago I posted a definition of “fake news” and the McClatchy article here would qualify.

    There’s a narrative which they present, and selectively present facts which support it–and they selectively leave out facts that contradict it, which the narrative cannot survive.

    To find out who DAMAC is, and that they are a publicly-traded company not belonging to Trump, and that they built the golf course and licensed Trump’s name, took a moment to Google. Journalists know how to Google when they want to.

    Frederick (64d4e1)

  24. Ben, imagine how off the rails we would be if he were to watch a certain musical named after one of the first of the icons he mentioned. It would probably go something like this.

    urbanleftbehind (5eecdb)

  25. urban:

    I’m perfectly willing to compromise with the Trump Emojis.

    I will take down a statue of Washington for every removed Bull Conner object of worshipful praise.

    Ben burn (ad9fa0)

  26. @23. Bannon’s where Silly Putty goes to die.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  27. If Bannon/Trump are so smart why do they abuse their bodies? I guess they adhere to the Christian philosophy of disposable skin bags for the soul and the CRV for plastic Earth…all useless to the magnificent Spirit they aspire to.

    Ben burn (ad9fa0)

  28. 27… nah, that would be Salon.

    Colonel Haiku (933076)

  29. On Morning Joe today, a panel discussed the news that Hillary Clinton will turn over thumb drives to federal investigators as well as the discovery of emails on Clinton’s private account that were labeled top secret.

    McClatchy’s Anita Kumar, who broke the story regarding the classified nature of the emails, tried to spin for Hillary by making the case that she was not personally being investigated: “There are several investigations into her conduct – not into her – but into her use of personal e-mail and a personal server.”

    oh my goodness

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  30. Whatever happened to ‘my body is a Temple’?

    It died with their self-respect.

    Ben burn (ad9fa0)

  31. Oh, bollocks. Half the world has “state-owned” business entities. By this rule they can’t fly Air France or use the Royal Mail.

    There is a difference between “governments” and “government-owned businesses.” Drop me a note if you need this explained to you.

    Kevin M (752a26)

  32. Johnny Cochrane and his Wookie now account for 9/31 (29%) comments in this thread, which is a little light for them.

    These stats can still be compiled if one uses Milhouse’s script, since one can see who commented and how often.

    What one cannot see is if any of their comments actually related to the thread topic.

    Frederick (64d4e1)

  33. A publicly-traded “Trump partner” engages in business with a (redundantly-state-owned) Chinese company and all of a sudden it’s collusion* between Trump and Xi.

    Infowars would hesitate to run this.

    Kevin M (752a26)

  34. *collusion: a word that seems to mean whatever you want it to mean these days.

    Kevin M (752a26)

  35. @Kevin M: There is a difference, which is moot since it was not Trump Organization who hired the government-owned company. But through selective citation of facts, the McClatchy article made it appear as if Trump Organization did hire the company.

    But note that they never come out and say that Trump Organization hired the government-owned company. They selectively cite facts and let readers fill in the rest, so they are not technically lying. They are, however, deliberately deceiving.

    Frederick (64d4e1)

  36. Frederick thinks you guys have too much white-space between thoughts..

    Ketchup!

    Ben burn (ad9fa0)

  37. McClatchy’s flat-out shamelessly lying

    this is extraordinarily amateurish fake news

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  38. The beauty of Milhouse’s script is that the griefers will never know if they are being ignored because they script is blanking them out, or if they are just being ignored.

    Frederick (64d4e1)

  39. Kevin thinks Ben has too much white space between ears.

    Kevin M (752a26)

  40. Trump promised not to work with foreign entities. His company just did

    that’s a lie

    it’s a dirty McClatchy lie

    no way around it

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  41. You guys act like the car salesman would never dream of defrauding anyone who gets in his avaricious crawl space. It’s just part and parcel of his ‘character’.

    Ben burn (ad9fa0)

  42. It’s a whiteout..

    Ben burn (ad9fa0)

  43. The Johnny Cochrane-Wookie ratio is going up. They must really hate that turning up their volume doesn’t annoy anyone.

    Frederick (64d4e1)

  44. The cryptic white space grows from blocked comments as well as blocked thought process.

    Ben burn (ad9fa0)

  45. It’s like having the auditorium to yourself. I love echoes…

    Ben burn (ad9fa0)

  46. another member of creepy-ass war hero John McCain’s “Republican Main Street” anti-american hate group is cashing out his chips

    Rep. Dave Trott (R-Mich.) announced Monday that he will not seek reelection next year, opening up another potential pickup opportunity for Democrats in the 2018 midterm elections.

    that makes three in the last couple weeks

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  47. Ben, you’re clogging every single thread with dribble. Please stop. You are making it hard to follow the commenters who are actually on topic an serious about it.

    Rev.Hoagie® (6bbda7)

  48. @Rev. Hoagie: Grief is what the griefers want. Their point is to make commenting here unpleasant for everyone. They are not trying to convince anyone of anything–no one belittles those they hope to persuade.

    And they can’t stand it that we individually have the power to tune them out whenever we want.

    Frederick (64d4e1)

  49. Kid Rock makes us all good again!

    “They are trying to use the old confederate flag BS, etc. to stir the pot, when we all know none of this would be going on if I were not thinking of running for office. Pretty funny how scared I have them all and their only agenda is to try and label people / me racist who do not agree or cower to them!! No one had a word to say when we sold out the 6 shows at LCA back in January! My track record in Detroit and Michigan speaks for itself, and I would dare anyone talking trash to put theirs up against mine. I am also a homeowner and taxpayer in the city of Detroit, so suck on that too!

    I am the bona fide KING OF DETROIT LOVE and it makes me smile down deep that you haters know that! Your jealousy is merely a reflection of disgust for your own failures and lack of positive ideas for our city.

    I am however very disappointed that none of the people, businesses or charities I have so diligently supported in Detroit have had anything to say about all these unfounded attacks from these handful of jackasses and The Detroit Free Press. So for the unforeseen future I will focus my philanthropy efforts on other organizations besides the ones I have supported in the past. I would however employ that NAN go ahead and make up these losses since they claim to be so good for Detroit and do not want me opening the arena and generating tons of jobs and tax dollars for the city and people I LOVE… IDIOTS! ….. (Has Al Sharpton even paid his back taxes yet?)

    P.S. Sam Riddle is a piece of s*it criminal and prime example of a lot that is and has been wrong with Detroit. Sam, you suck and you know it! (If anyone does not know who he is, please Google him!)

    P.P.S. To be clear – Fu*k ANYONE who takes a knee or sits during our national anthem! Pretty sure if Russell Wilson or Tom Brady were doing it they would have no problem finding a job playing for any team they wanted in the NFL! So cut the bullsh*t!

    Ben burn (ad9fa0)

  50. Hoagie: Absolutely!

    Ben burn (ad9fa0)

  51. I’ll be back

    https://www.newsbusters.org/journalists/anit
    a-kumar

    narciso (6708a7)

  52. 19. Ben burn (ad9fa0) — 9/11/2017 @ 10:48 am

    If there’s one thing the 19th century is known for, boy, it’s how we controlled our borders. That’s why all those Irish fleeing the Famine ended up in Madagascar. Yeesh.

    If you expect Charlie Rose to intellectually connect with what Steve Bannon is saying, you are expecting something almost unseen heretofore in television interviewers, and I include Dick Cavett.

    Bannon was confounding protectionism – control of goods – and actually not even that but import taxes – quotas on imports like we have on sugar, came along much later – with control of people, which nobody even dreamed Congress could do until the 1870s and 1880s and calling them both “border control” a phrase I first encountered in Nikita Khruchshev’s memoirs. Well, Bannon used “control of our borders.” There was none of course, and certainly not land borders, until maybe the 1920s, and not really then.

    The presence and legal rights of non-citizens – which in many states included Free Negroes – was regulated by the states. (The Federal government only had power over naturalization. It also recorded arrivals startung with 1820.) And they discriminated between different kinds of non-citizens. During the Gold Rush, after a while, California placed a prohibitive $20 a month tax on foreigners who wanted to prospect for gold, but this category did not include Europeans.

    Sammy Finkelman (8a673f)

  53. From the white paper:

    First, the Trust Agreement prohibits—without exception—new foreign deals during the duration of President-Elect Trump’s Presidency. Specifically, the Trust and The Trump Organization will be prohibited at all times during the Presidency from engaging in any new deals with respect to the use of the “Trump” brand or any trademark, trade name, or marketing intangibles associated with The Trump Organization or Donald J. Trump in any foreign jurisdictions.

    It is true Infowars would hesitate to run this. Because I forward is packed with Trump shills.

    Patterico (33f66d)

  54. Friends don’t let friends take McClatchy serioislym

    narciso (6708a7)

  55. 32. Kevin M (752a26) — 9/11/2017 @ 11:32 am

    There is a difference between “governments” and “government-owned businesses.

    Not really, because in what other form could somebody be dealing with a foreign government?

    A better objection is that this is not the kind of business “deal” that Trump was talking about, and furthernmore, the company is not owned by him.

    Sammy Finkelman (8a673f)

  56. Thirdly, the prohibition is not in dealing with a foreign government, but with doing certain new things “in any foreign jurisdictions” – that is, where not governed by U.S. law.

    Sammy Finkelman (8a673f)

  57. Sammy:

    Bannon is purported to be epochal in his strategic thinking but I assess his importance to be similar to L. Ron Hubbard in the long haul. Let him write a pandemic ode to times where continents were some distance in time and space without immediate feedback and no leisure time for rational thought/problem solving.

    Ben burn (ad9fa0)

  58. Go on record:

    1) Who here expects Trump to keep his promise of donating profits from foreign government payments to his hotels?

    2) Who wants to argue that it doesn’t matter whether he does?

    Patterico (33f66d)

  59. I think somebody “tipped” McClatchy off to this (truly wrong) story. Whoever gave that story to them is the true villain here. I wonder maybe who didn’t bite. I also wonder why they prefer fake anti-Trump stories. Maybe because they are simpler.

    This attempt to find financial corruption with Trump as a resuklt of the presidency is one of the stupidest thins you couild think of.

    Sammy Finkelman (8a673f)

  60. Who thinks Trump will cook the books and claim the profits are not profits because someone would have rented the space anyway?

    *raises hand*

    Who thinks Trumpers will back him up on this dishonest argument?

    *raises hand*

    Patterico (33f66d)

  61. @Patterico: 1) Who here expects Trump to keep his promise of donating profits from foreign government payments to his hotels?

    I’ll believe it when it happens, not before.

    2) Who wants to argue that it doesn’t matter whether he does?

    Not I. My only concern is that McClatchy deliberately deceived its readers.

    Frederick (64d4e1)

  62. 60. Patterico (33f66d) — 9/11/2017 @ 12:31 pm

    Go on record:

    1) Who here expects Trump to keep his promise of donating profits from foreign government payments to his hotels?

    I expect Trump to do that, and ALSO to hire the best accountants to minimize the payments, AND also not to review their work until after he is no longer president. (but his sons will)

    2) Who wants to argue that it doesn’t matter whether he does?

    It only matters a little.

    Sammy Finkelman (8a673f)

  63. “Not I. My only concern is that McClatchy deliberately deceived its readers.”

    You seem obliged to accept Trumps deceit as bizness as usual. We get accustomed to corruption as though carbon monoxide…invisible and odorless.

    Ben burn (ad9fa0)

  64. if we’re talking about the virtues of not dealing with foreign governments

    i like the part where President Trump withdrew us from the Paris Agreement, which was a very bold and meaningful thing to do

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  65. Every time the media deceives about something involving Trump, it makes it harder to pin on him the wrong stuff that he actually is doing.

    And this article is an example of that. McClatchy has Google. They can easily find out who the golf course actually belongs to, and who actually hired the contractor, and they chose not to present those facts because those facts falsify the narrative they decided to present.

    If Trump did do business with foreign governments or is, after he promised not to, this article did not present an example of that. They presented something else, which falsely identified with it. And that only helps Trump, it doesn’t hurt him.

    Frederick (64d4e1)

  66. Yo have a point Frederick, but just who is impacted specifically? I see errors in reporting every day but my filter gets cleaned regularly. Those errors do not occur in a vacuum but are cobbled by human beings who have seen so many ethical breeches that have gravitas it’s not a stretch to assume.

    Ben burn (ad9fa0)

  67. Are there courageous souls who know how much integrity Trump.possesses..character…efficacy..faithfulness…you lions of Trumplandia….speak up!

    Ben burn (ad9fa0)

  68. “Who thinks Trump will cook the books and claim the profits are not profits because someone would have rented the space anyway?

    *raises hand*”

    I think the IRS may have a cash reward for those who report tax cheats.

    Colonel Haiku (933076)

  69. the IRS is way way more corrupt than even President Trump’s harshest critics allege him to be

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  70. http://warrenhenryreport.com/2017/09/11/the-trump-pivot-theory-certainly-beats-the-pro-trump-theories-we-already-have/

    Rather, they prefer to blame everyone else for Trump’s problems, to the extent those problems are acknowledged. In this narrative, the most powerful man in the world is a victim best by enemies on all sides. This narrative is occasionally drawn with the sort of histrionics seen from Trump’s worst critics.

    That said, even paranoids can have enemies. Let’s take a brief tour of the rogues’ gallery.

    The Left, the so-called “deep state,” and the media are broadly indicted for attempting to reverse the results of the 2016 election by ginning up a Russia scandal and ensuing investigations thereof through a campaign of illegal leaks of classified information.

    Keep in mind that when federal officials were leaking classified info embarrassing the Clinton and Obama administrations to Bill Gertz, James Rosen and reporters at the Associated Press, the Right did not condemn the leaks, but did condemn the Obama administration’s Espionage Act investigations of the leaks. The “principle” at work here is not concern for national security.

    Ben burn (ad9fa0)

  71. @55. First, the Trust Agreement prohibits—without exception—new foreign deals during the duration of President-Elect Trump’s Presidency. Specifically, the Trust and The Trump Organization will be prohibited at all times during the Presidency from engaging in any new deals with respect to the use of the “Trump” brand or any trademark, trade name, or marketing intangibles associated with The Trump Organization or Donald J. Trump in any foreign jurisdictions.

    Then you’d think that nails him dead to rites, Patterico…

    But wait– what constitutes ‘new’ w/TO? Or a TO shell company? Something fresh– or something seeded months– maybe years back—-in the pipeline as it were, and just coalescing from a verbal agreement, a handshake or nod-and-wink– and no paper trail. A multi-billionaire’s life is soooooo complex, isn’t it. Trumpsters will just croak that’s confusing the issue as the paperwork was so much more voluminous disengaging his ‘yuge’ and complex global enterprise than expected with hundreds of shell companies and so many provisions that separating it all between November and January was simply impossible. But he means to make America great again no matter what! Oh the woes of a multi-billionaire’s troubled life. He has given up sooooooo much for us all. Hasn’t he.

    @60- Is there a provision dictating ‘when’ those donations must occur? Wouldn’t be surprised to see any significant funds going to regions and/or organization that indirectly enhance an area or region close to a Trump property.

    @62.=sniff= Cook books? Trump? Would JR Ewing? Pshaw. Definitely. And he’ll be backed up by the droids. A multi-billionare’s business is oh-so-complicated. He has sacrificed so much for them to make America great again… hasn’t he.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  72. @49. “This is Radio Moscow: East Berlin is at peace.”

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  73. Look. We know Bill is a scumbags. We know money from Nations means to influence. Too bad he got away. Iran/Contra makes me empathetic. But this is current events, not revisionism.

    http://thefederalist.com/2017/07/12/literal-treason-nothingburger/

    Ben burn (ad9fa0)

  74. @19. Ben, Bannon’s likely been arguing w/bartenders named ‘Charlie’ for days over why he’d been cut off three years before closing time.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  75. Shortly after midnight on June 15, 1960, a freak meteorological phenomenon, a heat burst, struck the community when a dying thunderstorm collapsed over Kopperl. The storm had rained itself out, and with little to no precipitation to cool the resulting downdrafts, superheated air was expended upon the community in the form of extremely hot wind gusts of up to 75 MPH. The temperature increased rapidly, peaking near 140° Fahrenheit (60° Celsius); twenty degrees above the official all-time high for the state of Texas. The storm, known as “Satan’s Storm” by locals, soon became part of local folklore.

    see this is what happens when you do fake news all up in it

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  76. I wonder why the Trump organization turned down oodles of money from DAMAC Properties after the election and before the inauguration?

    https://www.thenational.ae/business/property/damac-confirms-trump-turned-down-dh7-3bn-of-new-deals-1.65058

    I don’t think this is fake news since there are actual quotes attributed to the players involved in the relationship.

    To recap, the Trump name was licensed well before the election to DAMAC Properties, a company from UAE which separately, and in no way related to Trump’s businesses, subcontracted a Chinese company to build a friggin’ road. Oh, the corruption!

    If the Trump organization backed out of licensing its name to DAMAC, they could have been sued. Hence the caveat that existing deals would not be affected.

    It’s ironic that those who mock others who label the MSM fake news fall for fake news themselves.

    Lenny (5ea732)

  77. So the Host comes in to redirect the post after it turns out his take on the McClatchy article is just a bit off the mark.

    Let’s just revisit the post for a moment.

    1) The Dubai project is a “Trump” project in name only. The article says the Trump name has been licensed, and the Trump golf management company has been hired to manage the golf course operations.

    Are either of these a violation of the pledge? Well, we would have to know when those agreements were signed. If before the election, then no.

    I would point out that “branding” a multi-billion development project such as this generally comes before anyone breaks ground. So I suspect the deal to license the Trump brand has been in place a while.

    2) Is there ANY INFORMATION, much less actual evidence, that any Trump company had any involvement in selecting the contractor to install the roads in the residential component of this Dubai project? Since the reporting seems to confirm that Trump companies are not involved in the actual development, I don’t see how it would be accurate to say — as the article does (which the post quotes),

    “A major construction company owned by the Chinese government was hired to work on the latest Trump golf club development in Dubai despite a pledge from Donald Trump that his family business would not engage in any transactions with foreign government entities while he serves as president.”

    Read that sentence carefully, and then consider it in the context of the facts actually reported in the story. “… to work on the latest Trump golf club development in Dubai despite a pledge from Donald Trump that his family business would not engage in any transaction ….”

    Missing from the article is a single fact that the Trump family business is engaged in any transaction, other than the transaction involving licensing the name to the Dubai developer.

    The article doesn’t even claim that any Trump family business is engaged in a transaction with the Chinese company — but that’s the conclusion that McClatchy wants lazy readers to take away.

    Either that or the McClatchy reporter is ignorant about the basics of property development.

    Anita Kumar covers the White House for McClatchy Newspapers.

    She previously worked at The Washington Post, covering Virginia politics and government, and spent a decade at the St. Petersburg Times, writing about local, state and federal government both in Florida and Washington.

    She also worked briefly at the News & Advance in Lynchburg, Va. and the News & Record in Greensboro, N.C. A native Virginian, Anita grew up in Charlottesville and attended the University of Virginia.

    There’s your expert Patrick.

    shipwreckedcrew (56b591)

  78. i hate Anita Kumar FOREVER now

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  79. I doubt there are Dianetics-level cultists for Trump hereabouts so I wonder what the local reps for Republican values have to say about Trumps adoption of their Party and the resulting stain that requires a prewash.

    Ben burn (ad9fa0)

  80. They would most likely say the same thing about Ben burn constantly hijacking every thread. You seething hate for Trump has given him free rent in your puny brain. please don’t share your pathology with us.

    Rev.Hoagie® (6bbda7)

  81. @Rev Hoage: The Wookie wants to live rent-free in your head, and is. You have the power to evict him at any time.

    Frederick (64d4e1)

  82. @69. Ben: “Donald Trump is the kindest, bravest, warmest, most wonderful human being I’ve ever known in my life.”

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  83. DC..81 Radio noise (LNA) will return Sirius responses in the language of R&R before a local response, even the usual dishonest brokering.

    Ben burn (ad9fa0)

  84. @59. L. Ron Hubbard? No. Wallace B. Binghampton? Yes.

    “I could just scream.” – Capt. Binghampton [Joe Flynn] ‘McHale’s Navy,’ 1962-66, ABC TV

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  85. DC:

    Surely you’ve heard of Bannons walk-on in Battlefield Earth.

    Ben burn (ad9fa0)

  86. DAMAC uses the following disclaimer on its older Trump Estates advertising:

    Disclaimer: The Trump Estates are not owned, developed or sold by The Trump Organization or any of their current or former principals or affiliates. DAMAC Properties, the owner and developer of the property, uses the “Trump” name and mark under license, which license may be terminated or revoked according to its terms.

    I strongly suspect DAMAC does not seek any Trump Org approval on its selection of sub-contractors for projects. This isn’t even a nothingburger.

    Rick Ballard (1eda47)

  87. He was the Gibberlic interpreter for Travoltas character. He was tasked with making sense of the Grabastic dialogue and contradictory story lines inherent in production values like Lost in Space episodic buffoonery. Can you imagine making up that stuff?

    Ben burn (ad9fa0)

  88. Should Trump just let all your gasses escape at once with a tax document dump?

    Imagine the fog of finance and the infinity.of possible explanations for perceived subterfuge…endless rationalization…you are republican.

    Ben burn (ad9fa0)

  89. Sorry, Patterico, I have the same concerns as shipwreckedcrew:

    1. If Trump licensed his brand to DAMAC after the election, that would violate the pledge.

    2. If Trump had any say over the Chinese road contract, that would violate the pledge.

    Neither is clear.

    nk (dbc370)

  90. Dude. All day long today and not ONE thing about 9/11? Not even a little something about that incredible speech Pench made at the flight 93 site today? I understand your frustration with Trump and it’s deserved, but have some respect for what today is.

    ay (bd7a98)

  91. The license was in the news in December, 2015. There is absolutely nothing “new” about it.

    Rick Ballard (1eda47)

  92. ay gets an “aye” in support

    urbanleftbehind (847a06)

  93. ay @ 92. Nah, this is the all neverTrump place. I was waiting till later to see if any one gave a rats a$s about 9/11 but you mentioned it. I guess the TrumpHate® beats out the “Never Forget”. I think Ben has taken over the blog.

    Rev.Hoagie® (6bbda7)

  94. look at how blatantly “the hill” fake news propaganda slut rebecca savransky flat-out lies though

    Trump company hires Chinese government-owned firm despite promise: report

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  95. President Trump’s family business reportedly hired a construction company owned by the Chinese government to work on a project even though Trump promised it would not work with any foreign entities while he was in the White House.

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  96. Head scientist declares Earths age a mere 6000 years.

    http://thehill.com/policy/energy-environment/349877-climate-skeptics-on-the-rise-in-trumps-epa

    Ben burn (ad9fa0)

  97. climate change is gay and smelly

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  98. *gases*

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  99. @91. This just never gets old…

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ssYJuKQenHU

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  100. the google stormtroopers put a black ribbon on their googlebox to suggest they’re not entirely comfortable with what happened on 9/11

    interesting.

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  101. John McCain and the Pope Slam Trump Over Climate Change On the Same Day

    special circle in hell yada yada

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  102. @104. Too soon?

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  103. Did you last the 12 minutes?

    Ben burn (ad9fa0)

  104. @107- Can’t wait for the two-hour special!

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  105. Yeah, DCSCA, it really does get old. How about let’s discuss Hitlery’s new book Mein Kampaign? Let’s list her excuses for losing. You could slip some good old TrunmpHate® in if it makes you feel better.

    Rev.Hoagie® (6bbda7)

  106. You still reading these guys, Hoagie? You’re computer literate. Email Patterico for felipe’s javascript.

    nk (dbc370)

  107. Writer Evan Sayet called it 10 years ago… the 9/12 Democrats:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eaE98w1KZ-c&t=4s

    Colonel Haiku (933076)

  108. You know what else is gone? Yesterday’s gone.

    nk (dbc370)

  109. “Watch me pull a rabbit outta my hat…PRESTO! I need a new hat ‘

    http://www.salon.com/2017/09/11/now-trump-is-an-independent-president-give-us-a-break/

    Ben burn (ad9fa0)

  110. Dude. All day long today and not ONE thing about 9/11? Not even a little something about that incredible speech Pench made at the flight 93 site today? I

    When did the speech happen? When did I work today? What work do I still have to do?

    Answer me these questions, correctly, and then see if you have any room to bitch about the free ice cream you are receiving here, “ay” (if that is your real name).

    Patterico (115b1f)

  111. I saw a clip this morning showing that Trump boasted about having the tallest building in NY immediately after the WTC collapsed. I listened to the clip. Y’all want me to blog about that?

    Patterico (115b1f)

  112. that happened the same week they had to finalize plans for Trump Tower chicago

    which is hands down the single-most elegant architectural gift any city has ever received

    they made it shorter

    After the terrorist acts of September 11, 2001, Trump reduced the planned height to 78 stories and 1,073 feet (327.1 m), to reduce the risk of similar attacks.[82][83] Time magazine reported that a meeting between Smith and Trump about erecting the tallest building in Chicago was taking place at the actual time of the attacks.[84] Some international news sources later claimed that the planned tower height was reduced to 900 feet (274.3 m) after the original plans called for a 150-story building that would reach 2,000 feet (609.6 m).[84][85] These claims are supported by computer renderings from 1999 of the proposed skyscraper, shown in the Chicago Tribune in 2005.[86]

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  113. he maybe had the tallest building in the financial district after the towers

    Sammy does that track?

    i always wanted him to convert part of it to residential so i could move in and chase hookers down the stairwell with a chainsaw

    yeah i think i need a new dream

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  114. Tip of the cap to the men and women of the great City of New York — 9/11 plus 16.

    You’re big. You’re proud. You’re tough.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  115. @92. Cut some slack, ‘dude.’

    We all remember. But life goes on. A permanent national memorial to Pearl Harbor wasn’t even built until 1962 ‘ya know.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  116. @109- You won’t get an argument from me on her, Hoagie.

    “I chose option A.”

    Who the hell talks like that?

    A loooooza.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  117. oh my goodness

    you should check out the commentary at TJTB

    it’s… revealing

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  118. @116. Surely he hired Sheriff Joe to track down those thousands cheering on Jersey City roof tops.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  119. Thousands of people died on 9/11 and Trump’s initial reaction was happiness his building was the tallest again https://t.co/jkLygUelF7

    Patterico (c3ae4b)

  120. even more died in idiot george w. bush’s misguided response and food stamp’s feckless and cowardly stewardship afterwards

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  121. @114

    Look. It’s your blog. Write about what you want. Seems to me that with what little time you have today you’d mention something about what really matters instead of yet another piece on the current idiot in office. There will be hundreds of chances to catch Trump doing or saying something stupid. That’s easy. Something thoughtful about this day would be much more meaningful.

    Trump could’ve waited a day. Just my opinion. Relax.

    Alan

    ay (bd7a98)

  122. ok so yeah it was 40 wall street

    he saying “downtown manhattan” – not manhattan – meaning the financial district – not meaning all of manhattan – and he’s just answering a question

    and he’s right – you can see that gorgeous rooftop all over down there

    he’s answering the interviewer’s question directly and correctly

    honestly

    contrast that with the nasty and gratuitously obscene way hillary lied about chelsea jogging her useless poopy-butt around the towers as the planes hit

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  123. “Who had the biggest impact in modern political history? Andrew Breitbart. When I look at this [Bannon interview] and I see that nobody knew who Steve Bannon was 4 years ago… I mean some people did – we knew him, but America didn’t know him – but Andrew Breitbart gave America Steve Bannon and Steve Bannon gave America a Donald Trump win. So, it all kinda goes back, I think the biggest political story that hasn’t been reported is the impact of a political prankster, Andrew Breitbart.”

    — Greg Gutfeld

    Colonel Haiku (933076)

  124. If you haven’t watched the interview, it’s worth a watch, whatever your opinion of Bannon is. Charlie Rose looked to be ready for his own funeral.

    Colonel Haiku (933076)

  125. he saying “downtown manhattan” – not manhattan – meaning the financial district – not meaning all of manhattan – and he’s just answering a question

    and he’s right – you can see that gorgeous rooftop all over down there

    he’s answering the interviewer’s question directly and correctly

    Lol spinmeister. This is the question he was asked:

    Didn’t you have any damage? Or, what’s happened down there?

    That was the question.

    His answer was to boast about how now he has the tallest building downtown. Moments after thousand just died.

    He is a ghoul and you are a ghoul for supporting him on this. You have literally no shame. You make the perfect Trumper. Your history here is one of the most extraordinary displays of continuous ass-smooching on record.

    Patterico (c3ae4b)

  126. Seems to me that with what little time you have today you’d mention something about what really matters instead of yet another piece on the current idiot in office.

    You didn’t bother to check to see if I could have posted a piece about Pence’s speech. You went straight to criticism of me for not doing so. Do you feel at all bad about that? Because you have not expressed that you do even though I pointed this out already.

    I am not anyone’s dancing monkey. I have posted 9/11 pieces in the past. I do not believe I have anything more to offer today. I will not post it as a rote “I am doing this because I am supposed to” exercise.

    It is, after all, as you note, my blog. Why should I spend it trying to please some anonymous commenter I never heard of before who wants to criticize me for not dancing to his tune even though I was working all day and could not?

    Patterico (c3ae4b)

  127. Didn’t you have any damage? Or, what’s happened down there?

    That was the question.

    no here is the question Mr. Trump was asked:

    Interviewer: You have one of the landmark buildings down in the financial district, 40 Wall Street. Did you have any damage, or… what’s happened down there?

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  128. Wow. Unclear on the concept.

    Simon Jester (fbd5ad)

  129. Trump: Well, it was an amazing phone call. Actually, 40 Wall Street was the second tallest building in downtown Manhattan, actually it was the tallest, and then when the World Trade Center was built, it became known as the second tallest, and now it’s the tallest.

    this sounds to me like the way a manhattan property developer would talk

    and it was the tallest until we built the timid narwhal, which is now the tallest on the whole island

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  130. no here is the question Mr. Trump was asked:

    Interviewer: You have one of the landmark buildings down in the financial district, 40 Wall Street. Did you have any damage, or… what’s happened down there?

    Autocorrect changed did to didn’t but otherwise you simply added a statement to the question, ghoul. The interviewer did not ask how Trump felt to have the tallest building downtown because only a narcissistic psychopath would think about such a thing at such a time. But please, defend everything and anything Trump does. It’s not like you have any credibility left to squander.

    Patterico (c3ae4b)

  131. No, it sounds to me like the way an indiscriminate clod of an orange-skinned New York pervy poofter boy pansy would talk.

    nk (dbc370)

  132. 128.=Haiku!= Gesundheit!

    Who had the biggest impact in modern political history?

    Osama Bin Laden. But then, a shoebox towers over Guttafucco.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  133. he prefaced the question by specifically asking if 40 wall street was damaged

    it’s like all that other stuff manhattan people remember

    how St. Paul’s Chapel was miraculously undamaged – there’s a tree down there what went caput and didn’t harm the church at all as it death-spasmed violently in the crushing death-avalanche

    they bronzed the roots

    here’s a story

    to this day the upstairs of brooks bros. is something of a shine to 9/11

    they’ll serve you a cup of tea while you look at the pictures they have up there of how the store and merchandise were devastated

    all of this lore, of which Mr. Trump is in his own small way a steward, it matters

    manhattan’s like this in a way nowhere i ever been outside of southern small towns

    and it comes from a very good place

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  134. oops brooks is *something of a shrine* to 9/11 i mean

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  135. The problem is, the Democrats won’t vote to impeach him if Pence is going to replace him, that’s what the problem is. Just like Nixon and Agnew, Pence will have to go first.

    nk (dbc370)

  136. ASPCA OBL’s fanboi! I never would’ guessed…

    Colonel Haiku (933076)

  137. 67. Frederick (64d4e1) — 9/11/2017 @ 12:46 pm

    If Trump did do business with foreign governments or is, after he promised not to, this article did not present an example of that. They presented something else, which falsely identified with it. And that only helps Trump, it doesn’t hurt him.

    It helps Trump only, if in fact he did do business with foreign governments – which by the way, is not the promise he made – his promise was not to do new business in foreign jurisdictions,

    If there is nothing at all similar that Trump did do, t hurts him – moderately. Most of all, it helps Hillary Clinton. Because she and Bill did a lot of business with foreign entities, with no evidence that this was any kind of legitimate business. There is no global market for speeches.

    Sammy Finkelman (8a673f)

  138. 62. Patterico: Who thinks Trump will cook the books and claim the profits are not profits because someone would have rented the space anyway? No – it’s assigning overhead to the space.

    Also, if the argument were that someone else would have rented the space, you wouldn’t claim no profit, but you’d attribute as profit from foreign entities only the amount of higher rental, which would be say, 10% or 15%. But he probably won’t do that. It’s got to be a bit more traditional.

    Assigning as much overhead as possible to all rooms (regardless of who rented them) when making the calculation, is what he will probably do. This is known as Hollywood accounting, where the overhead goes to places were someone else gets a percentage of the net profit.

    Sammy Finkelman (8a673f)

  139. Patterico:

    “Who thinks Trump will cook the books and claim the profits are not profits because someone would have rented the space anyway?

    *raises hand*”

    Colonel Haiku (933076) — 9/11/2017 @ 1:10 pm

    I think the IRS may have a cash reward for those who report tax cheats.

    The accounting here is sseoparate and different fromthat when filing tax returns. It’s also asking a question that isn’t asked on a tax return. Not hiow much income, but to what is that attributable to?

    I expect he’ll disclose a number when someone in a position not to be ignored asks (but not how it was calculated, unless not disclosing some details is causing him a lot of trouble. (It won’t in any casem, be acomplete opening of the books, beyond what has to happen anyway)

    He won’t do anything as foolish as saying the rooms or space would have been rented anyway. If he did, he’d estimate the excess rental. But Trump wants to give the aooearance f not profiting from foreign government rental of hotel rooms, so he’ll want to show something reasonable.

    All of this will be done by accountants who had instructions to minimize the profits from those sources, and they;ll only do something respectable.

    Sammy Finkelman (8a673f)

  140. By popular demand, here is my 9/11 post.

    Due to the complaints about my criticism of Donald Trump, I made sure that the key point of the piece is about what a garbage human being Donald J. Trump is. I never knew until today just what a garbage human being he is. It’s incredible what you learn about a total shitbag once he becomes President.

    Never let it be said I don’t listen to the audience!

    Patterico (115b1f)

  141. I still can’t get over the feeling that God is testing us by putting the most immoral human possible (who is not an actual convicted criminal) in the Oval Office, just to see if people will act like partisan hacks and defend everything he does.

    This is probably not what is actually happening. But if it were, how would things be different?

    Patterico (115b1f)

  142. Patterico (c3ae4b) — 9/11/2017 @ 7:26 pm

    Thousands of people died on 9/11 and Trump’s initial reaction was happiness his building was the tallest again

    Trump lost the opportunity to build the tallest building in the world, in Chicago, because of 9/11.

    Now Trump won’t tell this story on himself, because, well, for one thing, a lopt of people think he was in New York that day.

    From page 443, of the TIME 2006 Almanac:

    On the morning of Sept. 11, 2001, Adrian D. Smith, a well-known architect in the Chicago office of Skidmore, Owings and Merrill, was in a meeting with Donald Trump. The hyperbolic new York City developer was in Chicago to go over the design of a proposed Trump residential tower in that city that he decided should be — what else! — the tallest building in the world, around 2,000 ft. In the midst of their meeting, the two men got word of the first plane that hit the World Trade Center. “When the second plane hit, we all rushed to the television to see what was happening,” says Smith. “That was the end of the meeting.” And also the end of the 2,000 ft tower. A few weeks later, Trump’s people came back with a revised proposal — at 900 ft. or so.

    The terrorists won, and Donald Trump lost. The tallest buildings in the world are now in the Far East, or in the Arab world.

    The Trump International Hotel and Tower in Chicago was eventually completed in 2009 at 1,389 feet.

    It is now about number 16 on one list of the world’s tallest buildings.

    Of course, insurance and accounting factors were involved.

    Sammy Finkelman (8a673f)

  143. Patterico #146: I have often thought the Right is under one of the curses that the Greek gods of mythology seem to hand out. In this case, folks on the Right who complain how folks on the Left would defend anything “their” candidate did…do pretty much the same thing.

    As you write, we need to note the good things DJT does. And we surely do have to note the awful things, as well. Or maybe, even more. There are few things worse than hero worshipping a politician.

    And that’s nonpartisan.

    Simon Jester (fbd5ad)

  144. And, again, Patterico, you would have it that NO ONE who owns and runs real companies (as opposed to those who manage or lend) is eligible for high office.

    For a Musk or Bloomberg or Gates to run for President you would insist that they

    1) sell off the bulk of their creations and put the money in the hands of bankers, or
    2) so hobble their companies that they failed financially.

    Clearly just putting the companies in other hands would not suffice as they cannot compete anonymously.

    Fortunately, these are not among the requirements set out in the Constitution. If they were George Washington would never have been able to serve as President since he was the richest man in America with wide holdings and interests.

    The answer is either to elect men of stature (which Trump is not), or to have a system where people like Trump are compelled through self-interest to do the right thing. Oddly, the Founders had the latter in mind.

    And, yes, I know this is an old argument. I’m not the one who keeps whipping the dead horse.

    Kevin M (752a26)

  145. I have lots of complaints about Donald Trump. I do not object to people who complain about Donald Trump per se. What I object to is folks who think that Democrat talking points are worth reading, let alone repeating. Fault Trump for reasons I care about and I’ll listen. Fault him for being a capitalist and zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

    Kevin M (752a26)

  146. Patterico (115b1f) — 9/11/2017 @ 6:05 pm

    I saw a clip this morning showing that Trump boasted about having the tallest building in NY immediately after the WTC collapsed. </block

    146. Patterico (115b1f) — 9/11/2017 @ 8:59 pm

    I still can’t get over the feeling that God is testing us by putting the most immoral human possible (who is not an actual convicted criminal) in the Oval Office, just to see if people will act like partisan hacks and defend everything he does.

    He’s not the most immoral person possible. Worse than Hillary or Bill Clinton? Come on. We were saved from them – but at a price.

    If anyone is being tested, it’s the American people. Not for partisanship, because that’s not the worst thing somebody could sign on to. It can’t be over the quetion of whether people will keep on saying he’s a great and brilliant person.

    What he is, is immoral on the question of immigration, or rather, he ran on that. He ran on endorsing atupidity, too.

    Sammy Finkelman (8a673f)

  147. Patterico (115b1f) — 9/11/2017 @ 6:05 pm

    I saw a clip this morning showing that Trump boasted about having the tallest building in NY immediately after the WTC collapsed.

    How could that be? Trump was in Chicago on September 11, 2001, watching the whole thing on TV, in the offices of Skidmore, Owings and Merrill, architects.

    Sammy Finkelman (8a673f)

  148. I still can’t get over the feeling that God is testing us by putting the most immoral human possible (who is not an actual convicted criminal) in the Oval Office, just to see if people will act like partisan hacks and defend everything he does.

    OK. I’ll bite. “MOST immoral” means that any other contender was less immoral. Care to support that?

    Kevin M (752a26)

  149. Now, if you wanted to suggest that God was testing America by making them see just how terrible their political class has been, making them choose between two impossible choices, you’d have an argument.

    For what though? “We have met the enemy and they are us.”

    Kevin M (752a26)

  150. @Kevin M:For what though?

    For heathen heart that puts its trust in reeking tube and iron shard; for valiant dust that builds on dust, and guarding, calls not Thee to guard; for frantic boast and foolish word, Thy mercy on Thy people, Lord.

    Not a test, Mr. M. A judgment.

    Frederick (80401a)

  151. @138. Mister Feet, go listen to the full WWOR interview– it runs about 10 minutes and it’s linked in this Politico piece from last year before the election. Context makes a big difference in how thi is interpreted within the flow of the full conversation- although what seems most appalling is his irritation that they closed the stock exchange even as debris was tumbling down on folks.

    http://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2016/09/trump-hillary-clinton-september-11-911-attacks-nyc-214236

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  152. @DCSCA:his irritation that they closed the stock exchange even as debris was tumbling down on folks

    Only have a partial transcript, but he put that as a desire to go on as if nothing had happened, and then realizing that you really can’t.

    Donald Trump is not a man who has much in himself to work with on the best of days–but on 9/11 we all had to work with whatever it was in is that we had. I can’t say that I did much for anyone that day. All the heroes are dead.

    Frederick (80401a)

  153. @157. Right. Agree. We both have a similar take per comments on other thread. Can’t really take it out of context– what he says out of the flow of conversation– he was processing it and talking … you could sense his bewilderment– everybody was that way that day.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  154. @DCSCA: I’m inclined to cut a lot of slack for anything said on or immediately after that day. Even stuff I really, really disagreed with, the “chickens coming to roost” things, or what did we expect we didn’t vote with the rest of the UN at the Durban anti-racism conference. I’ve dispensed to everyone my personal amnesty.

    Because all you have at that time is what’s in you. Yeah, maybe you should have built your life around acquiring other things, but you didn’t it’s too late, and now all you have is what you’ve got. It’s really more about what did you do with it when the time came, and if you have nothing within to reach for, I’m not the one to blame you, because you were too fortunate to have to know anything else.

    Many times, his father had taken him to read them, insisting that they were the most important things he could have, and implying with a sharp dismissive gesture of hand and arm that wealth, fame, and worldly possessions were worthless and demeaning. “Little men,” he once said, “spend their days in pursuit of such things. I know from experience that at the moment of their deaths they see their lives shattered before them like glass. I’ve seen them die. They fall away as if they have been pushed, and the expressions on their faces are those of the most unbelieving surprise. Not so, the man who knows the virtues and lives by them. The world goes this way and that. Ideas are in fashion or not, and those who should prevail are often defeated. But it doesn’t matter. The virtues remain uncorrupted and uncorruptible.”

    Frederick (80401a)

  155. OK. I’ll bite. “MOST immoral” means that any other contender was less immoral. Care to support that?

    I don’t have to. I present to you the Internet, which contains everything I know about Donald Trump, one of the most immoral human beings not convicted of a crime I have ever run across in person or by reputation. That you would profess shock at this, in my view, is evidence of rank partisanship blinding you to the perfectly obvious.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  156. The Chinese road contract. I wondered why that tickled my memory. It could be a “Joe Gall” book by Philip Atlee. I read those when I was a kid.

    nk (dbc370)


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