Patterico's Pontifications

11/19/2019

Trump Demands Mo’ Money from South Korea for U.S. to Pursue Its Own Interests There

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:55 am



It’s all about the Benjamins, baby:

The United States broke off talks with South Korea on Tuesday over how to share the cost of the two nations’ military alliance, injecting fresh tension into the relationship over Washington’s demands that Seoul pay sharply more.

President Trump has demanded South Korea raise fivefold its contribution to cover the cost of stationing 28,500 U.S. troops in the country, asking for nearly $5 billion, officials on both sides said. But that demand has triggered anger from Korean lawmakers and sparked concerns that Trump may decide to reduce the U.S. troop presence in the Korean Peninsula if talks break down.

The top U.S. negotiator, James DeHart, said the U.S. side decided to cut short the negotiations on Tuesday morning, the second of two days of planned talks. In a rare public show of disunity between the allies, he blamed South Korea for making proposals that “were not responsive to our request for fair and equitable burden sharing.”

“As a result we cut short our participation in the talks today in order to give the Korea side time to reconsider,” he said in a statement. “We look forward to resuming our negotiations when the Korean side is ready to work on the basis of partnership, on the basis of mutual trust.”

I guess our troops are still mercenaries in his eyes. The thing where he made the Marines troops for hire by Saudi Arabia was not a one-time thing.

There is a disturbing pattern here. Trump praises North Korea and antagonizes South Korea. He praises Putin and antagonizes England. He praises Erdogan, Mohammed bin Salman, and Duterte, and antagonizes the leaders of France, Germany, and Canada.

I don’t think he’s a paid stooge of Putin. But if he were, it’s hard to see how he might act differently.

P.S. Inevitably people will argue that this is just a negotiation tactic, and that Trump is just an awesome negotiator (he’s actually a terrible one but put that fact aside for the moment). If that’s the defense, it just reveals the fact that I’m bothered by the idea of cost-sharing to begin with. If it’s in our interest to have troops in South Korea, it’s in our interest to have troops in South Korea. Let’s separate the issue of cost from whether we are going to have troops there, and make cost-sharing a factor in how much foreign aid they get, not whether we are stationing troops there to begin with. There is no amount of money we should take that is high enough to do something that is not in our national interest, and no amount of money low enough that we should do something that is not in our national interest.

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]

68 Responses to “Trump Demands Mo’ Money from South Korea for U.S. to Pursue Its Own Interests There”

  1. I can’t think of anything good about this. Not one thing. Not even the money. The money is a drop in the bucket for our defense budget. If this were part of some sort of larger goal to balance the budget I could understand it, but it’s not. It’s like buying a small Starbucks instead of a large on your way to buy a Cadillac Escalade.

    Time123 (653992)

  2. You are right. It *is* all about the benjamins.

    It’s one think asserting our interests whereby the host country couldn’t be expected to help with the cost of US presence that provides their defense. But, South Korea is a wealthy country and I don’t think it’s unreasonable for S. Korea to provide more to help defray the costs of US resources in their defense.

    whembly (fd57f6)

  3. Well, when you make a habit of running trillion dollar deficits, eventually you are going to have to find areas in which to economize.

    I’ll say this about President Trump, though. He’s been relatively consistent (at least for him) in the idea that he does not see the U.S. as having national interests defending countries in the Middle East, Europe, or Asia. On this I think he is decidedly wrong, and I do not look forward to the day when Iran, Russia, and China have their hands strengthened, but he is essentially giving that worldwide chorus who has been highly critical of U.S. foreign policy for the past 70 years exactly what they claim to want. Let’s see how German Greens react when Russia largely controls the German energy sector, or at least the part of it that consistently delivers energy.

    JVW (54fd0b)

  4. 2. I don’t think that’s unreasonable either. Too bad that’s not the argument Trump is making.

    Gryph (08c844)

  5. @4 What is the argument do you think Trump is making?

    whembly (fd57f6)

  6. 5. The same one he says he’s making: “You owe us.” That’s not ever a good way to conduct diplomatic negotiations

    Gryph (08c844)

  7. 6. I don’t see it like that. I see it as Trump encouraging more (to steal the phrase) ‘equitable burden sharing’.

    It’s the same approach he used to get the NATO countries to comply with their obligations.

    whembly (fd57f6)

  8. Every few years you read of some poll where young South Koreans say that the U.S. is a greater threat to world peace than their Northern kin is. OK, fine. If they believe that, then maybe we ought to let them live their best life without a U.S. presence in the area. (Again, I don’t believe that myself, but it’s a seductive line of reasoning.)

    JVW (54fd0b)

  9. 1. Dog biscuit to his base.
    2. Angling for third date with Kim Jong Un.
    3. “Wag The Dog” move during the impeachment (Clinton bombed Belgrade) and we’ll see more like this as it goes on.

    nk (dbc370)

  10. Let’s separate the issue of cost from whether we are going to have troops there, and make cost-sharing a factor in how much foreign aid they get,

    This is wrong. President Trump is simplifying the process. Foreign aide is foreign Aid. President Trump is striving to de-mystify the murky area of “foreign aide”. Part of the dynamic, President Trump has talked about for decades, is the seemingly taboo subject of the United States citizens being unfairly burdened with paying for foreign nations self defense.
    This is exactly the same dynamic President Trump deployed in his NATO meetings. Ponting out that member NATO nations were not meeting their obligations.
    This is all normal, as to. President Trumps vision of foreign relations.

    iowan2 (9c8856)

  11. China has taken full advantage and has signed a defense agreement with South Korea. This is very bad folks.

    JRH (ab45b9)

  12. This is all standard for Trump, and you;re right, there’s nothing good about this (even though you have he argument these are all now rich countries) The United states paying gives the United States more control.

    The thing where he made the Marines troops for hire by Saudi Arabia was not a one-time thing.

    That one has precedent.

    President George H.W. Bush did that in 1990-91 for Gulf War I, partly to avid criticism by Democrats and partly because Saudi Arabia, for religious reasons, could sell it better by saying the foreign troops were mercenaries, and the United States actually made a small profit on the war (it was oversubscribed by various Gulf states. If the United States hadn’t been careful, it wold have been a bigger profit.)

    Sammy Finkelman (c95a5a)

  13. After what he did to the Kurds ….
    No nation should trust the corrupt criminal traitor Trump to come to its defense.
    South Korea should refuse to pay a penny until the daffodil is removed from office.
    Because:
    Kim Jong Un will tell the yellowbelly that he wants to establish a “safe zone” south of the 38th parallel that includes Seoul.
    The New York sewer scum will say South Koreans did not fight with us at Normandy and remove all American troops from the DMZ.
    A month later Kim Jong Un will be hosted at the White House.
    And the Trump butt-gerbils will cheer.

    nk (dbc370)

  14. Undermining longstanding alliances like Trump has done, is what Putin wants.
    Betraying a true ally like Syrian Kurdistan is what Putin wants.
    Cutting and running from Syria is what dictators like Assad, Erdogan and Putin want.
    Undermining a democracy like Ukraine–a nation that has lost territory to Putin and is still under attack by Putin–by conditioning military aid to “investigations” into a US political rival, is what Putin wants.
    Groveling to Kim and being an a$$hole to a good ally like South Korea is, guess what, what Putin wants.
    This president’s multiple acts can’t help but be seen as unpatriotic and un-American. When will a majority of Republicans open their eyes and see that Trump is the bad guy, in just about everything except judges.

    Paul Montagu (c18f4a)

  15. Trump fails to understand the first unwritten law of the modern Presidency “Keep the threats to the USA far away from our borders and snuff them out before they blow the world up into WWIII”. We learned this lesson in WWI, WWII and the Cold war.

    His attraction to dictators is solely driven by his continuing interest in his business holdings. He is no a Marriot with Hundreds of properties. He has only a handful of golf resorts and condos. Many of these are in places like Istanbul which he mentioned in a tweet just the other day. His focus is still on these not the grand responsibilities of leadership.

    What a schmuck

    dirtyjobsguy (96cdc8)

  16. Trump Demands Mo’ Money from South Korea for U.S. to Pursue Its Own Interests There

    Because, of course, South Korea has no interests in South Korea. Just a bunch of dog goat and kimchi farmers roaming their pastures and fields. Makes no difference to them who they pay taxes to. Doesn’t affect their lives one bit. Now the US interests in maintaining a division or two on a remote peninsula to…do something. Not like we could use those billions of dollars to build and maintain far more defensible positions.

    PTw (894877)

  17. U.S. Offers North Korea ‘Act of Good Will.’ Not Enough, North Says.

    North Korea said on Tuesday that the United States’ decision to postpone a joint military drill with South Korea was not enough of an incentive for it to return to the negotiating table, and that it would not discuss denuclearization until Washington ended its “hostile policy.”

    On Sunday, the United States defense secretary, Mark T. Esper, and his South Korean counterpart, Jeong Kyeong-doo, together announced​ that the allies would postpone a joint air force drill scheduled for later this month. They described it as “an act of good will” aimed at bringing North Korea back to the negotiating table.

    But the North remained unsatisfied.

    “We demand that the U.S. quit the drill or stop it once and for all,” Kim Yong-chol, chairman of the North’s Korea Asia-Pacific Peace Committee, said in a statement carried by the official Korean Central News Agency on Tuesday. “The suspension of the drill does not mean ensuring peace and security on the Korean Peninsula and is not helpful to the diplomatic efforts for the settlement of issues.”

    Mr. Kim said​, “The U.S. should not dream of the negotiations for denuclearization before dropping its hostile policy” toward the North.

    North Korea’s demand that Washington first build confidence and remove all threats to its “security and development” before nuclear talks can resume is a harder position than the country has taken so far.

    In its talks with North Korea, the Trump administration at first demanded that the North dismantle all its nuclear warheads and production facilities before international sanctions against it are lifted. ….

    Perhaps Trump wants to force South Korea to expel US troops by these demands as a reward to lil’ Kim.

    Rip Murdock (ff876c)

  18. After what he did to the Kurds ….
    No nation should trust the corrupt criminal traitor Trump to come to its defense.

    This is very true. But my point is that Trump is frankly the President that many of our allies deserve.

    JVW (54fd0b)

  19. I hear they’ve been offered a very attractive discount if they can manufacture some dirt on Biden or Warren.

    Dave (660159)

  20. I have nothing good to say about Trump’s Korean policies. He’s completely jumped the shark. Both hawks and doves are standing there, open-jawed.

    Kevin M (19357e)

  21. The US policy towrds North Korea should have started off, some years back, with: “You should realize that by testing a nuclear weapon, you’ve made it so that any war starts with nukes and we have so many many more than you do.”

    Kevin M (19357e)

  22. Yeah, why can’t we just pay more? Who cares about smaller government!

    rcocean (1a839e)

  23. Our Number 1 Foreign policy objective should be to make our “allies” like us. Unless they’re Saudi Arabia, the Gulf States, or Turkey. In which case, they should hate us.

    rcocean (1a839e)

  24. President Trump has not yet been in office 3 years. I am to believe he has done worse than the State Dept has for the last 6 decades. So much for leaving it to the experts.
    All the keyboard experts here, and none of them know any history.

    iowan2 (9c8856)

  25. I’m a globalist. That said, there’s little point [and a waste of electrons] in attempting to conduct an American ‘foreign aid seminar’ on a blog. Too complex – but easily researched for those truly interested. In general, U.S. foreign aid is divided into 5 categories by the lovely and talented bureaucrats at the CRS w/much administrated via the USAID: bilateral development aid, economic assistance, humanitarian aid, multilateral economic contribution and lastly military aid. -source it through wikiUSforeign aid.

    However, there is a difference between ‘military aid’ and ‘military deployments’ though established alliances, mutual defense treaties and so forth. Reevaluating and jiggering the costs and burden sharing as geopolitical scenarios or threats shift is reasonable; less a general policy and more a case by case situation, particularly as America has to borrow to finance it all. So Trump’s efforts to get others, such as wealthy and rebuilt NATO members– 70 years after the end of WW2 and 25 years after the Cold War melted away– to carry more of the load of their own defense in the 21st century makes sense [especially to a NYC slumlord.]

    W/respect to Korea (ROK,) the N & S are technically ‘still at war’– at least on paper– and any history buff can research the combatants- which included UN & U.S. troops — and China. Yet as of 2019, ‘ China is the ROK’s largest trading partner, behind Japan (2nd) and the United States (3rd.) Exports to the United States have dropped from 40% in the late 1980s to less than 20% in 2002.’ There are other trade issues between the U.S. and ROK as well. -source, wikiSKoreaUSrelations.

    So, in a back door way, squeezing more ‘burden sharing’ from South Korea taps the riches they’ve reaped from trade w/China to help pay for ROK ‘protection.’ OTOH, as times change, are one or two nuclear subs on patrol off the Korean peninsula, satellite surveillance, some armed drones and a dozen techies with thumb drives more cost effective than stationing 23,000 troops there to protect and service the prostitution problem. Hard to explain to citizen of crumbling Detroit why it is in their interest keep paying to keep Seoul shimmering. Trump is pushing Japan to pay more for their protection, too.

    It’s complex–and w/respect to Russia’s Putin, a ‘resource management issue’ as well, as this pie chart indicates:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/Russian_Armed_Forces#/media/File:2018_Military_Expenditures_by_Country.png

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  26. I see it as Trump encouraging more (to steal the phrase) ‘equitable burden sharing’.

    Someone who believes in “equitable burden sharing” would not have used bankruptcy to push the costs of his own mistakes onto others while he came out ahead, and would not have routinely stiffed small contractors and then said “Sue me if you want the whole amount we agreed on.’

    Trumpian ethics has nothing to do with equity. It’s all about “I win, you lose.”

    Radegunda (539c00)

  27. 26. Equity? Equitable? What kind of blathering idiot associates these words with the Trump brand?! The motto of Trump, Inc. might as well be “Life’s not fair; deal with it!”

    Gryph (08c844)

  28. The motto of Trump, Inc. might as well be “Life’s not fair; deal with it!”

    Gotta disagree with you a bit there, as it implies a view that unfairness ought to be taken in the same spirit whether it hits Trump or someone else.
    It’s more likely that Trump would see someone else’s misfortune in exchange for his own gain as perfectly fair.

    Radegunda (539c00)

  29. It’s more likely that Trump would see someone else’s misfortune in exchange for his own gain as perfectly fair.

    You’re still projecting humanity where none is in evidence.

    Scaramucci’s description rings true to me:

    “He is so narcissistic, he doesn’t see people as people. He sees them as objects in his field of vision. And so therefore, that’s why he has no empathy. That’s why he’s got his thumb up in the air when he’s taking a picture with an orphan. … And by the way, if you and I were in his field of vision and he had a cold and the two of us had to die for him to get a Kleenex, you’re f–king dead. I mean, there’s no chance. You understand that, right?”

    Dave (fc89e1)

  30. Mongolian gerbil or great gerbil?
    Do they need shots?
    What happens when they cheer? Do they sound like the Chipmunk cartoons?
    Hard to find a blog better informed about butt gerbils than this one.
    Thanks in advance

    steveg (354706)

  31. Yeah, why can’t we just pay more? Who cares about smaller government!

    rcocean (1a839e) — 11/19/2019 @ 12:01 pm

    Justin Amash. Beyond that I can’t think of anyone.
    Trump definitely doesn’t.

    Trend has gone up even faster under him.

    Time123 (f5cf77)

  32. Mongolian gerbil or great gerbil?
    Appalachian.
    Do they need shots?
    Badly.
    What happens when they cheer? Do they sound like the Chipmunk cartoons?
    Like this.

    nk (dbc370)

  33. 26

    I see it as Trump encouraging more (to steal the phrase) ‘equitable burden sharing’.

    Someone who believes in “equitable burden sharing” would not have used bankruptcy to push the costs of his own mistakes onto others while he came out ahead, and would not have routinely stiffed small contractors and then said “Sue me if you want the whole amount we agreed on.’

    Trumpian ethics has nothing to do with equity. It’s all about “I win, you lose.”

    Radegunda (539c00) — 11/19/2019 @ 12:34 pm

    Then how do you explain NATO nations agreeing to contribute more towards their obligation than the past? Trump had zero to do with that?

    whembly (51f28e)

  34. According to this it’s been pretty flat as a % of GDP.

    See page 5 graph 8.
    For NATO EU and Canada It’s been around 1.4 since 2012. With all the variation in the hundredths place. Basically flat. If you do want to say it’s been going up the change started in 2015 under previous administrations. Most countries set their budgets in the prior year, so the largest increase (0.05%) would have been under the 2016 Obama administration.

    Basically the data doesn’t show a big difference.

    Time123 (66d88c)

  35. Trump has consistently done everything to accommodate and placate Russia, China, North Korea, and Turkey. Four of the most dangerous tyrannies currently operating within the global sphere of genuine U.S. interests. He also praises the four tyrants in question consistently and outlandishly. This is not negotiation. This is abject surrender of legitimate U.S. interests, and the abandonment of long-term U.S. allies.

    If a Democrat did any of the things I mentioned above, let alone all of them, there is not a Trump voter, a Republican in general, or anyone with pretenses of being a “conservative” in America, who would not be shouting “Treason!” — and rightly so. The only differences between Trump and those hypothetical Democrats are that: (a) no Democrat could get away with selling out American interests so brazenly — even Obama and Carter didn’t have the guts to go this far, and (b) Trump is generally given a pass by most people, even when they disagree with him, because deep down most people know — and that includes most of his supporters, I suspect — that he is too genuinely ignorant and incompetent to do any of these things because he really wants to hand the future to progressive totalitarianism. They know he doesn’t understand any of the issues or dangers involved, so they let him get away with it, like bad babysitters who watch a child smash a lamp or throw rocks at a puppy and try to tell themselves it’s not their problem.

    America, and due to her influence, the entire civilized world, is currently at the mercy of a poorly raised, spoiled seven-year-old. And it is her, and everyone’s, problem, whether we wish to face it or not.

    Daren Jonescu (2f5857)

  36. “Mine your Own Business.” It was a Phelim McAleer documentary from 2006. The village is in northern Romania and the piece looks there and elsewhere at how environmental scolds tend to live in far greater luxury than the people they are trying to “protect.”

    Gryph (08c844)

  37. Whoops…wrong thread. Sorry.

    Gryph (08c844)

  38. Russian web trolls boo Biden, often boost Gabbard, report finds

    Among Democrats running for president, Tulsi Gabbard is popular with Russian propagandists, while Joe Biden draws the most criticism, according to a new analysis.

    Mentions of Gabbard, a Hawaii congresswoman, by English-language Russian propaganda outlets were 46 percent favorable and 44 percent unfavorable, a research team from the Foreign Policy Research Institute found after analyzing more than 1,700 news stories put out by Sputnik and Russia Today, or RT. She was the only Democratic candidate with more favorable than unfavorable mentions.

    References to the former vice president, by contrast, were 3 percent favorable and 53 percent unfavorable. The rest were neutral.

    Dave (fc89e1)

  39. Trump has consistently done everything to accommodate and placate Russia, China, North Korea, and Turkey. Four of the most dangerous tyrannies currently operating within the global sphere of genuine U.S. interests. He also praises the four tyrants in question consistently and outlandishly. This is not negotiation. This is abject surrender of legitimate U.S. interests, and the abandonment of long-term U.S. allies.

    1) Really? I thought Trump was in a TRADE WAR!! with China and we were ALL GOING TO DIE!!
    2) Trump has quieted down NK, and tensions have been reduced.
    3) Turkey is our NATO ally, in case you didn’t notice.
    4) Russia is being Sanctioned and we’re sending Military aid to Ukraine.

    If that’s “abject surrender” – what would you call FDR’s treatment of Stalin or Nixon’s love affair with Mao?

    rcocean (1a839e)

  40. Then how do you explain NATO nations agreeing to contribute more towards their obligation than the past? Trump had zero to do with that?

    “All my life I’ve been greedy. I grab and grab and grab. Now I’m going to be greedy for the United States of America,” said Trump at a rally. (I’m quoting from memory, but the general line is hard to forget.)

    What does that have to do with a sense of equity?

    Radegunda (539c00)

  41. @40.

    1) Really? I thought Trump was in a TRADE WAR!! with China and we were ALL GOING TO DIE!!
    2) Trump has quieted down NK, and tensions have been reduced.
    3) Turkey is our NATO ally, in case you didn’t notice.
    4) Russia is being Sanctioned and we’re sending Military aid to Ukraine.

    Replies:

    1) You’re all going to die in Trump’s trade war, but China isn’t. And Trump knows China isn’t, because he isn’t conducting a trade war against China. He’s conducting a trade war against American free markets, because he’s a progressive authoritarian and doesn’t see why he shouldn’t be able to control American industry and boss American businesses around, because that’s what Mussolini would do.

    2) NK is testing missiles and enjoying new international clout and legitimacy thanks to Trump’s ring-kissing “summits,” in which he gave Kim everything he asked for, and got a big fat zero in return. NK is “noisy” when it feels neglected. Kim Jong Un now feels like cock of the walk, because Trump handed him that status on a silver platter. If that’s your idea of “reduced tensions,” then I suppose “Better red than dead” is your style of foreign policy. It never used to be America’s style. Now it is apparently official policy.

    3) Turkey is controlled at present by a caliphate-mongering thug. It’s funny how Trump supporters have no problem with Trump peeing all over real, historical NATO allies left, right, and center, but then turn around and defend his facilitation of a massacre against a real, practical ally (the Kurds) by shouting “Turkey is a NATO ally!”

    4) You capitalized “Sanctioned” and “Military.” A dead giveaway. I suddenly realize why you are so defensive of Trump. You are John Barron. In any case, it took a lot of gall at this particular moment to deny Trump’s consistent sucking up to Putin by saying “we’re sending Military aid to Ukraine.” Two points for nerve!

    Daren Jonescu (2f5857)

  42. The motto of Trump, Inc. might as well be “Life’s not fair; deal with it!”

    I thought that was something generally understood by grownups. Certainly came from my father’s (and mother’s) mouth quite often. Also heard it from a coach or two regarding bad calls by refs and such.
    Though to be fair, over the years I’ve learned I was one of the few lucky ones to be informed of this. Thus we have football games that go on for hours and hours and hours because every slightly marginal call must be reviewed by a panel of experts. Who then, if you believe commentators and other “experts”, still get it wrong. I fully expect at some point in the near future the victory or loss by an NFL team will be decided in a court of law. Because it’s the lawyers who always win in the end.

    PTw (894877)

  43. 43. That’s Trump’s Motto. That doesn’t mean he believes it. Somehow, even though life isn’t fair to the people he screws over, he finds ways to make things work out to his advantage.

    Gryph (08c844)

  44. he finds ways to make things work out to his advantage.

    Which is kinda how things go in business, especially as the stakes go up. I have a previous employer, a VC startup, that owes me $30K-$40K, depending on how you want to count. The owner is worth around $5 million, I think…today. Was once worth much more AFAICT. One board member is an Egyptian billionaire. It’s been over a year now that they owe me. While it’s possible that I may, possibly, still get paid even if they do eventually go belly-up, either way it sucks. But I also understood by getting into this business that such a thing was possible. The incentive of stock options paying off were another possibility as well. That’s life and that’s business. Sometimes you’re the victim and sometimes you’re the victor. Grownups know not to be whiny little cry babies about it. Especially grownups worth millions of dollars. You simply deal with the situation and move on.

    PTw (894877)

  45. 45. “That’s life and that’s business.” And that also makes Trump unfit for elected office in my opinion. How many of the contractors that Trump screwed over were multi-millionaires? I’m guessing a non-zero number of them were not. Vera Coking and Michael Forbes were not multi-millionaires, and Trump tried to literally force them into “doing business with him.”

    At the end of the day, in the inherently political process that is impeachment, that’s the only question that should matter: Is Donald J. Trump fit for office? The answer to that question is a most resounding “NO!”

    Gryph (08c844)

  46. @45, I’m sorry to hear that you have to deal with that.

    Time123 (cd2ff4)

  47. How many of the contractors that Trump screwed over were multi-millionaires?

    You tell me. Can you name even one of them? One who wasn’t a multi-millionaire, that is.

    I’m sorry to hear that you have to deal with that.

    Well, yes it’s a problem. It created a bit of tension and a cash-flow issue for me, mostly because money that I do have to cover it is tied up in 401(k) and IRA’s. Were it not for this nation’s screwy tax laws (see the details of the age 55 rule) it wouldn’t be that much of a problem. Either way, a mature adult deals with it and my cash flow situation has (mostly) now been straightened out. So while I appreciate the sentiment, no need to feel sorry for me. Feel sorry for the people who otherwise would have maturity and a backbone were it not for the abdication of personal responsibility that is very, very wide-spread in our society.

    PTw (894877)

  48. Excellent comments, Darren. I am glad you comment here.

    DRJ (15874d)

  49. It’s all “grin and bear it” until the only ones who will do business with the deadbeat are Russian racketeers laundering their money through Deutsche Bank and then they own his orange ass.

    nk (dbc370)

  50. 48. Trump put contractors out of business by refusing to pay them. Hence, my assertion that a non-zero number of them weren’t. And as I said upthread, Vera Coking and Michael Forbes, while not contractors, were attempts by Trump to force them into selling him land (neither of which was ultimately successful, by the by). Yeah, that’s life. And yeah, I get that. But as far as your former employer who screwed you out of tens of thousands of dollars — would you vote for him for City Dog Catcher? Honestly?

    To say that this sort of “business” is routine and widespread in our society doesn’t make it right

    Gryph (08c844)

  51. How many of the contractors that Trump screwed over were multi-millionaires?

    You tell me. Can you name even one of them? One who wasn’t a multi-millionaire, that is.

    During the Atlantic City casino boom in the 1980s, Philadelphia cabinet-builder Edward Friel Jr. landed a $400,000 contract to build the bases for slot machines, registration desks, bars and other cabinets at Harrah’s at Trump Plaza.

    The family cabinetry business, founded in the 1940s by Edward’s father, finished its work in 1984 and submitted its final bill to the general contractor for the Trump Organization, the resort’s builder.

    Edward’s son, Paul, who was the firm’s accountant, still remembers the amount of that bill more than 30 years later: $83,600. The reason: the money never came. “That began the demise of the Edward J. Friel Company … which has been around since my grandfather,” he said.

    That’s only one. There are more. They’re on his bankruptcy creditors’ lists.

    nk (dbc370)

  52. And on this site from around three years ago.

    nk (dbc370)

  53. submitted its final bill to the general contractor for the Trump Organization, the resort’s builder.

    So it was the general contractor, Pereni, who owed him the money. Trump is just the deeper pockets with the bigger publicity. Any other situation would play out the same way. Business deals go bad. Just as my business deal went bad. This is not to excuse Trump for selecting Perini in the first place but again, business. And business in the northeast US, especially the construction business, especially in NJ is corrupt as hell. In order to get anything done in that area, you deal with corrupt people to some degree. Not that I don’t have sympathies but I find it very hard to believe that a 30-40 year old business losing $83K on a $400K contract was what did them in. Something smells real fishy on both ends there.

    Looking at my own situation, the company I worked for, the owner had several clear successes taking startups public and making a lot of money.

    In general, the larger the enterprise, the larger the footprint either in the present or over a long period of time, there are going to be problems. Especially in Godfersaken NJ or anywhere else in that nasty part of the country. But there also will be successes or that enterprise will cease to exist.

    Here’s a question that has been burning in my mind reading the rants and such here….Has ANYONE here run an enterprise, a true business, or part of one consisting of more than 100 people?

    PTw (894877)

  54. 54. I’ve worked for such businesses. Never run one. But I can relate to the difficulties the Vera Cokings and Michael Forbes of the world have with the Donald Trumps. There is a land developer right here in my home town who has put contractors out of business just as Donald Trump has, and has used eminent domain in much the same manner as Trump as well. And like Donald Trump, his “success” in business came from being in the fourth generation of old money.

    Gryph (08c844)

  55. Business deals go bad. Just as my business deal went bad.

    Trump and Trump Organization has a proven record of not paying creditors, or forcing them to agree to only partial payments. That is not a deal gone bad. That’s fraud.

    kishnevi (0c10d1)

  56. 56. Regrettably, when you have enough money and clout you can get away with fraud. That doesn’t mean it’s not fraud. It just means you can pay better lawyers than your victims.

    Gryph (08c844)

  57. Trump and Trump Organization has a proven record of not paying creditors, or forcing them to agree to only partial payments. That is not a deal gone bad. That’s fraud.

    No, it’s a bad business deal. Happens all the time in bankruptcy situations. Not saying it’s right, but it’s not fraud. And yet still people have done billions of dollars of business with him over the last 30 years. Again, not saying it’s right or proper, but the rules are what they are and if people were really concerned they wouldn’t have continued to do business with him. People take chances with their money, yet they hate to lose it. This is what I look for with high-profile people whom the media hates. Are people still willing to do business with them? It’s their money, their choice.

    And @55, so the answer is “no”. Looking for a “yes”, anyone? Bueller?

    PTw (894877)

  58. And yet still people have done billions of dollars of business with him over the last 30 years.

    Yes, money launderers, mobsters….

    If constantly stiffing the people you work for is simply business as usual, then business as usual is fraud.

    kishnevi (0c10d1)

  59. 59. What happens to people who refuse to do business with Trump? There are people like that out there. This. And this.

    Gryph (08c844)

  60. Whoops. Wrong guy. I meant to link this.

    Gryph (08c844)

  61. And @55, so the answer is “no”. Looking for a “yes”, anyone? Bueller?

    No, thank God! I earned my daily bread with my own sweat, not the sweat of others. Bosses are thieves.

    nk (dbc370)

  62. No, thank God! I earned my daily bread with my own sweat, not the sweat of others. Bosses are thieves.

    Everyone has a boss one way or the other. Sometimes these are called “customers”. Curious…So what, pray tell, is it that you do?

    PTw (894877)

  63. Lots of things, from farmboy to lawyer.

    nk (dbc370)

  64. I earned my daily bread with my own sweat

    from farmboy to lawyer

    Oh, that’s rich. Well, explains the manure factor. And lawyer says he’s a “farmboy”. Which from my, admittedly limited (thank God) experience with the animal means little more than possibly that there’s a tomato plant growing in a window box somewhere. Yeah, me too. Let me know if you need any citrus. Not that it’s all that relevant to my question.

    So zero practical experience, and thus practical understanding, of the complexities involved in getting serious, large-scale projects done. Dealing with government regulators, multiple contractors, engineering limitations and “surprises”, project “managers”, labor issues, (in NJ and such) unions, complexities in the supply of building materials. I could go on and on. But you know all about such things. Because you’re a lawyer. Went to college and stuff where you learned all you need to know.

    Again….ANYONE here been responsible for running an enterprise, a true business, or part of one consisting of more than 100 people? At this point, I’ll even take military officer experience. Any first sergeants/captains or above? Anyone responsible for running anything larger than a platoon?

    PTw (894877)

  65. Whatever.

    nk (dbc370)

  66. PTw
    It takes absolutely no business experience to know that stiffing the people who work for you is not normal budiness practice and not honest.

    Kishnevi (3e3b90)

  67. It takes absolutely no business experience to know that stiffing the people who work for you is not normal budiness practice and not honest.

    Says the guy who can see the Nassau lighthouse from the beach in Ft. Lauderdale…even in daylight…Lord, this is rich.

    PTw (894877)

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