This guy really is fascinating to me! Not because of his wealth, or proclaimed wealth, or what he truly has to offer, but fundamentally how hard he works to make himself appear to be relevant and bigger than he is.
I have to confess to not having been a fan of Donald Trump right from the get go!
I don’t challenge the successes that he has manifested for himself, but, as a flat broke kid from the wrong side of town and having fought my way to success in real estate totally on my own, I find it difficult to accept the snivelings of “silver spoon rich kids“.
Over my years of observing Mr. Trump I’ve seen his story of his success change considerably. The one thing I know is that he is not the “self-made superstar” that he proclaims to be these days.
His father was a wealthy apartment-building developer who sent Donald the “sliver-spoon son” to the finest schools enabling him to avoid the “draft” through educational deferment and later, other means.
Let’s just acknowledge that Donald never had to worry about paying the hydro bills or grocery bill, if you know what I mean.
His first job was actually in his father’s substantial development company which built affordable housing in New York city. My lack of a father in my life, left me to find my first job selling typewriters on straight commission.
Mr. Trump has always been a “deal maker” and this I like in him. I’m kind of a sucker for anyone who loves the “game of the deal“. To sell books you can call deal making an “Art” like Mr. Trump did with one of his books, but in reality it is a game, a game Mr. Trump plays very well.
But know that games are played by “salesmen” and if you’ve been reading my blogs over the past fifteen years you will be familiar with my number one warning to: “believe half of what you see and nothing that you hear“.
The selling game, is best taught in the writings of Sun Tzu in his prolific Book “Sun Tzu And The Art Of War“, and it is safe to say Mr. Trump has studied this historic reference book on war, which really is simply “the strategy of winning”.
Mr. Trumps repeated emphasis on being worth “$10 Billion Dollars“, and on having graduated from Wharton School of Finance (thus is smarter than everyone else), and his emphasis on “such a stellar financial track record” when his companies went through bankruptcies five times, is what gets to me.
He did go on to make a number of solid property purchases (when you have dad’s money, buying property is easy, especially when real estate markets have “bottomed out” which they had at the time).
You’ve got to give Mr. Trump credit for envisioning the potential underscoring these deals and for negotiating them though. Key in the financial mix of these acquisitions were generous tax concessions from the city (more “deals“).
So everyday tax payers further subsidized these deals that were set up by a severe fiscal crisis, the city was experiencing. Good marks on that one too, although I’ve never heard Mr. Trump thank or acknowledge consumers for having financially supported his stairway to the wealth that he so strongly promotes!
He bought and restored a number of Manhattan hotels and apartment buildings and built new ones. He is indisputably, a mover and shaker with talent in the real estate and self promotion business. He has parlayed his skill at both to expand into licensing, reality tv, and a bunch of other endeavours, all of which seemingly to considerable acclaim.
Don’t get me wrong, this is one great salesman! But salesman he is! Presidential material he is not! It is hard to tell just how serious he is about this alleged bid for the Presidency but you can rest assured that the celebrity reward for the effort pays his ego huge dividends.
The problem that I have with “The Donald” is that I know that his “spin”, “schtick”, “pitch” or whatever he chooses to call it, is that the facts do not match!
On the “never declared bankruptcy talking point of The Donald’s“, The “Pinocio Meter” jumps noticeably.
Protected under America’s corporate ownership laws, “Mr. Trump has never personally declared bankruptcy” however corporations that he owned and controlled (at times) have on five (5) occasions, not to mention the plethora of hotel and condo developments licensing his name, hype and name recognition!
Trump’s “Taj Mahal” located in Atlantic City was in debt for over $3.5 billion, when the company, which he owned filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. And then, another “deal”, where the Bankruptcy court allowed Trump to reorganize his corporate debts and allowed the casino to keep operating. To make the deal, he surrendered half of his ownership interests in the Taj Mahal. It was reported that he also sold his yacht and airplane to help make loan payments.
In 1992, Trump filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on his Trump Plaza Hotel in Atlantic City. He reportedly, owed $550 million. As part of this restructuring, Trump made a “deal” with Citibank for 49% interest in the hotel. He was given a lenient repayment plan. Trump was able to stay on as CEO but he had to give up his salary.
Trump Hotels and Casino Resorts also filed for bankruptcy in 2004 under $1.8 billion dollars of debt and Trump again made a “deal” reducing his ownership stake in the company to 25% and surrendering his control. The corporation received lower interest rates and another loan to upgrade the properties.
In 2009, Trump Entertainment Resorts filed bankruptcy after missing a large bond interest payment. Trump was not able to make a “deal” with his board of directors on a repayment plan so he resigned as chairman of the board. He managed to retain only a 10% ownership interest in the corporation.
I came across a Washington Post article about The Trump International Golf Course in Porto Rico that tells the tale of it going bankrupt. Despite going bankrupt, the “deal” was a solid winner for “the Donald”. He had put $0.00 into the project and enjoyed a percentage of the annual revenue (while it lasted). Mr. Trump is quoted as saying he “made millions without investing a dime“.
You can Google “Trump Hotel & Residences Bankruptcies” and find a list ranging from Georgia, Florida, Chicago and many many more, all of whom are businesses under the Trump “Brand” name at least and all have gone bankrupt.
This is where I take exception to Mr. Trumps blowharding! He is simply being disingenuous and untruthful. In sales it’s call “spinning” but in reality it is being untruthful.
Is this the Standard of Integrity that the people he is suggesting vote for him can expect should he become President of the United States. Hell, America is already broke!
Possibly this is where he sees himself being of the most value, based on his experience of owing little-guy suppliers so much money that they cannot do anything but accept pennies on the dollar!
Where is America going with this?