Monday, August 26, 2013

In Defense of Donald Trump

I don't always agree with Donald Trump's political and economic views, he appears to be a neo-mercantilist Keynesian, but there is a horrible miscarriage of justice taking place against him in his home state of New York. New York's attorney general, Eric Schneiderman, is suing Trump for $40 million. Schneiderman says Trump helped run a phony "Trump University" that promised to make students rich but instead steered them into expensive and mostly useless seminars.

"Trump University engaged in deception at every stage of consumers' advancement through costly programs and caused real financial harm," Schneiderman said. "Trump University, with Donald Trump's knowledge and participation, relied on Trump's name recognition and celebrity status to take advantage of consumers who believed in the Trump brand."

According to NyPo, "Schneiderman’s campaign hit up Donald Trump and his pals for contributions while he was investigating the real-estate mogul’s for-profit trade school for illegal business practices."

It certainly appears like the type of shakedown that power crazed government officials use. Trump didn't buckle, and good for him.

Moreover, it appears there may be even more to the case. Trump has tweeted:

Trump has been a long time critic of the President. Is this payback?

As for the course itself, a few years back, I happened to be staying at the Westin Bonaventure Hotel in downtown Los Angeles. On my way back from a day of meetings, I noticed a sign in the lobby directing people to a Trump Real Estate seminar. Ever curious, I wandered over to check it out. It was a free seminar that was about to start and I decided to stay. I was impressed with the instructor, who appeared to have a very strong real estate background, and with the presentation itself, which included a number of creative methods to acquire real estate.

A pitch finally came, explaining how for a fee (It was probably between $1,000 and $2,000--It was a long time ago and I don't remember the exact price now) more advanced details would be provided along with all the contracts to execute the types of purchases the program recommended.

The program seemed pretty decent to me. My gut feeling was that the contracts alone were worth the price of the course. Obviously, you are not going to walk out of the course a millionaire without doing a lot of hard work on your own, but it appeared to me that the program would be a good starter point for someone wanting to learn about the business.  As for me, I was just curious and there was no reason to sign up, but, again, for someone breaking into real estate, I thought the program could be valuable. In fact, I recommended to a friend, who was considering entering the real estate sector, to take the course.

Relative to the "education" students are given at state universities, the cost of  the state "education" and the waiters jobs they get after, Trump's program is a beacon of light.

Schneiderman is a typical government agent playing power government. If he was really concerned with education, he would be closing down the state colleges that offer totally worthless education, and he would be leaving Trump alone, who through the courses is delivering exactly what he says he is: Information on how to succeed in real estate.


This morning, on “Fox & Friends," Trump said:
He sits up in my office asking me for campaign contributions, he’s been there numerous times. He’s a political hack. He figures by going after Trump, he can get some publicity, which he will get, but we’ll try and make it uncomfortable as possible.

They [Obama and Schneiderman] meet on Thursday evening. I get sued by this A.G. Schneiderman, I get sued on Saturday at one o’clock. Think of it. What government agency in the history of this country has ever brought a suit on a Saturday? I never heard of such a thing.


  1. I wonder if Trump was the beneficiary of any of the gov't guaranteed student loans, I'm guessing there's a good chance he was/is.

    I have a relative that works in the internet industry of selling leads to both "public" and for profit schools that are tied in with gov't guaranteed loans.

    The people he works with seem to know there's an unsustainable bubble in the industry, and they know there's a good chance that the students taking gov't loans will never pay them back in most of these schools. It's a pretty shady business.

    I think gov't is preparing to vilify "for profit" schools because a lot of them are getting federal/taxpayer money as a response to the student loan bubble...while conveniently ignoring the public institutions doing the same thing.

    Trump is a nice target along those lines for the Big O and his pal aside from the obvious personal vendetta O probably has against him for the birth certificate stuff among other things.

    I can't say I feel very bad for Trump if his school has been profiting from gov't guaranteed student loans...but of course that doesn't justify him being "picked" on either.

    1. Nick,

      I don't get the sense that Trump is beneficiary of any government guaranteed loans. The seminar I attended was one where you whipped out your credit card or checkbook to enroll for further courses. There was no mention of government loans.

    2. Thank you for the note Robert.

      If that's the case, then I obviously see this as a horrible aggression on Trump.

  2. Boobus americanus will see this kind of thing and STILL go on believing they have nothing to fear from NSA spying so long as they aren't flirting with al Qaeda. Conservatives, especially! It's the same brain-block that causes them to oppose government management of medical care, on the grounds that government doesn't manage things well, while supporting the much larger undertaking of government management of a global empire.