Thursday, March 10, 2016

Donald Trump and Kevin Trudeau: Turds of a Feather?

Yesterday I had too many other things going on to be able to do a real blog post -- most notably we had bad thunderstorms and near-flash-flood conditions, and Internet was spotty at best -- so I settled for a brief sharing of the fake news that Grand Obstructionist Party front-runner Donald Trump has finally named a running mate: none other than imprisoned serial scammer Kevin Trudeau, aka KT, aka Katie on this blog. Though it was, as far as I know, bogus breaking news for the time being, is it really that much of a stretch? I can think of a few folks -- such as one Trump idolator who is also a loyal longtime Katie buddy -- who would probably love to see a Trump-Trudeau ticket. And even though the prospect of a Trumpdeau ticket made a few other people blanch, think about this: it still wouldn't be as scary as Trump naming loathsome wackadoodle theocrat Ted Cruz for his running mate. Eeesh.

But this post is really more about Scamworld than politics, though with Donald Trump the two are inextricably merged. The media -- at least the parts of the media that don't have their noses up Trump's bloated a$$ -- have been having an absolute field day with reports about The Donald's failed Scamworld venture, Trump University. Their focus is on several lawsuits pending against this institution of liar learning. 

Not surprisingly Trump is biting back. He's protesting too much, as he usually does, despite the fact that even he has pretty much admitted that Trump U was not all it was advertised to be. He acknowledged under oath, for instance, that despite the promos where he claimed that all of the "instructors" were "hand picked" by him, he actually had no role in selecting those instructors. If you're interested, here is a direct link to some court documents that include a deposition taken in December 2015.

Perhaps the most newsworthy point about this whole story hasn't made the news at all, though. And that is the fact that Trump U, though it has tongues wagging now that campaign season is in full swing, was just another day in Scamworld.

* * * * *

Meanwhile Trump's popularity continues to swell as he pulls off win after win after win during the icky foreplay to the Repugnican Convention. So far I have only listened to about half of his rambling, blustering, hubris-filled victory speech/press conference/infomercial at Trump National Golf Club in Jupiter, Florida, which he made following his big wins in Mississippi and Michigan on March 8. But I heard enough to understand that apart from his main objective, which was of course to rub everyone's nose in his victory and get in a few jabs at his remaining opponents, he was using the pep rally to polish the Trump brand. Most amusingly he took yet another opportunity to try to demonstrate that, contrary to the claims of his detractors, he is a Successful Businessman. (It seems that he is even more sensitive about public perception of his business success and the size of his bank account than he is about the size of his little hands and naughty bits.)

To prove his claims that he is not a bidness failure, Trump fake-showcased a few of his failed brands that he insisted are not a failure (Trump steaks, wine, water, etc.),
pretending that the steaks and wine he was serving at the gathering were actually his products.

More importantly to the theme of this post, he once again validated his place in Scamworld, declaring in no uncertain terms that he has every intention of starting up Trump University again once he wins the lawsuits. And he says he has every intention of winning those suits, adding that he never settles lawsuits (I guess he forgot this one), and driving home the point that he always, always wins his legal battles (I guess he forgot this one).

In any case, the scam that was Trump U has been burning up the news cycle, and earlier this week,
Mother Jones published a piece about yet another "penny-ante" scam for which The Donald shilled, The Trump Network. The author of the piece, Kevin Drum, concluded:

But here's what I don't get: how is it that we're hearing about this for the first time? It only happened seven years ago. It was announced with all the usual Trump fanfare. But it seems to have escaped everyone's notice. How many more of these things are out there just waiting to be discovered?
Well, as it happens, the scheme didn't escape everyone's notice. Salty Droid, who was covering Trump's Scamworld connections before it was cool, wrote about the Trump Network too a few years ago. This post is from September 2013.
If Donald Trump had to start over :: he’d find himself a good pyramid scheme … and get to work. Clawing his way up from the bottom of the bottom :: to the middle of the bottom … where bankruptcy lurks for all who spend significant time sucked into the MLM fraud vortex of doom...

...It’s a recipe for suckcess :: or something :: and I guess it’s why Don Trump is on TV … while Bank of America is foreclosing on your house.

If anyone would know about starting from scratch :: it’d be The Donald … because his family was stuffed full of scratch … and he never had to achieve a single goddamn thing on his own {total fucking lack of} merit...

And Wonkette gave a nod to Trump's "network" scamminess too, back in August 2015. That blog post referenced another August 2015 post on the very fine Naturopathic Diaries blog.

So no, the scam didn't escape everybody's notice. But I forgive you, Mother Jones and Kevin Drum, because you have worked so tirelessly and with such integrity over the decades to bring us the investigative reporting on issues that "they" truly don't want us to know about. Eat your heart out, Katie. (And Mother Jones has also prevailed in stupid vexatious defamation litigation against them (litigation initiated by a New-Wage scammer and major Republican political donor), so they're real champions as far as I'm concerned.)

And don't get me wrong: it is good to see that the rest of the world is finally awakening to these scams -- better late than never. But, as was the case with Trump U, and as I've mentioned here before, the sudden interest is there only because the failed scams were perpetrated by the front runner in the Make America Hate Again campaign for the White House. What the world has apparently not quite realized is that although these schemes may seem "penny-ante" (in the words of the Mother Jones piece) by comparison to, say, Bernie Madoff or Wall Street shenanigans -- or for that matter the trillions spent on various doomed-to-failure "wars on terror" and "wars on drugs" -- the effect of Scamworld schemes on ordinary individuals can be devastating. And most media don't even address the cumulative impact of all of these scams and scammers.

But at least there was some levity surrounding the MoJo piece. My friend Julie Daniel screen-capped this:

Another friend, former GIN member Paul Wilson, wrote, "Wow! if that happens, maybe they'll offer a '
Lazy Mans' Way to Poverty Program' on a National Level."

And the other day on one of Fred van Liew's threads about Trump (Fred, as I've mentioned more than once, is a YOOGE supporter of Trump, as well as a persistent defender of Trudeau), one commenter expressed the hope that one of the first things Trump does as president is to pardon Kevin Trudeau and set him free. That got a few "likes."

The thing is -- and I think most folks in the critical-to-Trump press have figured this out by now -- no matter how many "new" revelations emerge about Trump's scams and lies, no matter how many potential bombshells are dropped about his alleged Mafia ties and shady business dealings, and certainly no matter how hateful his rhetoric becomes or how many acts of violence are carried out at his big rallies, his starry-eyed followers just won't care. They will simply continue to cast blame upon the protesters, or Bernie Sanders, or Barack Obama... anybody but the bloated orange blowfish whom they have come to see as the new Messiah.

And in the big scheme of things, the Scamworld adventures of Donald have scarcely raised an eyebrow in some circles. If anything, they've made some people admire him all the more. It's just business, they say, if they even acknowledge that Trump U and the Trump Network were failures. They certainly don't care that people lost money. Even folks such as fake doctor and cancer quack Lenny Coldwell and his buddy Abe Husein, who have made such a very big deal over being scammed and screwed over by Kevin Trudeau and GIN, are using their Facebook pages to stump for Trump. They either don't understand or they simply don't care that Donald Trump has pulled off some of the same types of scams that Kevin Trudeau did. "If it didn't directly affect me, it's not a scam."

So really, from a business philosophy perspective (and after all, The Donald is all about business, which, apart from the racism, seems to be why so many people worship him), a Trump/Trudeau ticket makes a lot of sense.
And, after all, Katie did defend Trump on his radio show back in 2011. (Embedding is disabled by request, so you'll just have to follow that link.)

Indeed, Trump and Trudeau are a match made in marketing hell, especially considering that Kevin has had political ambitions for years. Perhaps Trump can finally make Katie's dream come true. And it would surely be a wonderful chance for The Donald to pick up an outsider whose feelings about issues such as "Mexicans" and American exceptionalism are right in line with Trump's. USA! USA! USA! Sieg Heil! Tomorrow belongs to those who love it the most! Long live der "furor!" And long live the hatriarchy!

It's a small Scamworld after all, full of scary stories in which, as usual, there are No Neat and Tidy Endings. The real tragedy is that con artist Donald Trump's scams have now reached way beyond Scamworld. Trump, the great gaslighter, is at the top of his game, and he has a huge following that most Scamworld gurus, including Kevin Trudeau, must surely envy. His run for the presidency is arguably the biggest scheme of his career, and even if he loses it is a scam that all of America could very well be forced to buy into, with no opting out.

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