The article details the many tax breaks that Donald Trump has been able to muster in developing his Manhattan real estate empire. NYT estimates the total in the range of $885 million.
No doubt Mr. Trump’s opponents will chuckle over these revelations. Clearly, the New York Times, which is no fan of Donald Trump, fully expects to generate a lot of tongue clucking and finger scraping with its Monumental Disclosure.
Truth is, The Donald has made no secret of the fact that he has gamed the system. Whether it is the bankruptcy laws, the tax laws, the eminent domain laws or the jurisdiction of the civil courts, Trump and his minions have scrambled from the trenches and stormed the economic battlefields of private enterprise without compromise or apology.
Is Washington D.C. a cesspool of corporate lobbying, a cornucopia of cash for eager Congressional campaign committees? Trump has been in the thick of it. He knows how it works because he has worked it. He admits it. Nay, he brags about it.
And he says it is wrong. He says he is a different species of Presidential candidate; an American businessman who says “Been there, done that, and it’s not going to happen on my watch.”
Thomas Jefferson, ruminating in a philosophical mood, once observed that the two party system is dictated by the laws of human nature. Whatever names they may claim, whatever people may call them, the two parties are always the Tories and the Whigs.
The Tories are the incumbents, the power brokers, the insiders, the establishment. They are the ruling class. The folks with the money. The haves. They are the system. City Hall. Downtown. Washington, D.C.
The Whigs are the unconnected. The have nots. The outsiders. The wanna bes. The people. Main Street. The Fly over zone. Business owners, entrepreneurs, workers, the taxpayers, the Silent Majority; the faceless mass of humanity that the Tories manipulate every election year.
If Mr. Jefferson is correct, it is perhaps true that Tories are nothing more than Whigs who managed to get elected. It is certainly true that, human nature being what it is, power is a corrupting influence, and those who come to office pledging to plug loopholes are often not above boring a few new holes themselves.
Surely it would be unduly sanguine to suppose that a sweeping Republican victory in November would inaugurate a new era of spotless integrity in our nation’s capital.
Still, there has to be some comfort in knowing that the man at the head of the GOP ticket doesn’t need the money. He may even take a page from George Washington’s book and decline to accept any compensation.
Whatever. In any case, I take solice in the fact that Donald Trump sees himself as a candidate for President of the United States and not a candidate for Governor of America.
Over the last half century, we have had too many candidates from both major political parties who have offered platforms more suited to a campaign for Governor of a State than Chief Executive of of our national Republic.
I hear Donald Trump saying that education, health and welfare, criminal justice and urban housing are matters that should be addressed in places like Albany, Lansing, and Sacramento.
The upcoming Presidential debate will present a striking contrast between a veteran insider, who has lived in the White House, served in the Senate and presided over the State Department and a consummate outsider, a novice to public office, whose principal assets are business acumen, patriotism and a determination to make America great again.
We are about to witness a classic collision between the Tories and the Whigs. Hang onto your hat. November is coming.