Commentary

Trump Tells Us How He’ll Hurt America

When you’re a 69-year-old extrovert, you’ve amassed quite a record of declarations and pronouncements. So when we say a Donald Trump presidency would harm America, don’t take our word for it. Take his.

What America Needs Is Bankruptcy, Right?

Trump on the economy: “I will be the greatest jobs president that God ever created.”

If his record for the past 25 years is any indication, there is a 75 percent chance Trump would declare bankruptcy during his presidency. Trump has declared bankruptcy for his Trump Taj Mahal, Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino, Trump Hotels and Casino Resorts, and Trump Entertainment Resorts during the presidencies of Bush 41 (twice), Bush 43, and Obama. Only the boom years of the Clinton presidency appear to have kept Trump out of bankruptcy court for a fifth time.

As the presidential hopeful often reminds the public, performance and winning are where it’s at, and his four bankruptcies do reflect a distinguished performance of sorts—placing Trump in the bottom 5 percent of his corporate peers. No wonder that part of the bankruptcy deals required Trump to give up ownership or removed his authority to make day to day decisions for the company.

On a positive note, he’s been bankruptcy-free for six years, though this coincides suspiciously with his tax plan estimates to deliver “tremendous” economic growth if elected, as much as 6 percent annually. The last time America had that type of growth? 1984—seven years before Trump first declared bankruptcy.

Take Donald Trump’s word for it. He’ll make America embarrassed again.

Attacking People Always Brings Unity

Trump on social conflict: “I will be a great unifier.”

Across the aisle and within the party, unity is needed so the big things can get done and Trump can make America great again. For us average Americans, it’s obvious that Trump will be the great unifier he’s told us he will be. As he reminds, he’s been at the top of the polls since he declared his candidacy, and his venues cannot even fit all of us trying to get in. We’re unified!

For some, though, there’s still work to be done. Take Iowa, for example. When Trump asks how stupid are the people of Iowa, that’s a legitimate question. They wavered in their support of the Great Unifier, which Trump correctly identified as a sign of stupidity.

All right, so maybe there’s some unifying still to do beyond Iowa. Thankfully, though, it’s mostly with women, so half of America appears to be safe. “Disgusting” Rosie O’Donnell needs to be less “fat” and less of a “slob.” If Arianna Huffington weren’t so unattractive, Trump would not have needed to state the obvious: “I fully understand why her former husband left her for a man — he made a good decision.”

But then, Megyn Kelly’s disregard for journalistic standards overwhelmed even the Great Unifier’s capacity for tolerance. Referencing those comments and others that disparaged women, Kelly asked how the comments might impact the general election. Initially, Trump reminded her and debate watchers that he’s too busy for political correctness (a sweeping term meant to negate the consequences of anything you say if you’re Donald Trump). The following day, however, the Great Unifier did what he does so well: taunting Kelly for the “blood coming out of her wherever,” he set about to unify.

He is unifying the Republican Party, starting with that “p-ssy” Cruz, “low-energy” Bush,“super low-energy” Carson, “weak like a baby” Rubio, and Fiorina with the face that no one could vote for. Then, there’s “not a war hero” McCain (don’t tell him that McCain was awarded America’s second- and third-highest military decorations for his gallantry and heroism). No one wants a stupid military.

Trump’s also reaching out across the aisle. He’s unifying as he goes with Clinton, the “single worst secretary of State in the history of this country,” and the Democratic Party writ large, despite their polices that are “going to end up kicking them — you know where.”

But what about race relations, a topic so tricky that not even Barack Obama, America’s first African-American president, has managed to move the needle on it? Fear not! Trump has reassured us that he is the right man for that job, too, since “I have a great relationship with the blacks. I’ve always had a great relationship with the blacks.”

We Need a Hair-Trigger Temper Holding the Red Button

Trump on international relations and national security: “Listen, you mother f—ers!”

On the international stage, Trump appears equally committed to and gifted at unifying. We know already that Trump would “get along very well with Putin,” noting that “at least he’s a leader, unlike what we have in this country.”

The Great Unifier in Chief has also shared his plans for rising powers like China, “Listen you mother f——, we’re going to tax you 25 percent!” Bold words, but as Trump tells us, it’s all in how you sell it.

Closer to home, Trump is very aware of the problems of illegal immigration from Mexico. “When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending the best. They’re not sending you, they’re sending people that have lots of problems and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. … And some, I assume, are good people.”

Thankfully, Trump has the solution and it’s simple: “I will build a great wall — and nobody builds walls better than me, believe me — and I’ll build them very inexpensively. I will build a great, great wall on our southern border, and I will make Mexico pay for that wall. Mark my words.”

And when it comes to terrorism, Trump has another simple solution: “I would bomb the s—t out of ISIS… I’m the worst thing that’s ever happened to ISIS.” It sounds well thought-out and with more than 23,000 bombs already dropped by the United States in 2015, Trump’s promise to really light up the sky is reassuring.

Finally, what about the ultimate deterrent in the U.S. arsenal? Surely a commander in chief needs a clear vision about nuclear weapons. Luckily, Trump’s views are clear to all potential adversaries: “For me, nuclear, the power, the devastation, is very important to me.”

I’m a Winner—Except at Work

Trump on problem-solving: “My style of deal-making is quite simple and straightforward. I aim very high, and then I just keep pushing and pushing and pushing to get what I’m after.”

Aiming high is always easier when you’ve led your business into bankruptcy … again … again … and again. But Trump’s quarter-century of poor performance aside, let his words speak to you: “We’re going to win so much — win after win after win — that you’re going to be begging me: ‘Please, Mr. President, let us lose once or twice. We can’t stand it any more.’ And I’m going to say: ‘No way. We’re going to keep winning. We’re never going to lose. We’re never, ever going to lose.’”

Politics Is a Disgrace

Trump on governing: “One of the key problems today is that politics is such a disgrace, good people don’t go into government.” Like any good lie, there’s a ring of truth to it, but Trump is not the antidote.

Donald Trump isn’t a statesman; he’s incendiary.

Donald Trump isn’t a commander-in-chief; he’s a bully.

Donald Trump doesn’t love America; he loves himself.

A. Trevor Thrall is a senior fellow at the Cato Institute and associate professor of international security at George Mason University. Erik Goepner is a retired U.S. Air Force Colonel who commanded units in Afghanistan and Iraq.