Trump Dishonored Vets Through Rampant Foundation Fraud
(November 11, 2019) — In a commentary featured last week on BuzzFlash, it was noted:
New York Attorney General Letitia James announced Thursday that the state Supreme Court ordered President Donald Trump to pay $2 million to eight nonprofits as part of a settlement for the state’s lawsuit that accused Trump and his three eldest children of “persistently” abusing the family’s shuttered charity, including to further the president’s political interests.
“The court’s decision, together with the settlements we negotiated, are a major victory in our efforts to protect charitable assets and hold accountable those who would abuse charities for personal gain,” James said in a statement.
Veterans were a particular target of this Trump political use of the funds, as the New York Times Editorial Board noted on November 8,
On Monday, President Trump will kick off the 100th New York City Veterans Day Parade, at which he is likely to boast, as is his wont, of his devotion to the men and women who have served in the military….
The president acknowledged in the settlement that his 2016 campaign controlled the $2.8 million the foundation had raised at a fund-raiser for veterans in Iowa in January 2016, only days before the state’s presidential nominating caucuses. The fund-raiser was used, in the words of the judge, “to further Mr. Trump’s political campaign.”
As “Bone Spurs” Trump cynically honors Veterans today, November 11, the mass media will largely overlook his political co-opting of Vets to advance Trump’s political campaign. Trump loves to evoke the self-sacrifice of US troops, but they are just another disposable prop in his unrelenting self-aggrandizement and enrichment.
As Charles Pierce, writing for Esquire, described Trump’s foundation’s corruption: “The president of the United States just admitted he looted a charity for political purposes. And it’s already been swallowed by the maelstrom of the 2019 news cycle.”
The funds were finally disbursed to veterans’ organizations, but only after media inquiries, and after the money raised was used to further Trump’s campaign. It’s not clear if the Washington Post had not started asking questions, having learned from Veterans’ organizations that no money had been received from the Trump “charity” fundraiser, if the money would have ever gone to Veterans, as described by The New York Times Editorial Board:
Reporting by The Washington Post, which led to the New York State attorney general’s investigation of the foundation, found that the foundation could not provide evidence that it gave anything to veterans groups until a reporter started asking about it, months after the fund-raiser.
The foundation, which was forced to dissolve by the courts, paid for everything from Trump’s legal expenses to a $10,000 portrait of him, which was hung at one of his hotels. The NYT notes that “shortly after his election, Mr. Trump did agree not to use the foundation to pay any of the $25 million settlement awarded to victims of his fraudulent Trump University.”
The latter Trump University settlement for fraudulent marketing brings us back to Pierce’s point that Trump’s rampant corruption is quickly forgotten by the media. It is profoundly and perilously ironic that Trump is getting away with claiming he was concerned about corruption in other nations (think Ukraine) when Trump himself is infested with fraud. Some of it gets reported on, but then disappears in the the news churn.
How can a man whose career has been built on corruption, both the big and the little grift, get away with another con, the extortion of Ukraine, by continually asserting that he was concerned about corruption? How does the media let him build a narrative around this without repeatedly pointing out Trump’s storied history of corruption? He is projecting onto Biden his most vulnerable flaw, endemic deceit that characterized his business career and now his presidency.
In his new self-promoting book — Triggered: How the Left Thrives on Hate and Wants to Silence Us — Donald Trump Jr. adopts his father’s favorite tactic, playing the victim, in this case at the expense of veterans. Trump Jr. has the gall to compare his chicken-hawk family to America’s fallen veterans buried at Arlington Cemetery,
I rarely get emotional, if ever. I guess you’d call me hyper-rational, stoic. Yet as we drove past the rows of white grave markers, in the gravity of the moment, I had a deep sense of the importance of the presidency and a love of our country … In that moment, I also thought of all the attacks we’d already suffered as a family, and about all the sacrifices we’d have to make to help my father succeed — voluntarily giving up a huge chunk of our business and all international deals to avoid the appearance that we were “profiting off of the office.”
Like his father, Donald Jr. can’t stop playing the victim card and flat-out lies about not profiteering from his father’s presidency. Remember that the Trump offspring — specifically, Donald Jr and his brother Erica — are allegedly running The Trump Organization — as they and their father mount a ferocious attack against Hunter and Joe Biden. It’s another of the ironies that builds upon an alternative reality that is amplified by the right-wing media.
And don’t forget that Donald Trump himself is still the sole owner of The Trump Organization, and profits from the presidency.
It is also worthy of note that Trump diverted $3.6 billion from the Pentagon that included funds to support projects for military families — including schools and daycare centers — to pay for the wall along the Mexican border that he promised Mexico would pay for.
On Veterans Day, it is important for veterans to remember that Donald Trump doesn’t have their back, he just uses them to advance his political interests and fatten his wallet.
In New Book, Trump Jr. Compares Family’s “Sacrifices” With Veterans Buried At Arlington
Walter Einenkel / Daily Kos
(November 8, 2019) — Donald Trump Jr. has a new book out called Triggered: How the Left Thrives on Hate and Wants to Silence Us. The world’s most disappointing son manicured his beard and took a photo. He also had a ghost writer string together a slew of his thoughts on things.
Like his father, Trump Jr. is unable to reflect upon anything without determining that the world is out to get him and that he and his clan of rich corrupt friends are being persecuted. Business Insider says Trump Jr. proclaims that a “victimhood complex has taken root in the American left” — in a memoir that spends most of its time having the “author” claim to be the victim of the American left.
Most of this crybaby whining from Junior mirrors what we have come to expect from any conservative pundit or politician. It’s “political correctness,” it’s non-binary gender roles, it’s everybody else that’s ruining America and not the people that have controlled and been scamming Americans for the past five decades. However, as with most of these kinds of conservative victim-porn tomes, there are moments that stand out for their egomania.
One such moment is when Junior, evoking what I imagine he believes to be a reflective tone, talks about visiting Arlington National Cemetery a day before Donald Trump’s inauguration.
“I rarely get emotional, if ever. I guess you’d call me hyper-rational, stoic. Yet as we drove past the rows of white grave markers, in the gravity of the moment, I had a deep sense of the importance of the presidency and a love of our country … In that moment, I also thought of all the attacks we’d already suffered as a family, and about all the sacrifices we’d have to make to help my father succeed — voluntarily giving up a huge chunk of our business and all international deals to avoid the appearance that we were ‘profiting off of the office.'”
Forget the fact that Ivanka and Junior and the whole Trump operation have indeed benefited more than ever before from their namesake’s corrupt regime: The breathtaking narcissism involved in comparing the “sacrifices” made by American war veterans and their families to a mob of untalented, barely coherent spoiled brats is truly vulgar.
Maybe Junior was thinking about “sacrificing” $2 million in a settlement over he and his family’s fake charity?
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