Douglas MacKinnon: Trump's taxes bring out the turncoats -- Let's call it ‘The Art of the Backstabbers'

Since first announcing his candidacy in June of 2015, now President Trump has had to deal with a never-ending list of turncoats.

Some are aligned with him from his private-sector days. Some are from within the government who, purely for reasons of twisted ideology, have made it their mission to try and sabotage his presidency.

But it is two from his private-sector days, which I would like to focus on at the moment.

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Those two being writer/authors who assisted Donald Trump with two of his books. The first being Tony Schwartz who helped with the writing of Trump’s 1987 massive-best-seller titled: “The Art of the Deal.” The second being Charles Leerhsen who assisted with “Surviving at the Top.”

Both have intimated that they turned on the president to “save the country” from his “evil,” but many will see it as self-serving ingratitude.

When the New York Times came out with its latest “bombshell” story about how Donald Trump “lost” over a billion dollars between 1985 and 1994 – which the president’s lawyer called “demonstrably false,” and a freshman Econ 101 student could explain away to the New York Times in minutes – these two authors went out of their way to pile-on the president in a groveling, pathetic, and transparent attempt to get kudos, a pat on the head, and a treat from the liberal Trump-haters in the media, entertainment, publishing, and academia.

Many on the left tend to feel entitled to whatever they want and never-earned, so gratitude, honesty, and the giving of credit have never been their strong suit.

That said, it was Donald Trump and his name and business model alone, which in many ways put these two authors on the map and gave them for sure, one of their largest paydays.

Of the two, Schwartz is the worst as he has tried to build a cottage-industry of regularly sliming the president on his Twitter account, and to the liberal media.

Which is a shame, because “The Art of the Deal” – which Schwartz seems to regularly claim credit for – truly is one of the best real-world business books ever.

I first read it when I was a writer in the White House of President Ronald Reagan.

As one who did grow up on the tough and poor-side of town, the book instantly resonated as “real business” as opposed to Ivory Tower academic nonsense.

After reading the book back in 1987, I wrote a short letter of appreciation and mailed it to Norma Foerderer, Trump’s executive assistant and vice president at the time. She was kind enough to answer me by mail (look it up, kids) and we became pen-pals over the next few years.

Twice while I was in New York, she invited me over to Trump Tower for a coffee. Now, while President Trump would not know me if he tripped over me today, Norma was nice enough to quickly introduce me to him.

We talked about our “Scottish” moms for a bit, and then he signed my copy of "The Art of the Deal." Just by coincidence, twice more in that same day, we crossed paths again. And both times, Trump took the time to walk over, say hello and talk and laugh with me for a few minutes.

As that former street-kid, those interactions came across as down-to-earth, genuine, and honestly, simply kind.

That was the extent of my contact with Trump but it did stay with me and as someone who was working in the White House, I increasingly came to believe that his real-world experience could be a tremendous asset.

There is a scene in the movie “Back to School,” where Rodney Dangerfield – who plays a tough CEO enrolling in an elite college to keep an eye on his wimpy son – takes issue with a liberal, never-worked-in-the-real-world professor, and explains to him the actual process of starting a business. Almost instantly, every student in the class turns their back on the know-nothing professor, face Dangerfield’s character, and begins taking notes like crazy.

And that, in a nutshell, is what Donald Trump did to the other Republican primary contenders in 2016 and then Hillary Clinton in the election. He overwhelmed them all with real-world experience which resonated with real-world Americans.

“The Art of the Deal” was and is a good book and Schwartz should be quite proud of it.

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Instead, for partisan and personal reasons, he belittles it and President Trump whenever possible.

I would caution him and Leerhsen that 30 pieces of silver do not go far with today’s liberal elites and gratitude is a much stronger and lasting commodity.

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