Thursday, September 22, 2022


It's possible that the lawsuit filed against the Trump family and its business operations by New York State attorney general Letitia James will eventually result in a judgment or settlement so costly to Donald Trump that he won't even be able to fake being a high-living billionaire anymore. But I disagree with Martin Longman's assertion that Trump is already disgraced, at least in the eyes of the people who matter to him:
The civil complaint she announced on Wednesday did one valuable thing immediately, which was to expose Trump as far less wealthy than he’d like us to believe. This was demonstrated by showing how he has outrageously inflated the worth of just about every known asset he owns, and even claimed assets that he doesn’t own. The complaint shows a laundry list of fraudulent acts, but the simplest one to understand is that he’s been lying about his wealth. That hits him in one of the few places where he’s capable of giving a shit and feeling some real pain. That’s a consequence, and it’s bad for his image.
But it won't do the slightest bit of damage to Trump's image with the people whose opinion he cares about most these days: his right-wing fan base. It doesn't matter what's in James's civil complaint. They simply won't believe it, because it comes from a Democrat -- a Black female Democrat, no less -- and it's being reported by "the fake news." None of the fans will weigh the allegations even momentarily. They're all lies! Look at where they're coming from!

I wouldn't exactly call it a sign of maturity on Trump's part, but he seems to have come to terms with the fact that sophisticated people, in Manhattan society and elsewhere, will never embrace him. They're the kinds of people who understand that Trump's claims of wealth are inflated by lies -- but they knew that years ago. His new best friends are different. They don't believe what fancy East Coast legal and financial journalists tell them about Trump. They believe what Sean Hannity and Steve Bannon tell them about Trump. They believe what Trump tells them about himself.

In a way, Trump and the right-wing base are a match made in heaven. They think, Are you one of us or one of them? If you're one of them, we won't believe anything you say, no matter how much evidence you have. If you're one of us, you can tell us anything and we'll believe you. Trump is "one of us" for these people. For a lifelong con man, they're the perfect marks.

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