Electing Trump to Stop Corruption is Like Smoking to Cure Cancer

Don't believe a word Donald Trump says about getting money out of politics -- he's part of the problem, and his apparent bribe of Republican Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi highlights it.

Although this scandal has been overshadowed by all the drama surrounding Hillary having the flu, emails, the Clinton Foundation, etc., it's actually a really big deal.

Here's the gist of what happened: Back in 2013, Bondi was thinking of joining a massive lawsuit against Trump University, which was accused of ripping off thousands of students.

Shortly after receiving a $25,000 campaign check from the Donald J. Trump foundation, however, Bondi decided not to join that lawsuit.

Bondi, of course, denies any wrongdoing, but no one in Florida is buying her excuses.

All three major Sunshine State newspapers -- the Miami Herald, the Orlando Sentinel, and the Tampa Bay Times -- have now called for a federal investigation into an incident that certainly looks like a classic case of quid-pro-quo corruption.

The Tampa Bay Times was especially tough in its call for a federal probe, arguing that since "The appearance of something more than a coincidence is too serious - and the unresolved questions are too numerous - to accept blanket denials by Bondi and Trump without more digging and an independent review."

Now, under normal circumstances, a scandal of this magnitude would be all over the news.

If Hillary Clinton, for example, were involved in anything like this, we'd never hear the end of it.

But because it's Trump, the whole story has slipped down the memory hole.

And that's despite the fact that the campaign donation that set off this scandal was itself illegal and worthy of a $2,500 fine for Trump breaking the law!

So what's going on here?

How is Trump able to weather a pay-to-play scandal that would probably doom another candidate?

The answer is simpler than you might think: Trump can survive this kind of scandal because being involved in this kind of scandal is a huge part of his appeal.

You see, unlike Bernie Sanders, who approached money in politics as an outside reformer, Trump approaches the issue as an insider, as someone who actively participates in the kind of wheel-greasing that's turned our republic into the best democracy money can buy.

He's even gone so far as to crack jokes about how much he loves bribing people.

This is a weird strategy, but it makes sense from a certain point of view.

By admitting his own corruption, Trump makes himself out to be the only honest guy in the room.

He's trying to point our that the emperor has no clothes by taking off all his clothes himself.

This is why the Pam Bondi story hasn't hurt Trump as much as it would hurt another candidate -- it just proves his point that the system is corrupt.

But can someone like Trump actually FIX our broken political system?

That's the real question, and the answer is no, he can't.

Trump might be "honest" in his own grotesque sort of way about pay-to-play politics in America, but that kind of honesty doesn't translate into good governance.

Quite the opposite, actually.

Trump is someone who's made billions by hustles and bribes, and he's not going to suddenly change once he becomes president.

He'll still be the same privileged bully he's always been.

If he brings his corrupt deal-making skills to the White House, expect him and his buddies to get rich and American workers to get the shaft.

That's the way it's always been with Trump the businessman; it's the way it'll be with Trump the politician.

He is the toxin in the system, and electing him president to get money out of politics would be like smoking cigarettes to cure cancer.


Hephaestus's picture
Hephaestus 7 years 40 weeks ago

He is simply the lesser of two evils

That evil woman might not make it, with no disrespect, that could allow Bernie in

Is there an honest chance of another candidate?

God bless america

Hephaestus's picture
Hephaestus 7 years 40 weeks ago

Incidentally, smoking cigarettes and the connection with cancer is statistical only!

Kend's picture
Kend 7 years 40 weeks ago

No wonder Trump is gaining on Clinton, with all the corrupt things going on with Hillary every day, the worst thing you can dig up on Trump is this. Remember Trump did this as a private citizen. I know as a business owner you trust in others to make decisions for you everyday. My guess is Trump didn't have a lot to do with the U of Trump. Clinton did all of her crap under the oath of office, very different. A Clinton lying under oath. What are the odds of that.

Pastor_Thoth's picture
Pastor_Thoth 7 years 40 weeks ago

How about this...electing Trump to fight corruption is like f*ckin' for virginity. :) Both are apparently counterintuitive. Well, one would hope it would be apparent. However, as another commentator pointed out, Hillary isn't a shining pillar of ethics herself.

ikeberltersen's picture
ikeberltersen 7 years 40 weeks ago

In the most recent news about the Trump foundation, a Washington Post reporter has been looking into the donations claimed by the TF on their taxes. Unlike Trump, who has decided not to release his taxes, his foundation's tax returns are available. It turns out that so far this reporter has found five organizations that cannot find any record of a donation from the Trump foundation, even though the TF claimed those donations on its tax returns. This is a felony.

ikeberltersen's picture
ikeberltersen 7 years 40 weeks ago

You really nailed it Thom. The thinking among people who are willing to vote for Trump, as well as many in the media, is that somehow Trump, once put into government, will somehow use his experience as a corrupt businessman for the good of the people. This may be true for hackers, who once caught, find employment with the government as 'anti-hackers' but it is unlikely that such a conversion will happen with Trump.

People want to believe that Trump is on their side because just about everybody does something a little dishonest at times, like cheating on taxes or driving over the speed limit. They are confusing candor, which Trump has, with honesty, which is a concept that is foreign to Trump. Trump's business record is an unrelenting list of deceit, manipulation, fraud, stiffing contractors, bribing politicians, outsourcing, paying off the mob, bankruptcies, and if none of the above work he will sue anyone who dares criticize him. Everything about his business record, which is all we have to go on since he has never worked a day in public service, indicates that as president this man will use the office to further his business interests. Those who support Trump may like his candor but they fail to ask whether Trump as president will take meaningful action on any of the issues he brings up. I have come to the conclusion that Mr. Trump is a complete fraud who is blowing smoke. He would be a disaster as president, completely unqualified.

Pastor_Thoth's picture
Pastor_Thoth 7 years 40 weeks ago

Hi Kend, I don't know if you follow Mr. Hartmann or progressive media outlets, but this is defnitely not the worst example of how corrupt Trump is. Not by far. Also, although I am not defending Hillary, there are not "things going on with HIllary every day." Conservatives keep rehashing, regurgitating the same info (e.g. Hillary's emails and The Clinton Foundation.)

The FBI cleared Hillary of any criminal acts involving the email scandal. As such, Trump, the consumate, lying conspiracy generator keeps whipping his supporters up into a blind frenzy, leading them to think that the FBI, Comey in particular, didn't charge Clinton because Clinton is above the law. As Comey said, not charging Clinton was not a "close" call. It would have been prosecutorial misconduct to have done so.

As far as The Clinton Foundation, the Assoc Press already lead an investigation into it, and no wrong doing was shown. Clinton's attempt to help the Nobel Peace Prize winner, Muhammad Yunus, win a Congressional Medal was the biggest scandal the investigation yielded. However, Republicans want to enact a taxpayer paid investigation into the Clinton Foundation based on a right-wing documentary called "Clinton Cash," which I watched, which is also based on a book written by Peter Schweizer, a senior editor at Breitbart News. Frankly, that's a very stupid thing to do. Anything that could be found, or any allegation that could made, is in the video. Watch it!!

Unfortunately, there is no similar documentary about Trump, at least none that I've seen. For example, earlier this year, there was Federal Judge Curiel, the one Trump claimed couldn't make objective decisions because of his Mexican ancestry, delayed a federal class action lawsuit against Trump or the falsehoods perpetrated at Trump U. Something happened there. I just don't know what. We already know that he bribed Attorney Generals in both Florida and Texas to not pursue criminal actions against him in connection with Trump U. Perhaps someone should create an expose on Trump and all of his corrupt practices.

Finally, although you attempt to dismiss Trump's unethical dealings as being that of a normal business man's dealings in the private sector, that simply isn't true. Because Trump has never held public office before, we should treat all of his unethical acts as a citizen with the same weight we would if he held an elected office. As such, we should weigh the myriad instances Trump breached his contracts, Trump decieved hardworking Americans to enroll in Trump U, Trump discriminating against blacks and Latinos in NY, Trump hiring forieng workers through H1B visa program instead of Americans, Trump evasion of taxes (I still assert tha the has money in an offshore tax haven), Trump racist comments against Mexicans, Trump's villainization of Muslims, Trump's multiple bankruptcies (which aren't available to ordinary businessmen because of the restrictions that need to be met), Trump illegal acts in attempting to suppress competing casino owners, etc. There's so much that I'm beginning to forget the list.

In short, don't try to paint Trump as being a clean and honest person. He is far from it. He is as corrupt as they come. Maybe I'll take some time later next week to draw up a list to compare the pros and cons of HIllary and Trump. That way, I can just cut and paste everything. Then, people can see a definitive list of known and alleged criminal actions of both candidates. But from what I've gathered so far, Trump is far ahead of Hillary in the department of corruption.

2950-10K's picture
2950-10K 7 years 40 weeks ago

Thank you Thom for pointing out that Donny is part of the FASCIST ESTABLISHMENT!.....Government to the highest billionaire bidder!!!!....now if we could only get that info out to those Teabaggers who think they're taking back their government from the liberals...lmao

Trump gives a nod to the gun nuts to shoot Hillary and that dissapears like he fffnnn never said it. The press today is all over Clinton for telling the truth about Don's supporters....guys like David Duke.....but hey, the fascist media has a lot to loose if Citizens United gets repealed, all those billions at democracy's expense....Thom you and most of us on this blog know why the CORPSE MEDIA will defeat Clinton at any cost.

2950-10K's picture
2950-10K 7 years 40 weeks ago

No more Democratic Party timidity, I'm so sick of playing defense ......google LAWSUIT CHARGES DONALD TRUMP WITH RAPING A 13 YEAR OLD.....and I'm sure he's done far worse!

2950-10K's picture
2950-10K 7 years 40 weeks ago

DEMOCRACY IS NOT A JOKE...many have died for representative government, including some of my ardent " we the people" 18th century ancestors. Why have so many forgotten that timeless enlightenment truth?????

Kend's picture
Kend 7 years 40 weeks ago

Sorry Pastor. After what Clinton said about hard working working Republicans yesterday to her elite donors I have lost all respect for her. The Clinton's alway do the same thing. Lie, lie again by saying they didn't lie, and then deflect and You fall for it. I am not saying Trump is perfect, he is far from it. I think he is right what do you have to lose. It is getting harder and harder for low and middle income Americans to get by under the old establishments. Maybe it is time for a change.

TomDorr's picture
TomDorr 7 years 40 weeks ago

Comparing Trumps business "bribes" to Hillary's "pay to play" schemes would be like Hannibal Lector complaining someone eats too much red meat.

Buying influence as a businessman is far more benign than selling influence as a politician or Secretary.

One hundred million dollars of income to the Clintons after they left the White House "broke", for mostly giving "speeches" to corporations and foreign business leaders goes far beyond the pale in terms of quand the "erasing"estionable ethics. Add to that the e-mail scandal and the erasures, and I think that questioning Trumps business deals to show corruption is hippocritical at best, a red herring at least.

Hephaestus's picture
Hephaestus 7 years 40 weeks ago

What puzzles me is the repeated notion of a POTUS to be "qualified"?

Where are these "qualifications" documented?

Kindly explain!

I thought it was all about the MONEY

Thom's Blog Is On the Move

Hello All

Thom's blog in this space and moving to a new home.

Please follow us across to hartmannreport.com - this will be the only place going forward to read Thom's blog posts and articles.

From Screwed:
"Thom Hartmann’s book explains in simple language and with concrete research the details of the Neo-con’s war against the American middle class. It proves what many have intuited and serves to remind us that without a healthy, employed, and vital middle class, America is no more than the richest Third World country on the planet."
Peter Coyote, Actor and author of Sleeping Where I Fall
From The Thom Hartmann Reader:
"Thom is a national treasure. Read him, embrace him, learn from him, and follow him as we all work for social change."
Robert Greenwald, political activist and founder and president of Brave New Films
From Unequal Protection, 2nd Edition:
"Hartmann combines a remarkable piece of historical research with a brilliant literary style to tell the grand story of corporate corruption and its consequences for society with the force and readability of a great novel."
David C. Korten, author of When Corporations Rule the World and Agenda for A New Economy