The Washington Post reveals much of the raw reporting involved in developing the new biography about Donald Trump. Two Washington Post reporters, investigative political reporter Michael Kranish and senior editor Marc Fisher wrote the book, Trump Revealed: An American Journey Of Ambition, Ego, Money, and Power. The raw information is fascinating.
Simon and Schuster writes this about the book:
‘“Trump Revealed” will offer the most thorough and wide-ranging examination of Donald Trump’s public and private lives to date, from his upbringing in Queens and formative years at the New York Military Academy, to his turbulent careers in real estate and entertainment, to his astonishing rise as the front-runner for the Republican presidential nomination.’
The award-winning reporters headed at team of more than 24 Washington Post reporters and researchers. These talented individuals leveraged, “their expertise in politics, business, legal affairs, sports, and other areas.”
This archive of raw material contains 398 documents. There were thousands of pages of “interview transcripts, court filings, financial reports, immigration records and other material.”
The beauty of this archive is that it can be searched a navigated in several different ways. It is a resource for other journalists and readers alike. The archive is like a treasure chest of gems about The Donald.
The Excerpt Of Trump Revealed
The authors defined Trump as, “Populist, frustrating, naive, wise, forever on the make.” The following is a portion of that excerpt:
‘The man who would be president rose from his tall, thickly cushioned leather desk chair, buttoned his suit jacket and waved his visitors to follow along:
‘“Come on, boys, I have something to show you.” He ushered us from his lushly carpeted office in Trump Tower, with its breathtaking view of Central Park and the majestic Plaza Hotel, immediately across the hall to a windowless room, not five steps away.
‘“I just discovered this,” he said, pointing at the conference table that took up most of the room. He swept his arm over the table, beckoning us to inspect. Every inch of the table’s surface was filled with stacks of magazines. “All from the last four months,” he said, and on every cover of every magazine, there he was, Donald J. Trump, smiling or waving or scowling or pouting, but always him.
‘“Cover of Time, three times in four months,” he said. “No one ever before. It’s amazing.” There he was on the New York Times Magazine, and on Esquire and on Rolling Stone and on and on, the man who was about to be nominated as the Republican candidate for president, his success (or his notoriety) emblazoned on magazine after magazine. He was very much impressed…
‘A few moments later, he would switch gears and show us his other side, also a classically American streak, this one darker, with a trace of paranoia and a dash of despair. This was the author of “Crippled America,” the truth teller who told huge crowds, “We don’t have a country anymore,” the prideful tycoon who now threatened to sue us even as he told us how much he was enjoying our interviews…
‘Trump was gracious and generous with his time, took nearly all of our questions, and often extended the length of our interviews, sometimes doubling or tripling the allotted time. That level of cooperation was a surprising switch from the campaign’s initial reaction to the book…
‘The interviews were fascinating but frequently frustrating: He rarely refused to answer our questions, but when the subject was uncomfortable or raised doubts about some of his past decisions, he often gave us disjointed answers that steered into completely unrelated
‘Even after all those hours of interviews, Trump seemed not quite real, a character he had built to enhance his business empire, a construct designed to be at once an everyman and an impossibly high-flying king of Manhattan, an avatar of American riches.
‘Trump was charming, yet forever on the make…Trump believed — like so many great Americans real and imagined, such as Steve Jobs and Jay Gatsby — in the unlimited, unequaled power of the individual to achieve nearly anything. And like many other products of the uniquely American machinery of celebrity, Trump believed that his fame and success would catapult him to a level of power that he deserved because he had made so much money.
‘He believed that just by walking into a room, just by reflecting the passions of a crowd, he could shift the course of events. He could, for example, make America great again…
‘In his incongruously serene office high above the cacophony of Fifth Avenue, the walls lined with awards and photos of himself at dinners and parties and even on the cover of Playboy, one portrait stood out, positioned prominently on Trump’s desk. It was a framed photograph of his father, Fred Trump, who made his fortune by providing housing for working-class families, mostly in Brooklyn and Queens.
‘At the start of the Depression, Fred, then in his mid-20s, worried about his financial condition and shouldered as little risk as possible. He said he was successful because he squeezed nine days out of a seven-day week and made sure every penny was spent wisely.
‘A key to success, Fred once explained, “You must like what you do. You must pick out the right business or profession. You must learn all about it. . . . Nine out of 10 people don’t like what they do. And in not liking what they do, they lose enthusiasm, they go from job to job, and ultimately become a nothing.”
‘All three of those presidents, to one degree or another, openly carried burdens …The rest of the desk was devoted to Donald, the stacks of magazines featuring his image, the morning’s news clippings about himself. Yet in an office dedicated almost entirely to celebrating Trump’s success and performance, nothing spoke to the man’s private passions or predilections, nothing to indicate a hobby, an artistic interest, a literary bent, a statement about his credo, his crises, or his dreams….
‘In one of his books…he asserted vinery business leaders succeed “because they are narcissists who devote their talent with unrelenting focus to achieving their dreams, even if it’s sometimes at the expense of those around them.” He approvingly quoted a writer who said, “Successful alpha personalities display a single-minded determination to impose their vision on the world.”
‘Trump often struggled to respond to questions that pushed beyond his business deals and political tactics……he was still Trump, still the cocky, blunt kid from Queens, still the guy who would say what others only thought. “I am your voice,” he said. “Believe me. Believe me.”
‘Yet as confident as he was of victory, he said he had not spent much time planning for how he would operate if he won. He would run the country much as he had his businesses, he said, keeping a close eye on everything, insisting on high standards. The difference would be that he’d be doing everything for the country, not just for himself.
‘What exactly that might look like was not entirely clear. He expected his day-to-day work style to be similar to what he’d done for decades. At Trump Tower, he kept no computer on his desk, and he avoided reading extensive reports or briefings. He went with his gut. He tweeted what he felt, confident that his heart was right where the people were.’
H/T: Washington Post.