I finally found a Trump supporter – this morning when I went to buy coffee. (I noticed a Trump bumper sticker on his car.)
“Hi,” I said. “Noticed your Trump bumper sticker.”
“Yup,” he said, a bit defensively.
“I hope you don’t mind my asking, but I’m curious. Why are you supporting him?”
“I know he’s a little bit much,” said the Trump supporter. “But he’s a successful businessman. And we need a successful businessman as president.”
“How do you know he’s a successful businessman?” I asked.
“Because he’s made a fortune.”
“Has he really?” I asked.
“Of course. Forbes magazine says he’s worth four and a half billion.”
“That doesn’t mean he’s been a success,” I said.
“In my book it does,” said the Trump supporter.
“You know, in 1976, when Trump was just starting his career, he said he was worth about $200 million,” I said. “Most of that was from his father.”
“That just proves my point,” said the Trump supporter. “He turned that $200 million into four and a half billion. Brilliant man.”
“But if he had just put that $200 million into an index fund and reinvested the dividends, he’d be worth twelve billion today,” I said.
The Trump supporter went silent.
“And he got about $850 million in tax subsidies, just in New York alone,” I said.
“He’s not a businessman,” I said. “He’s a con man. Hope you enjoy your coffee.”
Robert B. Reich was Secretary of Labor under President Bill Clinton.
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