The Tony Schwartz Story

“Donald Trump’s Ghostwriter Tells All”

The problem with Americans is they don’t read.

We live in a visual society. Once upon a time we thought the written word was returning, via the internet, where typing was king. But not anymore, Instagram blew a giant hole in that paradigm, and Snapchat came driving through thereafter. It’s all image all the time, all sound bites, and he who is not hustling, moving his piece further down the board, is falling behind.

So, our society is either self-promoting with sharp elbows, employing manipulation, or passively consuming content made to keep citizens in their troughs, the pigs getting fattened on government subsidized corn for the slaughter.

I ain’t never gonna vote for Donald Trump. But I did think he threw a needed monkey wrench into the Republican primaries, he dismantled political correctness overnight, yet I thought he had knowledge, ability, skill, that he earned his status and was wise under the surface.

I don’t think that anymore.

I was duped. I too believed those who are rich and famous have substance, especially if you went to Wharton, Penn’s an Ivy League school, and there were no dummies at Middlebury, then again, the degree doesn’t have quite the same cachet, it only means something in ski country, a subset of a subset of a subset of society, which when I wandered into the mountains way back when was not a moneyed class far removed from the rank and file, that came with income inequality, that came later.

And the truth is everybody poor reveres everybody rich. That’s reality, that’s the American Dream. Despite right wing carping, there is no more safety net, Bill Clinton got rid of that in the nineties, when our entire nation moved to the right, leaving liberals on an ice floe far from land while Republicans not only took over the judiciary system, but defined the debate, that’s what right wing talk radio and Fox News and Frank Luntz are all about, changing our perception. The truth is they’ve done a good job of labeling the imperfect Hillary Clinton as a crook sellout, someone unfit for office because she’s skilled at playing the game and shades the truth, sound like Bill O’Reilly to you?

But Bill O’Reilly is not running for office, he’s on the side of the people. That’s what he says on television, on the fair and balanced station. He’s got the best ratings, he’s got a burgeoning book career, he’s got acolytes, who are vocal, those who just don’t like that change has happened and they’re getting the short end of the stick.

The rich don’t bother with O’Reilly. The rich have disconnected from society, they don’t bother to debate. If someone supposedly wealthy is getting down in the pit and pontificating they’re either not that wealthy or they’re dumb. You can’t win with the public, because it’s not about you but people’s frustration. You want to keep your distance from the hoi polloi, unless you’re selling to them.

And that’s what the media does, sell advertising.

And Trump sells himself.

They’re made for each other. Without the former there is no latter. The media loved the Trump story, it sold ads at high prices, and ever since Larry Tisch ran CBS television news has been seen as a profit center, less about doing right than making money.

But the country runs on “The New York Times.” Because it’s got boots on the ground. But the “Times” is living in the twentieth century, it doesn’t know how to capitalize on its power, and its owners and employees find the power game abhorrent, they just want to push out the news…

And then Fox and the right wing employ the “Times”‘s reporting to set their own agenda, their talking points. The left wing too, but the left wing doesn’t get a voice, because of gotcha politics, working the refs, if you’re on the left and you say anything about raising taxes and the safety net you’re shouted down, made fun of. Taxes are a dirty word, but our nation runs on them, think about that.

So it’s bite-sized chunks of info all the time. The details are papered over, if they ever see the light of day. Hillary isn’t an experienced pol, she’s the woman who let our men die in Benghazi! That’s like criticizing the home run hitter for kicking the water cooler. Oh, now I’m gonna get e-mail from the right, I equated human lives with inanimate objects, that’s how it works folks.

So, if you’ve got an HBO subscription, if you’re a fan of Bill Maher, you saw Tony Schwartz on TV, decrying the Trump campaign, insisting he wrote “The Art Of The Deal” and the Donald has never read a book in his life.

The online buzz has been about “The New Yorker” article, which delineates all this.

I didn’t think I needed to read it.

But I just did, and it’s horrifying.

You can read it, you should read it, but the point is most people WON’T read it!

They don’t have the time, they want to vote on emotion and likability, that’s how George W. got into office, because he was more fun to have a beer with than Al Gore, supposedly anyway.

We live in a factless society. That’s what the information revolution has delivered, everybody gets their news from their own sources, and if you’re not biased in your position you’re losing. That’s right, cede an inch and you’ve given away the store.

So there’s gridlock.

And not only a lack of compassion, but a complete lack of understanding.

So, we spend time polishing our image on social media so others will think well of us. Come on, that’s why you post, otherwise what’s the point? I mean you can share birthday pics once a year, but every day? It makes you feel good, it makes you think you’re getting somewhere.

And the Donald makes some people feel good. Because he’s not like them. You know, the people who actually know stuff, who’ve done the hard work. Despite all this hogwash about putting in the effort to get ahead the truth is America is lazy, it doesn’t want to do what it doesn’t want to do. Math is too hard, lower the standards, I don’t have to know how to think, I’m just gonna be selling or becoming a reality TV star or online influencer, I don’t need no stinking basics, and you wonder why Trump can triumph with no basics in evidence.

All you people who put in your time, to get advanced degrees from renowned institutions, who can keep two opposing thoughts in your brain at the same time, the joke’s on you. You still think it’s the old days… Hell, PhD’s can’t get professorships and professors are barely middle class, what makes you think you’re so special? What kind of car do you drive, where do you vacation, what’s your favorite club in Vegas? I don’t want to hear your opinions, everybody’s got ’em, the fact that yours are informed and mine are not…WHO CARES!

So all of you intellectuals who read the paper and analyze, the truth is in getting ahead you’ve been left behind, you cooked your own goose. You’re guilty, of course, of not pulling the great unwashed along with you on your journey, but you thought they would stay in their ignorant hole causing no trouble.

Not anymore.

It’s entertainment 24/7.

It’s about fame.

Ask Taylor Swift, ask Kanye, they’re in the news all the time.

But they’re not on TV, which despite its denigration, despite all the talk of cord-cutting, is still the big kahuna, television rules, it shapes minds, it drives our country and…

Donald Trump had his own prime time show for years!

And if you think you know the actors in sitcoms, what makes you think people don’t believe they know Donald Trump?

It’s all an illusion folks. But the idolmakers lost control. Roger Ailes may have lost his job, but before that he lost control of the narrative, Donald Trump brought him and Megyn Kelly and Fox News to their knees.

And even the “Times” lauds Kelly, it’s afraid of excoriating her, for fear of right wing backlash. But tell me again, what exactly are her news chops? Was she embedded in Iraq? Did she bring down Enron? She might be educated and able to think on her feet, but there’s no there there, only image.

Our whole nation is in thrall to image. From nincompoops like Gigi Hadid to…

Donald Trump.

He’s gonna win folks. Michael Moore said it on that same Bill Maher program and I’m starting to believe it. Especially with the DNC e-mail leaks. They kept Bernie down, now they want his supporters to be with her? I don’t think so.

And she is part of the elite establishment.

And never mind going to Wellesley or Yale, if you didn’t even go to college, if you’re sick and tired of being mistreated by those who think they’re better than you…

You’re never gonna vote for her.

This is about mass ignorance.

This is about pulling the wool over our own eyes.

This is about giving respect to the unrespectable.

And if you think a Clinton victory will make it all go away, make everything right…

You’ve got no idea that most colleges are paper mills. And despite billionaires walking the earth, it’s hard for most people to pay their rent, especially in the city, where what opportunity is left survives. Hell, there’s even revolt in San Francisco, one of the most liberal municipalities in America… Where is everybody gonna live when the techies take over? Kansas, where the public schools have been stripped and business has gotten tax relief to the point where the government can’t make ends meet?

Don’t be smug. If wrong wasn’t right how would Scott Walker have survived his recall election and gotten re-elected in what was previously seen as one of the most liberal states in the Union?

It’s time for desperate measures.

It’s time for truth.

And that truth is America is stupid and until we correct this, agree facts rule and education and experience count, we’re screwed.

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