Trump has finally proved, beyond any doubt, that there is such a thing as #FakeNews.
In the 1980s and 1990s, the media conspired to perpetrate a vast fraud on the American people. So-called journalists and their complicit editors colluded — yes, that’s the word — to convince an unwitting public that Trump was a spectacularly successful businessman.
The scale of the ink-fueled myth has been exposed at last, thanks to 10 years’ worth of his tax information obtained by the New York Times, which revealed Trump’s enterprises were flopping on an epic scale.
In 1985, Trump reported losses of $46.1 million from his casinos, hotels and apartment buildings, which hemorrhaged $1.17 billion over the next decade. “Year after year, Mr. Trump appears to have lost more money than nearly any other individual American taxpayer,”.
You wouldn’t have known any of that from a December 1987 People magazine cover that featured the 41-year-old tuxedoed “tycoon” under a headline pronouncing him “TOO DARN RICH.”
“Almost everything he touches turns to profit,” the magazine marveled, adding: “He says he’s too busy to run for President right now, but in a few years, well, who knows?”
It was not the only glossy magazine to be dazzled by Trump’s multimillion-dollar toys, including a huge black helicopter with his name on the side, and his claims of a gilded financial empire.
“He is the man with the Midas fist,” Newsweek wrote a few months before the People cover.
The Times wrote the earliest with its first profile of Trump back in 1976. The story by society reporter Judy Klemesrud began: “He is tall, lean and blond, with dazzling white teeth, and he looks ever so much like Robert Redford. He rides around town in a chauffeured silver Cadillac with his initials, DJT, on the plates. He dates slinky fashion models, belongs to the most elegant clubs and, at only 30 years of age, estimates that he is worth ‘more than $200 million.’ ”