The media has given Hillary Clinton a new bone to chew with the likely illegal release of some of Donald Trump’s tax forms and she’s rushing out on the campaign trail to take full advantage of it. (Or at least as close to “rushing” as she can mange, bless her heart.) Given how thin this gruel is, however, her speech on the subject last night came off as one of the weaker attempts at political wit we’ve seen in a season already lacking in pithy retorts. As Politico reports, Clinton decided to make fun of The Donald over the fact that a businessman managed to lose money on a large investment.
Hillary Clinton forcefully — and joyfully — hammered Donald Trump over his business acumen Monday, casting the real estate mogul as a bigger bully than Wells Fargo rather than the “genius” his allies have sought to portray him as…
“Well, then you all know that in the debate he said it was smart to avoid paying taxes. Yesterday, his campaign was bragging it makes him a genius,” she continued. “Here’s my question: What kind of genius loses a billion dollars in a single year? This is Trump to a T. He’s taken corporate excess and made a business model out of it. He abuses his power, games the system, puts his own interests ahead of the country’s. It’s Trump first and everyone else last.”
“Back in the 1990s, Trump apparently lost a billion dollars in a single year on bad investments and failing casinos. Now, how anybody can lose a dollar, let alone a billion dollars, in the casino industry is kinda beyond me, right? It’s just hard to figure.”
Clinton went on to ask different versions of the same mocking question at a couple of stops. How can anyone lose money with a casino? To the credit of Clinton’s team, that’s a pretty good line because it taps into a widely held (though false) belief which is common among Americans. Hey… the house always wins, right? Casinos are money machines. And when the conditions are right that’s certainly true. But when the economy is in trouble, luxury businesses like casinos suffer along with the rest of the economy. If you look at a list of current casinos in Atlantic City you’ll see the remains of a battlefield where more than a half dozen of them closed and another dozen projects were cancelled before completion. This was hardly specific to Donald Trump, but then I wouldn’t expect politicians who don’t engage in actual business deals to know that.
The irony here is that Clinton should be the last person in the world asking how someone could manage to lose money in a business venture. She and her husband have made boatloads of money to be sure, but on what? Unlike actual business owners who have to risk huge investments, create jobs and fight shifting economic conditions, Hillary Clinton has been exclusively in the business of selling the carbon dioxide which she emits from her lungs. She gives speeches, frequently commanding more than a quarter of million dollars to show up someplace for a half hour or so and talk to people who stand to gain nothing from the experience. The only real winners in these deals are the folks who arrange and pay for the appearances because they gain access to the Clinton political machine when they write that big check.
Clinton’s only other source of serious income has been books. She gets massive advances to produce volumes of words which then largely sit on the shelves, selling nowhere near enough copies to justify the expense. (Her latest effort sold less than 3,000 copies in the first week, despite Clinton receiving a $14M advance on the masterpiece.) But this is all that Hillary Clinton has ever had to offer. She’s never risked anything in terms of a business and simply has people hand her massive amounts of money just for being named Hillary Clinton. So yes… Trump has lost some money on business ventures, but that’s because he actually ventured into that world.
And there’s one other point about the money that Trump allegedly lost on these deals, made eloquently by Chuck Woolery:
— Chuck Woolery (@chuckwoolery) October 3, 2016
Well said, Chuck.