Trump Says He’s ‘Most Successful Man’ Ever To Run For President, He’s Certainly The Least Charitable

Donald Trump has *snicker* officially announced that he is running for president. Or more specifically he claims he’s going to “make America great again” because he’s the “most successful man” ever to run for president. Which is news to us because Trump has spent his entire life not helping anyone be great except for himself.

Trump doesn’t have to officially disclose his most recent financial figures for another few months (if his candidacy even lasts that long), but if history is any indication – Donald Trump is one of the greediest, self-serving billionaires in America. He claims his assets sit around $9 billion, and he spends almost none of it on charities, public works, or relief efforts. He makes Ebeneezer Scrooge look downright philanthropic.

In 2011, during his last “run” for president, The Smoking Gun got a hold of his charitable history and found that there essentially wasn’t one. The man – presumably worth at least several billion dollars at the time (he sued a reporter who claimed he made less than that, after all) had given a measly $3.7 million to his namesake charity foundation… in 20 years.

From 1990 through 2009, Trump has personally donated a total of just $3.7 million to his foundation, which was incorporated in 1987. In fact, the billionaire is not even the largest contributor to his own charitable organization.

Tax returns show that World Wrestling Entertainment has given Trump’s foundation a total of $5 million in return for the developer’s assistance in working a couple of televised angles along with WWE boss Vince McMahon. The WWE gave Trump’s foundation $4 million in 2007 for his help in promoting that year’s WrestleMania festivities, and another $1 million in 2009, when Trump (pictured below with McMahon) pretended to purchase part of the WWE empire.

Perhaps they should rename the “Trump Foundation” the “WWE WrestleMania Charitable Trust,” it would be a bit more accurate.

Even more ugly and indefensible were the times Trump could have done some real world good with all that gold sitting in his vault and he declined to do so. While other wealthy Americans poured money into relief funds for the victims of 9/11, Trump managed to donate just $1000 to the New York Rescue Workers Detoxification Fund… a charity run by Scientologists… and five years after the attacks. To put that in perspective, Bill and Malinda Gates gave over $1 million to various 9/11 charity groups in the immediate aftermath of the terrorist attacks – a mere 10,000 times as much as Donald “Most Successful Man” Trump.

What did he do to help fight Ebola? All his cash could have certainly made a difference. Instead he instructed America to abandon any health worker saving lives in Africa because they made their choice.

Trump could argue that he tried to give away $5 million of his fortune recently but meanie President Obama ruined it. In 2012, incensed that Obama was on his way to another term in office, Trump told the president that he would give $5 million to the charity of Obama’s choice if he would release his college transcripts (remember that idiotic “scandal?”). The White House referred to it as a “shameless PR stunt” and even Fox News, who typically would be in Trump’s corner, called it an act of “philanthropic extortion.” Most people just pointed out the obvious: Instead of playing publicity games, why not just give $5 million to needy people?

Or as the LA Times dryly noted at the time:

Trump offered the money, of course, because he can’t stand more than a week or two at a time outside the media spotlight. The vast majority of that attention now focuses on Obama and Romney. So the man with the million-dollar tricks plays another one on the public.

“Frankly, it’s a check I very much want to write,” Trump said in setting an Oct. 31 deadline for Obama to cough up the records. If he really wanted to prove something — other than that he has a tiny, pecuniary heart — the carnival barker would write his $5 million check and try to hitch on to the next passing show.

Trump claims he’s going to be the best “jobs president” in history and give people the incentive to work – presumably by cutting welfare and lowering the minimum wage, both well-worn conservative fantasies to boost the work ethic of “lazy” people. He has absolutely no details about how he might accomplish this or why it would work. And in fact, Trump’s very “success” – and let’s use that term lightly when referring to a morally bankrupt egomaniac who has driven quite a few of his businesses straight into the ground while being continuously bailed out by his rich dad – is the very definition of the greedy mooch.

Trump doesn’t give money because Trump doesn’t have one iota of concern for other people. He has, and continues to, use his money as a blunt instrument to bully his way into the spotlight. The fear, and I think it’s probably justified, is that without $9 billion shielded him from criticism, Trump would be just exactly what he is – a sad, lonely asshole with low self-esteem. And all the money in the world can’t cure that condition.

Feature image via Gage Skidmore/Flickr