Vår folkekjære Donald – altså ikke Duck, men Trump – har en niese – som ikke heter Hetty, Letty eller Netty – men Mary.
Mary L. Trump har en doktorgrad i klinisk psykologi, og har nå skrevet en bok med den uslålige tittelen: Too Much and Never Enough: How My Family Created the World’s Most Dangerous Man.
Jeg ble så nysgjerrig at jeg kjøpte årsabonnement på Washington Post bare for å lese et par artikler om denne boka. Og omtenksom som jeg er, her limer jeg inn to artikler til glede for mine lesere.
“Vladimir Putin, Kim Jong-Un, and Mitch McConnell, all of whom bear more than a passing psychological resemblance to Fred [far til Donald],” Mary writes, “recognized … that Donald’s checkered personal history and his unique personality flaws make him extremely vulnerable to manipulation by smarter, more powerful men.”Mitt favorittsitat fra artikkelen, som igjen siterer boka.
The Plum Line Opinion
Mary Trump somehow manages to make President Trump look even worse
Opinion by Paul Waldman Columnist July 7, 2020 at 10:14 p.m. GMT+2
Donald Trump in 1990 with his parents, Mary and Fred; sister Maryanne Trump Barry; and brother Robert Trump with his wife, Blaine Trump. (Charles Rex Arbogast/Associated Press)Opinion by Paul WaldmanColumnistJuly 7, 2020 at 10:14 p.m. GMT+2Add to list
Mary Trump is going to have her say, and the president of the United States can’t stop her.
President Trump’s niece, daughter of his older brother, Fred Trump Jr. (who died in 1981), has penned a book about her uncle entitled “Too Much and Never Enough: How My Family Created the World’s Most Dangerous Man.” The president’s family sued to stop its publication, citing the fact that at the end of a family dispute about Fred Sr.’s fortune, Mary had signed a nondisclosure agreement in part about family secrets.
That lawsuit was a joke; as a New York court found, Mary Trump’s publisher is not a party to her contract with her family, and therefore it is free to publish her book. And there’s presumably a remedy in that NDA, in the form of Mary Trump paying a penalty if she violates it. Just like anyone who signs an NDA, she can choose to violate it, and then pay. That doesn’t mean the family can get the courts to shut her up.
But all that is of less concern to the rest of us than what she has to say. And now we know, because in advance of the publication date (already moved up to July 14, two weeks ahead of schedule), copies have been given to reporters at multiple news outlets, including The Post.
And while some tell-all books don’t deliver much that’s surprising, Mary Trump has some very interesting information to impart, boosted by the fact that as a clinical psychologist, she can offer insights into how President Trump got to be the person he is.
Here are some of the highlights:
- She claims Trump hired a smarter boy he knew to take the SAT for him; the high score helped get him into college.
- She describes Trump’s father, Fred, as not just domineering but a “sociopath.” He was verbally abusive to his children, especially Fred Jr., insisting that they become “killers” unhindered by emotion. “Fred perverted his son’s perception of the world and damaged his ability to live in it,” she writes.
- Her father, Fred Jr., came in for particular contempt from Fred Sr. for being soft. “The lesson [President Trump] learned, at its simplest, was that it was wrong to be like Freddy: Fred didn’t respect his oldest son, so neither would Donald.”
- When Fred Sr. died, Mary was told his estate was worth only around $30 million; the portion of that figure that became her inheritance was the subject of the dispute that led to a financial settlement and her NDA. She later gave Fred Sr.’s business records to the New York Times, which published a blockbuster story showing that the patriarch had transferred over $1 billion to his children (a scheme mostly carried out after Fred Jr.’s death), potentially defrauding the U.S. government of half a billion dollars in tax revenue.
- On a trip to Mar-a-Lago when she was 29, Mary came out in a bathing suit and shorts. “Holy s–t, Mary. You’re stacked,” her uncle said to her, with all the grace and sensitivity we’ve come to expect from him.
- For a time, Trump hired Mary to ghost-write his book “The Art of the Comeback.” At one point a Trump employee sent her some pages of material Trump wanted to include in the book. “It was an aggrieved compendium of women he had expected to date but who, having refused him, were suddenly the worst, ugliest, and fattest slobs he’d ever met,” including Madonna and Olympic figure skater Katarina Witt.
- At a White House dinner in 2017, the president gestured toward his son Eric’s wife; the two at that point had been together for eight years. “I barely even knew who the f— she was, honestly, but then she gave a great speech during the campaign in Georgia supporting me,” Trump said.
- “Vladimir Putin, Kim Jong-Un, and Mitch McConnell, all of whom bear more than a passing psychological resemblance to Fred,” Mary writes, “recognized … that Donald’s checkered personal history and his unique personality flaws make him extremely vulnerable to manipulation by smarter, more powerful men.”
Though Mary Trump’s book won’t be out for another week, it has already reached No. 4 on Amazon, behind John Bolton’s book and two books about racism. While we can’t rerun the history, there’s a strong chance that the Trump family’s attempt to suppress “Too Much and Never Enough” only brought it more attention; there’s nothing more intriguing than something someone doesn’t want you to see.
And while these details of President Trump’s life may not change anyone’s mind about whether they want to vote for him, they will be of significant historical interest. In the future, we’re going to ask not just how Trump got to be president but what could have produced such a man in the first place.
In Mary Trump’s account, if the future president ever possessed any virtues as a human being, they were eradicated by a cruel father who wanted to make his children just as ruthless as he was. She calls him the “monster” Fred Sr. created, someone who “would ultimately be rendered unlovable by the very nature of Fred’s preference for him.”
“In the end, there would be no love for Donald at all, just his agonizing thirsting for it,” she writes.
Somehow, through a combination of timing, his party’s pathologies, and dumb luck, Trump became the most powerful person on earth. And every new thing we learn about him only increases the horror.
Her er den andre artikkelen, som snakker mer sjenerelt om presidenter og fedre.
“By limiting Donald’s access to his own feelings and rendering many of them unacceptable, Fred perverted his son’s perception of the world and damaged his ability to live in it,” she wrote.Sitat fra artikkelen under, som igjen siterer boka til Mary Trump, Donalds niese.
The Trump father-son psychodrama
Opinion by Karen TumultyColumnistJuly 8, 2020 at 12:10 a.m. GMT+2
No doubt the president and his allies will dispute many details of “Too Much and Never Enough: How My Family Created the World’s Most Dangerous Man.” The new book by President Trump’s niece, Mary L. Trump, purports to be the ultimate insider’s account of a family where cruelty was passed down like an heirloom rocking chair from generation to generation.
But there is also a universality in her reminder that what fathers bequeath their sons is complicated — not least for those who would be president.
Mary Trump, who has a doctoral degree in clinical psychology, is the daughter of the president’s older brother, Fred Jr., who died at 42 from an alcohol-related illness. According to her book, the family sent her father to the hospital alone on the night of his death.
In her telling, Donald Trump’s character was warped by a desperate desire to win the nearly unattainable approval of his father, Fred Trump Sr. Nothing, including lying or cheating, was considered out of bounds. Mary Trump claims Donald Trump even enlisted a smarter kid to take his SATs for him.
All of which Mary Trump lays at the feet of her grandfather. “By limiting Donald’s access to his own feelings and rendering many of them unacceptable, Fred perverted his son’s perception of the world and damaged his ability to live in it,” she wrote.
We expect our presidents to be father figures, but our history is replete with examples of how they themselves never really escape the shadows of their own.
Some of them — John F. Kennedy comes to mind — were carrying out the ambitions of fathers who were overbearing and controlling. Others, such as George W. Bush, so idealized their fathers (Bush called the 41st president “close to perfect” in a eulogy at his funeral) that at times their own decisions were called into question. The younger Bush was not able to shake doubts over whether he went to war with Iraq because he viewed Saddam Hussein as a threat to this nation’s security or because he saw the Iraqi leader as “a guy that tried to kill my dad at one time.”
On the other hand, it was the absence of a father that complicated the struggles of others, including Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, to find their own identities.
Obama’s 1995 memoir, “Dreams from My Father,” is a voyage of self-discovery that culminates in Kenya, the homeland of Barack Obama Sr., where the future president realizes “how even in his absence his strong image had given me some bulwark with which to grow up, an image to live up to or disappoint.”
For Clinton, the death of his father in a car accident three months before he was born explains both the first-of-his-generation urgency of his ambition and perhaps the recklessness of his private behavior. “My father left me with the feeling that I had to live for two people, and that if I did it well enough, somehow I could make up for the life he should have had,” Clinton wrote. “And his memory infused me, at a younger age than most with a sense of my own mortality. The knowledge that I, too, could die young drove me both to try to drain the most out of every moment of life and to get on with the next big challenge. Even when I wasn’t sure where I was going, I was always in a hurry.”
Still, there are instances where presidents have found object lessons in the flaws of their fathers.
Ronald Reagan believed that his character was shaped at the age of 11, when he came home to the humiliating spectacle of his alcoholic dad passed out in the snow on his front porch, reeking of whisky from a speakeasy.
“I wanted to let myself in the house and go to bed and pretend he wasn’t there,” Reagan wrote. “… But someplace along the line to each of us, I suppose, must come that first moment of accepting responsibility. If we don’t accept it (and some don’t), then we must just grow older without quite growing up.” The boy took a fistful of Jack Reagan’s overcoat, and dragged him upstairs to bed.
So what to make of Fred Trump and his influence on the man who currently sits in the Oval Office? If Donald Trump had had a different kind of father, might he have turned out to have been a better person?
What Mary Trump offers in her book, which is a bestseller even before its release, is not so much a revelation about Trump as an explanation. The heartlessness she claims was drilled into him as a young man by his father is consistent with what we see every day. So no matter how hard the president tries to deny what she has written (White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany characterized it as “a book of falsehoods”), readers will likely see its fundamental truth.