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Crippled America: How To Make America Great Again, by Donald J. Trump (Threshold Editions, An Imprint 0f Simon & Schuster, Inc., New York, NY, 2015, 193 pages).

Book Review by Dennis Moore

January 2, 2016 (San Diego's East County) - Donald J. Trump, the very definition of the American success story, has now delved into politics with his candidacy for the White House, and explains why in his very provocative book; Crippled America: How To Make America Great Again. Trump, a graduate of the Wharton School of Finance, an accomplished author and having written more than fifteen bestsellers, with his first book, The Art of the Deal, being considered a business classic and one of the most successful business books of all time. There is no question that trump has been a very successful entrepreneur and businessman – but does that necessarily translate into his being a great politician or President of the United States?

In his book, Trump states: “Look at the state of the world right now. It’s a terrible mess, and that’s putting it mildly. There has never been a more dangerous time. The politicians and special interests in Washington, DC, are directly responsible for the mess we are in. So why should we continue listening to them? It’s time to bring America back to its rightful owners – the American people.”

Trump specifically states in his book: “This book is my blueprint for how to Make America Great Again. It’s Not Hard. We just need someone with the courage to say what needs to be said. We won’t find that in Washington, DC.”

If it is true that “a picture is worth a thousand words”, the numerous pictures in this book, such as Trump shaking hands with President Ronald Reagan at the White House, Trump’s confirmation at First Presbyterian Church, and Trump International Hotel & Tower on the river in my hometown of Chicago, certainly says a lot about this man.

With all the success that Trump has had in his life, one might ask why delve into politics? He answers that in a rhetorical question on the very first page of his book by stating: “SOME READERS MAY BE wondering why the picture we used on the cover of this book is so angry and so mean looking. I had some beautiful pictures taken in which I had a big smile on my face. I looked happy, I looked content, I looked like a very nice person. My family loved those pictures and wanted me to use one of them. The photographer did a great job. But I decided it wasn’t appropriate. In this book we’re talking about Crippled America. Unfortunately, there’s very little that’s nice about it.”

In this provocative book, Trump pulls no punches, and spares no one in his aim and professed desire of Making America Great Again! On the back cover of this well written book, it states: “EVERYONE IS TALKING ABOUT DONALD TRUMP”, with the following examples;

“I’m glad he’s in there, because him being the way he is, and saying what he says the way he says it, I think shakes things up, and I think that’s very needed.”

-          Robert Redford, in an interview with Larry King

“Far from destroying our democracy, he’s exposing all its phoniness and corruption….And changing it in the process.”

-          New York magazine

“We finally have someone who genuinely loves America and is not beholden to the donors….He will be beholden to no one except regular Americans.”

-          Ann Coulter, in an interview with Simon Conway

“Probably the best thing to happen to politics in a long, long time.”

-          Mark Cuban, on Cyber Dust

“Trump fills the vacuum left by a political faction that has for years promised its voters it would do things it had no intention of doing.”

-          The Federalist

“Trump has the fire in his belly to make America great again and probably do it the right way.”

-          Mike Ditka, in a Chicago Sun-Times interview

Of course, there are many that are opposed and disagree with Trump’s ideas about being the next President, and what it would take to make this country great again. That is what is so beautiful about this country we live in. Yes, everyone is talking about Donald Trump! Just recently, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said U.S. presidential front-runner Trump’s rhetoric on Muslims is ignorant and irresponsible. Trudeau said painting the Islamic State Group with a broad brush that extends to all Muslims “is not just ignorant, it’s irresponsible.”

Trump came out swinging with some of the most outlandish statements in his run for the presidency, such as building a wall between the United States and Mexico, and making Mexico pay for it. As a matter of fact, his hawkish stand on immigration seems to resonate with a lot of people in this country, which has kept him atop the polls. Perhaps his most profound and incendiary position has been his proposing a temporary ban on Muslim immigration into the United States, which Rich Lowry, editor of National Review, states; “might be the most roundly and fiercely denounced idea in America since the British Parliament passed the Intolerable Acts (in 1774).” Trumps Muslim position and pronouncement came on the heels of the recent Paris and San Bernardino massacres.

In a recent Republican debate, Trump’s call for temporarily banning Muslims from the U.S. – a proposal roundly criticized by his rivals – dominated much of the discussion heading into the debate, saying he wasn’t seeking to discriminate against Muslims, and specifically stating: We are not talking about isolation; “we’re talking about security,” he said. “We are not talking about religion, we are talking about security.” Another Republican candidate for President, Jeb Bush, countered by stating: “Donald is great at the one-liners, but he’s a chaos candidate and he’d be a chaos president.” That remains to be seen!

Ironically, and in further regard to the comment made by Jeb Bush regarding Trump, in a recent and new biography by Pulitzer Prize winning historian Jon Meacham; Destiny and Power: The American Odyssey of George Herbert Walker Bush, a Bush-Trump presidential ticket was first revealed. The book claims Trump was the one seeking to be veep and asked Bush aide Lee Atwater to vet him for the ticket. But Trump claims it was the other way around.

In his book Crippled America, Trump has even weighed in on the gun control issue, proudly claiming to be a member of the National Rifle Association (NRA), along with his sons Donald and Eric. He states in his book: “Gun owners should be allowed to purchase the best type of weapon for their needs, whether it’s for self-protection, sport shooting, or any other purpose.” That is a scary thought!

Since declaring himself a candidate for President of the United States, Trump seems to have taken potshots at everything and everyone, even Chief Justice John Roberts of the Supreme Court, questioning his conservatism. It makes me wonder if all this bombast is just theatrics, or a carryover from his “The Apprentice” show. Many people seem to be wondering who is the real Donald Trump?

For a person wanting to be President and Make America Great Again, I have never known someone such as Donald Trump to be so mean-spirited and to take potshots at virtually everyone, examples given; Rosie O’Donnell, Megan Kelly, Mexicans (Mexicans are rapists), President Obama and Chief Justice John Roberts. Surprisingly, he says nothing critical or negative about Russian leader Vladimir Putin or Syrian leader Bashar Assad. Yet, these antics seem to resonate with a fringe element of Americans.

In regard to Russian leader Vladimir Putin, Trump expresses admiration for him, referring to him as a “powerful leader” who is “highly respected within his own country and beyond.” Rich Lowry, editor of the National Review, states: “Trump’s call to steal Iraq’s oil and kill the families of terrorists is in a Putinesque key.” Is this Trump’s idea of How to Make America Great Again?

Trump also recently assailed Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton by calling her husband, former President Bill Clinton, “one of the great abusers of the world”, referring to Bill Clinton’s affair with White House intern Monica Lewinski – Trump specifically stated: “And she wants to accuse me of things. And the husband’s one of the great abusers of the world. Give me a break. Give me a break. Give me a break.”

Until reading Cripple America: How To Make America Great Again, I never knew or heard about Trump’s religion, as mostly what anyone heard was about his business savvy and acumen. If it is of any relevance, in his book Trump proudly professes to be a Christian. Just as he takes bold and somewhat controversial stands on gun control and immigration, he has some opinionated stands on religion. He states: “I think people are shocked when they find out that I am a Christian, that I am a religious person. They see me with all the surroundings of wealth so they sometimes don’t associate that with being religious. That’s not accurate. I go to church, I love God, and I love having a relationship with Him. I’ve said it before – I think the Bible is the most important book ever written – not even close. Perhaps The Art of the Deal is second. (Just kidding!)"

Surprisingly, about this book is the fact that at the back the author would include his personal financials, or net worth, which he proclaims: “My current net worth is more than ten billion dollars.” This is uncharacteristic of a politician to be so forthcoming, and especially without any prodding. But then again, Donald J. Trump is not the typical politician. This book, Crippled America: How To make America Great Again, no matter what your political or philosophical leanings are, will be found to be an insightful read and a window into the world of this enigmatic person.

Trump excludes from his book the role he played in the infamous "Central Park Five" case, in which in 1989 five young black men were wrongfully convicted of raping a woman jogging in New York City.

Surprisingly, Trump does not say anything in his book about his stance on the "Central Park Five", or his views on race relations, as they have become an issue in his presidential campaign. Trump actually paid a reported $85,000 to take out advertising space in four of the city's newspapers, including the New York Times. Under the headline "Bring Back The Death Penalty. Bring Back Our Police!" and above his signature, Trump wrote: "I want to hate these muggers and murderers. They should be forced to suffer and, when they kill, they should be executed for their crimes. They must serve as examples so that others will think long and hard before committing a crime or an act of violence."

One year after the Central Park Five were convicted, John O'Donnell, a former executive who ran Trump Plaza hotel and casino in Atlantic City, New Jersey, published a tell-all alluding to his former boss's casual racism behind closed doors, according to a story by Oliver Laughland in "The Guardian".

O'Donnell quoted Trump as saying: "I've got black accountants at Trump Castle and at Trump Plaza. Black guys counting my money! I hate it. The only kind of people I want counting my money are short guys that wear yarmulkes every day."

In a later interview with Playboy magazine, Trump labelled his former employee a "fucking loser" but added: "The stuff O'Donnell wrote about me is probably true."

The Central Park Five would later be exonerated, after Matias Reyes, a violent serial rapist and murderer already serving life inside, came forward and confessed to the Central Park rape. He stated that he had acted alone and DNA evidence proved it.

Following a 14-year court battle, the Central Park Five settled a civil case with the city for $41 million in 2014. But far from offering an apology for his conduct in 1989, Trump was furious.

Just days into office as President of the United States, President Donald Trump kept one of his campaign promises by attempting to ban Muslims from entering our country. Fortunately, a New York federal judge, United States District Judge Ann M. Donnelly would issue an order on January 28, 2017 against President Trump and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) enjoining them from doing so. See attached order here.

Perhaps to gain further insight into this man that wants to "Make America Great Again", one need to read the attached "Cohen v. Trump lawsuit here.

Ironically, and in the Trump University lawsuit in San Diego, which is being heard by the judge that Trump refers to as "Mexican", the attached sworn deposition by Trump speaks volumes here.

The judge that Donald Trump refers to as "Mexican" is actually Judge Gonzalo Curiel, and he was born in Indiana, and is pictured here in 1974 as a member of the predominately black Kappa fraternity.


And now, the Attorney General that President Trump has recently criticized, Jeff Sessions, has had a federal lawsuit filed against him and his Department of Justice by the City of Chicago, for threatening to withhold federal funds to Chicago for their alleged support and stance as a Sanctuary City. Read lawsuit here.

Dennis Moore is the Associate Editor of the East County Magazine in San Diego and the book review editor for SDWriteway, an online newsletter for writers in San Diego that has partnered with the East County Magazine, as well as a freelance contributor to EURweb based out of Los Angeles, and having written more than 175 book reviews. Mr. Moore is also the author of a book about Chicago politics; “The City That Works: Power, Politics, and corruption in Chicago.” He can be contacted at or you can follow him on Twitter at: @DennisMoore8.


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The lawsuit filed in 2013 is a civil racketeering or RICO  claim, alleging mail and wire fraud in promoting and selling Trump University, which wasn't accredited as a school. Trump's lawyers argued the case would expand the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act too far, but Curiel also turned aside that claim. Under the RICO law, a winning side can recover triple the monetary damages - a potentially huge bill for Trump, because the class action covers thousands of Trump University customers in 50 states.

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Carole, I remember "Choices" quite well, as I recall having the honor and pleasure of writing a review of this splendid book by you.

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In my review of this book, I point out that after 5 young black men had been falsely accused of raping a white woman, Donald trump called for bringing back the death penalty in a full page ad. These young men were later exonerated, but Donald Trump never excepted it, and did not apologize. What he said about Andrew Jackson, and working out some type of deal to avoid the Civil War, short of abolishing slavery, is inexcusable and evil. I, as a black man, can never rationalize this act of barbarism.

For this man to ask the question; "Why could that one not have been worked out?" is beyond reasoning and understanding, especially when he calls himself the President of the United States! I can't imgine anyone finding anything redeeming about Donald Trump's statements, although I will not be surprised to hear some attempt it.








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Make America Great Again

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Sorry, Dennis....

...if somewhere in this review of a book that purports to be a blueprint for how to Make America Great Again, I missed the blueprint. What does Trump intend to do to cure Crippled America?

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