The co-author of “The Art of the Deal,” the famous memoir about Donald Trump, says he sincerely regrets writing the book, for the sake of global society as well as himself.
“I put lipstick on a pig,” Tony Schwartz, a journalist and magazine writer, told the New Yorker. “I feel a deep sense of remorse that I contributed to presenting Trump in a way that brought him wider attention and made him more appealing than he is. I genuinely believe that if Trump wins and gets the nuclear codes, there is an excellent possibility it will lead to the end of civilization.”
He explained that he chose to write the book at the time because of monetary reasons.
“I was overly worried about money,” Schwartz said. “I thought money would keep me safe and secure — or that was my rationalization.”
Schwartz also believed writing the book using fawning language would garner more support for Trump and thus the memoir.
He explains in a 1986 diary entry provided to the New Yorker that the book “will be far more successful if Trump is a successful character — even weirdly sympathetic — than if he is just hateful or, worse yet, a one-dimensional blowhard.”
The stories needed to be told in different ways to show the real estate mogul in a better light, especially since Trump was prone to telling altered stories about himself.
“Lying is second nature to him,” Mr. Schwartz told the New Yorker. “More than anyone else I have ever met, Trump has the ability to convince himself that whatever he is saying at any given moment is true, or sort of true, or at least ought to be true.”
This was a consistent theme for Trump’s opponents on the campaign trail. The Republican nominee was called a “pathological liar” by Sen. Ted Cruz earlier this year.
Aside from Trump’s innate proclivity to embellish, it was also natural for Schwartz to concoct specific stories about Trump because the presidential candidate was so difficult to work with. Schwartz experienced great difficulty extracting information from Trump, as he would often become irritated from answering questions about particulars and would not recollect any details of his childhood.
The journalist would come home from long days with Trump and allegedly tell his wife, “He’s a living black hole!”
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