Donald Trump’s 1987 memoir titled The Art of the Deal made the business magnate into a household name. The book spent forty-eight weeks on the Times best-seller list, thirteen of them at No. 1, and sold millions of copies worldwide. If that book hadn’t come out 29 years back, it is all but certain that the political landscape today would look entirely different.
Trump owes that success in large part to Tony Schwartz, the ghostwriter who spent eighteen months with Trump, camping out in his office, flying with him in his helicopter, joining him at meetings, and spending weekends with him at his Manhattan apartment and his Florida estate, according to The New Yorker. Edward Kosner, the former editor and publisher of New York, said “Tony created Trump. He’s Dr. Frankenstein.”
You may expect the man who benefitted from Trump’s luxuries and who collaborated with him to make a huge money-making memoir to laud the presidential hopeful. After all, it would be cool as shit to have ghost written a book for the next President of the Free World.
That is not the case.
Tony Schwartz is fucking petrified of Donald Trump being elected.
In an long form piece by the New Yorker’s Jane Mayer, Schwartz admits to her how he helped create a myth, and wholeheartedly regrets it.
“I put lipstick on a pig,” he said. “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.” He went on, “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.”
Schwartz went on to speak about Trump’s serious lack of attention span, claiming he couldn’t imagine the Donald keeping his composure while being briefed in the Situation Room.
Schwartz believes that Trump’s short attention span has left him with “a stunning level of superficial knowledge and plain ignorance.” He said, “That’s why he so prefers TV as his first news source—information comes in easily digestible sound bites.” He added, “I seriously doubt that Trump has ever read a book straight through in his adult life.” During the eighteen months that he observed Trump, Schwartz said, he never saw a book on Trump’s desk, or elsewhere in his office, or in his apartment.
Schwartz then gave an alternative title for what he’d call The Art of the Deal if it were published today. His answer:
Check out the full article over at The New Yorker.