In The Cedars

Carolea Hassard

Writing this column is going to be great fun, especially as long as Donald Trump is still around. Doesn’t matter whether he’s in charge. His legacy is going to haunt us for a long time to come.

I developed an attitude toward the Living Toupee (where else did 70 grand go?) years ago, well before he ran for president.

In the mid 2000s,Trump had a licensing agreement on a huge condominium project in Florida, in which people invested millions. When the project went sour, he pulled his name. The project died and ended up in a public sale, losing who knows how much money. But did it affect Trump? Evidently not. In a motion to be dropped from the lawsuits, he claimed he didn’t approve of the project. Yet he appeared in a bunch of ads promoting the resort.

When I read that story, I thought, here’s somebody who can’t be trusted.

In 2009, he did a condo project in California, where hundreds of investors poured millions down the Trump drain. Sure ‘nuff, they saw it disappear. He settled the lawsuits.

In 2011, the same thing, only in Mexico. He lent his name to projects, enticing investors with his brand and then pulled out. He got the license fees. The investors lost their deposits.

I looked up a summary of his legal affairs the other day. The man has been involved in more than 3,500 lawsuits. Who has the time to sue and be sued 3,500 times?

Trump managed to bankrupt his hotel and casino businesses in Las Vegas. And he didn’t bankrupt them once, he bankrupted them four times. How do you bankrupt a casino? It’s like letting a liquor store going out of business.

He said to Newsweek in 2011, “I do play with bankruptcy laws. They’re very good for me.”

And he complains that people don’t seem to like him.

I read a lot, current events, world news, national, local, and I gripe to myself all the time about how things should be. Stupid politics. Foolish leaders.

So I took the chance to do this column. This is a good paper and I figure it will give me space to vent my spleen on things I really can’t change, but I certainly can complain, and along the way perhaps understand the world a little better.

Or just call it being gullible. I like to write, and since I retired – or was worn away - from being a reporter I don’t write. I thought I might do fiction, but that’s even more work than news reporting.

I discovered journalism in college, as a junior when I had to declare a major. Tarleton didn’t have a journalism major at that time, but it did have a program and a campus paper. So I chose English and picked journalism for a couple of electives.

Didn’t take long for me to figure out that reporting was something I might be able to do. I liked the whole atmosphere of putting out a paper.

So that’s what I did for the next few decades, working for weeklies and a couple of small dailies. It was a labor of love. You certainly don’t make money working for small papers. Actually, you’re lucky if you make a living.

Finally I grew weary of how it takes every waking hour and so decided to retire. And it’s been nice having the time to focus on a wider world of news rather than be so intensely local. For a long time, covering such things as city council and taking photos of kids in the park was my world. And I loved it.

But now I get to peruse the rest of the world. And comment on it. Hah hah. I don’t have to worry so much about insulting the people I cover.

So expect to see stuff on politics, world events, the environment, sex and all the weirdness that brings out, national crises whether real or imagined, local crises whether real or imagined, guns, bullying, social media, computers, the medical industry, the list goes on. Maybe I’ll be able to suggest some solutions, maybe it will be just a rant.

Carolea Hassard is a former reporter who now lives in Kinney County. She’s honored to be here.

Her opinions are not endorsed by, nor reflect those of the News-Herald.