The title of this post is the title of a new book by Forbes senior editor, Dan Alexander. Alexander combed records, literally went to Trump properties to investigate tenants, and assembled a dossier of Trump's business interests and assets using the same methods Forbes relies on to analyze other businesses that are hidden behind a labyrinth of tax-avoiding shell companies. Alexander found, for example, that Qatar, which became an unexpected beneficiary of Trump's special attention, leased a handsomely built-out and fully furnished but unoccupied office at a Trump property estimated to put $400k a year into Trump's pocket. Peanuts to a billionaire, but that's just one ongoing deal among a slew of deals foreign governments have with Trump's private businesses.
For purposes of comparison, estimates from parties who have a partisan political interest in painting Hunter Biden as corrupt, peg Biden's take on his Burisma association at $50k per month or $600k annually. Again, for comparison, Trump's take on the Qatar lease is just one of many such ongoing deals Trump has with foreign governments.
And this week, a Republican senate investigation into Hunter Biden found no evidence that US policy toward Ukraine was affected in any significant way by Biden's position on the board of Burisma. Though not illegal, Biden's cashing in on his father's name should be deeply troubling to anyone who cares about clean government, but anyone who is troubled by Biden's son cashing-in should be apoplectic over the extent to which Trump himself and his family have cashed-in on his presidency. Not only have they cashed-in, but there is plenty of reason to suspect that policy toward nations that spend money with Trump the businessman get favorable treatment from Trump the president.
Worth a listen: Dan Alexander discussed his finding yesterday on NPR's Fresh Air.