Wednesday, 7 March 2018

Book Review: FIre and Fury

 I did a review of the book, Fantasyland. Coincidentally, the author tells us, it seems all to have paved the way to the election of Trump! The next book, logically speaking, is Fire and Fury.  It follows closely election day in Trump Tower, and the first months after inauguration, and the chaos which ensued.

Fire and Fury was an easy read. It explains how author Wolff managed to insinuate himself into the White House, and was able to speak to people close to Trump. It includes candid opinions, if he is accurate, from people like Ailes, Bannon, and Jarvanka. The book is a good demonstration of how Trump & Co., can go from negotiating a Trump Tower in Russia, to running for election, to the fateful day when he won, and the shock hit the fan. It read well, and seems to ring true. It explains a lot, in my opinion. It shows how a man who does not read, has depended upon a few incompetent people around him, as well as others who have little political experience.

It's truly a soap opera, which many can appreciate for a laugh, except that Trump is a man with the nuclear codes, also the ability to provide universal health care, to restrict access to assault weapons, and is holding NAFTA and tariffs over Canadian workers' heads. There is much that rings true to those who keep up with the news. I have little respect for the author (Wolff), mind you, who has had his own issues. Wolff must have talked to someone, and there are always leaks from the White House. With the latest news on CNN, with Chief of Staff, Kelly, seemingly getting rid of Jarvanka, it seems plausible. Wolff has sources...

From my point of view:
More 🇨🇦Canadian workers travel south to rescue our 🇺🇸US neighbours. Still POTUS threatens us with NAFTA and a trade war. We sell $9.3 billion aluminum, $5.5 billion steel to our neighbours in an interdependent economy.
LIES and obfuscation: you buy what you need, sell what you can. A 'deficit?'

We have massive trade deficits with Canada and Mexico.”  March 5 post on Twitter

Partly true. In fact, the United States had a total trade surplus of $7.7 billion with Canada in 2016, and a surplus of $4.4 billion through the third quarter of 2017. 

Tweets of note!
Wolf claims that Trumps spends hours phoning friends (see "nightly phone calls" in the index), this rings true, with headlines like this.

Trump's foreign conflicts of interest aren't going away - Video - Business News

Trump's failures and lack of ethics should have warned the US electorate. Trump claims to be a 'very stable genius' but that seems doubtful. The memes are succinct.

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@Barrie Summy


Lucy said...

This is one of those books where I'm curious about it but not to the extent that I want to pad Wolff's pocket by buying a copy. Not sure I'll ever read it either because as much as I believe what he says in the book is probably true, I have some issues with him writing this book - Wollf is not innocent here either. But I do appreciate your thoughtful review of the book. Thanks for reviewing.

Olga Hebert said...

I have not read this book and probably will not. I hope for it to hit record sales though, just to irritate the POTUS. My son's take away: Trump is a man baby and Ivanka has presidential ambitions.

Jenn Jilks said...

I agree, Lucy, but I was curious, and hubby bought the book!

I agree, also, Olga.

Stacy said...

I'm intrigued by this, but I have concerns about this book. While I suppose all journalism is a matter of finding the right sources and getting key quotes, there is just something about this. Given the backstabbing environment of the current White House, how do you try to sort what's true from what's just bad office gossip? Given how much news articles I already read and my tendency to forget what I've read where, my fear is that I would accept some gossip as truth.

Linda McLaughlin said...

I used an Audible credit to get my copy of Fire and Fury and listened to it in the car. Like you, Jenn, I found much of it to be plausible, though I also don't have a lot of respect for the author. I blush to admit that I found a lot of it to be pure schadenfreude, even as I know how potentially disastrous it is to have Trump in the White House with no one to rein him in.

Particularly fascinating was the three-way power struggle between Steve Bannen, Jarvanka and the GOP establishment represented by Priebus and Spicer. Jarvanka are the only ones standing now, and their tenure may be temporary. I, too, suspect that Trump and Kushner both have been laundering money for the Russian mob and/or oligarchs on the sanctions list. When he was elected, I said we'd see Boss Tweed levels of corruption and we're already seeing some outrageous examples!

I fear that the US will never be the same again. Thanks for the thoughtful review.

Barrie said...

I'm not sure if I'll read this book. Although I've heard a lot about its contents. As I wrote on Linda McLaughlin's blog, I think we're all talking more about politics these days. Perhaps as a way to stay sane! Thank you for reviewing!

Red said...

Don't get me going on this one. It sounds like an interesting book to read.

William Kendall said...

I haven't decided if I'll read the book or not. That "man" in the Oval Office just irritates me endlessly, and the less exposure to him, even at third hand, the better.

The day when his Reign of Error comes to an end can't come soon enough.

Powell River Books said...

Half of me is living through this, the other half is safely living in Canada. I won't be reading the book and try to stay as far away from the subject as possible (if that is even possible anywhere in the world). - Margy