Book Reviews

[Review] Fear: Trump in the White House – Bob Woodward

Review Fear Trump in the White House

“Number one,” Bannon went on, “we’re going to stop mass illegal immigration and start to limit legal immigration to get our sovereignty back. Number two, you are going to bring manufacturing jobs back to the country. And number three, we’re going to get out of these pointless foreign wars.”

This book contains several foreign and domestic policies on which Donald Trump made decisions after one year as the US President. One thing you should note about this book is that it is not a biography about Donald Trump, do not expect any secret about his life nor success since he did not accept to be interview by the author!

A 42-chapter long book with many F-words reveals a lot about his viewpoint towards diplomatic, military, economic, and immigration issues as well as his personality and temperament. Chapter by chapter, Fear covers Trump’s presidential campaign to his recent decisions, including chain immigration, corporate tax, security guarantees with North Korea, Iran, Russia, Afghanistan, China, and so on.

The first half of this book shows us some secrets why Trump became US president. At first, he appeared to be narcissistic:

“He doesn’t like professors. He doesn’t like intellectuals. Trump was a guy who “never went to class. Never got the syllabus. Never took a note. Never went to a lecture. The night before the final, he comes in at midnight from the fraternity house, puts on a pot of coffee, takes your notes, memorizes as much as he can, walks in at 8 in the morning and gets a C. And that’s good enough. He’s going to be a billionaire.”

But clearly this man knew what he could do for the country:

“She is the candidate of the past. Ours is the campaign of the future.”

And he is not a wordy guy for sure:

He stuck to Twitter. “This is who I am. This is how I communicate. It’s the reason I got elected. It’s the reason that I’m successful.” 

One of the most notable points I learnt about this book is that as a businessman, Trump leads his country the same way as he runs his business: maximizing profits and minimizing costs. You can sense his profit-driven mindset in his decisions and policies:

  1. He insisted on leaving Afghanistan immediately since “… we waste billions there. Nonsense! Rebuild the USA”.
  2. The corporate tax rate in the US was 35%, one of the highest in the world. Trump urged to decrease the rate to 15% but encountered disagreement from his staff. Now the corporate tax rate is 21% in 2019, which is a great move.
  3. Tax Cuts and Jobs Act: Bring more jobs for US people and reduce the employment rate
  4. Withdraw from TPP and other trade agreements.

Overall, this book is nice though it is a little bit unfocused and unorganized (each chapter is not named, making it hard for readers to follow). Readers should have a sound knowledge about political science to understand it thoroughly (which I did not).

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