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General News    H3'ed 2/10/17

Is President Donald Trump Semi-literate?

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Donald Trump may be semi-literate.

I ...almost...dismissed this out-of-hand, but then I saw the video evidence from David Pakman's show,

which has apparently gone viral, and then this followup too:

Certainly, as Pakman says, and not just him, Trump does not LIKE to read. It's becoming clear he may barely be able to. The POTUS may be semi-illiterate.

If he were just a celebrity, I wouldn't "out" him, but he's the most powerful man in the world now. Melania's absence from the White House - unprecedented for a First Lady - may have something to do with this too. Maybe she's tired of being Donald's interpreter, especially on a national stage. She might not want to be in the spotlight when it becomes incontrovertible that her billionaire husband can barely read a menu.

What about his being an honor student at Wharton?

That was my first thought too, but I did some research. See this article from Fortune magazine.

No one can remember him at Wharton. He was a mediocre student, in spite of what he says, and it's a mystery why he got out in 2 years from what is supposed to be a 4 year program. Like his taxes, he refuses to release his school transcripts. Plus, one must remember, he was there about 50 years ago. Both the school and he could have changed a lot since then. He might have suffered some kind of brain damage that impaired his ability to read. But I'm leaning towards daddy or a friend propping him up and quietly getting him out of Wharton as quickly as possible. More props along the way as he "apprentices" alongside his father and pretty soon he's mogul enough to have a full time staff of readers.... Then, here we are with the first post-literate president in history.

Also, last summer Samantha Bee released a video saying the same thing, that Donald Trump can't read (see above).

Now, David Pakman is a nobody in Trump's world,* so he can ignore him, but Bee has a syndicated show watched by hundreds of thousands, sometimes millions of viewers. And somehow she got away with this. No angry tweets, written by a Trump staffer(!) over this. No threats of lawsuits. And this from a president who can't stop attacking Saturday Night Live for Alec Baldwin's impersonations of him. Why? Maybe he knows he will lose and his darkest secret will finally be exposed. I think this is real, and I think this actually could explain a lot of his blustering, hyperbolic behavior. Someone with as high expectations as Trump had thrust upon him by his out-sized father, expected to do even better than his multi-millionaire father, but...for reasons that were probably a lot less clear 50, 60 years ago...someone who is unable to read past, say, the 4th grade level. And he's been bluffing his way through life ever since.

Like I said, it would explain a lot.

* As am I. I sent Trump a copy of my book "America is Not Broke!" and a short article in January, 2016. Someone else at Trump headquarter signed for it, and there's no evidence he read either one. Probably he didn't have time and didn't want to anyway, but maybe he couldn't read them either?

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Scott Baker is a Managing Editor & The Economics Editor at Opednews, and a former blogger for Huffington Post, Daily Kos, and Global Economic Intersection.

His anthology of updated Opednews articles "America is Not Broke" was published by Tayen Lane Publishing (March, 2015) and may be found here:

Scott is a former and current President of Common Ground-NY (, a Geoist/Georgist activist group. He has written dozens of (more...)

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