A riveting and revealing Presidential horror story
Bob Woodward reveals the details of life inside President Donald Trump‘s White House. He has written precisely about how Trump has made decisions on major foreign and domestic policies. Woodward has drawn from hundreds of hours of interviews with firsthand sources, meeting notes, personal diaries, files and documents. The focus is on the debates and decision making in the Oval Office, the situation room, Air Force One and the White House residence with Trump’s most trusted advisors.
“Cohn and Porter worked together to derail what they believed were Trump’s most impulsive and dangerous orders. That document and others like it just disappeared. When Trump had a draft on his desk to proofread, Cohn at times would just yank it, and the president would forget about it. But if it was on his desk, he’d sign it. “It’s not what we did for the country,” Cohn said privately. “It’s what we saved him from doing.”
I thought I knew what was happening in the White House. After all, I watch the news everyday. I listen to talk shows. But reading FEAR I realized it’s even worse than I thought. Much worse! I’m not only in fear, I’m horrified. A man that won’t even listen to his very own experts. A man who threatens to fire anyone that disagrees with him and frequently belittles his staff. Trump appears to believe the application of fear in dealing with people and nations is the proper course for the head of State of the most powerful country in the world. Threats, bullying and intimidation are the only tactics he know.
Woodward deftly paints Trump as a man with no compassion, a hairpin trigger, and the temperament of a child. Trump refuses to read his own daily briefing book, preferring to fly by the seat of his pant and interestingly finds the pace in the Oval Office hard to handle. They have had to cut back on his schedule, so he doesn’t have to work so hard, he rarely shows up at the Oval Office before 10 or 11am. More than one senior White House official has stated they were appalled at Trumps’s erratic behavior, his ignorance, his inability to learn and his haphazard way of making decisions. His personal staff spend the majority of their time trying to prevent Trump for making disastrous mistakes.
The book is highly informative and the details of meetings and conversations provide the book with a strong sense of believability as well as credibility. It’s an easy and enlightening read. There was so much in this book to absorb, but one of the quotes that has intrigue me the most, and perhaps is the most revealing about his own character was his advice to a friend who had acknowledged some bad behavior toward women. Trump’s advice was:
“You have got to deny, deny, deny and push back on these women. If you admit to anything and any culpability, then you’re dead. That was a big mistake you made. You didn’t come out guns blazing and just challenge them. You showed weakness. You’ve got to be strong, you’ve got to be aggressive. You have to push back hard. You’ve got to deny anything that is said about you. Never admit.”
Publisher Simon and Schuster Audio
Published September 11, 2018
Narrator Robert Petkoff