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Let’s face it - bragging is obnoxious, irritating, narcissistic, in bad form, and just plain wrong, right? No, that’s not right. But so many professional women (and men) fall prey to this myth every day. I’ve seen in my work helping professional women speak up and get what they deserve in the workforce (many at very senior levels) that a majority of women are highly uncomfortable speaking in a confident, glowing way about their contributions, accomplishments, and what they want in their professional lives and careers.
I have my own ideas about the root causes of women’s deep reluctance and resistance to communicate confidently about themselves, but I’m always keen to learn more from experts in communication and leadership as to why it’s so hard to share about ourselves, and why women in particular often receive harsh, critical feedback, pushback and backlash when they do. I was excited to catch up with Peggy Klaus, renowned business and leadership coach and author of the bestselling book BRAG! The Art of Tooting Your Own Horn Without Blowing It, to explore how we can brag well and make it work for us.
I love this book and have recommended it hundreds of times to my clients and seminar attendees – it’s powerful and transformative. In fact, Rayona Sharpnack, Founder and CEO of the Institute for Women’s Leadership, has said of Peggy, “I’ve seen Peggy change more lives in 90 minutes than any other speaker.” Peggy answers my questions below about bragging, how to do it right, and why we need to: Kathy Caprino: Why are women so reluctant to speak powerfully about themselves? Peggy Klaus: It has to do with the cultural, societal, religious, and familial “myths” that we’ve grown up with since we’ve emerged from the womb: about how we should behave, how we should look and how we should think.
One of those myths is that women should not bring attention to themselves―that their attention should go towards nurturing, encouraging and “bragging about others.” So if we turn even some of the attention on ourselves and don’t put others in the spotlight, people won’t like us, and most importantly, we won’t get boyfriends and husbands. Of course, there are men as well who were taught that it was bad to brag, and have a very difficult time with self-promotion.
But, I have to admit that there are many more men on the opposite end of the spectrum, who are really bad braggers in terms of being self-aggrandizing and over-the-top. Caprino: But some research has suggested that when women boast about their skills they are perceived negatively, instead of as confident and ambitious? Klaus: Yes, there can be a backlash due to deeply ingrained cultural and gender stereotypes, and if the person brags badly.
For example, the consistent use of "I," talking incessantly about oneself, not engaging in a conversation or asking questions of the other person, among others. But the solution is not to tell women that they therefore shouldn’t self-promote. Yes, women have what I call a narrower band of acceptable communication and behavior then do white men. (By the way, women and men of color have an even a narrower band).
In order to offset that, and do and say whatever it is they need to, they just have to be more mindful about how they do it. There is a way to talk about yourself in a very gracious, graceful manner without being obnoxious or turning your audience off, and women have got to learn how to do that in order to get the jobs, the promotions, and the bonuses and salaries they deserve. Caprino: I’m with you 100%.
So how can women brag without backlash? Klaus: To brag the right way is to talk about yourself (interests, ideas and accomplishments) in a conversational story-like manner with pride, enthusiasm and passion. Telling a short story―or what I call a “bragologue”―is far more compelling and interesting than rattling off your accomplishments in laundry-list fashion. Bragologues are powerful in getting people to think about you in just the ways you want.
These pithy and entertaining “monologues” are woven together with a few memorable or impressive nuggets of information called brag bites―pieces of relevant facts, such as clients that you’re working with, how long you’ve been in the industry, or a project you’ve recently completed. Through the art of self-promotion, you can transform what people believe about you. This is vital for women who may be facing any gender-based and cultural stereotypes.
For example, I was meeting with an extremely arrogant head of Marketing for a Bio Tech firm to work on their big conference, and he said, "I just don't know if you have the experience to work on such a technical presentation. You know this is pretty senior stuff.” And I replied, “Well, you may be right because when I work with physicists, engineers, academics and physicians there is not a stitch of technical information in their presentations!”
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Donald Trump likes to say that he “tells it like it is,” and his blunt style has won him the Republican nomination, buoyed by voters who like feeling they know just where a candidate stands on the issues. So where does he stand? Over the past four decades Trump has talked about every imaginable subject: gun rights to germs, the nature of competition to pre-nuptial agreements, love and sex, self-promotion and politics.
And on every one of those topics, he has taken positions that directly contradict exactly what he has previously said. In a world where candidates have lost elections over a single flip-flop, Trump has turned the self-contradiction into an art form. To create the definitive archive of Trump’s long argument with himself, Politico mined an almost limitless seam of his radio and TV interviews, newspaper and magazine profiles, books written about him and books written by him, rambling campaign speeches and late-night tweets.
Read them together and they reveal a person who may be amazingly good at gauging the moment, but whose principles, beyond simply winning, remain elusive—perhaps even to himself. Story Continued Below Has anyone ever disagreed with Donald Trump more than Donald Trump? *** “I have no intention of running for president.” (Time, September 14, 1987) “I am officially running for president.” (New York, June 16, 2015) “I don’t want it for myself.
I don’t need it for myself.” (ABC News, November 20, 2015) “I wanted to do this for myself. … I had to do it for myself.” (Time, August 18, 2015) “Politicians are all talk and no action.” (Twitter, May 27, 2015) “I’m not a politician.” (CNN, August 11, 2015) “I’m no different than a politician running for office.” (New York Times, July 28, 2015) “If I ever ran for office, I’d do better as a Democrat than as a Republican—and that’s not because I’d be more liberal, because I’m conservative.
” (Playboy, March 1990) “I’m a registered Republican. I’m a pretty conservative guy. I’m somewhat liberal on social issues, especially health care.” (CNN, October 8, 1999) “You’d be shocked if I said that in many cases I probably identify more as a Democrat.” (CNN, March 21, 2004) “Look, I’m a Republican. I’m a very conservative guy in many respects—I guess in most respects.
” (The Hugh Hewitt Show, February 25, 2015) “I’ve actually been an activist Democrat and Republican.” (CNN, October 8, 1999) “Folks, I’m a conservative, but at this point, who cares? We got to straighten out the country.” (Burlingame, California, April 29, 2016) “I’m totally pro-choice.” (Fox News, October 31, 1999) “I’m pro-life.” (CPAC, February 10, 2011) “Look, I’m very pro-choice.
I hate the concept of abortion. I hate it. I hate everything it stands for. I cringe when I listen to people debating the subject, but you still—I just believe in choice. … I am strongly for choice, and yet I hate the concept of abortion. … I am pro-choice in every respect … but I just hate it.” (NBC News, October 24, 1999) “I am very, very proud to say that I’m pro-life.” (Cleveland, Ohio, August 6, 2015) OPTICS: 'Shameless Mogul Found in Breathless Tabs!': A quarter-century of Donald Trump in the tabloids.
(Click to view gallery.) “I think the institution of marriage should be between a man and a woman.” (The Advocate, February 15, 2000) “If two people dig each other, they dig each other.” (Trump University “Trump Blog,” December 22, 2005) “I’m against gay marriage.” (Fox News, April 14, 2011) “It’s like in golf. A lot of people—I don’t want this to sound trivial—but a lot of people are switching to these really long putters, very unattractive.
It’s weird. You see these great players with these really long putters, because they can’t sink three-footers anymore. And I hate it. I am a traditionalist. I have so many fabulous friends who happen to be gay, but I am a traditionalist.” (New York Times, May 1, 2011) “It’s always good to do things nice and complicated so that nobody can figure it out.” (The New Yorker, May 19, 1997) “The simplest approach is often the most effective.
” (Trump: The Art of the Deal, 1987) “My attention span is short.” (Trump: Surviving at the Top, 1990) “I have an attention span that’s as long as it has to be.” (Time, August 18, 2015) “I prefer to come to work each day and just see what develops.” (Trump: The Art of the Deal, 1987) “You can’t just sit around waiting for deals, opportunities, or a lucky break.” (Trump: Think Big, 2007) “I look at things for the art sake and the beauty sake and for the deal sake.
” (New York magazine, July 11, 1988) “I’m just a fucking businessman.” (Fortune, April 19, 2004) I’m speaking with myself, No. 1, because I have a very good brain and I’ve said a lot of things. … My primary consultant is myself. “I do listen to people. I hire experts. I hire top, top people. And I do listen.” (Greenville, South Carolina, February 13, 2016) “I’m speaking with myself, No.
1, because I have a very good brain and I’ve said a lot of things. … My primary consultant is myself.” (MSNBC, March 16, 2016) “Don’t think you’re so smart that you can go it alone.” (Trump: Surviving at the Top, 1990) “You must plan and execute your plan alone.” (Trump: Think Like a Billionaire, 2004) “I couldn’t be a one-man show …” (Trump: Surviving at the Top, 1990) “Think of yourself as a one-man army.
” (Trump: Think Like a Billionaire, 2004) “I like (and dislike) all sorts of people—winners, losers, and those in the middle!” (Trump: Think Like a Billionaire, 2004) “You’ll find that when you become very successful, the people that you will like best are the people that are less successful than you, because when you go to a table you can tell them all of these wonderful stories, and they’ll sit back and listen.
Does that make sense to you? Always be around unsuccessful people because everybody will respect you.” (De Pere, Wisconsin, March 30, 2016) “I surround myself with good people, and then I give myself the luxury of trusting them.” (Trump: Surviving at the Top, 1990) “My motto is ‘Hire the best people, and don’t trust them.’” (Trump: Think Big, 2007) “Surround yourself with people you can trust.
” (Trump: How to Get Rich, 2004) “People are too trusting. I’m a very untrusting guy.” (Playboy, March 1990) “Expect the best from people.” (Trump: Think Big, 2007) “The world is a vicious and brutal place. We think we’re civilized. In truth, it’s a cruel world and people are ruthless. They act nice to your face, but underneath they’re out to kill you. … Even your friends are out to get you: they want your job, they want your house, they want your money, they want your wife, and they even want your dog.
Those are your friends; your enemies are even worse!” (Trump: Think Big, 2007) “If you have smart people working for you, they’ll try to screw you if they think they can do better without you.” (Daily Mail, October 30, 2010) “You know, I know the smart people. I really know the smart people. I deal with the smart people.” (CNN, October 8, 1999) “You never want people to think you’re a loser or a schlepper, but it’s not a good idea if they think you’re the smartest guy in the room, either.
” (Trump: Think Like a Billionaire, 2004) “I’m, like, a really smart person.” (Phoenix, July 11, 2015) “You’re generally better off sticking with what you know.” (Trump: The Art of the Deal, 1987) “It’s essential that you keep your mind open and alert.” (Trump: Think Like a Billionaire, 2004) “All I know is what’s on the Internet.” (NBC News, March 13, 2016) “I see no value whatsoever in believing ignorance to be an attribute.
” (Trump: Think Like a Champion, 2009) “I love the poorly educated.” (Las Vegas, February 23, 2016) “I’ve cultivated the learning habit over the years, and it’s one of the most pleasurable aspects of my life.” (Trump: How to Get Rich, 2004) “Fortunately, I don’t pride myself on being a know-it-all.” (Trump: How to Get Rich, 2004) “It would take an hour and a half to learn everything there is to learn about missiles.
… I think I know most of it anyway.” (Washington Post, November 15, 1984) “Small talk can be one of the best ways to educate yourself.” (Trump: Think Like a Billionaire, 2004) “I can’t stand small talk.” (Trump: The Art of the Deal, 1987) “Stay as close to home as possible. Travel is time-consuming and, in my opinion, boring—especially compared with the fun I have doing deals in my office.
I can never understand people who say that if they had a lot of money they would spend their time traveling. It’s just not my thing.” (Trump: Surviving at the Top, 1990) “There’s no excuse for staying home; the world’s too fantastic to miss out on it. I wish I could travel more.” (Trump: Think Like a Billionaire, 2004) “Well, I read a lot … and over my life, I’ve read so much.” (The Hugh Hewitt Show, February 25, 2015) “I don’t read much.
Mostly I read contracts, but usually my lawyers do most of the work. There are too many pages.” (Veja, February 2014) “I don’t have a lot of time for listening to television.” (New York Times, July 28, 2015) “I actually love watching television.” (The Hugh Hewitt Show, February 25, 2015) “I’m a thinker, and I have been a thinker. … I’m a very deep thinker.” (Palm Beach, Florida, March 11, 2016) “The day I realized it can be smart to be shallow was, for me, a deep experience.
” (Trump: Think Like a Billionaire, 2004) I don’t mind being criticized. I’ll never, ever complain. “I like it when people talk about me. As long as it is positive.” (Dubai-based Life Beyond Sport, undated) “I really value my reputation and I don’t hesitate to sue.” (The Village Voice, January 15, 1979) “I don’t mind being criticized. I’ll never, ever complain.” (CNN, September 24, 2015) “When someone crosses you, my advice is ‘Get even!’ That is not typical advice, but it is real-life advice.
If you do not get even, you are just a schmuck! When people wrong you, go after those people, because it is a good feeling and because other people will see you doing it. I love getting even. I get screwed all the time. I go after people, and you know what? People do not play around with me as much as they do with others. They know that if they do, they are in for a big fight. Always get even. Go after people that go after you.
Don’t let people push you around. Always fight back and always get even. It’s a jungle out there, filled with bullies of all kinds who will try to push you around. If you’re afraid to fight back people will think of you as a loser, a ‘schmuck!’ They will know they can get away with insulting you, disrespecting you, and taking advantage of you. Don’t let it happen! Always fight back and get even.
” (Trump: Think Big, 2007) “If you can avoid an altercation, do so.” (Trump: Think Like a Billionaire, 2004) “If someone attacks you, do not hesitate. Go for the jugular.” (Trump: Think Big, 2007) “I don’t want to be provocative, and in many cases I try not to be provocative.” (Time to Get Tough: Making America #1 Again, 2011) “I do love provoking people. There is truth to that.” (BuzzFeed, February 13, 2014) “Sometimes, part of making a deal is denigrating your competition.
” (Trump: The Art of the Deal, 1987) “If striving for wholeness means diminishing your competition, then your competition wasn’t much to begin with.” (Trump: Think Like a Champion, 2009) “Be tough, be smart, be personable, but don’t take things personally.” (Twitter, June 22, 2015) “It makes me feel so good to hit ‘sleazebags’ back.” (Twitter, November 19, 2012) “You’ve gotta be nice.
” (The New Yorker, May 19, 1997) “I do believe in hate when it’s appropriate.” (Trump: Surviving at the Top, 1990) “I think I am a nice person.” (New York, June 16, 2015) Being on the other side of a relationship with someone like me must be difficult. “I’m no angel.” (Rolling Stone, September 9, 2015) “People who know me like me.” (New York, June 16, 2015) “Being on the other side of a relationship with someone like me must be difficult.
” (People, May 19, 1997) “But there is nothing better than having a great marriage, in my opinion. There is nothing more beautiful, and there is nothing more important.” (CNN, March 21, 2004) “You marry for love, but your signature on the marriage certificate is all about rights, duties, and property. It’s a legally binding contract that knows nothing of love.” (Trump: Think Big, 2007) Trump’s Love/Hate Relationship With Women “I’ve never been the kind of guy who takes his son out to Central Park to play catch, but I think I’m a good father.
” (Playboy, October 2004) “I like kids. I mean, I won’t do anything to take care of ‘em. I’ll supply funds, and she’ll take care of the kids.” (The Howard Stern Show, April 2005) “I think I’ve been a very good husband.” (CNN, February 9, 2011) “What the hell do I know, I’ve been divorced twice?” (Trump: Think Big, 2007) “Believe it or not, I’m a romantic guy.” (Trump: Think Like a Billionaire, 2004) “Geraldo Rivera is a friend of mine, but he did something which I thought was absolutely terrible and he admits it was a mistake.
He wrote a book naming many of the famous women that he slept with. I would never do that—I have too much respect for women in general, but if I did, the world would take serious notice. Beautiful, famous, successful, married—I’ve had them all, secretly, the world’s biggest names, but unlike Geraldo I don’t talk about it.” (Trump: Think Big, 2007) “I don’t have to brag. I don’t have to.
Believe it or not.” (New York, June 16, 2015) Hey, look, I went to the hardest school to get into, the best school in the world, I guess you could say, the Wharton School of Finance. It’s like super genius stuff. “I avoid people with especially high opinions of their own abilities or worth.” (Trump: Think Big, 2007) “Hey, look, I went to the hardest school to get into, the best school in the world, I guess you could say, the Wharton School of Finance.
It’s like super genius stuff. I came out. I built a tremendous company. I had tremendous success. The Art of the Deal. The Apprentice. Everything.” (CNN, August 11, 2015) “Do not look for approval from others. That is a sure sign of weakness.” (Trump: Think Big, 2007) “Look at my hands. … My hands are normal hands. During a debate, he was losing, and he said, ‘Oh, he has small hands and therefore, you know what that means.
’ This was not me. This was Rubio that said, ‘He has small hands and you know what that means.’ OK? So, he started it. So, what I said a couple of days later … and what happened is, I was on line shaking hands with supporters, and one of the supporters got up and he said, ‘Mr. Trump, you have strong hands. You have good-sized hands.’ And then another one would say, ‘You have great hands, Mr.
Trump, I had no idea.’ I said, ‘What do you mean?’ He said, ‘I thought you were, like, deformed, and I thought you had small hands.’ I had 50 people. … I mean, people were writing, ‘How are Mr. Trump’s hands?’ My hands are fine. You know, my hands are normal. Slightly large, actually. In fact, I buy a slightly smaller than large glove, OK?” (Washington Post, March 21, 2016) “Don’t worry about actively promoting yourself.
” (Trump: Think Like a Billionaire, 2004) “Let people know what you’ve done. What good is it if no one knows about it? You’ve gotta be a promoter.” (New York magazine, December 24, 1984) “Everyone says, ‘Oh, Trump is a great promoter.’ I don’t think I’m even a good promoter.” (Fortune, April 3, 2000) “Subtlety and modesty are appropriate for nuns and therapists.” (Trump: How to Get Rich, 2004) “So don’t be afraid to toot your own horn when you’ve done something worth tooting about.
” (Trump: How to Get Rich, 2004) Everyone says, ‘Oh, Trump is a great promoter.’ I don’t think I’m even a good promoter. “If I get my name in the paper, if people pay attention, that’s what matters. To me, that means it’s a success.” (Gwenda Blair’s Donald Trump: Master Apprentice, 2005) “Publicity gradually dehumanizes you.” (Trump: Surviving at the Top, 1990) “I have learned that entertainment is a very simple business.
You can be a horrible human being, you can be a truly terrible person, but if you get ratings, you are a king.” (Time to Get Tough: Making America #1 Again, 2011) “It’s fame itself that bends people out of shape. In fact, the more celebrities I meet, the more I realize that fame is a kind of drug, one that is way too powerful for most people to handle.” (Trump: Surviving at the Top, 1990) “Everybody kisses your ass when you’re hot.
If you’re not hot, they don’t even call. So it’s always good to stay hot.” (CNBC, June 24, 2012) “I hate people that think they’re hot stuff, and they’re nothing.” (Warren, Michigan, March 4, 2016) “I’m really concerned with the whole earthquake situation in L.A. I am a tremendous believer that someday Las Vegas may be the West Coast. … People in general are having lingering doubts about the value of real estate in L.
A. It’s happening too much and too often, the tremors. It’s a very scary thing.” (Los Angeles Times, July 24, 1988) “L.A. is going to be very hot, and it is very hot. The fact that Trump goes there makes it even hotter.” (New York Times, February 5, 1990) “Anyone who thinks he’s going to win them all is going to wind up a big loser.” (Trump: Surviving at the Top, 1990) “I win, I win, I always win.
In the end I always win, whether it’s in golf, whether it’s in tennis, whether it’s in life, I just always win. And I tell people I always win, because I do.” (Tim O’Brien’s TrumpNation, 2005) “I do whine, because I want to win, and I’m not happy about not winning, and I am a whiner, and I keep whining and whining until I win.” (CNN, August 11, 2015) “Toughness is knowing how to be a gracious winner—and rebounding quickly when you lose.
” (Trump: Surviving at the Top, 1990) We finished second, and I want to tell you something: I’m just honored. I’m really honored. “I don’t like to lose.” (New York Times, August 7, 1983) “I want to make America great again, and you can’t do that if you come in a close second.” (Washington Post, October 7, 2015) “We finished second, and I want to tell you something: I’m just honored.
I’m really honored.” (West Des Moines, Iowa, February 1, 2016) “Remember that in the best negotiations, everyone wins.” (Trump: Never Give Up, 2008) “You hear lots of people say that a great deal is when both sides win. That is a bunch of crap.” (Trump: Think Big, 2007) “I learned from my father that work can make you happy.” (Trump: Think Big, 2007) “I think of it almost as a controlled neurosis, which is a quality I’ve noticed in many highly successful entrepreneurs.
They’re obsessive, they’re driven, they’re single-minded and sometimes they’re almost maniacal, but it’s all channeled into their work. … I don’t say this trait leads to a happier life, or a better life, but it’s great when it comes to getting what you want.” (Trump: The Art of the Deal, 1987) “When you shake somebody’s hand, go with it. It is very important. Shaking hands with someone means you are making a deal.
” (Trump: Think Big, 2007) “Some business executives believe in a firm handshake. I believe in no handshake. It is a terrible practice. So often, I see someone who is obviously sick, with a bad cold or the flu, who approaches me and says, ‘Mr. Trump, I would like to shake your hand.’ It’s a medical fact that this is how germs are spread.” (Trump: How to Get Rich, 2004) All my friends who work out all the time, they’re going for knee replacements, hip replacements—they’re a disaster.
“You’ve got to take care of your body and stay healthy.” (Men’s Health, March 3, 2013) “All my friends who work out all the time, they’re going for knee replacements, hip replacements—they’re a disaster.” (New York Times Magazine, September 29, 2015) “Dress the part and act the part. Do not cause any doubt in anybody’s mind that you don’t know your stuff. When I moved to Manhattan to do my first deal, I did not have money or employees.
When I went into an office, I acted as if I had an organization, The Trump Organization, behind me. I was on my own and no longer working for my father. Few people knew that The Trump Organization had no employees except myself and operated out of my studio apartment in Manhattan.” (Trump: Think Big, 2007) “Sometimes people will come into my office and they will be great. They will look great, they’ll sound great, they dress beautifully; everything is great.
Then after you hire them they turn out to be morons. Sometimes a real slob will come in looking for a job. He does not dress well. He does not look good. He does not seem to be very smart. It turns out when you hire him or her, you find out you have hired a genius.” (Trump: Think Big, 2007) “I do something wrong—I do things wrong—and when I do, I don’t mind.” (CNN, September 24, 2015) “It’s amazing how often I am right.
” (Twitter, March 24, 2016) “You can’t con people, at least not for long. You can create excitement, you can do wonderful promotion and get all kinds of press, and you can throw in a little hyperbole. But if you don’t deliver the goods, people will eventually catch on. I think of Jimmy Carter. After he lost the election to Ronald Reagan, Carter came to see me in my office. He told me he was seeking contributions to the Jimmy Carter Library.
I asked how much he had in mind. And he said, ‘Donald, I would be very appreciative if you contributed five million dollars.’ I was dumbfounded. I didn’t even answer him. But that experience also taught me something. Until then, I’d never understood how Jimmy Carter became president. The answer is that as poorly qualified as he was for the job, Jimmy Carter had the nerve, the guts, the balls, to ask for something extraordinary.
That ability above all helped him get elected president.” (Trump: The Art of the Deal, 1987) “ Jimmy Carter ... . He is a very nice man, but he wasn’t my kind of president. I was more into the Ronald Reagans of the world. Nevertheless, after President Carter’s term as President was up, he asked to meet me and of course I agreed. I didn’t know what he wanted in that I had never supported him and was actually very vocal on how poorly he handled our captives in Iran.
… Nevertheless, we had a wonderful conversation prior to getting to his point, which was, would I consider making a $50 million contribution to the Jimmy Carter Library? Here was a man that I had not supported, had not voted for, and yet he was in my office asking for a $50 million contribution! I said to myself, and I told the story many times, that Jimmy Carter, despite his image to the contrary, had an ability to think big.
That’s why he ran for President and others did not.” (Trump: Think Big, 2007) “Ronald Reagan … is so smooth and so effective a performer that he completely won over the American people. Only now, nearly seven years later, are people beginning to question whether there’s anything beneath that smile.” (Trump: The Art of the Deal, 1987) “… Ronald Reagan, to me, was a great president. And whether you are liberal or you’re conservative, people really view him as a great president.
He’ll go down as a great president and not so much for the things he did, it’s just, there was a demeanor to him and a spirit that the country had under Ronald Reagan that was really phenomenal. And, you know, there was just a style and a class … I mean, that’s a really big part of being president. Ronald Reagan had it.” (CNN, October 8, 1999) George H.W. Bush is “a great man. He’s a man I support.
” (Washington Post, April 21, 1988) “But I disagree with him when he talks of a kinder, gentler America. I think if this country gets any kinder or gentler, it’s literally going to cease to exist.” (Playboy, March 1990) George W. Bush? “I like him.” (CNN, October 8, 1999) “Don’t talk to me about Bush, I was never a defender or a fan!” (Twitter, April 12, 2013) “I like John McCain.
” (Twitter, May 28, 2013) “I’m not a fan of John McCain.” (Facebook, July 18, 2015) “Ron Paul has some serious ideas which deserve serious consideration. Wrong for media to ignore him.” (Twitter, August 23, 2011) “He should be ignored.” (Twitter, January 4, 2012) Mitt Romney “is the steady conservative who can restore America’s future.” (Twitter, February 22, 2012) “He’s a jealous fool and not a bright person.
He's good looking. Other than that, he's got nothing.” (New York Times, March 18, 2016) George Pataki is “the most underrated guy in American politics.” (Trump: The America We Deserve, 2000) Jeb Bush is a good man. I’ve held fundraisers for him. He’s exactly the kind of political leader this country needs now and will very much need in the future. Pataki “couldn’t be elected dog catcher.
” (Twitter, July 1, 2015) “Jeb Bush is a good man. I’ve held fundraisers for him. He’s exactly the kind of political leader this country needs now and will very much need in the future. He, too, knows how to hang in there. His first shot at Florida’s governorship didn’t work out, but he didn’t give up. He was campaigning the day after his loss. He won the next race in a landslide. He’s bright, tough, and principled.
” (Trump: The America We Deserve, 2000) “He’s like a lost soul, Jeb Bush … this poor, pathetic, low-energy guy.” (Las Vegas, January 21, 2016) Barack Obama is “a strong guy who really knows what he wants.” (Fox News, February 9, 2009) “He’s been a horrible president.” (Fox News, April 14, 2011) “Here’s a man that not only got elected, I think he’s doing a really good job.” (CNN, April 15, 2009) “Barack Obama has been the worst president ever.
” (Fox News, April 14, 2011) “Barack Obama is not who you think he is.” (Twitter, October 15, 2012) “Oh, yes, he’s a champion. I mean, he won against all odds. If you would have looked—when he first announced, people were giving him initially no chance. And he’s just done something that’s amazing. He’s totally a champion.” (CNN, April 15, 2009) “Hillary Clinton is definitely smart and resilient.
” (Trump: The America We Deserve, 2000) “Incompetent Hillary doesn’t know what she’s talking about. She doesn’t have a clue. She’s made such bad decisions.” (Fox News, March 22, 2016) “I think that a lot of people will be looking at Hillary’s record as secretary of state, and she will be defending that, and I’m sure she’ll do a good job of defending it.” (NBC News, August 10, 2013) I know Hillary and I think she’d make a great president.
.. “She was the worst secretary of state in the history of our nation. There’s never been a secretary of state so bad as Hillary.” (NBC News, July 8, 2015) “I know Hillary and I think she’d make a great president …” (Trump University “Trump Blog,” March 13, 2008) “Hillary will be a disaster as a president.” (NBC News, July 9, 2015) “She has a husband that I also like very much.
” (CNN, September 24, 2007) “She’s married to an abuser.” (NBC News, January 10, 2016) President Trump? “He would believe very strongly in extreme military strength. He wouldn’t trust anyone. He wouldn’t trust the Russians.” (Playboy, March 1990) “I have always felt that Russia and the United States should be able to work well with each other.” (Reuters, December 18, 2015) “I see NATO as a good thing.
” (Washington Post, March 21, 2016) “I think NATO is obsolete.” (ABC News, March 27, 2016) In favor of invading Iraq? “Yeah, I guess so.” (The Howard Stern Show, September 11, 2002) “It looks like a tremendous success from a military standpoint.” (Fox Business, March 21, 2003) “The war’s a mess.” (Washington Post, March 25, 2003) “Qadhafi in Libya is killing thousands of people, nobody knows how bad it is, and we’re sitting around, we have soldiers, all over the Middle East, and we’re not bringing ‘em in to stop this horrible carnage.
… We should go in, we should stop this guy, which would be very easy and very quick.” (Trump video blog, February 2011) “I never discussed that subject. I was in favor of Libya? We would be so much better off if Qadhafi were in charge right now.” (Houston, February 25, 2016) “Angela Merkel is doing a fantastic job … Youth unemployment is at a record low & she has a budget surplus.” (Twitter, October 3, 2013) She’s “ruining Germany.
” (Twitter, December 9, 2015) John Kerry is “a very solid and stand-up guy.” (Twitter, January 25, 2013) “Obviously Kerry did not read The Art of the Deal.” (Virginia Beach, Virginia, February 24, 2016) “Compromise is not a dirty word.” (Manchester, New Hampshire, October 12, 2015) “I’m not big on compromise. I understand compromise. Sometimes compromise is the right answer, but oftentimes compromise is the equivalent of defeat, and I don’t like being defeated.
” (Life, January 1989) “I’m walking, talking proof of the American Dream. For me, the American Dream is not just a dream; it’s a reality.” (Trump: Think Like a Billionaire, 2004) Maybe we Americans pump ourselves up too much. “The American Dream is dead.” (New York, June 16, 2015) “Maybe we Americans pump ourselves up too much.” (Trump: The America We Deserve, 2000) “We are the greatest country the world has ever known.
” (Time to Get Tough: Make America #1 Again, 2011) “I’m never self-satisfied.” (Playboy, March 1990) “In truth I am dazzled as much by my own creations as are the tourists and glamour hounds that flock to Trump Tower.” (Trump: Think Big, 2007) “If I were satisfied, I would not be Donald Trump.” (Trump: Think Big, 2007) “I think there are two Donald Trumps.” (Palm Beach, Florida, March 11, 2016) “I don’t think there are two Donald Trumps.
I think there’s one Donald Trump.” (Palm Beach, Florida, March 11, 2016) “Stop the indecisive internal dialogue before it starts. That is your biggest enemy.” (Trump: Think Big, 2007) “I think we’ve had enough debates.” (Fox News, March 16, 2016) “More debate is always better.” (Twitter, December 7, 2011) “I mean, my whole life is a debate, but I don’t debate.” (South Bend, Indiana, May 2, 2016) “Sometimes—not often, but sometimes—less is more.
” (Trump: The Art of the Deal, 1987) “I always say, ‘More is more.’” (Trump: Think Like a Billionaire, 2004) “New York is a great place. It’s got great people. It’s got loving people, wonderful people.” (North Charleston, South Carolina, January 14, 2016) “I know this city. There are some terrible people in this city.” (Trump: Think Big, 2007) “Nobody owns me.” (New York Post, April 18, 1999) “I’m owned by the people!” (Rolling Stone, September 9, 2015) “There’s not a team.
” (MSNBC, March 8, 2016) “Yes, there is a team. I’m going to be forming a team.” (MSNBC, March 8, 2016) “Eminent domain is wonderful.” (Fox News, October 6, 2015) I believe in positive thinking, but I also believe in the power of negative thinking. “I don’t like eminent domain.” (Breitbart News, November 5, 2015) “If you see somebody getting ready to throw a tomato, knock the crap out of ‘em, would you? Seriously.
OK? Just knock the hell—I promise you, I will pay the legal fees, I promise, I promise.” (Cedar Rapids, Iowa, February 1, 2016) “I do not condone violence in any shape.” (NBC News, March 13, 2016) “Oh, I believe in polls.” (ABC News, November 17, 2010) “I honestly believe those polls are wrong.” (Miami, October 24, 2015) “I believe in positive thinking, but I also believe in the power of negative thinking.
” (Playboy, March 1990) “I never think of the negative.” (New York Times, August 7, 1983) “I always go into the deal anticipating the worst.” (Trump: The Art of the Deal, 1987) “I believe in the power of positive thinking, but I never like to talk about it.” (Washington Post, October 7, 2015) “I don’t think positively, I don’t think negatively.” (Gwenda Blair’s Donald Trump: Master Apprentice, 2005) “I don’t worry about anything.
” (New York Times Magazine, September 29, 2015) “But I often think of nuclear war. I’ve always thought about the issue of nuclear war; it’s a very important element in my thought process. It’s the ultimate, the ultimate catastrophe, the biggest problem this world has, and nobody’s focusing on the nuts and bolts of it. It’s a little like sickness. People don’t believe they’re going to get sick until they do.
Nobody wants to talk about it. I believe the greatest of all stupidities is people’s believing it will never happen, because everybody knows how destructive it will be, so nobody uses weapons. What bullshit. On a much lower level, I would never hire anybody who thinks that way, because he has absolutely no common sense. He’s living in a world of make-believe. It’s like thinking the Titanic can’t sink.
Too many countries have nuclear weapons; nobody knows where they’re all pointed, what button it takes to launch them. The bomb Harry Truman dropped on Hiroshima was a toy next to today’s. We have thousands of weapons pointed at us and nobody even knows if they’re going to go in the right direction. They’ve never really been tested. These jerks in charge don’t know how to paint a wall, and we’re relying on them to shoot nuclear missiles to Moscow.
What happens if they don’t go there? What happens if our computer systems aren’t working? Nobody knows if this equipment works, and I’ve seen numerous reports lately stating that the probability is they don’t work. It’s a total mess.” (Playboy, March 1990) “I’m an environmentalist.” (CNN, April 28, 2010) “Global warming is a total, and very expensive, hoax!” (Twitter, December 6, 2013) “I generally oppose gun control, but I support the ban on assault weapons and I support a slightly longer waiting period to purchase a gun.
” (Trump: The America We Deserve, 2000) “I am the strongest person running in favor of the Second Amendment.” (Hanahan, South Carolina, February 15, 2016) We finished second, and I want to tell you something: I’m just honored. I’m really honored. “My sons love to hunt. They are members of the NRA, very proudly. I am a big believer in the Second Amendment.” (Ayrshire, Scotland, July 31, 2015) “I’m not a hunter and don’t approve of killing animals.
I strongly disagree with my sons who are hunters.” (Twitter, March 15, 2012) For a woman who has an abortion, “there has to be some form of punishment.” (MSNBC, March 30, 2016) “If Congress were to pass legislation making abortion illegal and the federal courts upheld this legislation, or any state were permitted to ban abortion under state and federal law, the doctor or any other person performing this illegal act upon a woman would be held legally responsible, not the woman …” (DonaldJTrump.
com, March 30, 2016) “Millions and millions of women—cervical cancer, breast cancer—are helped by Planned Parenthood. So you can say whatever you want, but they have millions of women going through Planned Parenthood that are helped greatly.” (Houston, February 25, 2016) “But Planned Parenthood should absolutely be defunded. I mean, if you look at what’s going on with that, it’s terrible.
” (Fox News, October 18, 2015) “I continue to alienate members of the press on occasion, but on the whole, I like them.” (Trump: Think Like a Billionaire, 2004) “They are the most dishonest people in the world. The media. They are the worst. They are very dishonest people. They are terrible.” (Indianapolis, April 20, 2016) I guess we wouldn’t be here, maybe, if it wasn’t for the media, so maybe we shouldn’t be complaining.
“OK, no, I don’t hate anybody. I love the media. They’re wonderful.” (Indianapolis, April 20, 2016) “I guess we wouldn’t be here, maybe, if it wasn’t for the media, so maybe we shouldn’t be complaining.” (Indianapolis, April 20, 2016) “If you equivocate, it’s an indication that you’re unsure of yourself and what you’re doing. It’s also what politicians do all the time, and I find it inappropriate, insulting and condescending.
I try not to do it.” (Trump: How to Get Rich, 2004) “I tend to do what I do.” (Time, December 25, 2015) “I do it to do it.” (Trump: The Art of the Deal, 1987) “Define yourself in a big way. We all have self-definitions; give yourself a big definition.” (Trump: Think Big, 2007) “I have an organization but it’s largely myself.” (New York Times, March 19, 2016) “You are what you think you are.
” (Trump: Think Big, 2007) “I’m Swedish.” (New York Times, November 1, 1976) “I’m proud to have that German blood. Great stuff.” (Kings of Kallstadt, 2014) I’m very capable of changing to anything I want to change to. “I’m not the world’s happiest person.” (New York magazine, March 5, 1990) “I’m a very happy man.” (Forbes, October 1, 2009) “The worst hell you will ever face is the hell you create with your own mind.
” (Trump: Think Big, 2007) “I’m very capable of changing to anything I want to change to.” (Fox News, February 11, 2016) “I am me.” (New York, April 26, 2016) “What I say is what I say.” (Cleveland, Ohio, August 6, 2015) Michael Kruse is a senior staff writer for Politico. Noah Weiland is a researcher at Politico. This article tagged under: Show Comments More from POLITICO Magazine
Title: Brag The Art Of Tooting Your Own Horn