When veteran New York Times editor Timothy L. O'Brien had the nerve to write a book, TrumpNation, arguing, based on meticulous research, that Donald Trump's net worth was a lot lower than he claims it is, the Donald threw a predictable hissy fit.
Being the litigious creep that he is, Trump sued O'Brien for defamation, but that lawsuit was tossed out by Camden County superior court judge Michele Fox yesterday. In a statement, the author said, "I am deeply gratified that the court's decision has vindicated the reporting in TrumpNation." In a separate statement, publisher Hachette said that "We are gratified that the court has granted summary judgment dismissing Mr. Trump's meritless libel lawsuit."
As for Mr. Turmp, he's as defiant as ever, and says he'll appeal the decision. "It tells you how unfair the libel laws are," he told [subscription] The Wall Street Journal. "We proved our case."
That raises an interesting question: If the problem is that the libel laws are unfair, why are you appealing? Will a higher court change the laws?
This case has been fun to watch for a number of reasons -- partly because it's coincided with a number of lawsuits against Mr. Trump and the bankruptcy of Trump Entertainment Resorts. The best part though, by far, came when Trump explained during a deposition that his net worth fluctuates based on his feelings and that he included the value of his "brand" in calculating his net worth.
Bad new for Mr. Trump: that brand appears to be in decline. Trump's latest insipid volume -- Think Like a Champion: An Informal Education In Business and Life -- landed with a plink and currently sports an Amazon sales ranking of 24,406, which doesn't exactly suggest tremendous brand value.
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