By Jim Meyers and Kathleen Walter
Donald Trump is mad as hell — and he’s letting everybody know it.
In a wide-ranging exclusive interview with Newsmax.TV on Friday, the billionaire real estate mogul and reality TV star lashes out at China, OPEC, Obama’s Middle East dealings, the president’s State of the Union address and more.
Trump takes aim at America’s “horrible” trade agreements, declares that the Middle East is going to explode, warns about “catastrophic” oil prices, and charges that Obama’s Afghanistan policy is “dangerous and stupid.”
He also complains that the United States is a “laughing stock” throughout the world — and confirms that he is seriously considering running for president in 2012.
Asked directly about a possible run, Trump tells Newsmax: “I’m thinking about it. I’m looking at what’s happening with this country and frankly, it’s very sad. I see what’s happening left and right, how we’re being abused by other nations, and I don’t like it. I don’t like what’s happening with jobs. I am seriously thinking about it.”
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Jan. 30, 2011 &amp;amp;mdash; Real estate mogul Donald Trump tells Newsmax.TV he probably will announce his candidacy for president in June. The New York billionaire is confident he can restore the United States to glory after President Barack Obama has made America &amp;amp;quot;a laughingstock.&amp;amp;quot;
Trump says if he does run it will be as a Republican and not as a third party candidate, and explains why he would run.
“I love the country. I’ve done well in the country. My businesses have never been better because I’ve made some good decisions. It shouldn’t be good. It should be terrible because a lot of other businesses are terrible. But I’ve made some very good decisions.
“I love the country and I hate what’s happening to the country. In 12 years China will take over as the world’s leading economic power, if not sooner, and the way we’re going this country will not be a great country as it was anymore. That’s so very very sad to me.”
Trump has a lot more to say about China.
“I’m a big buyer of products, and I’m also unfortunately a big buyer of Chinese products,” he says. “It’s very hard not to buy Chinese products, including sheetrock, which has destroyed many a development and many a life.
“I’ll say this: We make better products than China. The problem is they manipulate their currency so badly that it’s almost impossible for a person like me to buy outside China.
“I want to buy an American product. The Chinese products come in, they’re cheaper. They’re not as good but they’re cheaper. And it’s not because of their workers, it’s because of their manipulation of their currency.
“Another thing: If you try to do business in China, it’s almost impossible. They want all your technology. They want you to build your plants in China.
“We have a very weak policy. Whether it’s China, or the horrible agreement just signed with South Korea, or any of the other horrible deals that we make, we don’t have the ability to make good deals with other countries.
We’re like a whipping post for other countries. We are standing there and being beaten by South Korea, by Mexico, by China, by India. If you have a problem with a credit card and you call somebody up, that person is based in India.
“And then they wonder why we’re not going to have jobs for another five or six years.
“Ben Bernanke said recently it’s going to be at least five years before our jobs really come back. And I say, why? All our jobs are going to China. We’re rebuilding China and other places.”
Trump insists the United States needs to change its trade policies with the People’s Republic.
“If we ever taxed Chinese products coming into this country, we would pay off the debt so fast. More importantly, we would start creating jobs in our country.
“They cheated at the Olympics with their gymnasts, they’re cheating us with their manipulation of the currency. They’re not our friends. I know them very well. I do business with them. I’m not angry at them. I just can’t believe that they can get away with it.
“My friends from China said to me just recently — they didn’t know that I might be thinking about running for president — we cannot believe how stupid your politicians are to allow us to get away with what we’re getting away with.
“They thought they were talking to me as a business guy and they were all laughing and smiling. We are a laughing stock throughout the world.”
Referring to President Obama’s State of the Union speech, Trump says: “He didn’t talk about the deficit, he didn’t talk about how to pay off all the debt that we have. Instead he’s telling everybody what a great country China is, that China has the fastest computer in the world. That should be for the president of China to talk about, not President Obama.
“Unless we get tough, and smart, and unless we stop having dinners for people that are destroying us, like when the president of China came two weeks ago to this country and we gave him a great state dinner, we’re going to have big problems.”
Trump has a surprising response to speculation that the turmoil in Egypt and other countries in the Middle East could push oil prices to as high as $200 a barrel.
“It also could go the other way. Frankly, the Middle East is a tinderbox. It’s going to explode. OPEC will probably be destroyed if it explodes, and oil prices could go the other way.
“I understand economics. You break up what would normally be an illegal monopoly, OPEC, and break it up very strongly. The Middle East is exploding, and I’m saying that could have a positive impact on oil prices.
“If you look at oil right now, it’s soon going to be $100 a barrel. Far too high. It’s set by OPEC. I think OPEC would explode with the Middle East and that wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world.”
Trump has especially harsh words for OPEC and its grip on oil prices.
“I think it’s unfair. I think it’s illegal,” he declares. “If you have a store and I have a store and we collude and set prices, we go to jail.
“Here you have 12 men, in this case all men, they sit around a table and they set the price of oil.
“We have so much oil. There’s so much oil out at sea. I see $3.50 for a gallon of gas. Cars are lined up trying to get it, and at $3.50. It’s a shame. It’s a ridiculous shame.
“Plus we don’t use our natural gas. We have more natural gas than anybody. Why we not using it is an amazing thing.
“Abu Dhabi, which has plenty of oil, just went to all natural gas for transportation because they want to sell us the oil at exorbitant prices. When you tell me about Obama and what he’s doing in the Middle East, I don’t think he’s doing anything in the Middle East.”
Trump warns of the dangers to the United States posed by OPEC and high oil prices.
“We have to do something about OPEC because that’s the life blood of the country. Right now, until we get on natural gas and other things, they really have us, and they’re sitting around inflating the price.
“When we had our problem not so long ago, a few years ago, oil was almost $150 a barrel. They’re blaming the banks, and the banks were terrible, and lots of other things were terrible, but I give a lot of the credit for the almost collapse of this country to the price of oil. It’s going to be up there again very soon and you’re going to have another catastrophic problem.
“By the way, any time a country comes up with oil they invite them in. Join OPEC. The United States is stupid, the people who represent the United States are really stupid, so join us and we’ll take advantage of the United States, sell them oil at inflated prices. They’re draining our life blood. We cannot allow that to continue. What kind of power do we have over OPEC? They wouldn’t even exist if it weren’t for us.”
Asked where he thinks the price of oil is headed, Trump responds: “I think it could go, with proper leadership, down to $40 a barrel. I think if we continue the way it is, it’s going to go up to $150 a barrel.”
Turning to Afghanistan and the timeline President Obama has proposed for withdrawal of American troops, Trump tells Newsmax: “We should be out of there as soon as possible. At the same time, when Obama announced that he’s going to be out at a certain date, these militants are just sitting back saying, ‘He gave us a specific date. This is fantastic. We’ll just sit back and then we’ll take it over the minute they leave.’
“So for him to give a date was a very dangerous, stupid, and foolish thing to do.”
In Part Two of Trump’s interview, he rips banks, Obamacare, American diplomats, spending on Iraq and Afghanistan, and more. It will appear Monday night.
- Trump: Obama ‘Isn’t Doing Anything in Middle East’
- Trump: U.S. ‘Whipping Post’ for World Under Obama
- Trump: ‘I’m Thinking About’ Running for President
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