Nobody likes a blowhard, and Donald Trump may be the hardiest blowhard of them all. Since declaring his candidacy, the presidential hopeful has turned vacuous insults and jaw-dropping gaffes into a kind of booming cottage industry. Most recently, he ruffled feathers with his comments about how Muslims should be kept track of in a database, and their mosques should be kept under surveillance. But such clangers aren’t a new development. The Donald has been honing the art of stupidity for many, many years. Here are ten of the dumbest things the man with America’s worst toupee has ever said.
10. China Invented Global Warming
The Donald is famously tone-deaf regarding world affairs. Not so long ago, he accidentally retweeted a picture of Nazi soldiers he thought were American troops. In 2012, he took this geopolitical blind spot to a whole new level when he tweeted:
“The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make US manufacturing non-competitive.”
In other words, he claimed China invented global warming to hurt US jobs.
While we would love to think China was cunning enough to bribe 97 percent of all scientists in the world to repeat its claims, common sense sadly tells us that isn’t the case. But even if it was even remotely plausible, it’d still be an utterly nonsensical case to make. China has recently brought in strict controls designed to battle climate change, meaning it has no advantage over the US in this area whatsoever. If Trump is right, then we’ve gotta say Beijing totally dropped the ball on this one.
9. “Laziness is a Trait in Blacks”
There are some things you should never, ever say unless your only dream in life is to become head of your local Klan chapter. In 1991, Donald Trump supposedly didn’t just say those things – he said things that people who say those things would find deeply offensive. According to a book by a disgruntled employee, the Donald once claimed:
A bit of context on this one. The book was a hatchet job by John R O’Donnell, who worked directly for Trump in Vegas for three years and left with a grudge. Trump says he only met O’Donnell three times (which seems unlikely). On the other hand, he also once said “The stuff O’Donnell wrote about me is probably true.” If that’s the case, it would mean O’Donnell was also being accurate when he claimed Trump said:
“Black guys counting my money! I hate it. The only kind of people I want counting my money are short guys that wear yarmulkes every day.”
Which has to set some kind of record for most race-baiting in a single vitriolic outburst.
8. “Tiny Children are Not Horses”
In 2014, Trump displayed his acute powers of observation by tweeting the immortal line “tiny children are not horses.” While we’d love to tell you this was the start of a new Twitter account where Trump does nothing but inform readers what things aren’t other things, this sadly wasn’t the case. Instead, in a moment of anti-vaxxer insanity, the Donald tweeted:
“I am being proven right about massive vaccinations—the doctors lied. Save our children & their future… No more massive injections. Tiny children are not horses—one vaccine at a time, over time.”
Aside from tiny children literally not being horses, nothing about those statements is true. Doctors didn’t lie to us, choosing not to vaccinate will not “save your children” from invisible boogeymen (instead, it’ll – surprise! – leave them open to measles), and the number of injections kids are expected to have is sharply decreasing. But tiny children are definitely not horses. Probably.
7. Environmentally Friendly Lightbulbs Can Cause Cancer
You probably remember how a few years back everyone got their knickers in a twist over the ability of lightbulbs to kill us stone dead. As with everything controversial, the Donald had to get in on the act. In 2012, he tweeted:
“Remember, new ‘environment friendly’ lightbulbs can cause cancer. Be careful-the idiots who came up with this stuff don’t care.”
Hilariously, this is yet another tweet where Trump managed to get every single one of his facts wrong.
Environmentally friendly CFL bulbs emit more radiation than regular incandescent lightbulbs. This is actually true, and presumably what Trump was talking about. However, he completely failed to mention that the amount of radiation emitted is harmless to humans. He also didn’t mention how the WHO found no link between CFL bulbs and cancer, or that double-enveloped CFL light bulbs actually emit less radiation than normal, incandescent lightbulbs. Then again, expecting even the quickest fact check is likely asking too much from the Donald. Which brings us nicely to our next entry…
6. The Truth About Birth Certificates
The Birther movement in Obama’s first term was a consistent reminder that money and intelligence don’t necessarily go hand in hand. Spearheaded by billionaire Trump, it sought to have Obama removed from office by proving he wasn’t born in the USA – despite Obama twice releasing first his short, then long-form birth certificates.
Trump wasn’t having any of it, though. In 2011, the Donald declared of Obama’s latest release, “A certificate of live birth is not the same thing by any stretch of the imagination as a birth certificate.”
What’s hilarious about this is the state of Hawaii disagrees. Either of the certificates released by the White House are all the state requires for you to prove your identity. Even the original ‘short form’ Trump is talking about with his “certificate of live birth” nonsense is considered sufficient evidence in Hawaii courts. The fact the Donald was still banging this drum after the ‘long form’ was also released just proves what we’ve always suspected. That the Donald is nothing if not hilariously insane.
5. The US Will be Forced to Defend Iran Against Israel
There’s been a lot of debate about the Iran nuclear deal recently. Some think it gives Iran too much leeway, some too little. One thing it definitely doesn’t do is obligate the US to defend Iran against an Israeli invasion. So it should come as no surprise that Trump thinks that’s exactly what it does do.
In September, Trump claimed about the deal: “If Israel attacks Iran … we’re supposed to be on Iran’s side.” The only problem is, the deal doesn’t say that. It doesn’t say anything even remotely like that.
Instead, a small clause asks the countries involved to give the Iranians training and workshops on defending against an attack. In practice, an ‘attack’ here means a rogue terrorist group trying to get its hands on some nuclear material. The US has run similar workshops with other countries (including Russia), as it’s in everyone’s interests to ensure ISIS aren’t running around with the components for a dirty bomb.
More-importantly, though, the deal only asks other countries to help. The US is under no obligation to do so. When Rubio raised this issue with the White House, John Kerry made it clear the US would never take Iran’s side against Israel.
4. Taxing China
China is the world’s next superpower. The 21st century will belong to the Middle Kingdom, with the US, India and maybe Europe hovering around the periphery. So it might seem wise for a prospective presidential candidate to build bridges with Beijing. But Trump certainly didn’t get to where he is today by being wise. In 2011, he issued a direct challenge to China, shouting:
“Listen you motherf—–s! We’re going to tax you 25 percent!”
The logic behind this is presumably that Trump thinks China is taking jobs away from decent, hardworking Americans. Thank god the Donald is here to sort out those sweatshop loving Commies… oh, no. Wait. Turns out Trump himself has much of his clothing line made in China to reduce costs, taking jobs away from American workers and adding to the growing Chinese economy. Nice consistency there, Donald.
3. Mexico is Sending Over Rapists and Killers
Sometimes, a comment is just so blatantly race-baiting that you almost have to admire the gumption of the psychopath who made it. In summer 2015, Donald Trump accused the Mexican government of deliberately sending “rapists” and “killers” into the US. It was as open an instance of real-life trolling as politics has ever seen. It’s also one of the most monumentally moronic things anyone has ever said.
From a factual point of view, it was an utter howler. Not only does no-one without a tinfoil hat believe Mexico is deliberately sending shadowy sex perverts into the US, the government’s own sex assault statistics prove otherwise. As a population, Latinos are hugely underrepresented in sex assault cases, while whites are conversely overrepresented. Only two percent of illegal immigrants are arrested for sex crimes; two percent too many, but a tiny amount compared to what Trump is claiming.
Perhaps more pertinently for such a business ‘genius’ though, Trump’s remarks were simply bad business. In the immediate aftermath, Colombia pulled out of hosting Trump’s Miss Universe pageant.
2. Execute the Innocent
This one isn’t so much something Trump said as something he did. In 1989, New York was rocked by a devastating rape attack on a white female jogger in Central Park. In the aftermath, a group of African-American teenagers were interviewed as suspects. Trump immediately took out a swathe of full-page newspaper ads attacking them in the harshest terms. The ads all ended with a call to execute the teenagers as quickly as possible.
The group were then all found innocent.
Even by the Donald’s standards, this was one heck of a fail. It didn’t help that this was only shortly before the whole “laziness is a trait in blacks” storm we mentioned earlier blew up. In an attempt to make amends, Trump visited a black assault victim in hospital, where he promised to pay all her medical bills. If only he’d now do the same for everyone else he’s ever offended, we might just have a viable alternative to Obamacare.
1. Claiming He Could Have Prevented 9/11
It takes a certain kind of extremely awful person to use the deaths of nearly 3,000 people to score a political point. Want to guess who is exactly that kind of extremely awful person? We’ll give you a clue: his name begins with ‘T’ and his hair defies logic. In October 2015, the world’s biggest gasbag declared that his policies on immigration would have stopped 9/11 from ever happening.
It’s hard to see exactly how this would have worked. A grand total of zero of the hijackers were Mexican, and most of Trump’s immigration rhetoric can be summed up as forcing Mexico to pay for a wall to be built across the border. But, on a more-human level, it’s basically just horrific. On the one hand, you have perhaps the greatest mass-tragedy the United States has ever experienced. Weighed up against that, you have Donald Trump wanting to get one over on Jeb Bush by insulting his brother. The only way it could possibly be worse would be if you had someone using, say, the Holocaust as a way of making cheap points about gun control…