That's from What Drives Donald Trump? Fear of Losing Status, Tapes Show. The New York Times obtained "Recordings of Donald J. Trump [that] reveal a man who is fixated on his own celebrity, anxious about losing his status and contemptuous of those who fall from grace."
"Most people aren't worth of respect." Really? From the man who would be President? That sentiment you might imagine coming from a monarch, a king, or a dictator. But from the President of a democratic republic? What happened to "all men are created equal"?
Here are some snippets from the recordings of live interviews by his biographer that get to the essence of Trump.
The recordings reveal a man who is fixated on his own celebrity, anxious about losing his status and contemptuous of those who fall from grace. They capture the visceral pleasure he derives from fighting, his willful lack of interest in history, his reluctance to reflect on his life and his belief that most people do not deserve his respect.
In the interviews, Mr. Trump makes clear just how difficult it is for him to imagine — let alone accept — defeat.
Mr. Trump, in a statement on Monday night, called the recordings “Pretty old and pretty boring stuff. Hope people enjoy it.”
In the interviews, which occurred in Mr. Trump’s office and apartment in Trump Tower in Manhattan, he is by turns animated and bored, boastful and stubborn when prodded toward soul-searching. “No, I don’t want to think about it,” he said when Mr. D’Antonio asked him to contemplate the meaning of his life. “I don’t like to analyze myself because I might not like what I see.”
Despite his reluctance, Mr. Trump reveals himself over and over, in the stories he tells, in his wide-ranging answers to questions and at times in casual, seemingly throwaway lines.
Who does he look up to? “I don’t have heroes,” Mr. Trump said.
Does he examine history to better understand the present? “I don’t like talking about the past,” he said, later adding, “It’s all about the present and the future.”
There is little trace of sympathy or understanding. When people lose face, Mr. Trump’s reaction is swift and unforgiving.
And when Mr. Trump feels he has been made a fool of, his response can be volcanic.
On the tapes, Mr. Trump describes a passionate enjoyment of fighting, which started during his adolescence in Queens. It did not matter, he said, whether an altercation was verbal or physical. He loved it all the same.
He still seems to long for those older, tougher times as a presidential candidate. At a Las Vegas rally in February, as Mr. Trump scolded a protester who tried to interrupt his speech, he used strikingly similar language.
“I love the old days,” Mr. Trump told the crowd to loud cheers.
“You know what they used to do to guys like that when they were in a place like this? They’d be carried out on a stretcher, folks.”
He is intoxicated by the glow of his name in the news media, a subject he brings up repeatedly in the interviews.
He quickly figured out that media attention was free advertising for his new hotels and golf courses, a fact that led him to frequently participate in newspaper interviews and television shows ... No matter the newspaper, magazine or show, Mr. Trump was always keeping score — of how positive the coverage was and how often he was featured, just as he does today.
Ultimately, Mr. Trump fears — more than anything else — being ignored, overlooked or irrelevant.
During his final interview with Mr. D’Antonio, as their relationship had warmed and deepened, Mr. Trump turned philosophical. He recalled a favorite song, performed by Peggy Lee, “Is That All There Is?” — a poignant ballad about unfulfilled dreams and dissatisfaction with life.
But he quickly retreats from the moment, declining Mr. D’Antonio’s [his biographer] invitation to further explain how the song makes him feel about himself, saying he might not like what he discovers.
Of this, however, Mr. Trump is certain: He needs the world’s attention and its embrace, a life force that has sustained him for decades.
“I don’t like to analyze myself because I might not like what I see.”
We voters don't like it either.