Former President Donald Trump is outraged. Not over the egregious situation in Israel. Or the failing economy. Right now, his ire is fixated on something much closer to home for him. Forbes has removed Trump from its list of 400 richest people in the world.
When pressed for a greater explanation, the Forbes editors simply explained that they no longer believe Trump is as rich as he says he is.
Of course, for Trump, this is yet another example of the “Deep State” attack he’s been subjected to since the moment he descended from the golden escalator at Trump Tower in New York and announced his first serious bid for the presidency of the United States in 2015.
To be fair to Trump, this is likely, on some level, retribution from another aspect of the mainstream media machine that has made it their business to hate on Trump publicly.
Yet, Forbes can still hide behind the fact that it does use a real metric for determining who should be on—and who should be taken off—their famed list of the 400 richest people in the world.
Part of their reasoning for removing Trump was the fact that Trump’s Truth Social platform has not lived up to its promise and is not worth anywhere near what was invested into it.
Beyond that fact, everyone knows that Trump notoriously inflates the value of everything he owns—even his net worth. It has now been determined by a New York State court that Trump has inflated the value of his own properties by as much as 200 times what they were truly valued at.
Much of Trump’s wealth, which initially had qualified him for that elite list on Forbes, was based on what we now know to be inflated values.
While Trump doesn’t deserve to have the massive legal headaches he’s been subjected to in New York State (if they were being serious about going after fraudulent activity, then New York would have to go after every wealthy real estate owner in New York for overvaluing their properties), the fact is that it is provable that he has exaggerated his worth.
Thus, Forbes cannot, by definition, allow for Trump to be on its exclusive list.
Nevertheless, Trump rages at the purported injustice of it all.
And, by the way, why does he even care?
I thought Trump was the avatar of the Everyman; the one guy who was willing to throw it all away, in the formulation of conservative talk show host, Charlie Kirk, to show We, the People, the truth about how corrupt and broken our system was.
Trump, I have been told—and at one time believed—was the anti-establishment candidate. So, what’s with this vestigial urge to constantly seek the preservation of his standing among an elite that has so clearly washed their hands of him long ago?
While entertaining for observers like me, the fact remains that, if Trump is the GOP nominee in 2024, he will be the last bulwark standing between a rabid, partisan, and militant Left seeking to impose an unwanted revolution upon the American people.
The very last thing we need is for our nominee to be perennially distracted with John McCain-like fretting over why the establishment doesn’t like him anymore.
Trump should embrace his true outsider status and use it to propel himself to victory. Not to get hung up on why some establishment paper no longer considers Trump to be part of their elite list.
That’s the most un-Trump thing imaginable.
Whatever happens next with Trump, it is clear that he never truly intended to lead an anti-establishment revolution. Regardless of what the man wanted, he is now the face of a movement that is militantly—and rightly—opposed to our elites.
If Trump is to be the Republican nominee, he must not get bogged down in being loved by the elites. They never will love him. He must work to diminish their power and replace them with a new set of leaders who will actively protect the interest of ordinary Americans.
A 19FortyFive Senior Editor and an energy analyst at the The-Pipeline, Brandon J. Weichert is a former Congressional staffer and geopolitical analyst who is a contributor at The Washington Times, as well as at the Asia Times. He is the author of Winning Space: How America Remains a Superpower (Republic Book Publishers), Biohacked: China’s Race to Control Life (Encounter Books), and The Shadow War: Iran’s Quest for Supremacy (July 23). Weichert occasionally serves as a Subject Matter Expert for various organizations, including the Department of Defense. He can be followed via Twitter @WeTheBrandon.