Donald Trump’s latest target is Amazon founder Jeff Bezos who he saw fit to claim was having “anti-trust problems” and “getting away with murder” on his taxes. To be precise, Trump told Sean Hannity:
He’s got a huge antitrust problem because he’s controlling so much. He bought the Washington Post for practically nothing. He’s using it as a tool for political power against me and other people. We can’t let him get away with it. Amazon is getting away with murder, tax-wise. He’s using the Washington Post for power so that the politicians in Washington don’t tax Amazon like they should be taxed.
For Trump to criticize Bezos about his taxes is sheer chutzpah. So long as Trump refuses to release his own tax returns, he is no position to criticize Bezos or anyone else where it concerns their taxes.
There are two reasons Trump is targeting Bezos.
First, Bezos is richer than Trump. In fact, Bezos is now the fourth richest person in the world with a net worth of $61.2 billion. Whereas Trump inherited his wealth, Bezos built his company from scratch. Be honest with yourself. If you had the choice between taking business advice from someone who changed the very nature of commerce as opposed to someone who filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy four times, you would be insane to trust the latter.
Now Trump might have been able to tolerate Bezos’ success in business if Bezos were on board the Trump Train a la Carl Icahn. But Bezos is his own man and Trump claims Bezos is using The Washington Post “as a tool for political power against me and other people. We can’t let him get away with it.” And, if elected President, what sanction would Trump impose against those who would dare criticize him? Once again, Trump is showing his unfamiliarity with freedom of the press and that it is the prerogative of a free press to criticize those who hold power be it political or economic or both. Simply put, Trump believes he is above any criticism. But I’m sure if Trump owned a newspaper or other media enterprise, he wouldn’t be above using it against Bezos or any of his other adversaries, real or imagined.
As usual, Trump’s allegations against Bezos are made up out of whole cloth. His allegations should be seen for what they are. Donald Trump resents that Jeff Bezos is more successful businessman than he is and because of it he has no need to worship at the altar of Trump.