Former presidential candidate Donald Trump might stumble but he never falls. In debt from his presidential bid and judgements from lawsuits over Trump University, the billionaire is moving on to his next business venture and redemption: The Trump Church Of Monetary Unification.
This reporter attended a Trump rally, ostensibly a worship meeting, at the Atrium in the Trump Towers. Trump roused the crowd as he talked about his new currency and took a poke at his former rival.
"The TrumpMark is a really really strong currency, and it will be the choice for hard currency when Hillary finally crashes the economy."
The SEC took a different view of TrumpMarks, and trading was halted after investors poured hundreds of millions of dollars into the currency only to see their value cut in half almost immediately when customers tried to cash in their chips (customers did literally receive chips from Trump's failed casinos when they bought their TrumpMarks}.
When customers and TCMU churchgoers discovered that no sane person wanted to be paid in TrumpMarks, they tried to convert their TrumpMarks back to US currency. They were told by TCMU brokers that the TrumpMarks could be exchanged at only half of what they had paid for the new currency.
Another problem is that TrumpMarks are easy to counterfeit: US Customs has already intercepted several large shipments of counterfeit Taj Majal chips coming from China.
Congress is considering enacting new currency rules after a defiant Trump defended the practice of giving customers only half of their money back when they wanted to cash in their TrumpMarks for US dollars:
"They are getting the safety and security of owning a Trump brand. We have administrative costs to cover as well as the repair of the riot damage to Trump Towers. I can show you testimonial after testimonial of my churchgoers and people who have been happy to convert their money to TrumpMarks."
Why the move to a church for someone who has never shown much interest in the Good Book? Trump hates to pay taxes and has payed little or no taxes in the last thirty years. He's done this either by settling with state and federal agencies when sued for delinquent payment, or by gaming the system in his favor. By changing his organization to a church he will avoid having to pay most business taxes altogether.
Trump talked To Allan Smith about the decision to start a church in an interview with Business Insider.
"You don't need Adam and Eve and you don't have to talk Bible-y and stuff to be a church, and I've had all kinds of really good lawyers tell me this, if you have a sincere belief that money is God, that qualifies as a religion under US tax laws. You have to look at L. Ron: His publishing rights are worth a few million, but when he went to a church organization he was finally able to avoid taxes and accrue some net worth, and we're talking hundreds of millions in a short time."
Following in the example of L. Ron Hubbard's Church Of Scientology, TCMU is offering financial auditing for those who want to be like Donald Trump. Smith questioned Trump about the services, and read some text taken from a TCMU brochure about the auditing:
"I'm reading here and I quote 'These auditing services start at just a few thousand dollars. The auditing sessions help people reprogram their thinking and feelings towards money and to avoid doing the things that are keeping them poor.'"
Smith then asked The Don, "If people are giving their money to a billionaire's church for questionable services, isn't that one of the things that keeps those people from accumulating wealth?"
To which Trump simply said,"No, No Allen, I don't thinks so."