The Art of the Con

In the news, not the news department, Donald Trump’s recently released taxes reveal what we knew all along. His boasts of being a multi-billionaire were totally bogus. The only great wealth creation this failed businessman has created is in his imagination. His only success is getting as many to believe his image as a successful entrepreneur for as long as he did.

And he learned from a master, a man named Sid Rosen. Likely a name you are unfamiliar with, Sid was the guru of the grift, and a young Donald Trump got his Masters of B.S. from this scam artist.

Vintage ad 1975

Along with the cache of classified documents, nuclear secrets, and old press clippings uncovered by the FBI in Trump’s storage rooms at Mar A Lago is a revealing piece of paper that is getting scant attention.

Easy to overlook, in the jumble of documents this brittle, yellowing advertisement clipped from a 1975 magazine called Specialty Salesman,  just might be the clue to Trump’s uncanny skills as a con man.

I Can Make You Appear To Be A Millionaire

The headline of this ad just screams Trump, a man who has based his entire brand on appearances and illusions. You can see the appeal to a 29-year-old Trump who had yet to inherit his daddy’s 400 million.

“I will teach you how to get smart and live great! I’ve done it and I’ve enjoyed new cars, luxurious homes, fat bank accounts, the best foods, wine, women, and best of all, lots and lots of money. I will now sell you my secrets and I will teach you how to:

Get VIP treatment wherever you go

Attract glamorous women

Gain political power in your area

Borrow away your debts

“My name is Sid Rosen, I’ve been a wheeler-dealer all my life and I’ve been involved in hundreds of successful businesses. Let me tell you what I can do for you.”

Sid made it clear he had perfected the art of the spiel years before Trump ever published his book or appeared on the Apprentice.

In fact, channeling Sid, Trump opened each show by saying:  “I’ve mastered the art of the deal…And as the master, I want to pass my knowledge along to somebody.”

I’m Like Really Really Smart

“I will make you appear to be a millionaire…in just four weeks!” Rosen promised.”  I will teach you how to GET SMART AND LIVE GREAT! I will teach you to open previously locked doors create unlimited opportunities and place yourself upon the glittering path to financial prosperity and success.

I will help you to acquire and enjoy all the marvelous things in life you’ve always dreamed of having but felt you would never get- like a luxury cruise around the world, a color TV in every room, expensive cars, luxurious homes, beautiful clothes, gourmet foods, cameras, gadgets you name it.

I will show you how to get it!

Art of The Con

“I have learned that it is possible to create the “illusion” of great, great personal wealth quite easily in today’s credit-oriented economy. Notice now, that I  have used the term “illusion” …for that is exactly what our entire capitalistic society is based upon.

“People, including you, and I believe what they see.

We presume a person to be wealthy when seeing his expensive home, high priced cars. Well tailored clothes and luxurious lifestyles.

Bearing this out, years later Tony Schwartz the ghostwriter who wrote Art Of The Deal said “There is nothing more important to Trump than being seen as very very rich which is why he’s expended so much effort in trying to claim a networth far beyond what he actually was worth.

The Illusion of Having Money

“Everything and I mean everything you need to know is in my manual which will be sent to you in a plain envelope. The price is $10.” A decade before Art of the Deal  “Smart Money Plans” the Money Making Strategy Planning book covers all aspects of creating wealth and eliminating debt.   Published Fact Research 1975

Sid goes on to promise:

“You’ve probably heard the saying It takes money to make money.”

“The truth I will tell you is that in today’s economy, it only takes “THE ILLUSION OF HAVING MONEY “…to make money and it only takes “THE ILLUSION OF HAVING MONEY” to borrow money.”

“Remember this, in today’s financial marketplace, most money transactions are merely bookkeeping entries and nothing usually changes hands but scraps of paper. This is one of the secrets I will reveal to you in great detail!”

Not too many people know this…

“I’ll tell you this…I call many of my plans “secrets” because I don’t think more than one person in a thousand knows any two of them.

“I will teach you to look the part and to wear the hat of a millionaire.”

With a buxom model on his arm and a garish home decked out in 24-karat gold Trump always looked the part and he did it by happily creating the most vivid pop culture cartoon of wealth outside a comic book.

Or a scammy ad from 1975.




  1. Sally, well said. A compiler of the Forbes 400 list of richest people said most people do not want to be on the list, because they get hit up for money. He noted in all of the years, only two people politicked to be on the list – a man from Saudi Arabia and Donald J. Trump. His story is his father lent him $1 million, but the investigated story is his father gave him over $400 million tax free before he died over the course of a few years. This was reported in The New York Times, but it did not get the notoriety it deserved. Keith


    • Trump lied his way into Forbes’s list of wealthiest people and used a fake persona to do it. In May 1984 “John Barron” lied to the Forbes reporter about Trump’s wealth and assets to get him on the Forbes 400 list. Trump’s practice of sometimes speaking to the media under the guise of a spokesman was an open secret in NY circles during the 80s and 90s.


      • Sally, well the person in question just had the Trump Organization penalized by $1.6 million for tax fraud yesterday. Ironically, $1.6 million is the same number a New York judge told Trump he had to repay the Trump Foundation a few years ago for using its funds for personal use. This was before the Foundation was ordered terminated and all monies distributed to charity. It should be noted the judge also forbade anyone named Trump from overseeing the distribution process. That was tax fraud as well. Keith


  2. Isn’t he dead yet? No? Well, when he is, bury him on his New Jersey golf course next to his first wife. Then let his name forever be forgotten!


  3. Chris Thomas

    Sally…Get a Life !!!!! Hater !!!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: