Donald Trump was interviewed by Michael Savage on Savage's radio show Monday afternoon, 1/10/11, for about 14 minutes beginning at :34 in the first hour. The two happened to meet at an event over the weekend and Savage invited him on the show. I recorded the interview on tape and transcribed it as follows (S=Michael Savage, T=Donald Trump):
"S: Run the country like a business not like an empire. There's only 1 man I know who can do it, that's Donald Trump. Donald, welcome to the Savage Nation. Thanks for being with us.
T: How are you, Michael, you're a piece of work, that I can tell you.
S: Well now, we don't know what you really mean when you say that. But look, when you and I spoke yesterday, I asked you straight up, I didn't mince words. I said to you where do you stand on tariffs with regard to Chinese goods, and you didn't blink, you didn't mince words. Tell the audience what you think should be done.
T: Well look, nobody is hurting-outside of OPEC-this country more than China. What China's doing to this country is absolutely a sin and it shouldn't be allowed, and somebody has to speak to them. Somebody called me last week, the head of China is coming next week to see the president, and they said, what message would you have that the president should give? I said, the president should cancel the meeting. And IMMEDIATELY cancel the meeting, until such time as they stop manipulating their currency, etc., etc., because when they manipulate their currency our companies cannot compete with theirs, they just can't. Beyond labor, beyond other things, they can't compete, and I will tell you as a big buyer of products, glass, and lots of other things, the Chinese are very, I mean, do we make anything in this country anymore? It's being made in China and other countries, but China is the big culprit. And the advantage they have is through a manipulation of their currency. So, what I say to you very simply is that I would absolutely tax all products coming in from China. Then you'll say to me, oh, but don't they loan us a lot of money by buying our bonds? And I would respond by saying, if you tax their products those bonds will be paid off very, very rapidly.
S: What tax? What per cent?
T: I would say 25% and I would say a firm, strong 25%, and then, you know what, when they start behaving properly. You know, we're building cities in China, we're building China, we're rebuilding the whole place, because what they're doing is they're taking all of our jobs. And it's very interesting, I don't know if you heard Bernanke, Ben Bernanke the other day, but he said very strongly, job market won't be back for 5 or 6 years.
S: Yeah, I heard that, that's terrible. Well, you and I had one point we disagreed on where you said you cannot buy anything made in America anymore, and I said, Mr. Trump, you're wrong about that, you can buy a congressman.
T: (Laughs) That's very true.
S: (Laughs) It's sadly true. So in addition to saying you're fired you now want to say, "You're elected," huh?
T: Michael, I don't believe 5 or 6 years because why are jobs coming back to this country if everything is being made in China, Mexico, lots of other places? You know what happened in Iowa? Iowa, it's very sad. Newton, Iowa, Maytag, because of our brilliant system, Maytag moved their manufacturing and virtually everything out of Iowa, Newton, and into Mexico.
T: And all the jobs.
S: That's because of NAFTA and the WTO. Now we on the conservative side in the media were opposed to that in the '90's, we opposed NAFTA, we opposed WTO, we were called crazy at the time. Would you repeal any of these international agreements if you were president, Mr. Trump?
T: Well, NAFTA's been a total disaster, it's just been unbelievable how horrible, you go up and look at New England, all you see is empty factories that are just decaying buildings.
T: And those people moved out and they moved over to Mexico and other places. And you take a look at what's--the truth is the United States is a whipping post for the rest of the world. And the reason is our people aren't smart enough or tough enough to do something about it.
S: One of my callers, Rich in Pittsburgh is calling, and he's saying in China they tariff our products, is that true?
T: Totally true. I can tell you about a steel company, which I can't mention, but I can tell you about a steel company, and I'm talking about a big one, where they can't, they're not allowed to go into China and sell steel. Look, st General Electric recently, where General electric was forced to give up all their technology and all their secrets in order to do business in China. I mean it's terrible what's going on, and we do nothing. Look at South Korea, there's another one, there's another beauty.
T: I just can't even believe. But look at South Korea, they have a trade agreement that's so bad and so one-sided for them and against us. Then the president goes there recently, and they refuse to sign it because they want more. Then all of a sudden, a couple of shells get lobbed onto one of their islands by North Korea.
T: And all of a sudden, they come back and they say, no, no, we will sign the agreement because they are my great allies, they're our great allies.
S: (Laughs) Right.
T: Sure, as we have the SS, as we have the George Washington aircraft carrier, one of the great boats of the world.
T: And many destroyers sailing right toward North Korea, and I said to myself, they make hundreds of billions of dollars of--let's use the word profit, because it's easier to understand.
T: With the United States with their televisions, their cars, everything else. The agreement is horrendous. We're protecting them, why aren't we being paid for that? This nation is so rich, much richer than us, actually, but why aren't they paying when we sail those incredible ships over to North Korea, which by the way, cost millions of dollars an hour--
S: What you're saying is why doesn't south Korea pay for the price of sailing the ships and the men going there to protect them, is that what you're saying?
T: Why doesn't South Korea pay us something? Which means why don't we ask South Korea for something? Instead, what to they do? They go out and they give us a trade agreement that only an idiot from our standpoint would sign. So, it's a very, very, sad situation.
S: But, Donald, if you were the chief executive of the United States of America, would you do some of the more controversial things that I've called for such as, let's go to Iraq. Many men lost lives, lost limbs, lost eyes, we lost our national honor in many ways for what? They're sitting on a sea of oil, they've never given us a free barrel of oil. George Bush said they would pay us back though oil. We never got one free barrel. Don't you think for example, Iraq owes us a few hundred million barrels of oil in exchange for how many billions we spent there?
T: Iraq has 15 trillion dollars of oil sitting under its land, people don't realize. After Saudi Arabia, they're the second nation for oil. Now, we've spent a trillion and a half, OK?
T: They should pay us back. They should pay us back. Now I don't know if that's necessarily the greatest example, only because it's not lie Iraq is, I don't know, a lot of people would say, did we really do them a favor. If you go over there, it's a total mess. Which, by the way, Iran will take over as soon as we leave. What we've done in Iraq is unbelievable.
T: You know, they've been fighting for hundreds of years back and forth (inaudible) equals.
T: Now we've de-neutered Iraq, so that as soon as we leave Iran will go in and take over that oil which is very interesting.
S: Well, as, look, when war broke out I said, this could be the greatest blunder, military blunder in American history, I hope Bush is right and not wrong because if he's wrong, all that's going to happen is the Shia dominated Iran is going to dominate Iraq which was run by the Sunnis under Saddam, who was a balancing power to the Shia power within his own country and Iran. It was a complete mess, but let's look at Afghanistan. If you were president, would you pull the boys out of Afghanistan
T: I'd get out as soon as I could. Now you have to understand, Michael, I'm a very, very hawkish person. I believe in REALLY strong military, stronger than what we have right now.
T: I believe in all of that.
S: So do I.
T: What we are over there is policemen. You know we didn't lose a war, if we pulled out, we won the war. But we're policemen over there. We're not meant to be policemen.
S: Yes. You know, in my book Trickle up Poverty, Mr. Trump, I end it by saying, run America like a business, not an empire. And, I went on the air tonight and I said I finally have found a businessman who I think could run this country not only like a business but AS a business, because it IS a business. Every nation fundamentally is a business. But you can't run a business at a loss, let us say forever, can you?
T: Well, I'd also say a business with compassion, because there are certain times where government really can help people, and that's a great thing. But you know when I look at for instance, you mentioned Afghanistan, think of this. $52 million was given to somebody--in a suitcase.
T: To go to Afghanistan.
T: It ended up--we just found this out--it ended up in Dubai.
S: In Dubai, yeah.
T: Now, Dubai is not doing well.
T: It ended up in Dubai. Now you say to yourself, we give $52 million in cash, I mean who ever heard of $52 million in cash--I have numerous cash businesses, but my cash businesses I watch closely. I have--accountants watching the people. Then I have people watching those people. I want to know who is the colonel or the general or whoever it is that gives 52 million in green to Afghanistan, and then it ends up somewhere in Dubai, which is another part of the world. And I say, who are the people that give this money? Is it a colonel? Is it a corporal that carries it out? Is it a private, like the Wikileaks private? And then I say of the money that was given, 52 is an odd number, how much was stolen before the 52 got there? And who stole it including our own couriers? So when I look at that 52 million in cash, if you think about what that is, you say, who authorizes something like that?
S: I don't know, I didn't.
T: No but, can you imagine?
S: No, I know what you're saying, where did the money come from, who did it go to? Look, you only have a minute left in this segment, there's a lot more we have to cover in the months to come. I don't even know if you're running. Are you really ready to run for the presidency, Mr. Trump?
T: Well. I'm a proud American, I love this country. I've never seen anything like what's happening now. I've never seen OPEC go so crazy as they are right now. Oil is now $90 a barrel, it should be $30. I've always been told by a certain very smart friend of mine who's truly an expert on oil, that whenever we have oil above 30 and 40, this country HAS to lose money. And I believe that it was OPEC and I believe it was the oil prices that really caused the almost demise of our economic nation. It was a horrible thing. It got up to almost $150 a barrel--
S: Well, it's a commodity that in essence is acting as a currency. That's what it comes down to. If we have inflation, the barrel of oil becomes the equivalent of the deflated dollar in reality to the Arab. In other words he goes to New York and he wants to buy an apartment in Trump Plaza that was $10 million, and suddenly it's $15 million. He wants more money for his oil, yes or no?
T: It's--the problem we have with the devalued dollar--and they devalue it on a daily basis--is you're going to be paying $25 for a loaf of bread, and you're going to be paying $10 for a Coca Cola. I mean the devalued dollar, which is no longer a respected currency, as you know-
T: Is ABSOLUTELY just hurting this country, and it's going to hurt Number 1, level of respect, Number 2, wait til you see and you see it now, you see the price of copper, you see the price of gold, you see the price of all these commodities INCLUDING oil going through the roof. And it's a very, very serious situation for this country. It's very important.
S: But when will we know, when will we know if Donald Trump really wants to really run for the presidency?
T: Well, I would say I'll make a decision sometime by June. You know we have Celebrity Apprentice going on very soon. I'm not allowed to run during that time, because otherwise everyone else has to get 2 hours of prime time television. Somehow, I don't think that's going to happen.
T: It terminates, season 11 comes to an end during the month of June, and I will make a decision sometime then. But, it's a very sad thing. What's happening to this country is very sad. And I've never seen it where this country is such a whipping post, and just doesn't tap the respect of other nations.
S: Run the country like a business not an empire. We need a really successful tough-minded man like Donald Trump, in my opinion. I would definitely back you if you ran, and I haven't backed anyone, because I see nobody who can beat Obama out there on the Republican side. That's a terrible thing to say when you consider Obama is such a terrible president. That the Republicans are going to do it all over again, Mr. Trump. That's what I say, we really need you out there.
T: Michael, health care is destroying many, many companies. I know for a fact. I have friends that are literally closing up their companies. They're not going to be able to afford health care. And just one other little thing. You know, we signed recently a treaty with Russia.
T: How would you like Russia dictating when and where we can build missiles? I mean do you think this is great now that Russia's telling us what we can build, when we can build it, it's sort of amazing.
S: I covered this in a chapter on what's in the START Treaty, I tried to warn America. Why the president and those 9 Republican turncoats agreed on the START Treaty without any discussion really concerns me, because we have now become an (inaudible).
T: That's a real beauty, and part of the beauty is because they don't want us to have a defense system. So, you're not allowed to defend yourself, you can't build missiles. Russia telling us what to do, and they rush out and approve it. It's UN-believable.
S: Well. we have a lot more to cover, and I know it's not the last time Donald Trump will be on the Savage Nation, at least I hope not. And we're giving you an open door to the most important independent nation in the country, which is the Savage Nation. I sincerely mean it. This is not for ratings, Mr. Trump, this is to save the country that I love ever since I've been a Boy Scout in Queens, New York, And I hope you're the guy who's going to do it, and you're the guy who's going to save this country.
T: Well, thank-you very much, Michael, you have a great show, and I really do, I can't say a hundred percent, but I agree with so much of what you say.
S: If you agreed with me a hundred percent, I'd really worry about you.
T: (Laughs). Thank-you, Michael, and we'll be on again.
S: Donald Trump on the Savage Nation. It's 48 minutes after the hour."