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That Time a 1987 Newsweek Reader Shaded All Future Americans

By Courtney Enlow | Politics | November 17, 2016 |

By Courtney Enlow | Politics | November 17, 2016 |

Hey, remember the ’80s? Max Headroom! New Coke! Psychics writing to Newsweek and predicting the total collapse of the future at the hands of a ferret-headed demagogue! Side-ponytails!

In 1987, Newsweek did a cover profile on a then 41-year-old Donald Trump, calling him “America’s brash billionaire.” With the exception of a then 6-year-old Ivanka not yet having grown into her hotness and being worth daddy’s lechery (that usually comes around 12ish), there was little difference between 1987 Trump and NuTrump.

“I’m not running for president,” he told Newsweek’s Bill Powell and Peter McKillop in the 1987 piece, “but if I did…I’d win.” In the same interview, he boasted that “there is no one my age who has accomplished more.”

Few of us could imagine the terrifying hell that awaited us. But one man did. Robert Crook.


In his analysis of the attention he receives from the star-struck masses, Trump confuses envy with admiration when he claims that the American people would elect him to the presidency. A leader must be giving and caring. Considering the long list of slick, thoughtless, for-profit-only deals he has perpetrated, it becomes glaringly clear that the only person Trump has ever cared about is Trump. God forbid that our society would ever put such a man in the White House.

Robert Crook
Los Angeles, Calif.

Oh Robert. This is awkward.

Earlier this year, Newsweek found Robert Crook and instead of asking him, “OH ORACLE, WE IMPLORE YOU, TELL US, DO WE SURVIVE THIS CRUEL BURNING FATE AND IF NOT, WHAT OF THE CHILDREN?” and instead just asked if he thought his letter, which he wrote at 23 years old, holds up.

Is that still your view? Oh absolutely. I think that time has shown that to be true. There’s no real change in Donald Trump…. Donald Trump is basically the mirror that’s being held up to the Republican Party, and they’re seeing themselves perhaps for the first time and they don’t like what they’re seeing.

You wrote, “God forbid that our society would ever put such a man in the White House.” Did you ever imagine he’d get this far?
You know something? I didn’t. I think this was someone who appeared to have a lot of money, who had no experience. If you look at not what Donald Trump said but what he did over a period of time, it really became very clear that he’s not a particularly charitable person. He’s not someone who’s particularly diplomatic. In fact, he’s none of those qualities. He’s just somebody who has developed a persona and has the money to back up the persona and is making a bid for an office that he’s not qualified to possess.

Sigh. We know.

Meanwhile, there was fucking Louise. Louise ruined EVERYTHING.


Do you stand by what you wrote 29 years ago? You know, I’ve been watching this campaign. At first, I didn’t think I did, because he kind of talks before he thinks sometimes. I think he would do a good job. And I think he has calmed down a little bit with the approach he has when asked a question. He’s caught off guard. You know what I’m saying? It’s the way he says it. I still think he’s a very intelligent man. I think he could do a good job, and I think people want a change. Many people are saying, “Oh my gosh! We need him, because he’s not afraid to speak up and he isn’t doing it for the money; he’s got plenty of money.” Of all the people that are running right now, I have to say, I think he’s probably going to be the best.

God dammit, Louise.