It is a truism that much of the controversy over Donald Trump’s Golf Course has arisen because of the things he has done and the things he has said. Reports from the press conference at Aberdeen Airport yesterday talked of a more restrained demeanour and less of the bravado and insults that have become his stock in trade.
But then, he gave an interview to Channel 4 News on 20 June 2011 in which he misrepresented the environmental arguments and told outright lies about the ongoing dispute with one of his neighbours, David and Moira Milne. At 1:55 there is this exchange
CH4: You’ve got some unhappy neighbours. They’re very unhappy at the way they’ve been treated by your estate staff. They accuse you dirty tricks, of Â building things on the edge of their land, of trying to buy them using underhand methods.This is pretty damaging to the Trump brand isn’t it?
Donald Trump:Â No it’s a great enhancement to the Trump brand. We had a man, he built a fence and he was stealing our property because he built the fence on our land. We told him to move the fence – he didn’t move it and we then moved the fence. How would you like to have a house and your neighbour comes out and builds a fence and he takes your backyard that’s essentially what happened here. We told him to move the fence – Â he wouldn’t do it so we moved the fence. But what he did is he took this fence, put it up and he was stealing our property. He knows he did wrong. That’s OK but he knows he did wrong.
This is a total lie told on national TV. It is defamatory. The fence in question was erected by Menie estate many years ago (Fig 9 in my report). The Milne’s didn’t touch it. Trump’s staff moved it to the correct location. The Milne’s have no problem with that (however, they have a problem with being presented with the bill for it!). The real argument is over a garage that the Dundas & Wilson on behalf of the Trump Organisation threatened legal action over.
If you wish to see the background to this dispute, the original documents, and all the arguments why Mr Trump is wrong, take a look at the report – Donald Trump’s Ego Trip I published in May 2011 (pages 15-21 to be precise).
You might also be interested in what Mr Trump had to say about the Milne’s house the last time he visited, in October 2010. Watch this video (at 20 seconds in) which records the very words on film.
And, finally, there is a documentary film – You’ve Been Trumped – that is receiving rave reviews. it is showing in Aberdeen Belmont cinema this coming weekend and opens the Edinburgh Documentary Film Festival in September. It also screens Glasgow and Edinburgh, 13 & 14 July as part of the the Take One Action programme.
Go and see it.