The ugly detail everybody missed in Donald Trump’s trading card scheme
There are now scattered reports of Trump supporters not being able to figure out how to access their NFT trading cards, scammy details in the fine print, and even questions about the money trail involved. Given that Trump’s schemes are generally put together rather flimsily to begin with, and this one seems to be unraveling already, it feels like the ugly details will keep surfacing.
But even as that plays out, I still think the larger story is being missed here: Donald Trump is not running for President. He may or may not think he’s running. Who knows what, if anything, is going on in his rotting brain these days. But whoever is calling the shots at this point, whether it’s Trump himself or one or more of his remaining advisers, it’s now clear – in fact painfully clear – that whoever is making the decisions doesn’t consider “Trump 2024” to be a real thing.
This NFT stunt did reportedly bring in around four million dollars. That’s not a lot of money within the overall scheme of what Trump is trying to do with his “Trump 2024” campaign. He’s raking in 2024 campaign donations daily, which he can try to funnel through his campaign back to himself, because there is no actual campaign to spend money on. It’s a good scam, and Trump presumably intends to keep it going until he’s indicted and arrested, and even beyond that, for as long as he can keep selling it. But it’s entirely dependent upon keeping up the illusion that Trump really is going to be a serious and viable candidate in 2024.
This requires Trump to publicly behave like he’s an actual 2024 candidate. He hasn’t really done anything at all since his announcement, but up to now, he was at least not saying or doing anything specific to give away that he’s not really running. The biggest of pro-Trump suckers will keep shoveling money at Trump until the very end. But Trump’s 2024 scheme requires a broad swath of his followers to buy into the notion that he’s running, not just the biggest true believers.
Trump’s trading card scam may have netted him a quick one-time windfall. But it’s also bringing him the kind of widespread scorn that’ll cause at least some of his most tentative remaining supporters to start asking what’s even going on here. It won’t be shocking if this trading card nonsense ends up costing Trump money in the longer run.
Then again, for this guy, there really is no longer run. His “2024 campaign” is already just a short term cash grab ahead of his indictment. Now he (or whoever is making decisions for him) appears to be too impatient to even sit back and let the campaign donations come in, and is instead resorting to this nonsense.
The real story here is that Donald Trump’s own timeframe keeps shrinking. He’s gone from impatiently announcing a 2024 campaign ludicrously early just to get campaign donations to start coming in, to now being too impatient even for that. What’s he going to do tomorrow, auction off his left arm? Trump is now thinking very, very short term. Just how soon does he think he’s getting indicted?
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report