According to New Republic, when asked about the last book he had read, Donald Trump replied, “I read passages, I read areas, chapters, I don’t have the time,” …
I think, considering the current goings on in the US that a blog post about Donald Trump wouldn’t be out of place, plus it follows on rather nicely from my post last week about making time for reading.
Firstly, to say you don’t have time to read – as I’ve mentioned before – is nonsense. If you don’t read it’s because it isn’t your priority. I’m sure Trump finds plenty of time in his day to Tweet bigoted bullshit or watch a baseball game. He just isn’t interested in picking up a book – despite making plenty of money from those he has “written”. But secondly, it is truly alarming that someone running to be president of the United States is so uninterested in self improvement and a widening of knowledge. Not that it comes as much of a surprise that Trump isn’t interested in either of those things!
However, as Harry Truman – himself once president of the United States – once said, “Not all readers are leaders, but all leaders are readers.” All leaders should indeed be readers. In fact, successful people tend to read an awful lot. Oprah Winfrey, Barack Obama, Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, Steve Jobs, Elon Musk… The list goes on and on but they all share a common passion for reading.
Reading opens your mind to new perspectives, different ways of viewing a topic, and, most importantly, it makes you think. We live in a world where too many people take information at face value and don’t stop to question its veracity. We live in a society of Facebook memes wrongly attributing quotations to random famous people. Where it is easy to mindlessly “share” information without thinking about where it has come from. Is it a surprise, then, when someone like Trump comes along and suddenly seems to be a serious candidate for president? Or is it a rather inevitable outcome?
Charlie Munger, Warren Buffett’s business partner, once said: “In my whole life, I have known no wise people who didn’t read all the time — none, zero.” I think it’s safe to say that Trump is not a wise person. An excellent self-marketer and a remarkable salesman he may be, but that won’t help run a country.
So what are you – a non Trump – reading right now, dear reader? Anything you can recommend? I’m currently enjoying Junot Diaz’s This Is How You Lose Her, and I’ve just started listening to an audiobook version of Frankenstein. I’ll be popping up reviews of both as soon as I’m ready! Stay tuned for those.