Outside the United States, Donald Trump’s reputation for being a nightmare was established long before the gruesome campaign season. In a series of 16 letters written to the former Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond, Trump chastised the leader for erecting a wind farm adjacent to the real estate mogul’s luxury golf courses, thus allegedly ruining the scenery. The letters, released through a freedom of information request, illustrate the arc of Trump’s anger and ridicule, not unlike we are accustomed to seeing in his Twitter posts—without the character limit.
Trump’s feud with Scotland’s leadership goes back quite a few years. Then “just” a businessman, Trump operates a luxury golf resort in Scotland and he became outraged when a nearby wind farm went up, alleging it ruined the view. Trump sued the Scottish government in 2011, based on the claim that officials promised him not to build a clean energy-generating wind farm and then the subsequent administration went ahead and did it anyway. (For the record, the wind farm in question is located two miles offshore, and Trump lost the suit at every stage of appeals.)
In his letters to Salmond, whom Trump refers to as “Mad Alex,” the president-elect makes his opinions about renewable energy clear. He warned the former first minister that his dream of Scottish independence would be “gone with the wind” if he continued to support wind energy projects, sometimes referring to wind farms as “monsters.” Trump also accused Salmond of being “hellbent” on damaging his country’s coastline, further suggesting that he “let them ruin the coastline of Sweden first,” because “wind power doesn’t work.” Clearly, that’s patently false, since Scotland’s wind farms recently generated more than 100 percent of the country’s electricity. Trump also argued that Scotland’s “economy will become a third world wasteland that investors will avoid.”
Of the 16 abusive, ranting letters Trump sent between September 2011 and June 2013, Salmond replied to only one. The former first minister penned that letter in April 2012, in which he refers to a recent conversation with Trump—suggesting that Trump was harassing Salmond through other channels in addition to the written communication. In the letter, Salmond rejects Trump’s claim that wind power will be Scotland’s undoing, pointing instead to the $37 million of investments and 28,000 jobs projected to be created from Scotland’s planned offshore wind projects.
Via The Guardian