So, Donald Trump's not running for president. Was he ever serious? My guess is he wasn't at first, but when he saw how far he could get just by yelling crazy, irresponsible stuff, he kind of got serious. In hindsight, it's easy to write him off as a joke candidate. But if Obama hadn't released the birth certificate, Trump would probably still be in contention. (True, Obama's taking out bin Laden made Trump look pretty lame, but that effect would have worn off in time, just as the president's bin Laden bounce would have faded.) And that's ... disturbing. Anyway, as we bid the Donald farewell (for now?), let's recall some of the quotes that made his political turn so memorable.
1. On the hair
"OK, what I do is, wash it with Head and Shoulders. I don't dry it, though. I let it dry by itself. It takes about an hour. Then I read papers and things. ... "Do I comb it forward? No, I don't comb it forward. ... I get a lot of credit for comb-overs. But it's not really a comb-over. It's sort of a little bit forward and back. I've combed it the same way for years. Same thing, every time."
2. On Obama's birth certificate release
"I'm very proud of myself because I've accomplished something that nobody else has been able to accomplish. I'm really honored."
3. On Obama's student records
"The word is [Obama] was a terrible student when he went to Occidental [College]. He then gets to Columbia. He then gets to Harvard. I don't know why he doesn't release his records. Why doesn't he release his Occidental records?"
4. On dealing with OPEC over oil prices
"We have nobody in Washington that sits back and said, you're not going to raise that f—-ing price."
5. On dealing with China
"Listen you mother——ers we're going to tax you 25 percent!"
6. On the greatness of the Donald
"Over the years I've participated in many battles and have really almost come out very, very victorious every single time. I've beaten many people and companies, and I've won many wars. I have fairly but intelligently earned many billions of dollars, which in a sense was both a scorecard and acknowledgment of my abilities."
7. On Libya
"I'm only interested in Libya if we keep the oil. If we don't keep the oil, I'm not interested."
8. On Iraq
"I very simply said that Iran is going to takeover Iraq, and if that’s going to happen, we should just stay there and take the oil. ... That would mean that all of those soldiers that have died and been wounded and everything else would have died in vain– and I don’t want that to happen."
9. On "the blacks"
"I have a great relationship with the blacks. I've always had a great relationship with the blacks."
10. On how he screwed Gaddafi
"I rented him a piece of land. He paid me more for one night than the land was worth for two years, and then I didn't let him use the land," Trump boasted. "That's what we should be doing. I don't want to use the word 'screwed', but I screwed him."