Trump University's Surveys Are Utter Bullshit

Today, American's angriest Oompa-Loompa, Donald Trump, released a statement where he said, in essence, "When I said all that stuff about the race of Judge Curiel, I was totally not racist." As he always does when talking about the case against Trump University, the get-rich-quick seminars he used to bilk desperate dummies out of millions of dollars, Trump cited the surveys of student satisfaction, saying that most of the "10,000 paying students" gave the scam high marks. And he encouraged people to go to the conveniently named website 98percentapproval.com, where the surveys have been posted.

Trump is anxious to quote people who said nice things and point to the actual ratings people gave on the surveys. He's right: most of the surveys show seminar attendees gave high marks at the end of the three days of sessions. Check out the thing:

Of the seven questions there, four are about the actual instructors (called the "Speaker" and the "Team"). If you've spent time with a person who is nice to you for a few days, you're naturally going to give them a thumbs-up. These are sales people. They are supposed to make you feel good about yourself. You'll notice, though, that, except for the first person, students were not asked about the expertise of any of the other instructors or assistants.

For that matter, how would these complete naifs about real estate and wealth management know if they were being given good information? They wouldn't until they attempted to apply it in the real world. The same goes for the questions about the "usefulness" and "relevance" of the seminars. The surveys are utter bullshit, completely worthless except as a quick glimpse into what the "students" thought in the hurried moments at the end of the presentations. Hey, you paid 35 grand to be there. You'd look like an idiot if you didn't say it was awesome.

Also, notice that the respondents could choose to put their names, which almost all of them did (or why would it need to be blocked out?).

So you joined these seminars with the understanding that it might bring you closer to Donald Trump (that's a skeevy thought) because he might make you his money buddy or something. When you're given a chance to give your name so that he might notice it, no shit you're gonna do it. And no shit you're gonna say nice things and give excellent scores to the course because if you say it was a waste of time and money, Donald Trump isn't going to invite you to go nail some Russian strange on a private jet on its way to Las Vegas. (And, in case you didn't put your name at the top, you're asked to sign the form at the end.)

You know what appeared with sad regularity in the comments section of the survey? In answer to the question, "How could Trump Education [note: really?] help you meet your goals?" there are lots of answers along the lines of "continued support via mentor," "ongoing feedback," or "meeting one on one consistently." In other words, "Help us. Please, help us."

What matters more is how the students felt in the months and years after the seminars. And we know what a lot of them felt because they're suing the shit out of Donald Trump.