'I'm not very smart," Nobel winner jokes, in Trump jab

Nobel Peace Price winner in Chemistry Professor Fraser Stoddart speaks at Northwestern University on October 5, 2016 in Evanston
Nobel Peace Prize winner in Chemistry Professor Fraser Stoddart speaks at Northwestern University on October 5, 2016 in Evanston, Illinois

The Scottish-born winner of the Nobel Prize for Chemistry took a jab Wednesday at US presidential candidate Donald Trump, who has bragged that he was "smart" to avoid paying taxes.

"I am not very smart. The IRS (Internal Revenue Service) will run off with a third of it," said Northwestern University professor Fraser Stoddart, referring to his portion of the eight million Swedish kronor (around $933,000 or 832,000 euros) award, which he shares with Jean-Pierre Sauvage of France and Bernard Feringa of the Netherlands.

"Did you all get that? I'm not very smart," Stoddart added, to laughter and applause during a champagne-fueled press conference to celebrate the Nobel win.

Trump, the Republican nominee for US president, has refused to release his tax returns.

In the first presidential debate on September 26 Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton suggested that Trump is hiding "something terrible," and suggested that he had not paid any .

Trump's answer: "That makes me smart."

Days later, the New York Times published a bombshell based on a leaked copy of his 1995 tax documents, showing he declared a loss of nearly $1 billion, and could likely have avoided paying taxes for almost two decades.

Stoddart, who said he has lived in the United States for 20 years, did not press any deeper into politics, but said he wants to use whatever is left of his prize money to help others.

"One of the things that drives academia in this country is philanthropy," said Stoddart.

"What I want to do, of course, is give back."

Stoddart listed a number of his favorite universities as potential recipients, including his alma mater, the University of Edinburgh, the University of California Los Angeles, Northwestern University, and the universities of Birmingham, Sheffield, Cambridge, Durham and Imperial College.

Stoddart, Sauvage and Feringa won for developing the world's smallest molecular machines, which may some day have uses in cancer treatment, robotics and prosthetics.

Stoddart described their work as "a fundamental advance in chemistry" that will take some time before it translates into real-life applications.

He also urged young people to press on with their goals, even if they face detractors and doubts.

"Through the early years you take some criticism because people don't understand why you are doing what you are doing," he said.

"But that eventually ebbs away and then the recognition starts to come."


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Oct 05, 2016
Trump did what every American, and I guess everyone in the world. He took all the legal deductions he had coming to pay the least tax. I do it. You do it. Companies do it. So why is it a big deal that Trump did it?

Oct 05, 2016
Trump did what every American, and I guess everyone in the world. He took all the legal deductions he had coming to pay the least tax. I do it. You do it. Companies do it. So why is it a big deal that Trump did it?


What an ignorant lie.

What Trump did only extremely wealthy real estate owners can do.

The laws he used exist ONLY for him.

You cannot write off money you lose last year and deduct it from next years income taxes can you?

You cannot invest tax free in real estate shelters or get paid rebates when you paid NO taxes can you?

Those are things Trump and big corporations do, that the typical person CANNOT do, because it's illegal for everyone but them. It becomes legal only when you reach a certain threshold of wealth.

The difference between what you do and what Trump does is the difference between a whale and a mouse. Sure both are mammals, but I doubt if we're going to see a mouse swim from one pole to another any time soon.

Oct 05, 2016
Let's take an informal poll here of the commenters. Do any of you purposely not claim all the tax deductions you are legally entitled to? I don't. I claim everything I can.

What's the difference between Jonseer and Trump? Trump owns businesses that qualify for tax exemptions that Jonseer doesn't. Trump also employees thousands of people that Jonseer doesn't.

Would it be smart for Trump to purposely skip deductions he is qualified to take? His investors would think he was an idiot and demand he be fired, because if he continued to do that, he would likely eventually destroy his company, ruin his investors, and put thousands of employees out of work because of his incompetence.

So, yes, Trump is smart to take all the deductions he is legally entitled to, just like the rest of us are. And a Nobel laureate can indeed be remarkably stupid about money as Stoddart so ably demonstrated.

Definition of sanctimony: insisting others do what I am unwilling to do myself

Oct 05, 2016
I agree. The only difference between what Trump wants and most the other 1% want, is he wants to close all the loopholes he and the other 1% use in the tax system. (If the loop hole does not generate more revenue than eliminating it would.)
Hillary has been secretary of state for quite awhile and Obama has been president for 2 terms. If any of you have a reason for being mad, why aren't you blaming the people that made the rules and laws that let Trump pay no taxes for 20 years?


Oct 05, 2016
@aksdad
Trump owns businesses that qualify for tax exemptions that Jonseer doesn't. Trump also employees thousands of people that Jonseer doesn't.

Although I'm only going by what I've read of the matter in the media, my understanding of it is that Trump's almost-US$1B losses that he's claiming against more recent company profits, come from the failure of one or more businesses he established.

Reportedly, those and other Trump businesses have not paid creditors and have not repaid smaller investors. These methods don't strike me as either an ethical way to do business or especially smart - anyone who allows billion-dollar businesses to fail can't be all that great at business, surely? Even if they (or, more likely, their accountant) know the tax codes well. Though I assume that the employees of those failed businesses were let go without compensation, so maybe that is smart? I wonder how they feel knowing that they helped offset multiple years of subsequent taxes?

Oct 05, 2016
I get it....I doubt most people will though with a 100IQ being what it is

Oct 06, 2016
You do it.

Nope. I actually don't. On purpose.

So why is it a big deal that Trump did it?

Because he's abusing separate tax mechanism - each of which may have been set up with the best of intentions in mind, but which are completely broken if used in combination.
There's a difference between letter and intent of a law. Those who just follow the letter are people who you'd call 'bastards'.


Oct 06, 2016
I agree. The only difference between what Trump wants and most the other 1% want, is he wants to close all the loopholes he and the other 1% use in the tax system. (If the loop hole does not generate more revenue than eliminating it would.) -rderpis

No he doesn't want to close all the loopholes. That's just the lie that came out of Trump's mouth to convince morons that he has more than his own interests in mind.

Oct 07, 2016

No he doesn't want to close all the loopholes. That's just the lie that came out of Trump's mouth to convince morons that he has more than his own interests in mind.


Are you a member of the press? Using words that label people, like the word "Moron" are usually used be people that think by belittling someone, their ideas will be of less value.

The other people that use words like that in a debate are people trying to bully others into believing their opinions

Which group do you fall into?.
Of course he wants to close the loopholes and most everything else he says to. Trump's ego is supreme. He does not want to be just anouther president. With his ego he wants to be the greatest president there ever was. I am not saying he will be. I am just pointing out his motivation.


Oct 07, 2016
Trump did what every American, and I guess everyone in the world. He took all the legal deductions he had coming to pay the least tax. I do it. You do it. Companies do it. So why is it a big deal that Trump did it?

It's mostly because he lost a billion dollars and somehow that makes him competent enough to lead one of the biggest economies on the planet.

Oct 07, 2016
he wants to close all the loopholes

A person who abuses these loopholes to the fullest (otherwise he'd have been bankrupt a long time ago) says "I want to close all these loopholes"...and you don't think that sounds a liiiiiitle bit fishy?

I have a Brookling Bridge for sale. Cheap.


It's mostly because he lost a billion dollars and somehow that makes him competent enough to lead one of the biggest economies on the planet.

To be fair: Going billions (or trillions) of dollars in debt is something that American governments have a habit of doing. I'm pretty sure with his 'expertise' he could add another zero or two to those numbers.

Of course he wants to close the loopholes and most everything else he says to.

Since he keeps contradicting himself that's not even possible - even if he wanted to. But the guy doesn't remember what he says from one day to the next. What makes you think he'd remember anything about tax loopholes if elected?

Oct 08, 2016
"But the guy doesn't remember what he says from one day to the next. What makes you think he'd remember anything about tax loopholes if elected?"

I wonder if that means he's in the early stages of dementia? D~

Oct 08, 2016
Psst hey buddy - wanna be smart and make back all that tax dough and then some?

"The Nobel Prize gold medal that physicist Leon Lederman won in 1988 was auctioned off on Thursday for a winning bid of $633,335, plus a buyer's premium that brought the final price to $765,002.

"That put the transaction at No. 4 on the list of 10 Nobel Prize sales over the past 30 years..."

-Maybe trump will buy it. He likes shit like that.

Oct 10, 2016
I guess he pisses most of you off because he is richer than you, so you belittle his business sense because you are doing better.
As far as his mental abilities, since most of you have written a book that stayed on the bestseller list longer than the one he wrote, you certainly have room to talk.
And of course most of you have put more people to work than he has, so you have a right to criticize.
Even his kids seem better than 90% of the rest of us raise. And that's hard to do when they have so much access to money and fame. You would think they would all be spoiled and lazy.

You know I dont like him as much as Mr. Green Jeans but I am not voting for the person with the best personality, I am voting for the person that can turn our government around and not with just smiles.

It's the same kind thinking that my boss used when he criticized mother Teresa for not going to one of the hospitals she founded. :-)


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