Donald Trump: Making the World Safe for Golf

Dark Side of the Greens

Directed by Anthony Baxter (BBC 2015)

Film Review

Dark Side of the Greens is about lengthy citizen campaigns in Scotland and Croatia to halt Donald Trump’s efforts to replace pristine ecological heritage sites with golf courses.

The documentary is a sequel to the 2011 film You’ve Been Trumped. It relies heavily on commentary by environmental lawyer Robert F Kennedy Jr, president of the Waterkeeper Alliance. He reminds us that governmental protection of the commons dates back to the Magna Carta and can’t be usurped by wealthy elates. According to Kennedy, the commons is the main source of values, virtue and character of a people.

Aberdeen residents were unsuccessful in preventing Trump from destroying one of Europe’s rarest sand dune formations to build his golf course cum gated resort (the subject of You’ve Been Trumped). However a staunch local farmer led a successful multi-year campaign to prevent Trump from building a second golf course.

Local residents also successfully resisted Trump’s efforts to stop an offshore wind farm which presently supplies 40% of Aberdeen’s residential electricity needs.

Over in Dubrovnak, the citizens successfully organized Croatia’s first citizens referendum to prevent Trump from destroying a world heritage site for a golf course, resort and exclusive gated community.

After 85% of the population voted against the project, the mayor (who has since been indicted on corruption charges) ignored the referendum and signed contracts to proceed with the golf courses.

The film is full of classic Trumpisms, such as “What’s great for golf is good for Scotland.”