Last night I went to a talk sponsored by the World Affairs Council on Russia and Vladimir Putin — author Stephen Lee Myers talked about his book The New Tsar. I was so down I almost didn’t go, then I decided that was ridiculous. I can’t stop living because we have Trump as president. I walked to the venue, which was a good thing as downtown Seattle was entirely gridlocked with a protest march by several hundred students shouting Fuck Trump and Not My President.
Myers said he’d be astonished if Trump followed through on his pledge to ditch NATO, which has been a bipartisan linchpin of global order since World War II. I’m less optimistic than Myers. His view assumes Trump knows the history of NATO, and that he cares. I’m not sure either is true.
There are a lot of articles online trying to figure out Trump’s appeal to so many voters. Are they all racist and misogynists? Are they just voting for change? Are the upset because the elite looks down on them?
I suspect we’re overthinking this. What do all the Trump voters have in common? Reality TV. We are watching a reality TV show called Mr. President starring Donald Trump. Americans LOVE reality TV — check out your cable networks to see how many channels there are.
I recognize that I’m cycling through stages of grief, anger chief among them at the moment. But reality TV really could be the explanation. Simple as that. Have you ever heard Trump string together three coherent sentences that he isn’t reading off a teleprompter? I haven’t. Reality TV, raw, racy, and right off the top of your head. You heard it from me.