Commentary

The Trumpman Show: The Pugnacious Prince Of Bel-Hair

Donald “Ratings Machine” Trump seems to have found his political groove. He is the Golden Boy, currently owning the airwaves, social media, and the polls, and even performing miracles — like getting the American electorate interested in politics.

As if to cement this golden boy impression, now that he’s off the hustings and has doffed his “Make America Great Again” trademarked cap, Trump appears to have gotten his upper swoop of hair material highlighted. In his recent TV interview with CNN’s Chris Cuomo, with that newly silky, golden crown (it used to be silvery), Trump looked like one of the saints in an illuminated manuscript, or one of the “My Little Pony” figures with the colorful manes.

Either way, Trump the unicorn continues to defy all rationality with his “I’m rubber and you’re glue” approach.

Never mind. Whatever he says strengthens his poll numbers. He’s been called the Teflon Don, and indeed he’s trying to align himself with Ronald Reagan, whose bust he has in his office.

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Unlike most people, Pretty Boy Trump’s brain is a boxing ring, and he can dart around and find his footing, avoid a punch and put his questioner on the ropes in a flash.

Nowhere is this ability to turn things around more dramatic than in his 60% favorable rating among Republican women.

Nope, no purgatory for the Donald after bringing up the otherwise verboten subject of women’s blood, when he said questioner Megyn Kelly had the stuff coming out of her eyes and her “wherever.” When it was suggested that he was referring to her monthly flow, he said only a “deviant” would think  that. He’s on record saying that breastfeeding is “disgusting.” And that he “cherishes women.”

Perhaps women respond because he’s a strong man in the 1950s/60s sense, and they are nostalgic for that, and those times, before the civil rights or women’s movements. He’s a no-sharing, no-Snuggli-wearing, no-parental-leave kind of guy.

Then again, he can also be a yenta, saying funny stuff about dieting and obsessed with weight. “I’ve never seen anyone thin drinking a diet Coke,” he tweeted. And he told Maureen Dowd of the Times that he can no longer be friends with Bill Clinton, because he’s “too thin.”

To make sense of Trump, you have to keep two very separate and opposing lines of thought in your head simultaneously, (picture a cartoon mouse and a cat beating each other up.) Eventually, your noggin hurts, and you try to eliminate complications and reduce your mind to the the binary world of black/ white, winner/loser, war/peace.

It works for the Donald, and sure makes life easier. “I think the big problem this country has is being politically correct,” he said during the debates. “I don’t, frankly, have time for total political correctness, and neither does this country.” Being P.C is not only time-consuming, it’s boring, and not fun, he told Dowd. “You wouldn’t be here if I was P.C.” he said.

That’s true. Part of the celebration is that at an overwhelmingly complicated time, Trump will be our ADD president. He doesn’t have the patience for political correctness.

It’s true that trying to understand people of different races, genders, cultures, upbringings, is very difficult and frustrating — never mind trying to live with, go to school with, or work with these types. Of course, the demographic reality is that whites will soon be the minority in the U.S. But never mind.

In his first position paper, Trump posits that he will deport millions of illegal aliens (the term “undocumented” is too P.C for him.)  How this will be done — whether we put these aliens on trains, or in camps, or dump them from planes on unsuspecting countries in the middle of the night while we build our wall — is not explained.

Only the media want specifics, Trump tells the media. But in one TV interview, he actually told Cuomo a very specific story about how he went down to Miami and scooped up the Doral Hotel before anyone else could, as a way of showing that sometimes you can’t plan these things, or put plans for world events in writing.

Meanwhile, Trump, ever-competitive, delights in asking his media interviewers how other reality shows are doing. He seems particularly interested in the fate of Caitlyn Jenner, because he hears the show is tanking. And then he compliments Bruce as a great athlete and a great looker.

Obviously, Trump is a real estate guy, and a reality TV guy, and that combination is all about facades, staging things for maximum appeal, and knowing how to run a hall of mirrors.

So this gives him a huge leg up on the “none of the above” roster of Republican candidates he’s running against. He’s a performer, and he’s clever and a great observer, though he doesn’t seem to be capable of any insight or irony about himself. The greatest irony is that he has convinced so many right-wing voters to believe in an elite billionaire New York builder.

What he says about Jeb’s “low energy” is genius. Poor Jeb, he with the exclamation point in his campaign signage.  “Low energy” implies so much in two little words: Low libido? No fight? Depressed? Repressed?

When asked about Hillary, he talks about the FBI and criminal activity, serious claims. In reality, Trump has magic and no policy. Hillary has policy and no magic.

And the golden creature of TV — who gets his political news from the Sunday shows, and turned the debates into an episode of “American Idol” by complaining aloud about the mean judge — knows his media terrain.

“The nice thing about Twitter,” he told Dowd in the Times, “is that in the old days when I got attacked it would take me years to get even with somebody, now when I’m attacked I can do it instantaneously, and it has a lot of power.”

It sure does.
 

19 comments about "The Trumpman Show: The Pugnacious Prince Of Bel-Hair ".
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  1. Don Perman from self, August 20, 2015 at 6:24 p.m.

    A pleasure to get this insightful, witty analysis.  Indeed, it's an astonishing spectacle.

  2. david marks from self, August 20, 2015 at 6:34 p.m.

    You see, Barbara, when I need to find some brilliance to the Trump arguments, I rely on you, and really, you do say it so well. "Unlike most people, Pretty Boy Trump’s brain is a boxing ring, and he can dart around and find his footing, avoid a punch and put his questioner on the ropes in a flash.” This is what we all need, some rhythm to the Trump madness; great job!

  3. G Andrew Maness from Absolutely Music/Four Guys In Tuxes, August 20, 2015 at 6:50 p.m.

    The Artist of the Deal.

  4. Jo Duran from BOM, August 20, 2015 at 6:52 p.m.

    And here I am without PSD to whip up a my little pony with a mane so gold and shiny! LOL! 

  5. Feminista Fan from The Past, Present and Future, August 20, 2015 at 7:05 p.m.

    Such a great analysis of the Trump phenomenon. The real election is more than a year away but nothing seems to be slowing down The Donald. Will he eventually self-destruct? His ability to turn every negative into a positive is endless.

  6. Dean Fox from ScreenTwo LLC, August 20, 2015 at 7:20 p.m.

    Trump is our Mussolini in a designer suit. While I am grateful to him for exposing the raw prejudice and racism within the GOP, his snarling, demeaning attacks on anyone he considers a "loser" are growing very tiresome.  If this is what motivates the GOP's primary voters to support him, their attitudes just don't belong in our democracy.  Hispanics, women and idealistic millenials will and should flee this fascistic egomaniac.

  7. Tom Scharre from The Hunch Fund, August 20, 2015 at 9:45 p.m.

    People are so hungry for something, anything, for someone, ANYONE who is authentic that they're even intrigued by the authentically obnoxious. I think your headline contains the essential truth - the Trumpman Show gets great ratings because, right now, it is the only alternative to the Truman Show that is mainstream American politics.

  8. Paula Lynn from Who Else Unlimited, August 21, 2015 at 12:25 a.m.

    This escapade is revealing what the media has become and the real stupidity of Americans who are so ignorant of the mechanics of our government and that other countries do not work the same. T-rump has been coached to dumb down his verbiage and sound like he is in the wrestling ring, like McMahonn and his vapid wifey. Do you think he speaks to his bankers and "others" with this cheap language ? He is animus in the selfishie generations and performs to the tomato throwing crowds in the middle ring better than the stiffs in the other 16 rings. He may finger point to a few things which are no secret that are problems and once the pied piper viles his leammings over the cliff, he and his narcism are left on the podium with the portion of the absolute power brokers would kill for. 

  9. Eva Dillon from Self, August 21, 2015 at 6:31 a.m.

    Tick tock tick tock.  Bye bye, Donald.

  10. Jeff Sawyer from GH, August 21, 2015 at 8:56 a.m.

    Great piece. I'm waiting for Trump to overcome his recent affronts to minorities by announcing his VP candidate, Bill Cosby. 

  11. Mark Van Patten from Retired, August 21, 2015 at 10:09 a.m.

    I believe Trump's version of the "disgusting" comment... 1. She wanted to pump not feed, 2. Lawyer used it as delaying tactic, 3, comment was out if context.
    Trump vs lawyer, I'll go with lawyer.

  12. Jo Holz from Holz Research, August 21, 2015 at 1:30 p.m.

    You nailed it, Barbara, as usual! Mr. My Little Phony, I mean Pony, Trump knows how to create compelling television. But like slowing down on the highway to see the gruesome aftermath of a horrible accident, you feel kind of queasy after watching.

  13. Sharon O'Connell from Green Topaz Productions, August 21, 2015 at 2:05 p.m.

    So true, so nailed, and especially great title, Barbara Lippert!

  14. Alan Wasserstrom from None, August 21, 2015 at 3:37 p.m.

    Thoughtful,readable,and provocative analysis of the Trump phenomenom.

  15. Michael Deane from Modern Times Film Company, August 21, 2015 at 4:50 p.m.

    Nicely done barbara.  You are much more kind than I am.  For me, it is only a matter of time before his implodes.  Despite his protests to the contrary, the Donald isn't very smart.  Daddy's money probably got him into Penn just as it gave him a huge advantage in the business world. His response to the Boston beating was absolutely dreadful and suggests to me that he is incapable of leading anything.  He reminds me of Rodney Dangerfiled in Caddyshack...

  16. Barbara Lippert from mediapost.com, August 21, 2015 at 9:10 p.m.

    Yeah, the Donald constantly brags about the Wharton School, but he spent his first two years at Fordham (which is a good school, but he never mentions it.) And he got into Penn via connections. And when he was at his lowest point of declaring various banktruptcies , he got an inheritance from daddy Fred of over one million. And as they said of Geroge HW Bush, he was born on third base, in terms of making his earliest deals. 

  17. Bill Weber from Bill Weber Studios, August 21, 2015 at 11:29 p.m.

    America is in need of a 12-step abuser program, and Donald Trump is the evidence that we are about to hit bottom.  I hope so, for then we can start climbing up again.

  18. Jim English from The Met Museum, August 22, 2015 at 1:37 p.m.

    Somewhere in my mind's eye I can see Ronald Reagan speaking beside a huge fortification on the U.S. side of the Rio Grande,  "Mr. Trump,: the president would say, "tear down this wall."

  19. Brenda Kilgour, August 23, 2015 at 1:30 p.m.

    Don't we have anything more insightful to offer than warmed-over hair jokes and echoes of what other opinionators have already said elsewhere?  In the interest of equal time, how about a column about cankles, pantsuits and lying?



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