Tuesday, June 14, 2016
Ken Burns, the Donald, and hairdressers
Honestly, I hesitate to say anything about Donald Trump because there's no end to the words that have been said and written. When he began his campaign, people considered it some kind of joke. But soon enough commentators and pundits from both political sides described what he'd done to the campaign as "taking the oxygen out of the room." He so dominated news cycles that no one else could breathe. At taking over the news, he was flat-out brilliant.
Nobody uses that phrase anymore, even though the man's orange doo is on every screen in the nation. He's still doing it, just continually ramping it up.
His reaction to the horrible Pulse massacre in Orlando was textbook Trump. He started by extolling his own virtues, an arrogance his disciples love, for some strange reason. He told America that thousands of people were writing him to say he was a prophet on terrorism. "I don't care about being right," he said, a lie; and then he took on Obama, the Devil incarnate.
The carnage in Orlando was Obama's fault because Obama won't call what's going on "Islamic terrorism." Presumably, if Obama would, suicide bombers would drop their vests. Now when he ascends the throne, he will use that phrase--and terrorism will cease. ISIS will lay down their arms and concede.
Donald Trump is not the only one to say those things. He knows he's got to go farther to create news, to take the oxygen out of the room. So he did. He's not stupid--you can believe him when he says that. He's a bigot and a bully. He's a chiseler. He's a liar and a fraud, but he's not dumb. He's a whole heckuva lot worse than dumb.
So once again he suggested something that made him politically famous years ago. He repackaged his suggestion that Obama may have something to do with terrorism's madness and butchery. He cracked the window for those who already hate Obama, and their numbers are legion; he gave them leave to wonder whether or not the President of the United States sneaks out of the White House to meet with terrorists or else perhaps sneaks them in. Trump left open to suggestion that Omar Mateen and Barack Obama are teammates--after all, they're both Muslims.
All of that is pure idiocy and utterly reprehensible. What it strengthens is paranoia and hate. But he's the master at dealing out fear.
The scary thing is not that people don't call him out for his evil--they do. Thousands do. The scary thing is that people like Paul Ryan let him ply his horrifying trade. The scary thing is that when people like filmmaker Ken Burns say, as he did in a commencement speech at Stanford, that Trump is “a person who easily lies" and "who creates an environment where the truth doesn’t seem to matter," people--thousands of them, millions, don't listen. Trump, Burns said, "has never demonstrated any interest in anyone or anything but himself and his own enrichment.”
Ken Burns is just a pinko leftie, I guess.
Burns called the Republican candidate for President “an infantile, bullying man, who depending on his mood is willing to discard old and established alliances, treaties and long-standing relationships." And then he said, “This is not a liberal or conservative issue--this is an American issue.”
What's really scary is that upwards of forty per cent of the American public believe Trump. Ken Burns is just another liberal demonizer. Instead, they believe Donald Trump. The really, really scary part of all of this is not that nothing musses the man's hair, but that his loyalist millions are willing hairdressers.
That's what scares me.
Posted by J. C. Schaap at 6:57 AM