Soon, someone is sure to pen a fictionalized version of the bizarre story of Donald Trump and our tortured recent past. Perhaps somebody already has. If so, what, I wonder, is the genre? Satire? Fantasy? Psychological thriller? Apocalyptic tale? … Horror?
The story of last weekend’s CPAC alone would lend itself to any one of those literary types. Think about the name, for instance: Conservative Political Action Conference. I’ll admit I couldn’t bear to watch the entire lunatic event, but when I did, I didn’t see any conservatives and there was no conferring going on. The “former guy” (gotta love the Biden-inflicted moniker) fumed, whined and lied in a repetitive dump of hubris and prevarication that passed as a major speech. Sucking the oxygen out of the ballroom for an hour and 30 minutes, he provided lots of grist for satire, but none of it involved conferring with other attendees.
You haven’t experienced the real Donald Trump until you’ve read, as opposed to heard, a few “sentences.” Here’s a sample from his opening remarks: “I stand before you today to declare that the incredible journey we’ve begun together, we went through a journey like nobody else. There’s never been a journey like it. There’s never been a journey so successful.” And you thought listening to him was painful! (For complete text of the former guy’s verbal meandering, click here.)
Then there’s Ted Cruz, fresh from the self-imposed embarrassment of his Cancun adventure. (You know … the one where he abandoned his Texas constituents in their frozen, unheated, waterless state.)
He showed up in Orlando, stuffed into a business suit, and strutted about the stage, spouting inanities. “Bernie is wearing mittens, and AOC is telling us she was murdered,” he crowed a propos of nothing. And later we wandered into “… the media here looks at the men and women gathered here, at the young people gathered here, as dangerous radicals. This is the Rebel Alliance and Vader and the emperor, and let’s be clear, they’re not your father, are terrified of the rebels who are here. And I’m proud to tell you, Gina Carano [whoever she is] is standing with us.” Winding down, he closes with what he calls encouragement: “ . . . these are dark days and the media tells us this is the new Galactic Empire forever and 1,000 years.” Ted Cruz is a horror story in and of himself, and an apocalyptic one at that. (For text of his verbal adventure, click here.)
The speeches are blessedly forgettable, but I don’t know how I’m going to delete from memory the study in chaos that is the golden icon: that six-foot statue of Donald in flag-themed board shorts, red flip-flops, and (oops!) business attire on top; holding a star-topped magic wand worthy of Cindy’s fairy godmother in one hand and a document headed “We the people” in the other. And here’s the piece de resistance: hair styled in a pompadour a là Elvis Presley. It’s kind of Elvis meets the founders for a day at the beach and a long speech with a magical lady.
And never mind the inevitable comparisons with the idolizing of the golden calf in the Bible. That adventure turned out badly. Republicans, beware . . . (Text of Exodus 32 here. It’s short. You should read the whole thing.) Bibbidi-Bobbidi-Boo!
Thoughts for Our Time
“Conservatism discards Prescription, shrinks from Principle, disavows Progress; having rejected all respect for antiquity, it offers no redress for the present, and makes no preparation for the future.”