They just don't get it. And by they I mean the political pundits- the "experts." And by it I mean why Donald Trump continues to resonate with Americans. And by Americans I mean the people of whom 41% can't name the Vice-President, 65% can't name a single Supreme Court justice, and 77% believe that space aliens have visited Earth. Also, according to the Rotten Tomatoes website, 87% of audience members liked Tyler Perry's Diary of a Mad Black Woman.
What are the job requirements to becoming a political expert, anyway? I think I would make a good pundit. Based on what I've gathered from watching a lot of cable news, all you have to do is dress sharp, pretend like you know what you're talking about, and use the term "from Wall Street to Main Street" a lot. Oh, also, you're supposed to get a sense of things. The political pundits say stuff like "the sense I'm getting" and "the mood in Washington..."
It's obvious why Donald Trump continues to surge in the polls. Yet the political pundits still can't explain it. Google "why is Donald Trump doing so well" and you'll get more clichés than an NFL locker room interview. You'll read that people like Trump for being a political outsider or that voters find his brash style appealing. But in the way same way football players are giving it 110 percent, there is a logical inconsistency to these explanations. (Incidentally, I've always wondered how fans would react to an athlete who only gives 104 percent when he's on the field. Would he be accused of not making a full effort?)
First of all, Trump isn't a political outsider. The Clintons attended his wedding. The Clintons didn't attend my wedding. Well, Doug and Maggie Clinton came, but Doug isn't the former President of the United States; he's my dad's bowling partner. Donald Trump speaks about calling famous politicians on the phone. Well, if Mitt Romney is on your speed dial, you're not a political outsider. Heck, if I want to talk to Mitt Romney, I have to use his 1-800 number, which I got off the back of an 18-wheeler that asked what I thought of Mitt's driving.
Most people aren't political outsiders. But most people aren't leading in the Republican primary polls. Lou, my mailman, is a political outsider. But Lou doesn't seem to be appealing to voters. Heck, Lou is barely polling above George Pataki or Bobby Jindal.
And it's not about personality. If you could win an election simply by being obnoxious, then Ted Cruz would be the next President of the United States. And it's not about the issues. Trump and Cruz are simpatico on the issues. If you could really solve the immigration issue by crapping on the 14th Amendment of the Constitution's guaranteed right to citizenship, then President Cruz would have to deport himself.
No, the reason that Donald Trump is so popular is because he's a celebrity. That's all there is to it. We love celebrities. And when we hate celebrities, we love to hate them. We care about celebrities. People care about Donald Trump.
That ordinary, everyday Americans can "relate" to Donald Trump, or that they believe he can relate to them, is even more absurd than Jared Fogle winning next season's Celebrity Apprentice. The man is a multi-billionaire who keeps a private jet inside his bigger private jet. But it doesn't matter. Americans feel they can relate to celebrities. Why? Because we want to be celebrities. People don't imagine themselves as politicians or as mailmen. We picture ourselves sitting at the head of a fake boardroom studio saying "you're fired" and then going out and meeting Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston for cocktails. God I wish those two would get back together.
It doesn't matter that Donald Trump says stupid stuff. He's a celebrity. Ryan Reynolds isn't saying anything of substance, either. And he has six-hundred-thousand freakin' Twitter followers! Hmm... let's see what smart things Sharon Osbourne is telling her 2.3 million Twitter followers.
Sharon Osbourne @MrsSOsbourne Aug 14 @SalmaHayek is a true natural beauty on the inside and out. Believe me I've met them all and she's the best.
Thank you, Sharon. That's good to know. Now what do you think we should do about ISIS?
See, these people are celebrities. We listen to their gobbledygook because we need them. What would our shallow, pointless existence be without famous people's opinions? Talk shows and reality shows and celebrity blogs keep us entertained. I for one refuse to go back to books.
Donald Trump is an entertainer. If his poll numbers drop, it's like we're cancelling the Donald Trump Show. And we don't want that. We love his show too much.
I don't even think most of the Trump supporters realize why they like him so much. They think they like Trump's "tough talk." But that's not what it is. They're simply hypnotized by the power of celebrity. It's sort of like how if your grandfather gets a tattoo, it's gross. Meanwhile, if an attractive woman gets the exact same tattoo, it's sexy. It's not the tattoo- it's the woman. It's not what Trump says- it's the celebrity saying it. (Incidentally, I wanted to get a tattoo that best represented me as a person. So I got a tattoo of me getting a tattoo. It's on my neck.)
A few months ago, I read about a dangerous trend in which teenage girls were sucking shot glasses to puff up their lips... in order to look more like Kylie Jenner. Why? Because young girls love Kylie Jenner, who of course is famous for
According to reports, Kylie, who is occasionally seen but not heard on the reality show Keeping Up with the Kardashians, was paid two-hundred-thousand dollars by promoters to appear at her own 18th birthday party. Oh, and her boyfriend Tyga gave her a Ferrari. That's nice. Most kids celebrate their birthday in a less extravagant way, I assume. But that doesn't matter. Young people can relate to Kylie Jenner because she's a celebrity. They think of Kylie as a "friend." And one day, years from now, Kylie Jenner will be the President of the United States of America.
When Donald Trump announced his candidacy, a lot of people didn't take him seriously. But I did. I knew he would do well. Why? Because he's a celebrity. People like celebrities. I still tell friends about the time I met Sergeant Slaughter, the professional wrestler from the 1980s. That's all there is to the story; I met him. And, yet, people really like the story.
Nevertheless, I did write that Donald Trump probably wouldn't end up winning his party's nomination. But I only wrote that because the political experts on TV were saying that he wouldn't win his party's nomination. Now I think they might be wrong. And from now on, when I want solid political analysis, I'll go to TMZ and find out what the celebrities are saying. Because celebrities know everything. Or at least that's the sense I'm getting.