For the past three days President Donald John Trump has taken center stage on the National platform. First it was his State of the Union Address and then his “Press Conference” in the East Room of the Whitehouse. In both instances Trump held what could be best described as self-promotional pep rallies, rather then Statesmen like addresses to the national. There was no contrition or even an attempt at some kind of innocent naïveté on his part for his impeach ordeal, but instead the continued bold defiance that he had done nothing wrong along with vicious mean-spirited verbal attacks against those who brought him to account, characterizing them as “horrible people.”
But what struck me most was the analysis of Trump’s antics by most of the mainstream press, Fox News excluded. For the most part their analysis sought to portray Trump as a narcissistic, petulant, prevaricator, who is so self absorbed; that he only sees the world as centered around him. They spoke of how unpresidential and divisive his antics were and how those who opposed him would feel the wrath of his retribution. And while some of those things may be true, I realized that after 3 years of the Trump presidency, they still just don’t get it.
Okay, sure Donald Trump is a narcissistic pathological liar, but that’s not has been driving his antics over the past several days. Donald Trump is a CELEBRITY. He is a PERFORMER. And if there is one thing Donald Trump knows, he knows the power of celebrity. Doesn’t anyone remember what he said to Billy Bush in that opened mic when talking about grabbing women’s privates. “When you’re a star they let you do it.”
One of the interesting things about the power of celebrity is how people will do anything, just to be around them, or say they know them, or want a piece of something that belongs to them. People seem to lose their sense of reason in the presence of celebrities.
Have you ever understood why fans scramble to pick up sweaty headbands, wristbands and towels from basketball, or football superstars when they are thrown into the stands after games? Because they were used by a celebrity. You couldn’t pay me to dive for anyone’s sweaty towel no matter whose they are. But that’s the power of celebrity and Donald Trump is a master at understanding its power as a politician.
He realized it as a candidate when the networks began to follow every one of his campaign stops, when they were attracting thousands of people because of the ratings they were generating. And once Trump realized it he immediately used it to his advantage. How ironic it is that the news organizations who created the monster are now excoriating him because he won’t play by their rules.
He uses twitter just like a celebrity to communicate directly to his fans and his followers are diehard loyalists. They don’t just love him, they are in love with him. That’s why nothing he does will ever change their allegiance to him. Because when you’re in love with someone, there is nothing they can do, no matter how wrong it is, that will ever break your love and commitment to them.
So what was Donald Trump doing in the East Room of the Whitehouse when he took time to call off the names of every member of the Senate and Congress, make personal comments about them, while affirming them positively and praising them as heroes. Do you have any idea what it means to someone when a celebrity calls your name, recognizes you, allows you for 15—30 seconds to share the spotlight with him and applaud you for what you’ve done for him. The looks on each of their faces, as Trump took time to call each of their names, was so powerful that you could not imagine what that did for them. But Donald Trump knew exactly what he was doing. He was creating memories in each of their minds that would last a lifetime, and it only took him a little over an hour to do it.
And while the press was busy analyzing Trump as a narcissistic sycophant, Donald Trump was creating a room full of zealots who will give their lives in blind support of him to the death, no matter what he does, because people yearn for someone or something meaningful to commit their lives to and follow. And this is the greatest danger of Donald Trump. When he said he could shoot someone on 5th Avenue and no one would do anything to him, this is what he was talking about. He was creating a room full of radicals who would do just that. And they were not only in the East Room of the White House, they were watching him during the State of the Union Address on Tuesday night and attend his campaign rallies being held across the nation. While we are psychoanalyzing Donald Trump, he is creating a nation of extremists who will die for him.
Think for a moment about the last few presidents we have had. The major difference between the candidates is, one candidate the people may have liked or loved, but the candidate who won was the one his/her supporters were in love with.
Clinton—HW Bush, Ross Perot
As you look down the lists, which one was loved by their supporters and which one was their supporters in-love with them?
One final question, of the Democratic candidates presently running for president, which one could you see yourself falling in love with…Quick somebody better draft Oprah…