The Debates debate rages on in the corporate media. Other than Fox “news,” who was the winner? Was it Hillary? She was the presumptive Democratic nominee, according to the assembly of Neocons.
We didn’t learn much we didn’t already know, did we?
The Donald is an misogynistic egomaniacal asshole, Huckabee is a bigot, Jeb is an apologist, Rubio is the cute one, Christie is the fat one from the failed state, Kasich is the Fox News Darling, Paul is the crazy one, Walker has no chin or spine, and Carson is the black guy. Just an aside, it’s rather telling that the only minority in attendance was behind a podium . . . but that’s Fox for ‘ya.
Not much we at the Malloy Show can add to the analysis, so please read this spot-on play-by-play from Elspeth Reeve writing at The New Republic:
The moment Fox News’ Republican debate began on Thursday night, it felt like a professional wrestling show. The crowd was amped, emitting full-blown sports woos. The first question was perfectly crafted for Donald Trump. Moderator Bret Baier asked the candidates if anyone would raise their hand if they would not pledge to support the GOP nominee, whoever it may be, and not run as an independent candidate. The debate audience was like, Ooooh shit just got real. Trump raised his hand. Huge boos.
“Experts say an independent run would almost certainly hand the race over to Democrats and likely another Clinton,” Baier said, incredulous. “You can’t say tonight that you can make that pledge?” He could not. “I am discussing it with everybody, but I’m, you know, talking about a lot of leverage.” Rand Paul cut in to say Trump “buys and sells politicians of all stripes,” and Trump shrugged, as if to say, true enough. “Well, I’ve given him plenty of money.”
Donald Trump is a heel. Not in the generic insult sense, but in the very specific World Wrestling Entertainment sense. In pro wrestling, which shares certain cultural sensibilities with the Republican Party, the heel is the bad guy—a rude, nasty cheater—who the good guy fights. The good guy is called the face. That was the Republican Party’s problem on the debate stage: It has a heel but no face.
There are definitions of heel all over the web, but the most lovingly crafted appears to be on Wikipedia. It’s also a perfect description of the Trump phenomenon: “heels are often portrayed as behaving in an immoral manner by breaking rules… Others… exhibit unlikeable, appalling and deliberately offensive and demoralizing personality traits such as arrogance, cowardice, or contempt for the audience.” Further, “If a given heel is cheered over the face, a promoter may opt to turn that heel to face…” That’s right, there’s even a role in this analogy for Roger Ailes.
Since Trump’s presidential announcement in June, journalists and pundits have puzzled over who could possibly support Trump. He made fun of a war hero for getting captured in Vietnam. He brags about exploiting bankruptcy law. While every other candidate plays up his or her humble roots, Trump says that he is “very rich” and his foes are “stupid.” A political campaign is usually about sucking up to audiences large and small, and yet he’s succeeding with the brand “jerk.”
There’s much more, go read it. The wrestling analogy is perfect.
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