Let Trump Win
The campaign sprint begins, and Memo #8 emerges . . . The president comes clean on the Reality of the economy . . . Taffer stays home and the cameras keep rolling . . . Kicking out the jams
As of noon on October 15th, the author is in the midst of a frenzied 19-day campaign for one of five seats on the City Council of Pirates Paradise, Florida. In all, there are 29 candidates for those five seats, which is only slightly above average.
The terms are two years, but meetings are infrequent — about every month or two, depending on hurricanes, or who's going to be out of town. The Council gathers at the leather-bound corner booth in Patty's, a small hideaway for locals —and the unofficial seat of P.P. governance — where they can be guaranteed their privacy, along with a stiff drink.
The author's Campaign Manager arrived in P.P. three days ago, and the time since has been spent in a furious whirlwind of opposition research and strategy sessions as they try to nail down positions on any and all issues that could come up over the course of the campaign: paving of roads, dog leashing, beach curfews, public fires, noise complaints, possible secession from the United States, etc.
While the the Campaign Manager was able to fit in a few hours of fitful sleep, the author was apparently still hard at work — fueled by enough espresso to power a flux capacitor — compiling the following "Campaign Memo #8," as it was labelled, though no previous memos have been distributed.
It was completed just before noon on the 15th, then hand-delivered to the Campaign Manager outside Patty's before the necessary paperwork was filed to make the campaign official.
"Politics is the entertainment branch of industry."
We keep coming back to that old saw, don't we? The Truth of it stretches way back, to before industry even existed, and likely out into futures we can't even fathom. Adding a little bit of show business to things is a lot easier said than done, however, judging by how things have been going on the Trump Show for the last few years.
As it turns out, having a game show host as president is a lot different than having an actor, like Reagan. Half the gig is giving the impression that you're in charge, that things are going well, that everything is holding together just fine. Sure, Reagan might have been a mostly-empty suit, but goddamn if he couldn't play the part, at least enough to fool the average sap. With Trump, all we got is a 300-pound bag of farts, flailing around in search of his own herd of sub-average saps who will wordlessly agree to not complain about the smell.
Of course sometimes we forget, Frank went on:
"Caution! Buffoons on the Hill! Wallowing in blabber and spew, regiments of ex-lawyers and used-car salesman attempt to distract us from the naughty little surprises served up by deregulated corporate America."
Trump is more than excellent in this regard; he is the gold-toilet standard. Except he never did figure out — or more likely, never bothered to give a shit — that keeping up the facade of state is also part of the job, maybe the only part that really matters. No president has been more leg-hump horny toward the flag, but nobody in history has ever been more able to cast so much doubt in people's minds about whether America even exists.
Just a few short years ago, it would have been unthinkable for an American president to hurriedly arrange a nationally-televised press conference to announce that, Hey, if you think about it, money isn't actually worth anything. It's just printed on really nice paper, or it's some number in a bank account, but there's no intrinsic value to it.
And really, the whole damn economy is imaginary, a mirage with made-up rules, warped incentives, and predetermined outcomes. It's something we all know, but as long as we all agree to not acknowledge it, it holds together. As your president, I'm telling you, it's all an illusion...
But now, we're probably a couple of weeks away from that press conference, tops, no matter how the election turns out. Trump has a true ability to destroy any Reality near him that is not to his liking, so why not the concept of money, or, when the time's right, America itself? We can only assume Reality-Reality would be next, if not Space-Time.
If you ask me, another four years of this could be just what the country needs for a real head-change. Trump's first term has been a four-year-long version of the first 20 minutes of your average Bar Rescue episode: overflowing grease traps, employee theft, impaired management, and rats to the rafters.
Things are going down in absolute goddamn flames, except there's no Jon Taffer coming to put them out. If he was, he certainly would have burst in by now, yelling at us to Shut it the Fuck Down, light fire to the bar top, and crowbar open the booze closet for any passing ne'er-do-well unlucky enough to be in this sad part of town to help themselves to a few bottles on the house.
That's a mess that Taffer's usually able to mop up, at least for the cameras. But what happens if he gets a look at the footage inside, before he bursts in through the front door, and the carnage is too much to get any sort of grip on? It has reached the point that nobody's head could wrap itself around the sheer thievery, gross gimcrackery, and outright boobery happening, not even a head like Jon Taffer's — which is renowned for what it's able to wrap itself around.
So Taffer stays home, not wanting to get woodchippered by the lunacy contained within that hell-trap. But the cameras keep rolling, and the business continues to fail in spectacular fashion while the Nation watches every dollar get haphazardly flushed down the toilet; and the End comes creeping closer and closer, until one day the local vagabonds bring their own crowbars to the booze closet and the Fun really starts.
That's the show we've all been missing, and it's the show we're so close to having if Trump is somehow able to pull out the election. It doesn't look like that's likely to happen, without some serious scumfuckery, and maybe not even then.
Right. But what if the smart move is to just let him win the damn thing? God only knows why the hell Biden would want to stick himself into this dreck. The fact that he seems so willing to take the job is a sure sign of the old-age delirium that he's so often accused of. Or perhaps he has Brain Syphilis to match Trump's. We can only hope that he has the same regimen of horse amphetamines to get him through the next four years.
If I'm being honest, there are selfish reasons I wouldn't mind seeing Trump stick around for another term. Based on data collected over the last several weeks, both from online sources as well as direct conversations, I've decided that the best way for me to win a seat on the Council will be to come out in favor of secession from the United States.
From what I can tell, the only voters who consider it a serious issue, or even know it's an issue in this race at all, are almost entirely for secession. Anyone who would be against it aren't even willing to give it second thought, and won't waste any time getting into that claptrap. So I go heavy on the Independence talk when I know I'm in Good Company, and pretend to not know anything about it when I'm talking to the condo-types or any other Leading Citizen of Pirate's Paradise. One key is to keep all of my campaign conversations as private as possible, which is a cinch in this Age of Distance.
Which means, once the long game is complete and I've assumed the Presidency of the Federation of the 10,000 Islands, the United States will be my diplomatic and strategic adversary, and it would be much to my advantage to have a simpleton of Trump's sort at the helm.
He would fly me up to Mar-a-Lago, and I would lie & tell him how beautiful his golf course was, and Pirates's Paradise would be so lucky to have such a gem; and before I know it, the 10,000 Islands have Most Favored Nation status.
Or maybe I would host him at Fortress LeMoyne. I'd light a fire on the beach, pack a cooler full of light, American beer, and we could watch the sun set on the Gulf while I sell him on the Island Way of Life.
Ahh, who am I kidding? That cheapjack clown doesn't appreciate the Good things in life. I'll just microwave some Totino's Pizza Rolls and offer him a 10% cut of all contraband that crosses from P.P. to the U.S. Then after he negotiates himself down to 5%, we'll shake on the deal and the Islands will launch into some real business.
I guess what I've been getting at — or meaning to — is we shouldn't be afraid to bring a little show business to this campaign. Some glitter, some fireworks, maybe a few hoe-downs. Let's stay away from the horse amphetamines, though. Leave those to the professionals.
There hasn’t yet been time to choose a campaign song; "Highway to Hell" seemed a bit on the nose, and was already taken by Trump anyway. I was thinking maybe, "End of the World Party" by MMW, but it's nearly impossible to sing along to. Anyway, I figured the least I could do to really kick out the jams of this campaign is to end on some more Zappa:
"America under Reagan saw the rise of governance by trickery, fear, disinformation and superstition. Oh Jesus! Here come those fucking balloons again."