Marlowe Moore's Ramble Bound, politics edition: The Most Unexpected Event

Chance encounters with cool people, fascinating places and unexpected events.

click to enlarge Flag in the swamp. - Marlowe Moore
Marlowe Moore
Flag in the swamp.

Editor's note: CL contributor Marlowe Moore typically writes about her travels, but this week has shifted her focus to the subject of one Donald J. Trump. Sort of.

I’ve been trying to get around writing about it. I can’t. So here it is: I do not recall experiencing any event as unexpected as having Donald Trump in line as the next President of the United States.

Try these out:

President of the United States, Oprah Winfrey.

David Hasselhoff, POTUS.

President Judge Mathis.


Snooki, Commander-in-Chief.

This short list, too, contains charismatic TV stars, business whizzes, and self-branding maniacs, though I am remiss — none on the list is a legacy; these people all built themselves from nothing, which is not true of Trump.

There's much more similarly not-self-made equivalent floating around in our pop culture-sphere.

Ladies and gentlemen, please stand for the President of these United States of America, Kris Kardashian-Jenner.

That sounds fucking nuts, right? What kind of America would elect somebody like that?

And yet.

We did.

Believe me when I tell you I would not give her a chance either, even if she was a Democrat (or a Green Party or a Socialist or a Republican) — and despite being a woman! — especially if she packed her transition team with Kim and Khloe and appointed Kanye West as her chief transition advisor. {Editor's note: The writers of South Park seemed to pick up on this horrific element of the 2016 zeitgeist in "casting" Caitlin Jenner as Mr. Garrison's running mate this past season). Nor would I like and share her Christmas post with adorable little North posing in their matching, custom, winter-white Gucci snowsuits next to an Instagram-ready snowman the help erected on the White House lawn.

I would freak as she appointed Tyga to run the Department of Education and somehow, through whatever thought process makes sense to people who love being on television, cast Bob Odenkirk as Attorney General based on his convincing work on Better Call Saul. I would be dumbfounded as she magnanimously offered O.J. Simpson a job helming Housing and Urban Development because he is, after all, black, and I would not say “but look how Christian she is for forgiving him for being on trial for murdering her best friend.” Even if she tweeted about how great she is, how great her picks were, I would in no way believe Kris Jenner could lead America to anything but a vapid live-action version of Keeping Up With The Kardashians, minus all the money.

If I had friends and family who voted for Kris Kardashian Jenner, you had better believe I wouldn’t waste any time trying to understand their mentality. I would know what we know: a sizable amount of the American people are foolish and gullible.

Now imagine intelligence reports confirm Russians interfered with her election. Sure, it was only the RNC and DNC servers, but it’s probably whiny losers making up shit and no one trusts the CIA anymore anyway. If you want the real story, check PopSugar or scan the headlines while you’re in the grocery store check out line. Those people tell the truth because they aren’t funded by special interest groups! #PrezKKJ

Imagine President-elect Kardashian-Jenner admits that she’s really just too smart to need daily security briefings. She knows more than the generals. She is glad she didn’t have to work for a Purple Heart, that someone just gave it to her. Not paying her taxes makes her smart. Trust her, she knows ISIS. (As her fans, we can confirm her smartness because we have seen her parenting skills propel her daughters to international icon status — it’s obvious that media negotiating at that level takes the kind of smarts needed to monitor a national economy and understand international politics, which can’t be much different in principle from shopping with bodyguards while managing paparazzi, right?)

No. It’s nuts. It’s wrong. It’s all wrong. It’s unacceptable. I would never roll with a #PrezKKJ, and I will never roll with @realDonaldTrump.

But here we are, staring down the clown-shooting canon of a cartoon presidency fueled by hoax internet stories and a loud but small base of rhetoric zombies spitting out the anti-liberal required phrases: crybaby, liberal cunt, sore losers (recycled from Gore, ah, I remember it well), climate change scam artist, libtards, TRIGGERED!, and other schoolyard taunts handed down by the bigger kids. It’s ridiculous. The liberals stink at the insult game, so their shouts of “deplorables!” is like bringing a knife made out of a dictionary to a gun fight.

But, this isn’t a joke. It isn’t tune in next week to find out what happens on The President! Look around, citizens: we’re in the nascent throes of the types of the dictatorships we used to dismantle in the name of "democracy."

You know I’m right if you’ve read through the comments on any given political post. If you haven’t, breeze through the Kellogg’s thread when they posted on Facebook that they were pulling their Breitbart advertising. The us vs. them language has taken firm root in our homeland, and the hardest obstacle in front of us isn’t jobs or social justice or the economy, it’s whether or not the conservatives versus liberals sectarianism is going to nurture full-grown irreconcilable domestic strife.  

Here’s a tough truth to come to light about this election: American culture is now on international public record as reeking of hypocrites who don’t actually love freedom. We don’t. We like the idea of freedom but not the thoughtfulness or self-discipline it takes to be truly free: to let others have freedom to live their lives in the way they choose. Fly your flag, man, and go on about your life. Or don’t fly any flags at all. Whatever. It’s not a hard concept to live by common principles and leave people alone. That is, if you really believe the inalienable rights upon which this country was founded (yes, I know, hypocritically, what with slavery and disenfranchised women, but Amendments were added as needed, even if there is an ongoing assault on the basic rights of minorities).

So, life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Ensuring domestic tranquility.

But what if we told ourselves the truth: we lean towards death and obedience and negativity. Look at our public school system. Look at our ongoing social conflicts. Look at our hypocritical attitudes about sex and family values. Look at our national debt. Look at our choices in this past election. Look at the way we behaved towards each other because of those people. What do we make about the fact that, despite how charged this election was, FORTY-SIX PERCENT of the people did not vote?

We enjoy being obedient consumers as long as we’re hearing what we want to hear. This isn’t unique to America; it’s Western psychology 101. We love — more than freedom, more than democracy, more than an abject clinging to our fave Amendment — to feel like we’re in control of our environment and others. I want what I want like I want it. From an ethical and political (not to mention spiritual, but let’s not go there, loves) standpoint, that is the exact opposite of freedom. But who among us has guts to admit we don’t practice the principles of this country in our daily lives? Who’s really into self-examination these days as we’re scrolling through our biased Facebook feeds and cheering any opinion that sounds like our own? It’s hard being free. 

With this past election, I wanted, in principle, the same thing a lot of Trump voters wanted: an apple-cart-upsetting, charismatic leader who wasn’t a bought politician, someone to change the disgraceful representation of a democratic republic that exists in Washington. A lot of Americans wanted a political overhaul to take us back to a government representative of the people, not of corporate or wealthy interests. We have common ground in this strangest of territories. 

I’ve traveled a lot of roads, and I’ve met a lot of different kind of folks. Some are good people, and some are not. Most are a normal mix of virtues and vanities, a complex song of insecurities and generosities. They work hard, they try their best in a life that confounds them, but they keep going. They help their neighbors. They make mistakes, sometimes terrible ones, sometimes a lot of terrible ones, but I have not met a single person in this country who deserves #PrezKKJ.

Not one.

But I have met a lot of people who would have voted for her. Most, though, would try to stop the train wreck.

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