Why Are We Still Talking About Trump Like He’s A Real Thing?

Sometimes people ask me why I don’t write about the Donald Trump campaign as much as Hillary Clinton’s. Lately I’ve just been saying, “Because the Trump campaign is not a real thing.”

Did you ever watch that show Punk’d? They play a wild prank on some quasi-celebrity, then Ashton Kutcher comes in all “You got punked!” and everyone laughs? This election cycle is like that, except when Ashton came in nobody got the joke, and everyone’s still freaking out about the fake orange candidate.

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WikiLeaks has shined a big, bright light on the various ways the DNC, the Clinton campaign and the upper echelons of news media organizations collaborated to not only ensure Hillary Clinton’s nomination on the left, but to elevate Trump above the other Republican candidates on the right as well. He was hand-picked by Clinton and her goons to be her perfect foil and ensure her ascension to the throne. This happened, we know this now, nobody can deny it, and yet somehow everyone’s still speaking as though an actual presidential race is happening in America between two actual candidates.

I don’t write about the Donald Trump campaign for the same reason I don’t write about the tooth fairy. You don’t see me writing about Trump’s controversial statements for the same reason you don’t see me writing about Darth Vader’s imperialistic foreign policy. I’m here to discuss American politics, not works of fiction.

At this point, I have as much respect for people who worry about Trump as I do for people who believe pro wrestling is real. As far as I’m concerned these are the same people who cry when John Cena gets hit with a folding chair. In a way they’re even dumber, because people who are worried about Trump have actually been taken backstage and shown how the prop chair works, seen the wrestlers choreograph their falls, and they still think it’s real. Ashton Kutcher has been explaining to Demi Lovato that the recording studio isn’t really haunted since last week, and she’s still babbling about ghosts.

You want to talk about Donald Trump? Fine. Donald Trump is a member of the WWE Hall of Fame. Google it. Watch the videos of him clotheslining Vince McMahon in front of thousands of screaming fans. Donald Trump knows how to play the heel, and he knows how to work a crowd. He’s also a longtime friend of the Clintons.

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I don’t care about Donald Trump and his kayfabe candidacy. I do care about his supporters, because they’re showing us something very real about America and about the Republican party; their open prejudices and bigotries are bringing something into the light that the GOP has been trying to keep in the dark for a long time now. Whenever something comes into consciousness, there’s the possibility of healing it.

Trump supporters are also the very people that Bernie Sanders was trying to help: the victims of the Wal-Mart economy, the beaten-down survivors of rural America’s slow digestion into caloric fuel for the one percent. In that sense, they’re actually a lot smarter than the people who freak out about Trump, because at least his supporters are pointing at some real problems and not at an imaginary fabrication of the neoliberal think tank.

I find Trump himself completely uninteresting, though. I’m interested in writing about real things and asking real questions, like why was it so important for the plutocrats to push Hillary Clinton to the top? What is it about her specifically that can fulfill her plutocratic sponsors’ desires so much better than a Republican or another Democrat? Why was it so urgent to force Hillary through instead of letting the primaries unfold naturally and then buying up whoever gets through? It can’t all be because of Bernie Sanders; the leaked Pied Piper memo shows the Democratic party elites rigging it for Hillary long before they had any idea what a force Bernie would be.

The question is no longer if this election was rigged, it’s why. Let me put that in the big quote thingies, so you know I mean business.

The question is no longer if this election was rigged, it’s why.

Does it have something to do with Russia and China? Hillary’s giving every indication that she’s in a mad rush to get into a war with Russia, from talking about using military retaliation for their alleged cyber attacks, to consistently pushing for a no-fly zone in Syria, where Russian planes are conducting operations against the Islamic State. John Pilger reports that NATO has been mobilizing along Russia’s western border in the greatest buildup of military forces since World War Two. Meanwhile, The Guardian reports that China has wasted no time cozying up to madman Philippines president Rodrigo Duterte as the U.S. loses its grip on that crucial regional alliance, surely in order to cut a hole through some of the growing American naval presence on the east. Is whatever would be gained by winning a third world war so important that only Hillary Clinton can be trusted to inflict that upon the world? Does it have anything to do with the fact the Russia and China are buying up gold like it’s going out of style and appear to be making arrangements to move away from the U.S. dollar as a reserve currency?

These are the things I’m interested in right now, not what the decoy candidate’s latest mouth fart smells like today. Let’s keep our bright eyes on the real monsters lurking in the shadows. If the talking heads are telling us to pay no attention to the man behind the curtain, then that’s precisely where we need to be looking.

[Featured Image by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images]