SEND IN THE BABOONS

Talk about backasswards, how revolutionary that Donald Trump became a serious candidate before becoming a serious person. Or trying to become one, like a 69-year-old on a bicycle for the first time.

Now that the 2016 primary election burlesque appears to have turned a sharp corner and veered toward possible resolution—cross your fingers—here is some of the debris.

After slogging through a transcript of the new, improved and Oval Office-ready Trumpet’s foreign policy speech, I’m now pretty sure why he wears his rock of hair in a sprayed-to-the hilt colossal comb-over.

To hide the lobotomy scar.

Yet it was striking how two mainstream papers I regularly read, the New York Times and Los Angeles Times, gave sober coverage to the speech as if Trumpet had inadvertently uttered something worth recalling.

NYT: Trump “gave a foreign policy speech Wednesday in Washington, shifting his focus to topics…”

Oh, please. This reminds me, once again, of hilarious radio satirists Bob and Ray providing meticulous, in-depth, step-by-step analysis of how to make a bologna sandwich. In Trumpet’s case, baloney.

The title of another Bob and Ray flight of fancy perfectly fits this election season’s exotic GOP universe.

Galaxy of the Baboons

It also epitomizes do-anything-to-get-noticed Yahoo News, which ran the following provocative banner over a story on April 20:

“Cruz rejects Canadian citizenship”

Accompanying this was a Ted Cruz photo with a cutline that read: “The 2016 presidential prospect’s origins have been under scrutiny lately.”

Lately?

Hmmm. A little tardy in the campaign for that; Trumpet hadn’t questioned the Canadian-born Cruz’s birth qualifications for months.

Worse than tardy, it was a musty antique. The story, from Politico, originally ran Aug. 20, 2013. That made it nearly three years old, the kind of footnote that doesn’t concern Yahoo News in its self-serving pursuit of clicks.

Just as honesty is often a casualty—flicked away like lint from a lapel—in candidates’ quest for votes.  And that goes for both major parties.

All right, I get it; emails, shmemails. But puleeeeeze, Madam Secretary, if you’re so Holy Hillary with your pockets turned out and nothing hidden, so pristine and sparkly, do the right and honorable thing, even if it means walking the plank. Give a nod to good old Bernie and share transcripts of your big-bucks speeches to Wall Streeters. Don’t flim flam and obfuscate like an octopus fleeing from peril behind a cloud of ink.

Carly Fiorina picSpeaking of that, this week’s GOP headliners also gave us Flim and Flam in the persons of Cruz and his new best pal Carley Fiorina. There he was anointing Fiorina as his running mate on a fantasy GOP ticket he is likely to head only if the election is held on Pluto.

This is the same Fiorina who said of him earlier, when she, too, was seeking the top job: “Ted is just like any other politician; he says whatever he needs to say to get elected.”

Exactly. Yet she’s now salivating all over the guy. When a TV reporter asked Fiorina to reconcile her conflicting public statements about Cruz, she replied (and I’m paraphrasing): candidates say things in the heat of battle, and it’s no big deal.

The obvious follow-up: Then, Ms. Fiorina, you were disingenuous or lying when, with notable passion and ferocity, you earlier aimed those negatives at Cruz? If so, why should we believe you now?

But it wasn’t asked.

Cruz kidsAs if summoned from central casting, Cruz’s two young daughters again spent time on the stump with him and his wife. The girls are not only humanizing for a candidate whose humanity is largely elusive, they’re a pair of adorable cuties whose presence raises an issue that applies to candidates of both major parties. You know, the multitudes who shade the truth and sometimes flat-out lie to gain advantage in the pornography of politics.

Let’s assume the Bible-thumping Cruzes are virtuous parents who try mightily to instill in their girls such high-minded values as the Golden Rule and so on and so on, including DO NOT LIE!  If that is the case, how does Cruz justify suspending those noble values in service of personal ambition?

Do as I say, girls, not as I do?

I believe that’s called hypocrisy.

Attaching an exclamation mark to the week, a freshly exalted Fiorina pandered her way into the hearts of Cruz supporters by singing a song to his daughters. The bizarre scene illustrated why “Saturday Night Live” parodies of the candidates often fail. They’re redundant because the candidates themselves are parodies.

Send in the baboons. Don’t bother, they’re already here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Advertisements

Published by

Howard Rosenberg

Pulitzer Prize-winning former television critic for The Los Angeles.

2 thoughts on “SEND IN THE BABOONS”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s