Understanding celebrity as fame for being famous rather than actual artistry or contribution to society, no one exemplifies the dynamic like celebrity apprentice president Donald J. Trump. And the morose cost of such elevation is made perversely clear in the news of the aircraft carrier supposedly barreling toward North Korea to teach their wanna-be-celebrity leader a lesson. Except is was cruising in the opposite direction. According to the NY Times,
Just over a week ago, the White House declared that ordering an American aircraft carrier into the Sea of Japan would send a powerful deterrent signal to North Korea and give President Trump more options in responding to the North’s provocative behavior. “We’re sending an armada,” Mr. Trump said to Fox News last Tuesday afternoon.
The problem was that the carrier, the Carl Vinson, and the three other warships in its strike force were that very moment sailing in the opposite direction, to take part in joint exercises with the Australian Navy in the Indian Ocean, 3,500 miles southwest of the Korean Peninsula.
White House officials said Tuesday that they had been relying on guidance from the Defense Department. Officials there described a glitch-ridden sequence of events, from an ill-timed announcement of the deployment by the military’s Pacific Command to a partially erroneous explanation by the defense secretary, Jim Mattis — all of which perpetuated the false narrative that a flotilla was racing toward the waters off North Korea.
Pence looking for US aircraft carrier. Nope, that’s not it. pic.twitter.com/QpsFVof0QD
— ian bremmer (@ianbremmer) April 18, 2017
Wrapped inside an epic takedown of Hillary Clinton’s loser presidential campaign in New York Magazine, Andrew Sullivan offers the best description of Trump, and the difficulty he presents to a logic-seeking mind,
What on earth is the point of trying to understand him when there is nothing to understand? Calling him a liar is true enough, but liars have some cognitive grip on reality, and he doesn’t. Liars remember what they have said before. His brain is a neural Etch A Sketch. He doesn’t speak, we realize; he emits random noises.
From his buffoonery as Howard Stern’s guest going back to the 90s, to his reality show and beauty pageant embarrassments, Trump’s life as an actual real estate developer came to an end a generation ago. Still, in America’s television-driven house-of-mirrors, where actual experience is mediated, he can be whomever he says he is. The viewer/consumer/citizen is prisoner to the relentless fictional propaganda, from both sides of the political spectrum. The truth is, Donald Trump is a perfect reflection of America’s celebrity-molested culture. That should make us all uncomfortable, and somewhat responsible. Had he been term-limited as a celeb, we might not be suffering with this apprentice president disaster today.
Celebrities are the problem. #TermLimits4Celebs is the solution.