Archived 2016 Articles


Pieter-Dirk Uys

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Trumpeting at the Walls of Democracy — and like Jericho we all fall down!

– Pieter-Dirk Uys, Daily Maverick, 10 November 2016

How could we have got it so wrong? The media with all their fingers in so many pies? The polls who swear by their perfect tone of whisper? How are we still cemented in the ancient belief that things will develop and end in a logical way, as they did last time? Those days ended on September 11, 2001 in the smouldering ruins of that great American Dream. And a female candidate spouting monologues that have a beginning, a middle and an end, makes no sense to the LCD. (That stands for Lowest Common Denominator) I have always believed that in an upside-down society the LCD floats on top.

Enter Donald J. Trump. A glossy one-dimensional cartoon straight out of a Batman saga, who knows his market. He tweets, he insults, he demeans, he lies, he cheats and then the postscript to that is what he can steal. He whispers like a pornographer into the ears of the deaf and the blind and his bad breath lets them realise that he is one of them, the great unwashed, the silent majority. The people who have the vote because that is what democracy has given them. The people who have possibly never used that vote before, because their world was being discussed in the staff room of politics while they were all still in detention as the dunces of the class.

Donald Trump treated the campaign and us, the audience, as the reality show that it was, and being the veteran winner and eternal survivor, will be in the Oval Office in January 2017. Politics will never be the same again. Nor will satire. The glorious bloodbath of fun at the expense of the Orange Pussycat in cartoons and late-night TV shows (Trevor Noah especially) will lead to a renaissance of politically-dicey ribbing from the backrooms of snigger.

And I am totally inspired! Let me repeat it slowly for us all to savour: Donald J. Trump is to be the 45th President of the United States of America. For the next four years all I need to do is have my small orange kitty arranged on my head, wave my clenched fists around to indicate those small hands, purse my lips like a Lady Gaga on Botox, and never end a sentence.

Just say four words slowly, then pause; repeat the four words slowly. Then suddenly beam a smile that could make people think you’ve got your foreskin stuck in your zip. Point a finger at no one in the audience but as if you knew them. Nod your head, make your eyes sleepy and dreamy and drop your voice into a purr. Then start that half sentence all over again. It's called doing a Trump. That means a performance with orange pussy on head, minimal words, few half-sentences and no content or context.

What a gift. The leader of the free world with the IQ of an artichoke. Truly, Goofy has left Disneyland and is moving into the West Wing.

What will the Donald do? He doesn’t have any idea of the national structures of supreme power. He’s been a one-man band with a gift for self-promotion and useful amnesia with repeated denials of “I never said that”. Behold his inauguration with his small hand on the Bible, which is more than likely the well-thumbed copy of The Valley of the Dolls from beside his bed. He will say in his Apprentice voice, not “Donald you’re fired”, but “I Donald J. Trump do hereby swear to uphold the Constitution of the United States of America, so help me God”. Then soon to insist: “No, I never said that. Ever said that. No, not once. Ever. Said. That.”

He could start his reign with a bang. On his first day in office (would that be January 21, 2017?) he could drop a nuclear bomb on North Korea. The rest of the world will sigh with relief as they have all wanted to do that same thing for ages but just didn’t have the balls. The Donald is all balls and will take full responsibility in half a sentence, which in a month’s time he can deny ever having said. Or he can just embrace the job and do what comes naturally. Sell the Trump Name to front countless projects in the name of the people – Trump Drones, Trump FBI, Trump Pentagon, Game of Trumps. He can envelop himself in the shadow of Hillary, become part of the Wall Street Mafia, and allow all the business of the past corruptions to carry on as usual as long as he gets his fee and the percentage owed him as the leader of the free world. Lots of laughs in all that, I’d say.

It was a terribly long reality show, this American election. Could it have been 18 months? The analysis, the discussions, the primaries, the speeches, the accusations, the debates. Maybe that’s the only lesson we can learn. Subjecting our chosen ones to the gruelling discipline of finding answers to questions and delivering opinions on issues that affect the people. In our rainbow tuck shop there is never any of that. Our potential leaders refuse debates, discussions, arguments, even issues. They sit fatly on the party list and then settle grandly into the post of minister, usually in charge of the future of millions of young people without even knowing how to spell the word “category”, let alone pronounce it.

So watch him reinvent the top job in the world and sell time-shares in the Lincoln Bedroom. Watch Melania Trump take her place as the First Stepford Wife. Watch the Trumpettes backseat-drive their Dada’s government once helmed by veteran professionals. And watch the daily news of Agent Orange as he breaks wind in the palm of your hand. It will dissolve your flesh. Now that’s funny!

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