Friday, 10 February 2017
post reality blank paper golden fleece manipulation strategies
I get the corrupt republic argument. "Only in a corrupt republic, in corrupt times, can a tyrant rise." Like the 'ambitious liberalism' argument that over-hugging can make everything go a bit hippy-dippy.
So we get the rise of populism. Differing degrees with Brexit and Trumpton. Voices of the generally unheard people protesting that life ain't good. Unless there's a selfie in it somewhere.
There's the irony then of electing billionaire bullies to prominence or placing unbelievers into roles where they must turn 180 degrees. There's also a free fall element to the whole set-up, where consequences are hardly considered and it becomes all about the activity rather than about a planned outcome.
The Americans are doing it with the rat-a-tat-tat of executive orders. Blank sheets that can say anything and can adopt the ready-fire-aim philosophy except there's really no guidance system beyond the murky rich white man circle now in power. More a case of feeding the swamp than draining it.
And here, in the UK, the ready-fire-aim continues, although our blank sheets remain steadfastly blank. We are managing with a preoccupation on whatever happens to be the current activity rather then the effect we wish to achieve. Busyness rather than business. The PM should, by now, be kicking over tables of the people running the teams that are supposed to be having the ideas to come up with something useful.
We have a few set-pieces coming forward. Trump visits the Queen. It reminds me of high profile business trips that include a 'jolly'.
A visit to a revolutionary new form of housing development with a side trip to the adjacent Monaco casino. Or a visit to the R&D facility in Texas the same week as SWSX. You get the idea. So presumably Trump will want to play nicely with the UK until he has added his trip in a golden carriage to the ego wall next to his Playboy cover. Thumbs up.
I was going to make a quick PS of Stevie and Donnie peeping out of the carriage, but I think I'll leave that one to the imagination.
The Steve Bannon cover of Time this week already makes the point about the economic nationalist manipulation behind Trump's desk.
Come to think of it, I doubt that Trump's entirely self-contained ego would ever admit it.
So instead of Trump already in the carriage, I thought I'd imagine the type of heraldic order he could borrow.
He clearly likes this sort of thing, what with his yellow and purple triangular coat of arms, surrounded by gold and with a big T in the middle.
It didn't take me long to think of something appropriate.
Originating from 1430s Belgium, but with distinctly Spanish overtones, along with the obvious gold finery.
Yes, the Order of the Golden Fleece.
I know, my Photoshoppery isn't up to much, but this is only intended as a rough draft. It's too early for Trump to be awarded the American Golden Fleece Award (which is all about wasting public money). He's been too busy as he puts it 'being smart' and not paying Federal Taxes.
I still remember my first visit to Trump Tower, many years ago. I was overcome by its use of blingy gold. Probably part of Trump's unsentimental approach. You can imagine the order 'Make it gold. Very gold. Good gold. Very very good gold.'
Back in those days we laughed it off as a kind of Narcissistic Personality Disorder.
The thing is, by the measures of money, business and politics, he has continued to be immensely successful since that time. That's even if some of his methods, like trash-talking opponents, bullying, lack of grace, misogyny, grandstanding, virtue trumpeting, not paying suppliers and re-inventing the truth wouldn't usually hold up to scrutiny.
Watch as populism turns into outsiderism.