The State of Our Union
(By American Zen's Mike Flannigan, on loan from Ari Goldstein)
Someone kidnapped Donald Trump last night and replaced him with some pod person simulacrum just before last night's State of the Union Address.
It was almost successful. He was virtually what a Republican President should sound like in his boilerplate orthodoxy but something was off. It was like looking at the best mannequins at Madame Tussaud's or Mitt Romney and marveling at the reproduction of humanity. But something was missing.
Trump's first State of Union before a joint Congress was everything the usual leaks promised it would be. Hidden in a dark closet in the White House or Trump's mind was the usual snarling, paranoid serial tweeter screaming about phantom terrorists in Sweden or nonexistent porno movies by Miss Universes or three to five million illegal aliens voting or the media being the "enemy of the American people."
Pushed out of sight was the cryptofascist who chose for brtual exclusion the citizens of seven Muslim majority nations with whom he just coincidentally has no business dealings. Gone for a couple of hours was the guy whose executive orders have kept doctors from arriving at their jobs to heal the sick, detaining Australian children's book authors and Muhammad Ali's son.
Poof. Like magic, that man was held at bay away from the incurious eyes of his 62,000,000 voters.
This new, improved version of Donald Trump, whose job title as President is as irrational and inconsistent with sanity and rationality as King Elizabeth II was almost, well, normal.
He did many if not all the right things such as reading his usual Bannon-Miller speech, even using his teleprompter instead of winging it. He used as political window dressing the widow of the Navy SEAL who was killed while he was somewhere else, tweeting, instead of the Situation Room as that botched operation, the first of his so-called presidency, played out like a Greek tragedy.
He spoke about amnesty for younger undocumented immigrants and putting them on track toward citizenship, being "eager" to reach across the aisle and working with Democrats to actualize his bumper sticker slogan of making America great again.
But the Democrats weren't having it. While Republicans, as always during a SOTU delivered by one of their own, stood up and applauded every few minutes, those on the other side of the aisle remained seated, stone-faced. Afterward, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer told the press it was the least important State of the Union in recent history because Trump only said what he was going to do rather than how he was going to do it.
It was a good performance by a nonhuman homunculus like Trump to even try to act statesmanlike, like watching a poodle walk on its hind legs for a few seconds- One was surprised to see it even attempted much less actually acted out for as long as it had.
But then, the aware remembers Trump's last few statements before taking the well at the House- How liberals are to blame for the Jewish cemetery descrecations in Pennsylvania, blaming Owens for his death in Yemen while Trump was tweeting about a TV appearance, whining about health care being so complicated...
...and then we realized Donald Trump wasn't kidnapped by aliens and supplanted by a pod person, after all. The career tax cheat and draft dodger who hadn't an ounce of political experience prior to January 20th has finally learned how to reinvent himself and lie in a more plausible manner.
Last night was the night Donald Trump finally became a professional politician, a run of the mill Beltway insider. The Executive and Legislative branches became, at least in the short term, cold-fusioned.