Trump World Grab-Bag--A Collection

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Stay Bull Jean Yuss 4: Work or Shoot?

It really helps to know a bit about professional wrestling to grasp some of the weird stuff that comes out of Donald Trump, who is a WWE Hall of Famer, and a long time friend of Vince McMahon. I'm certainly no pioneer in calling this reality out--Chauncey DeVega and Oliver Willis both laid out how Trump learned some of his mic skills from the wrestling world and seems to have applied them to politics.

I would say one of the features that has popularized his campaigns has been the ability to generate fan loyalty by both working the mic and working out his trash talk routine when touring smaller venues (like his rallies) to work up to different bigger shows. Twitter is a circuit performance where Trump is trash-talking his future opponents (Crazy Bernie Sanders and Sleepy Joe Biden) to advertise that he is not worried about them because he knows he holds the White House belt. They are just challengers.

This is where some political observers might get Trump wrong--Trump says in the screen-capped Tweet above "May God Rest Their Soul!". Sure--in real world terms, this is the language used to bless dead people. In the wrestling world, however, it has echoes of the Undertaker and Paul Bearer, who were a kind of fan-favorite heel wrestler and manager combination of the late 90's/early 00's. Saying stuff like "God have mercy on your soul" is just some cold shit (or maybe, your weird early 90's memory might flash on Jules from Pulp Fiction, if you aren't given to wrestling analogies) someone might say to get a rise out of a person. It doesn't mean an actual threat, as in Trump is going to literally get Sanders or Biden murdered. It's just a warning that this fight will be epic entertainment for the Trump Brand.

Now, this commentary might make it seem like Trump has strategy and is conscious that he is doing wrestling memes in a political context to own the libs. I would say, I don't actually know that Trump even now understands that wrestling works aren't altogether real. He thinks he can create works and they become shoot. He might actually believe he can Twitter-slay people.

After all, he Twitter-advised the Paris Fire Department to use flying water tanks to douse the Notre Dame flames, thinks rakes could prevent forest fires, and that branding is the problem with a class of airliner that crashes very fatally. It becomes a question of whether he knows a work from a shoot, even if his works seem pretty calculated.

For anti Trump folk, one read of Trump's comments here might be this. He wouldn't be saying this if he didn't think he had to.

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