POLITICAL NEWS: Part 2 of 3

Lipstick on a pig? A toad?

toad

 (My last blog, Stuck on the Tar Baby, takes a look at what it means in the worlds of journalism and public-relations to frame $2 billion in “free” press coverage in today’s presidential campaign. Today I muse about recent PR efforts to harness the comb-over candidate’s tongue).

 Bluster & blunder

With voting deadlines bearing down on all comers, journalists observe that the comb-over candidate’s handlers are attempting a new approach: curbing the Republican front-runner’s erratic blunder-busters.

Until now, the candidate stated publicly that “what you see is what you get.”

The mass-mediated projection of his character is…well…accurate.

And that’s a good thing.

That means readers and viewers—you and I—see an authentic portrayal in the news.

Each time he opens his pie-hole we hear the real, uncensored candidate.Here are some of his most choice and uncensored reflections (with citations):

Women

“It really doesn’t matter what the media write as long as you’ve got a young, and beautiful piece of ass

Humility

“The beauty of me is that I’m very rich

Economics

“The point is, you can never be too greedy

Diplomacy

“Why can’t we use nuclear weapons?”

Judiciary

“I’ve been treated very unfairly by this judge. Now, this judge is of Mexican heritage. I’m building a wall, OK? I’m building a wall

Race Relations

“Black guys counting my money! I hate it. The only kind of people I want counting my money are little short guys that wear yarmulkes every day

We should worry that spin-meisters are redoubling their efforts to curb the candidate’s runaway Coprolalia (obscene language) by forcing him to stick to a carefully scripted playbook.

Until now, we’ve seen the unvarnished croaker: warts and all.

The future promises a frog-turned-prince, whose musings will be tempered and speeches burnished with greater polish.

And that’s what we should fear: a Trump cloaked in finely spun rhetoric from a puppeteer’s hand.

“I put lipstick on a pig,” is how Tony Schwartz described his handling of the real-estate racketeer when ghost-writing the book, The Art of the Deal.

“I contributed to presenting Trump in a way that brought him wider attention and made him more appealing than he is,” Schwartz told The New Yorker.

What concerned Schwartz was the candidate’s indifference to lies. “Lying is second nature to him…He lied strategically. He had a complete lack of conscience about it.”

And Schwartz regrets he soft-peddled the bottomless pit of lies as a ghost-writer, instead framing fibs as “Truthful hyperbole,” which, deconstructed, simply means “true lies.”

My fear is that the prince will wear new clothes and spout carefully constructed rhetoric while the toad reposes beneath the varnished façade.

My fear is that some news reporters will assess the prince as a convert to rationalism and applaud the glossy Trump.

My fear is that some voters will accept the new exterior as authentic.

But the toad will still be a toad, and the pig? A pig.

Image from http://altjapan.typepad.com/my_weblog/yokai/

#nativescience

#tarbaby

#combovercandidate

#machiavelli

#theprince

Advertisements

About Cynthia Coleman Emery

Professor and researcher at Portland State University who studies science communication, particularly issues that impact American Indians. She is enrolled with the Osage tribe.
This entry was posted in advertising, american indian, politics, propaganda, public relations, social media, writing and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s