Originally published on tmrw at: tmrwmagazine.com/the-presidential-election-or-the-latest-reality-tv-show/
When speaking to reporters, obama called being the president a “serious job”, and that it’s “not hosting a talk show or a reality show”, criticising the recent election race. But, actually, that’s pretty much the perfect description of what the presidential election has become. Who needs Keeping Up With the Kardashians anymore? 5his is much more entertaining. Maybe Kanye’s recent twitter tirades are his demand for attention – Donald Trump’s become America’s new villain and Kanye’s feeling needy. The presidential election is now got all the traits of a reality TV show.
everyone’s slagging off everyone
When another cycle of X factor’s sobbing contestants and loud-mouth idiots rolls around, we’re use to the drill. They’ll be drama, someone always seems to be criticising Cheryl (I thought she was our national treasure?) and the audience will boo anyone. It’s a free-for-all in who can complain the most. As is true in the presidential election. Rather than anyone choosing to stick up for their own policies, they just shout down anyone else’s. Even Hilary Clinton’s daughter got in on the act when she criticised Bernie sSander’s healthcare policies. Donald Trump also called Obama a “lousy president”– I’m not sure if he’s realised yet that he’s not running against Obama… He then somehow managed to get into a fight with the Pope. The actual Pope. How is that even possible?
it’s about personality
Reality TV wouldn’t be half as entertaining if everyone was as dull as dishwater. Instead they exaggerate loud personalities, as you watch on in horror. Is it Donald Trump or someone from Geordie Shore? Who can even tell nowadays.
Personality does play a role in selecting a leader, but it shouldn’t become the dominating factor, overshadowing policies and principles. This isn’t a new thing though, likeability has always played a role in electing the president – I mean Kennedy’s young and energetic nature was certainly handy, and who didn’t think Obama was cool when he came into power? Though Donald Trump isn’t exactly likeable (I have many other words I could use to describe him, but I’ll hold myself back), he certainly has a personality. It’s just a personality that would be better suited on a reality TV show, than running the United States. Though they’re basically the same thing now.
one person runs the show
Simon Cowell has been responsible for a lot of reality TV, with the likes of Britain’s got talent, X factor and American Idol all under his belt. And no Simon, this is not a compliment. But the Cowell equivalent here perhaps could be Trump, who has dominated the headlines (and this article), but it’s actually the families that have control over the president’s office. More kardashian-style then. We’ve had two Bushes take on the job and now Jeb Bush is trying to continue the family legacy. Another Clinton in the White House also looks probable. For such a large country, the people running it come from a very narrow background.
money, money, money
It’s fair to say the cast members of Made in Chelsea aren’t going to have to worry about money anytime soon. Maybe they could lend some to the presidential candidates, as running for president costs a lot. I mean a lot a lot (I amaze even myself with my technical language sometimes). Which means the criteria for running for president is the same for being on Made in Chelsea: be rich. Trump said it cost him “peanuts” to run for president, or “hundreds of millions of dollars”. So, urm, peanuts then.
the winner does nothing
Occasionally you’ll get your X factor success story, like Little Mix, who release lots of albums, and that can be true with your presidents, Obama’s had victories with Obamacare and legalising gay marriage. Though, like Little Mix’s last album, his policies aren’t everyone’s cup of tea. (Sorry Obama, haters are other part of the reality TV package). But, the majority of winners maybe release one song, until it was clear they peaked during the contest itself. So I wouldn’t go placing your money on Trump becoming christmas number one this year. Sorry, I’m confusing my X factor metaphors with the presidential candidates now. But to be honest, it may be safer to have all the presidential candidates form some sort of pop super group, dance moves and all, then let them run the white house.