The Corner

Obama, Trump and “Cool”

So I was looking for the American Crossroads “Cool” ad which apparently has been getting a lot of buzz. Here it is if you’re interested:

But while looking for it, I found this item on how Donald Trump hates the ad.

“I thought it was one of the worst commercials, in terms of what they were trying to do, that I’ve ever seen,” Trump said on a call with MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”  

The ad paints Obama as a “celebrity president,” and features clips of the president slow jamming the news on “Late Night” with Jimmy Fallon and singing Al Green. The ad proclaims that “America elected the biggest celebrity in the world” in 2008, and asks viewers, “is your life any better?”“They are making Obama look great,” Trump said. “They are making him look like that’s the man we want to be president. I looked at that clip very closely, and actually, I couldn’t believe it.”

Acknowledging the drawbacks of taking Donald Trump seriously, I think this is fascinating. Trump is basically revealing what a creature of celebrity he is that he can’t imagine anyone will process these images in a negative way. He’s responding to the Rorschach test in precisely the way his critics would expect. How can clips of him on Jimmy Kimmel be anything but bad!?

That said, Trump does have half a point here. I wish the ad had at least one or two really solid clips conveying how despearately Obama wants to seem cool, which is always the great coolness-killer. It would have helped set the tone of the ad much better. What would those clips be? I’m not sure, but then again I’m not making the ad. Michael Moore seems to find a way to find that kind of footage pretty easily, and I have no doubt it can be found in Obama’s case.

Jonah Goldberg — Jonah Goldberg holds the Asness Chair in Applied Liberty at the American Enterprise Institute and is a senior editor of National Review. His new book, The Suicide of The West, is on sale now.

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