Coming Soon... 'Trump' Season 2!
Can "Trump" Season 2 outdo "Trump" Season 1 the way the second season of "The Crown" is said to have topped the first?
Trump One certainly had a boffo finale with the passing of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017.
Tax rates were lowered for the middle class, corporate rates made competitive with other industrialized nations, ANWR opened after forty years of trying for energy independence, and Obamacare eviscerated by ending the individual mandate -- all in one fell swoop. Too bad they couldn't add tanking the Iran Deal into it somehow.
How will Season 2 end? Middle East peace? Not likely. That would strain credibility. (Maybe Season 5 or 6.) But the show biz analogy still holds because Trump is clearly our most show biz president, even more than Reagan. He entertains as none before. Everyone -- right and left -- binge-watches Trump.
Can you imagine what it will be like when he's no longer president? CNN better start planning now for that cable news Armageddon, whether it's 2020 or 2024. Like it or not, their misreporting of everything Donald keeps them alive.
But like any good series, "Trump" must reinvent itself every year to keep us watching. Question is -- how?
His first-year decisions -- foreign and domestic -- were largely good. America is in better shape economically with unemployment down and the stock market and GNP up. It's also in a better position globally in a surprisingly stable, though still violent, world, well described by Arthur Herman in Wednesday's Wall Street Journal.
But pace all the winning, Trump is his own worst enemy, or so it's said. He remains unpopular, according to the polls. It's time for him to get popular, push up those numbers, accurate or not (okay, not very). Can he do it?
This is great drama for Season 2.
Although he is winning almost everything else, the major area Trump is losing, for now, is the propaganda war with the Democrats, liberals, progressives and their sycophantic army of media legionnaires -- this despite the even more extreme unpopularity of the press. The Republican Party's ineptitude at messaging is legendary -- and that's one legend that has proven true, even with its biggest celebrity ever as president.
Trump should seize the moment of his most significant legislative victory to make the proverbial pivot and change that situation for the next season. He should do this by employing his not inconsiderable talents as an actor. He has told us he can act the role of a traditional president, literally at the blink of an eye. Time to do it.
This does not mean that Trump should not be Trump. Besides being impossible, it's not advisable. Instead, he should be a New Trump -- half old Trump, half traditional president. This could lead to a second season even more boffo than the first. He might even need his own Netflix channel.