With the Presidential election just days away, America is on the verge of making history regardless of who wins. Tara Ward watched as Michael Moore made a desperate, and perhaps successful, attempt to talk sense with potential Trump voters.
“I think Hilary Clinton will have dead people vote.”
It’s indisputable logic like this that makes Wilmington, Ohio the perfect location for filmmaker Michael Moore’s latest piece, Michael Moore in TrumpLand. Ironically situated in Clinton County, Wilmington is famous for its love of Donald Trump and for being the birthplace of the banana split.
“Hold the nuts,” says Moore, but I’m afraid it’s too late.
It must be tricky presenting a rational argument to people who think corpses can vote. But this isn’t Moore’s first rodeo – rather, TrumpLand is his political comedy Baywatch. His one-man show dives into the treacherous waters of the US election like a modern day Mitch Buchanan, rescuing dazed and confused voters before they’re swept away by the deadly Trump undertow.
But rather than hold their heads under the water and berate them for their idiocy, Moore attempts to save lives with flattery, empathy, and passionate reason. It’s like Suzanne Paul trying to sell me a Bambillo Pillow, but with feminism and humour and the future of the world at stake.
Black and white images of a young Hillary Clinton line the stage, as if someone finally discovered the ‘enlarge to gargantuan’ button on the photocopier. All voters were welcome, but it’s the Trump supporters who sit with their arms folded, jaws clenched, probably chanting the Second Amendment in their heads each time they get an eyeful of Hillary’s college graduation photo.
Spoiler alert: despite this hostility, Moore leaves the stage to a standing ovation. Was it the promise of free ice cream that made the audience rise to their feet, or did Moore convince them to come over to the dark side?
It’s hard to tell. Some people really love ice cream. Either way, Moore was all over Trumpsville like a can of extra strong hairspray on an unruly comb-over. Here’s how he does it.
1) He confesses to admiring Republicans
Moore confuses the audience with honesty and blinds them with civilized debate. He admits to not loving everything about Hillary, has never voted Clinton, and admires the conservatives for their discipline, courage of convictions, and for always knowing where their car keys are.
Does that mean I need to turn Tory to leave the house ten minutes earlier each morning? If so, this is the life hack I’ve been waiting years for.
2) He understands why folk love The Donald
Breaking news: the white American male is now a minority, making up only 19% of eligible voters. Everything’s being taken from straight white men, mocks Moore, and their future is terrifying. That’s why they congregate at Trump rallies, making the cry of the dying dinosaur: “THE WOMEN ARE COMING!”
Trump is the “human Molotov cocktail” that angry Americans have been waiting for. But Moore warns that a vote for Trump is a ballot made in anger – it’ll feel good, but you’ll wake up on November 9 to discover that “now you’re fucked”.
Still, at least you’ll know where your car keys are.
3) He loves that George W. Bush loves his dogs
Hell, if Moore can say three nice things about George W. Bush, surely Trump supporters can say something positive about Hillary.
“She stood by her man,” says one, which is about as good as it gets.
4) Hillary’s weaknesses are actually her strengths
People don’t like Hillary, she changes her mind too much, and she supposedly killed 46 people with her own bare hands. Whatevs, reckons Moore. Who doesn’t want a President who puts on a pair of shitkicker boots and gets stuff done?
5) You can still hate Hillary – but vote for her anyway
Forget that Hillary’s been preparing for this since she was in her twenties. Forget that she’s put up with a crapload of misogynistic bullshit, that she’s fought for decades to improve the lives of everyday Americans. Hate Hillary all you like, begs Moore, but vote for her, no matter how hard it hurts.
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But in case it all goes to shit, Moore announces he’ll stand for President in 2020. He promises weekly marijuana mail outs, one cord for all devices, and free banana splits every 4th of July. Now he’s talking.
Trumpland speaks to Hillary’s Clinton’s courage and stamina, her ability to bide her time and seize her power. It’s also Moore’s insightful and sincere plea to understand the significance of this election – a day that could finally provide that “glorious moment when the majority gender has the chance to run the world, to have real power, and kick some righteous ass”. Plus free ice-cream for everyone, right?
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