Donald Trump is struggling right now. His approval rating is falling. Republican voices such as Mitt Romney and James Mattis are speaking out against him. The country is in utter turmoil because of COVID-19 and police brutality. He's probably low on vitamin D from spending so much time "inspecting" his bunker. But most of all, the President is suffering from a bruised ego, and that's what makes this so hilarious:
There is no tactical reason for Donald Trump to run ads in Washington, D.C., as D.C. historically votes overwhelmingly for the Democratic candidate. In the 2016 election, Donald Trump managed to get 4.1% of the D.C. vote, which is good if you're campaigning against 2% milk, and that's about it. The only reason that staffers would so aggressively run ads in D.C. is so that they can make Trump feel better during the many moments he passes by a TV, in between the times when he's busy golfing and ripping into Jared Kushner. The fact that Trump's narcissistic wounds run so deep that this is like putting a band-aid on a severed head is irrelevant. If the campaign has to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars just to give Donny a mere half-second of a dopamine hit, then it's worth it.
Of course, Tim Murtaugh, the campaign's communications director, would argue that "we want members of Congress and our DC-based surrogates to see the ads so they know our strong arguments for President Trump and against Joe Biden," but this is such a weak smokescreen that it might as well be puffed out of a tapped-out vape pen. You don't need to run campaign ads to get your ideas into congress. That's what lobbyists are for. Or, you know, you could just go to talk to them.
It reminds actually, of the classic psychological study where scientist Harry Harlow took infant rhesus monkeys and separated them from their parents. The infant monkeys raised without mothers developed social deficits, showing reclusive tendencies and clinging to their cloth diapers. Harlow then took this data and did a second experiment using surrogate mothers made of terry cloth and surrogate mothers made of wire and wood. The monkeys clung to the terry cloth mothers, prioritizing their "love" over all else, even food.
Donald Trump is just like this, prioritizing praise and affirmation above all else, even if that praise is something he paid for, and comes out of a tiny, metal screen. Maybe if his parents just said "good job" every once in a while, we wouldn't be in this fucking mess.
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Top Image: Gage Skidmore