It’s election day in the Philippines and a man described as a “Donald Trump” like candidate appears to be on the brink of victory.
You’ll hear this all over the media today. “The Donald Trump of the Philippines has won the presidency today,” they will exclaim as they read their carefully prepared words presented through a tele-promptered lens. But be clear, this narrative is meant to trash Trump by comparing him to a third-world crackpot.
CBS News describes 71-year-old Rodrigo Duterte as an anti-establishment, foul-mouthed former mayor who has run an unconventional campaign:
An ex-prosecutor, Duterte has peppered his campaign speeches with boasts about his Viagra-fueled sexual prowess and jokes about rape. But Duterte has successfully tapped into discontent and voters appear willing to overlook his foul language.
“All of you who are into drugs, you sons of bitches, I will really kill you,” Duterte told a huge cheering crowd Saturday in his final campaign rally in Manila. “I have no patience, I have no middle ground, either you kill me or I will kill you idiots.”
The Daily Beast continues the comparisons by highlighting the fact that, like Trump, Duterte recently got the full “John Oliver” treatment replete with multiple and gratuitous Trump comparisons:
At a mass wedding recently, Duterte—taking a page out of Braveheart—offered himself up to the brides as a wedding gift, announcing from the stage, “I don’t have money to give, but I could give your wives something else—and this is for the wives only. Men, I’m sorry but you don’t get anything because I’m not a queer.”
“Duterte routinely kisses his female supporters, once called the pope a ‘son of a bitch,’ all of which has earned him a reputation of the ‘Trump of the East’—a title previously held by a burnt wonton covered in scarecrow pubes,” Oliver quipped, adding, “Duterte has also suggested, if elected, he would kill five criminals every week—which may not be an idle promise as since he’s been there, extrajudicial death squads have reportedly killed over a thousand people. And while he denies any involvement in that, he does admit he has blood on his hands.”
Oliver then threw to a news clip of Duterte admitting in a nationally televised interview that he had killed people in the past. “Yes, of course. I must admit I have killed,” he told the interviewer. “Three months early on I killed about…three people.”
And on and on it goes.
From PBS to Washington Times to Chicago Tribune to NBC News and beyond, the media will spend several news cycles comparing a guy in the Philippines who claims to have murdered several people to the presumptive Republican nominee. Why? Because any success in demonizing and marginalizing the Republican nominee succeeds in helping the cause of Hillary Clinton.
The media smell blood in the water with Trump. They know Hillary is disliked and mistrusted by the American people. And they’re out of opportunities to re-define her. She’s been on the public stage for three decades and we know who she is. We just don’t like her. So the only chance she has is to have the American people fear the GOP candidate more than they hate her.
So linking Trump with this clown subliminally (and not so subliminally) jams through the argument that Trump is a clownish and dangerous figure. And the more they can do that, the less they have to try to salvage the deteriorating image of their chosen candidate. But you see right through it, don’t you?