One of the few things that has made Donald Trump even remotely bearable over the last two years is “Saturday Night Live.” Last weekend’s episode didn’t disappoint. Most of the attention has centered around “SNL’s” epic send-up of Trump’s trip to the G-20 summit in Argentina during the cold open. In case you missed it, watch it here.
Alec Baldwin’s Trump moped about about Robert Mueller’s investigation closing in on him, using Cecily Strong’s Melania, Kate McKinnon’s Rudy Giuliani and Ben Stiller’s Michael Cohen as sounding boards. We also got a look at the apparent bromance between Russian strongman Vladimir Putin and Saudi crown prince Mohammed bin Salman, as portrayed by Beck Bennett and Fred Armisen, respectively.
But for once, the cold open wasn’t the funniest item served up by the Not Ready For Prime-Time Players. At the end of the show, the women of “SNL”–McKinnon, Strong, Leslie Jones, Aidy Bryant, Melissa Villasenor, Heidi Gardner and Ego Nwodim–did a rendition of Mariah Carey’s modern-day Christmas classic, “All I Want For Christmas Is You.” But there was a twist–they told Mueller that what they really wanted for Christmas was for him to indict Trump–or at the very least, his slimy son, Donald Jr.
Surprisingly, there aren’t any clips of that skit as I write this on Monday night. That’s too bad. By all rights, it should be a future “SNL” classic.
But believe it or not, this skit isn’t being panned from the right, but from the left. Specifically, the far left. Namely, from Caitlin Johnstone, an independent blogger and unabashed Bernie-or-Buster from Australia.
Johnstone bills herself as a “rogue journalist,” and has garnered a decent-sized following. But unlike many on the left, she doesn’t think that we should be asking questions about whether Trump and/or his campaign crawled into bed with Putin. To hear her talk, doing so makes you sound like a “neoliberalism-friendly establishment hack” who is pushing “an establishment agenda.”
So it should come as no surprise that she gave a big thumbs-down to the “SNL” women.
Well, that’s interesting. I thought that Mueller was merely seeking answers about how a foreign government was able to interfere with an election–and may have done so with the help of the Trump campaign. So wanting to answer questions about an attack on the foundations of our democracy is a sign that you’re being played by the “imperial blob” and are “bought and owned by power”? Yeah, okay.
I know quite a few Bernie-or-Busters who voted for Jill Stein, and yet know Trump is an ogre and want Mueller to bring him to justice. Suffice to say that Johnstone can’t see the forest for the trees.
But a deeper dive into Johnstone’s background reveals how she could possibly sound so dense. She claims that she is fighting to save the world from “a transnational alliance of plutocrats and secretive government agencies.” But in her effort to fight this cabal, she dishes out conspiracy theories as merrily as the likes of far-right luminaries like Alex Jones and Liz Crokin. She is a full-on 9-11 truther and believes there’s nothing wrong with asking about Pizzagate.
Seen in this light, Johnstone’s panning of this “SNL” skit might as well sound like this.
Most of us know that Trump represents an existential threat to democracy and to the world. Most of us also know that this country was swindled in 2016, and have been praying for this swindle to be exposed. If Johnstone believes exposing that swindle supposedly serves the interests of the plutocracy, she’s only making it harder for those of us who want to make sure there’s a country left to save.
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