Just in time for the holidays and oh happy day the referral of criminal charges against him, the shabby carnival barker and future inmate managed to hit yet another implausible new low last week with a “major announcement” that turned out to be the launch of blissfully tacky, $99, grifting-for-his-life Trump digital trading cards celebrating his life and “career” – as ripped Superhero, astronaut, cowboy and presumably now white-collar-except-for- the-orange-makeup-stains-perp.
Monday’s unanimous referral by the Jan. 6 Committee of four criminal charges – “influencing or impeding an official proceeding of the US government,” “conspiring to defraud the US”, “unlawfully (making) false statements to the federal government,” and “assisting or engaging in insurrection against the United States” – was, of course, the day’s big, bad news for the has-been now living a “sad,” lame life in his “Barbie Dream House” amidst endless golf games, hapless sycophants and the dutiful applause of dinner guests for a loser who desperately craves it.
The decision that it’s “time to prosecute” the most flagrant of his boundless crimes could mean the end of all that, an end devoutly to be wished; it could also decisively show, declared Jamie Raskin, that, “Ours is not a system where foot soldiers go to jail, and the masterminds and ringleaders get a free pass.”
Still, for all the day’s drama and schadenfreude, the Committee’s action was long-awaited and somewhat expected. Not expected was Trump’s willingness in the preceding days to sink yet one foul rung lower in the Cheap Grifter Department. Awaiting the rumored charges, he was already losing it with a bonkers rant about the “Unselect Committee of Democrats, Misfits and Thugs” going after his “‘PEACEFULLY & PATRIOTICLY’ speech” on Jan. 6th, which was “mild & loving.”
Then, tossing any minimal remaining shred of dignity to the wind, he morphed into a gaudy salesman hawking “a series of utterly ridiculous, abominably photoshopped,” likely illegal by dint of copyright law NFT imaginary trading cards – think Mickey Mantle without the card – featuring his mug stuck onto multiple, fit, heroic figures with “really terrible to really, really terrible” results – a move even his last five loyal fans declared “one of the cringiest things ever” before incredulously asking, like many of us before them, “Is this a joke?” Nope. After a tacky tease – lasers shooting from his eyes! – proclaiming, “America needs a SUPERHERO,” he evidently, astoundingly decided he’s (still) it. “Come for the claim Trump was a better president than Washington and Lincoln!” mocked one group. “Stay for the Trump digital trading cards!”
The “ultimate holiday grift” – “sort of like baseball cards, but hopefully more exciting!” – features a supremely cheesy, “limited edition,” “digital collectible” trading card, each with “a pre-assigned rarity” and “exclusive incredible artwork” “priced to sell at just $99!” And SWEEPSTAKES prizes! 45 cards – $4,500-plus – gets you A GUARANTEED TICKET TO A DINNER with “hopefully your favorite president of all time” in “South Florida” (but you have to pay to get there). Other prizes: A chance to “spend time with the president of the United States” (Biden?) playing golf, or Zooming, or seeing him sign plastic crap.
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“Christmas is coming and this makes a great Christmas gift,” he says in his QAnon meets QVC video. “They will be gone, I believe, very quickly!” “TODAY ONLY $99!” blare the ads. “1000s of PRIZES! BUY NOW!” Astonishingly, suspiciously, the atrocities reportedly sold out within 24 hours; many wondered if they were bought up by his PAC, or served as a front for a foreign country funneling money to him, or got caught in some shady time/space continuum where pathetic crimes by pathetic clowns are rewarded. Regardless, he likely made at least a cool million toward his soaring legal costs.
In return, he forfeited a sizable chunk of whatever supremely scant political credibility he had left to him, including by stalwart MAGA cultists who until then somehow hadn’t realized their noble leader was a lying, moronic, cartoon grifter. Sample responses as documented by former GOPer and nemesis Ron Filipkowski: “Are you f(&King kidding me?”, “Trump is becoming a joke,” “Pretty sure I just fell off the Trump train. Unbelievable,” and, from right-wing media figure Baked Alaska, now facing six months in jail for his Jan. 6 rowdiness, “I can’t believe I’m going to jail for an NFT salesman.”
Sentient human beings were unsurprised but similarly unimpressed: “Pathetic has a new basement… One of the most hilariously shit videos I’ve ever seen… Will he throw in a couple of steaks and a college degree?…The guy’s a moron….The political version of suicide by cop.” Polls now show Trump on the rails: Both CNN and Quinnipiac recently found his approval rate at a six-year-low of 31% of Republicans. And many experts noted that, in keeping with his Art-of-the-Deal self-mythologizing, his judgment and timing, this time on the NFT and crypto currency market, were again catastrophic – “He bought into a clear collapse” – because everything he touches dies, still.
Despite the cold cash he got, the savage mockery of his latest venture prompted the ever-fragile Trump to back-peddle and swiftly, clumsily claim, Dumb-and-Dumber-like, that his real “major announcement” wasn’t about silly cards but free speech.
“MAJOR ANNOUNCEMENT,” shrieked MAGA War Room. “President (sic) Trump has announced his 2024 free speech platform.” Cue six pained minutes of word salad about “my plan to shatter the left-wing censorship regime” after “bombshell reports” confirmed “a sinister group of deep-state bureaucrats, Silicon Valley tyrants, left-wing activists and depraved corporate news media” conspiring to “silence the American people.” Insisting “the censorship cartel must (be) destroyed immediately,” the only former president in history to be charged with multiple crimes of sedition vowed that, “within hours of my inauguration,” he will sign an executive order banning anyone from calling anything “misinformation” yada yada.
We assume that would be his inauguration as mayor of Crazy Town at FCI Otisville Block 4, where hopefully, in the quiet of his cell, he will be free to peruse alternative Trump cards, including – “MAJOR ANNOUNCEMENT” – the honest grotequeries of The Good Liars: Space Hero, Builder Hero, Burger Hero, Twitter King, Stable Genius, Fine People Hero and, our fave, Jail Hero.