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Trump Engineers a Linguistic Kill Shot for Fiorina

Trump Engineers a Linguistic Kill Shot for Fiorina

    Disclaimer: For new readers, this is part of my series on Trump’s skills as a persuader. I am analyzing events through the filter of my Master Wizard Hypothesis. The Master Wizard Hypothesis says that Trump is playing three-dimensional chess with a two-dimensional world and he will win the presidency in a landslide. (The alternative hypothesis is that he is nothing but the loudest “outsider” and will flame-out soon.)

    I don’t know which candidate would do the best job as president. I am not that smart. But I am impressed with Trump’s game. I write about it for entertainment. Don’t take cartoonists too seriously.


    The Fiorina Linguistic Kill Shot: “Look at that face!”

    This morning I see that the press is playing rusty trombone on Rolling Stone’s article about Trump and his unkind comments about Carly Fiorina’s appearance. The press is furiously trying to manufacture news out of the quote and doing a good job of it so far.

    You won’t appreciate the beauty of Trump’s game until you read the entire article, and that takes too long. But if you do, look for a Master Wizard making a Rolling Stones writer fall in love with him while setting up the writer to transmit the Fiorina kill shot embedded in a sexist-sounding comment. 

    And the Outragists danced and shouted. As planned.

    See the search results on Trump’s linquistic kill shot this morning, below the post here.

    All of the chatter from the Rolling Stones article will be about whether Trump’s comments were sexist or not. True to form, Trump is making all of us think past the close. The sale in this case is the idea that Fiorina’s face will be a problem with voters. We accepted that part of his suggestion and went directly to the idea of whether mentioning it is okay or not.

    Yeah, that happened.

    A kill shot is designed with one necessary element to distinguish it from a mere insult. The kill shot has to put words to what you were already thinking in a vague sense. If you disagree with the main idea in the linguistic kill shot, it has no power. Trump only picks kill shots you agree with on some visceral level. For example…

    Jeb Bush does look “low energy.” We agree as soon as Trump says it, even if we had never had a concrete thought about it until he voiced it.

    Ben Carson does seem “too nice” for the difficult job of staring down foreign leaders. We agree.

    And I’m going to come right out and agree that Fiorina’s face was bothering me. But I never would have voiced that opinion without Trump going first because it sounds terrible. I wouldn’t want to be associated with the thought. [Note to Outragists: The first sentence in this paragraph is the one to take out of context. You are welcome.]

    When I say Fiorina’s face bothers me, I am not referring to her looks in general. She looks fit, stylish, and attractive to me. But she does have what I call the angry wife face when she talks politics. Guys, you know the face, which is usually paired with a tone of disapproval. It is your greatest nightmare. It is the face that says you did not do a good job, at whatever.

    The outragists in the press will report Trump’s comments as sexism. And by today’s standards, I agree with the classification. But what every adult male who has ever had a relationship with a woman saw was Trump putting words to their own personal nightmares: That face.

    Trump will never win over voters who would be incensed by his “sexist” comments. But he can stir-up that crowd and make them carry his message to the rest of the world without paying a penny for ads.

    I have no way of knowing this, but I think most voters see a guy competing in a beauty contest and commenting on the beauty of another contestant. People do cast their votes based on looks, and that includes the attitude that a candidate’s face projects. The physical appeal of the candidates – both men and women – is a HUGE factor in any political race. That’s why we don’t elect short, bald, male presidents. It works both ways. Trump spoke the ugly truth. 

    My guess is that the majority of American voters chuckled at Trump’s comment and muttered to themselves some version of “We don’t have to worry about him lying to us.” 

    And his popularity grows.


    Bonus Thought: Trump seems to be about systems that improve his odds in a variety of ways, as opposed to moonshot-like goals. My book explains how to improve your odds the same way.

    And one reader says it boosted his energy…

    And are you reading Top Tech Blog every day after this? It makes a good finisher.

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