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Invasion of the Pretty People, Kamala Harris Edition
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How do you sell elite rule to a 99% electorate? Well, don’t run somebody like Hillary Clinton, a lackluster campaigner with more 1% baggage than the Louis Vuitton stock room.

There aren’t many politicians who can look you in the eye and say “I work for the bankers…but I care about you” and get away with it.

Obama could. Clinton couldn’t. Now that Obama’s termed out, the search is on for the telegenic candidate who checks the intersectional boxes but knows on what side the world’s bread is buttered.

My bets are on Kamala Harris as the intersectional box-checking, globalist friendly, appealing candidate now being groomed for a presidential run. Sooner rather than later, I’d think.

Judging by Emmanuel Macron, a handsome youngster can be transformed into a president even with a slim resume. Best thing is to get ‘em out in front of the voters while they’re young and fresh, and before they’ve had to accumulate too much of a track record of 1% accommodation.

That’s the Obama lesson. He came from nowhere and became President. Hillary came from somewhere and went nowhere.

It’s an interesting data point in the evolution of American politics that the Democrats doing what the Republicans used to do: find a charismatic front person who is also a tabula rasa to generate electoral mass appeal for elitist policies.

The key task, and one I’m guessing Democratic strategists have devoted a lot of effort to cracking, is how to convert the perceptual framing from “99% v. 1%” to “degraded lumpen v. the quintessence of America”.

Democratic Party liberalism pretty relies on meritocratic technocratic model to make the elite rule pill easier to swallow: the best and the brightest are recognized by an enlightened electorate and handed the keys to the America-mobile.

The people who don’t vote for Team Demlib are *ahem* unenlightened: low information voters, bigots, oh, what’s a good word? How about…Deplorables!

So what should we call Demlibs? The wise? The The woke? How about…the Adorables?

This framing lets Demlibs dodge the slam that they are venal politicians feasting on the nutritious swill slopped in front of their snouts by globalist billionaires; or, for the Marxy-inclined critic, that they callow bourgeoisie sucking up to the capitalist class for profit and protection.

Sweeping issues of political interest or class interest under the rug does raise some awkward questions, though!

Dems are pretty much in the situation of saying, we’re out here absorbing billions in campaign funding and promoting globalist centrist polices because…


Um, because we care so much about humanity we can’t bear to do otherwise!

We’re not creatures of class, ambition, or interest!

That must be it! Noblesse oblige!

This is an indispensable piece of framing for a political movement that might otherwise be convincingly portrayed as tools of the 1%.

It’s an easier line to sell with a young, sexy, and savvy candidate.

Obama played that role quite well as president, but not, in my opinion, so well since then, with the whole fracasso of sabotaging the Trump presidency with the anti-Russia horcruxes and then signing a $60 million book deal and shouldering up to the public speaking trough with the Clintons with a $400,000 gig and for that matter helping out with “Hillary a la Francais” centrist Emmanuel Macron’s presidential campaign.

Takeaway: get the pretty people in front of the voters before they turn ugly.

The future belongs to the young!

(Republished from China Matters by permission of author or representative)
• Category: Ideology • Tags: Donald Trump, Emmanuel Macron 
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  1. Escher says:

    Many good points made by the author. However, I disagree with his prediction of Kamala Harris as the next Democratic candidate. They will probably revert to a white male, to try and claw back some of the deplorable votes.

    • Replies: @anonymous
  2. I’ve been predicting Kamala Harris since Hillary tanked. Elizabeth Warren will be about 71 in 2020. Kamala Harris will be only in her late 50s and likely running against a 74-year old Donald Trump who seems to be doing everything he can to alienate his “deplorable” base. The only downsides that I see to a Harris candidacy are geographical–California is already in the Democratic tank and racial–can she at least partially energize blacks?

  3. Smitty says:

    Kamala Harris has an Achilles heel, actually she can be removed and criminally prosecuted for a rainbow of crimes she committed while CA AG and I’m sure her crimes have extended to her federal office.

    • Replies: @Alden
  4. reiner Tor says: • Website
    @Diversity Heretic

    Yeah, she might be too light skinned.

    • Replies: @Not Raul
  5. JackOH says:

    “It’s an easier line to sell with a young, sexy, and savvy candidate.”

    Peter, you may be on to a variant of the “Chicks up front!” cry of the protestors at the 1968 Democrat National Convention. Back then it was to gain special public sympathy by baiting the police into clobbering young women on television.

    I actually haven’t thought much about the prospect of politically ambitious women who are skilled enough and conniving enough to recognize that good looks alone contain at least the possibility of foiling a substantive political competitor. I’m thinking Van Gordon Sauter and Roger Ailes types guiding the Democrats into explicitly sexing up their candidate roster as cover for corporate governance. I’m also thinking, very early in the morning, how Gloria Steinem gave the weirder elements of feminism a voice that frumpy women and hate-filled lesbians couldn’t.

    Yeah, if I were approached by the Dems about regaining electoral success, I’d be thinking: “Hot, unknown babes with law degrees.”

    • Replies: @Logan
  6. Renoman says:

    In the words of Mohamed Ali, “He too ugly to be champion”. Star quality is what you are talking about, that magical presence factor. It doesn’t have to be all looks either, Tom Waits has it, it’s more “cool” than anything, you know it when you see it.

  7. dearieme says:

    Will Tulsi Gabbard be too young?

  8. Anonymous [AKA "California Dreaming"] says:

    So, Mr. Lee’s area of expertise is ‘China’. He writes a blog called “China Matters”.

    And yet, when the world flashpoint in N. Korea is threatening to explode, Mr. Lee now seems determined to write about anything other than is area of expertise. I’d find it much more useful if he’d provide some expert commentary on China-N.Korea rather than talking about the Dalai Lama and an obscure American Senator now filling B.Boxer’s old fake-liberal but really pro-corporate Dem role.

    The big problem with the Dems is that they have nothing to sell. They can’t run on what they really want to do, which is more war, more rule by bankers, give corporations everthing they want as long as they pay/bribe enough to get it, more police abuses, more spying on Americans, etc, etc, etc.

    So, yes, they might go for a pretty face. But it won’t get them anywhere. They got nothing. Only Bernie had even a hint of something to sell. And that worked pretty well even coming from an old geezer who wasn’t exactly photogenic, with a platform that was a hollow, luke-warm, shallow and incomplete message of just a little change and just a little hope.

    Thus, the Dems mainly need to come up with a platform that’s actually popular. Which would mean kicking away all their 1% donors and backers and actuallly giving the people something they want. Which doesn’t seem like its going to happen anytime soon. We’ve consistently seen since the election that the 1% have a firm hold on the Democrats short-hairs and aren’t going to let go.

    Meanwhile, I wish Mr. Lee would get back to covering his beat before it all explodes in a nuclear war that ends life on earth as we freeze and starve in a nuclear winter.

    • Replies: @Kiza
  9. Logan says:

    Anchor people and reporters used to often be average looking.

    Everybody on TV now looks like invaders from Planet Gorgeous.

    I don’t always notice it watching American TV, but one of the things I find most enjoyable about BBC programming is that many of its actors and even stars look like actual human beings. It’s always startling when a normal person wallks out.

    Fox had a lot to do with this. Their female commentariat were all gorgeous. Many also very breight and articulate, but it’s pretty clear that looks is a prerequisite.

    • Replies: @JackOH
  10. Alden says:

    What crimes? I’m interested to know.

  11. @dearieme

    You mean the notorious KGB agent from Hawaii? Assad’s girlfriend? They’ll never give her a chance.

  12. Numinous says:

    Is America ready for a Hindu President?

    • Replies: @dearieme
  13. dearieme says:

    “Is America ready for a Hindu President?” Dunno: it’s her Mum who’s the Hindu. The daughter is some variety of Christian.

    Mind you, you ought to be ready for a Hindu if a good enough one comes along. A country that subjected itself to the sequence Slick Willie, W, O, and Donald J Hillary can’t afford to turn its nose up at a good candidate on religious grounds.

    Though perhaps you did turn your nose up at Romney on religious grounds.

    • Replies: @Numinous
  14. After the crash and a couple years of foraging for insects and berries no American will admit to ever being a Democrat or a Republican. A bit of hind sight will reveal the truth. D’s and R’s ruined the country.

  15. Z-man says:

    That’s it Trump-Gabbard in 2020!!! Dump Pence and make it a fusion ticket! She won’t go for it and neither would the orange man but it’s nice to dream and Trump would win in a landslide!

    • Agree: RadicalCenter
  16. I’d rather have Rand Paul as VP and Gabbard at Sec State. Well, a guy can dream.

  17. JackOH says:

    Yeah, agree. You can make book that at least one major Democrat consultant is thinking that a successful 2020 contender against President Trump will be a good-looking woman with a thin political resume and none of the marital and legal baggage of Hillary. The kicker, of course, will be that Madame X will represent the same corporate-global interests as Hillary would have. In other words, that consultant will tell the Democrat leadership to stick with the same old-same old identity politics, and get a new messenger for it.

  18. Not Raul says:
    @reiner Tor

    I’m not sure that’s much of a problem. Obama is light-skinned, too.

    A bigger problem might be that she isn’t a biological parent. The last President not to have kids was Harding.

  19. @Diversity Heretic

    if she is the answer dnc comes up with, she will not win. we will get another 4 years of trump.

  20. At times, I feel as if I’m not 100 percent certain I wouldn’t prefer to be executed by firing squad, as opposed to living in the USA at a time when Willie Brown’s ex-girlfriend is the presiding officer of the Federal government. A man can only stomach so much. Personally, I would be disinclined to ever vote for a woman for President, and certainly not a very pretty woman who’s been pampered her whole life. This is the worst idea ever, but on the plus side of the ledger, I just can’t see her beating Trump.

  21. Kiza says:

    You obviously have not been following Prof Lee’s writings, but you are a US person so you must have a (worthless) opinion about everything. No wonder US is already an Idiocracy, which you all have been discussing here: Kamala Harris as President Camacho.

  22. Numinous says:

    Wikipedia says her religion is Hinduism.

    I’m a Hindu Indian. (Though practically speaking, I’m an atheist.)

    Had I been American and allowed to vote in the 2012 Presidential election, I’d have gone for Obama, purely on the grounds that Romney was promising more of the execrable neocon foreign policy. If anything, Romney’s religion would have been a plus in his favor as far as I was concerned. I lived on the West Coast for many years during the past decade (and traveled throughout the American West), and found Mormons to be some of the nicest, most level-headed, people around.

  23. @dearieme

    Will Tulsi Gabbard be too young?

    She’s certainly pretty enough, but the Establishment doesn’t want her. She has too many sensible views.

  24. Dave337 says:

    From what I’ve read Harris used Brown as much as he used her which may (or may not) offend feminists voters. Another Californian waiting in the wings is Gavin Newsom who apparently appeals to both genders.

  25. Ram says:

    How long would it be before the US becomes like Czarist Russia – a feudal society with serfs serving their handful of Pharisaic overloads.

  26. anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    The future belongs to the young!

    Age 52 is hardly the youth brigade coming up even for these times. The 1% needs to have the CIA locate some 16 yr olds who seem like they could be brought along and have their career paths smoothed over surreptitiously as they’re brainwashed and have various scripts drilled into their heads. They need to create candidates rather than merely trying to mold already existing ones. This’ll be the way of the future in order to continue deceiving the masses.

    • Replies: @Truth
  27. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    It’s been more obvious since (Bill) Clinton’s unexpected breakthrough, but the Democrats have been gravitating toward the Eva Peron beautiful-people candidates a long time. Upper-class “witty” flake Adlai Stevenson was the prototype of this urban-elite mascot. What you say is true, though– in most democracies it’s the right-of-center party that leans on this gimmicky tactic. By contrast the United Demographic-States of Consumer-researchmerica led the way in making racial minorities hip and exotic, which has been followed by Canada and Blairite Britain, eventually to shape the ideology of the E.U. in the new century.

  28. Truth says:

    Age 52 is hardly the youth brigade coming up even for these times. The 1% needs to have the CIA locate some 16 yr olds who seem like they could be brought along and have their career paths smoothed over surreptitiously as they’re brainwashed and have various scripts drilled into their heads.

    Uh, what do you think they’ve done with every president, except it was more like 6 than 16.

  29. @Not Raul

    A bigger problem might be that she isn’t a biological parent. The last President not to have kids was Harding.

    Webb Hubbell on line one.

  30. athEIst says:
    @Not Raul

    The last President not to have kids was Harding.
    Does that include bastards?

  31. artichoke says:

    I predict Chris Murphy, junior senator from Connecticut. Pretty good looking as far as I can tell, talks smoothly, came from nowhere — he’s got some force behind him. I don’t even think he did time in the House. Swoosh, straight into the Senate.

    • Replies: @res
  32. artichoke says:
    @Not Raul

    Obama’s returned the rent-a-kids and apparently the wife too. Don’t see them together any more.

  33. res says:

    Per his wiki, in the House 2007-2013:

    But thanks for the pointer. I did not know about him. Any reason to believe he would run anytime soon given his youth?

  34. anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    White male? Maybe. Then again there’s always Corey Booker who passes the NYT litmus test, meaning a person of color and conjectural gender along with the requisite educational credentials (Stanford, Yale Law, blah blah blah).

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