Last night, via German state-run ARD, the Anne Will Show came on. The public forum chat topic? Trump-Clinton.
There are six observations to make from this show, which featured five entertaining guests.
1. "Are Americans that stupid?" This was the question at some point directed by Anne Will (the moderator) toward Thomas Gottschalk (the German entertainer who lives out of California). In about sixty seconds, Gottschalk laid it out....that Americans are the always the energetic child-people....always pumped up and going onto the next thing.
The suggestion here by the moderator.....which the public would normally perceive is that Americans really aren't capable of making correct decisions. This theme came over and over in the forum.
2. The chief active political player invited as a guest? Martin Schulz (SPD) who typically is a EU member. It's an amusing invitation because behind the scenes.....Schulz is being seen as the top SPD chancellor candidate instead of Gabriel. Few Germans know that, and it's not widely discussed.
Throughout the evening Schulz laid out issues and problems with Trump. I would suggest that the chief political theme for summer and fall of 2017 for the SPD in it's way toward the Oct/Nov election.....instead of security and immigration.....it'll be an anti-US/anti-Trump theme. Amusing to some but not likely to work as it has in the past.
3. A fair amount of assumption by the entire panel that Trump will win. This is the part that surprised me....in that they are fairly assessing the situation and have already determined that Hillary cannot win against Trump.
Back in April and May, Hillary would come up as a topic and talk was always positive on state-run TV on her campaign. Now? The assessment must be in and the sense is that she's in a bad situation.
4. Roger Johnson was the sole American on the panel and did a fair job (in German) explaining the whole thing. He is a Republican, I should note. Oddly, they didn't invite someone to hype up Hillary, which made one wonder if they had quietly gone ahead and assumed she was pre-determined loser.
Johnson's one key positive in the episode came toward the end and explaining the public desire for more jobs. There is a significant assumption that only Trump can deliver on the jobs promise.....which no one seemed to argue much against that logical reason to pick Trump.
5. Only intellectuals and statesmen should be leaders. Over the first ten minutes of this show.....this topic was drilled down into, and repeated. Trump isn't a statesman, or an intellectual. Trump's profession as mentioned at least a dozen times over the evening.....is reality show host.
Perhaps they could have asked about the intellectualism assessed to President Obama.....or how Chancellor Merkel's intellectualism got them deep into AfD territory with disgruntled voters, but they didn't reach that stage.
There is a need for intellectuals within politics....but to say they are some kind of 'anchor' or the stable side of the game....is a joke.
6. A clear moment where you realized this forum had become an entertainment forum. Over and over, it was stressed via the guests of the show and the moderator.....that politics isn't entertainment. Yet, over and over.....they proved the point of all of this coming full circle and being entertainment for the public.
As I came to the end of this chat forum show.....I came to this odd conclusion. There are some people (political figures and journalists) who are generally in some trance or zombie-like state, and haven't met real people in a decade. These people (not just the ones who appeared on this show) aren't connected to the public or understand the general public frustration....whether it be in Germany or the US. They hang out with like-minded friends, sip wine with other intellectual-types, and read intellectual-minded material.
These were the people who want to tell you what the priorities are.....why things are great....and how you should appreciate things as they are. The general public frustration is obvious.