This Unholy Mess


Cross-Promotional Bonanza in North Korea

Okay, listen up, people. I feel like you don’t realize what you’ve got here. Just one of the greatest cross-promotional opportunities on earth at this moment, that’s all. This is synergy times a hundred! It’s our chance to boost the president’s World Leader Image into the stratosphere by having him meet a fourth time with Kim-What’s-His-Name, then say a bunch of stuff about the nuclear threat being gone.
What? No, I’m telling you, it doesn’t MATTER that the president doesn’t know nuclear proliferation from venereal disease. It doesn’t even matter that the first three meetings were less than zero. What matters? Making him look like the Deal Maker, the decisive boss-guy who’s gonna get Kim-What’s-His-Body to give up the only thing that makes anybody pay attention to him—his nukes, of course–in exchange for letting the West make a ton of money putting huge buildings all over his country. All the president’s gotta do is play out the kind of TMZ scenario he does best: lunch, photo-op handshake, call it a win, and leave. It’s a no-brainer. Literally.
I admit it’s a little disappointing to see the president’s bulky good looks in the same photo frame as Kim-Whozits—jeez, the guy’s like a cross between a morbidly obese panda and Glenn Beck–but what we do is make up for Kim’s physical image by playing up his strong leadership side—you know, the guy who murders family members and has a few hundred thousand dissenters in re-education gulags. You get the natural fit with the president? Of course you do. Two strong guys deciding the fate of the world. Iron Man and Superman. Kevin James and Danny DeVito.
Groundwork? Seriously? What are you, a refugee from the State Department? Don’t tell me: you like those “experts,” guys who spend years, like, studying the history of Korea and junk like that. You want lower-level negotiations to start with, ground work to give a summit a chance of achieving concrete results. Concrete results? Really? Rat poisons and suppositories need results. What we want are optics! The clue for you is: the president doesn’t do experts. His fantastic intuition makes him armed and dangerous and ready to make the right call to burnish his personal brand. He might even help America out as long as it’s convenient and doesn’t mess up his coif.
I’ll tell you where you can pour your concrete results. You can pour them on the site of the new Trump Panmunjom Tower, in the heart of the prestigious Korean Demilitarized Zone–in the planning stages now! Can you see how this plays out to the public? It’s their chance to experience living history. Book in advance, in either Kim’s Communist Wing, where goose-stepping servers offer you a choice of luscious canned cat foods (or, for a modest supplement, actual cat) from the Will of the People Restaurant; or in the Effete Capitalist Wing, where room service from the DMZ Café is brought to your bullet-proof door by sweet young girls in private school jumpers, with faces made identically perfect and vaguely western by the latest in South Korean cosmetic surgery.
So you guys are feeling the momentum, the synergy? Like they say in hell, the bottom’s the limit! And your job is to be sure the president gets himself there. Kim-Something-Or-Other might get some legitimacy out of the meetings, sure—he’s always wanted a face-to-face with an American president, but has been stonewalled up to now. All that hoo-ha about him being a murderous, iron-fisted dictator. So what? Our job is to see that the president comes out of the meetings with at least the same amount of thin, flashy legitimacy as Kim-Kim. How hard can it be? “Thin and Flashy” is the president’s middle name. Okay, point taken. Maybe “Fat and Flashy.”
We’ve got some mojo going, no doubt about it. Look at the way the “DMZ moment” at the end of June played out. It’s one for the history books, yada, yada. You’ll always remember where you were when it happened, blah, blah. He takes a few steps into the DMZ, gets the handshake, the big toothy Kim smile. That classic scene again: two global strongmen having a moment together. Exchanging charm bracelets or whatever. Hot chocolate and a marshmallow. That’s “Apprentice” quality promotional genius, and we want to work it. Grab the headline and stop worrying about whether anyone notices nothing actually happened. De-nuclearizing? Who cares?
Last point, and then you can get back to coaching Mike Pence on a new facial expression. Kim is smarter than Trump, sure—but that’s tweakable. Our angle is: At least Trump is smart enough to get into a photo with someone as smart as Kim. That’s a win.

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