Wait, what? No parade? No M1A2s rolling down Pennsylvania Avenue? No Patriot missile batteries? No marching ranks of goose-stepping infantry in front of the Trump International Hotel?
WAAAAAAAA!!! I WANT A PARADE!!!!!!!
Finally, somebody pulled the plug on Trump’s farcical vanity project. Not the Joint Chiefs, bless their pointy, be-hatted little heads – the Pentagon couldn’t put a stop to it. They just tried to rein in the scope a bit by telling Donald little white lies, like he couldn’t have a phalanx of M1 Abrams main battle tanks because their treads would tear up the Washington pavement. Now it is true, an M1 weighs a crap-load, over 70 tons, but they have rubber blocks on their treads, and I don’t know about the streets in D.C., but they never left ruts in the boulevards of Baghdad.
When you think about it, a combat vehicle that couldn’t drive down a paved street would be kind of silly, wouldn’t it? I mean, off-roading is obviously necessary a lot of the time, but hell, if you’ve got the enemy’s freeway secured, it would be a right royal pain, a tactical fiasco even, if you couldn’t make good, efficient use of it, yes?
It’s claimed they had to do some re-paving in D.C. after the big parade in 1991, celebrating the victory in the Gulf War, but I’ve got my suspicions on that score. Sounds like prevaricating to me. The French, for example, have no trouble motoring their admittedly somewhat lighter (60 ton) Leclerc main battle tanks past the reviewing stand on Bastille Day, and you know they’d never make an unseemly mess of the Champs Elysees. Happens every year. Too bad, too, because that’s how Trump caught the bug in the first place, sitting there with Macron last July.
I suspect that the Pentagon, with no big victory to celebrate, and leery of the optics of giving Orange Mussolini a parade like the ones his pals Vlad and Kim like to put on, was just looking for excuses. It fell to the Mayor of D.C. to deploy the ultimate wet blanket – excessive cost (so excessive, over 90 million, that one can’t help but suspect somebody pulled a number out of her backside just to kibosh the thing) – and totally ruin Donald’s fun, and oh, what a disappointment it must be to him.
Heartbreaking, really. Why else do the stinking job, if you can’t have the pomp and ceremony? It’s by no means insightful to note that Donald derives no joy whatever from holding the office of President, save that supplied by the trappings. It was much more fun to be campaigning, drinking in the adulation of the frothing Caucasian hordes at his serial re-creations of the good old days in 1940s Berlin, which is why he won’t stop holding election-style rallies. The only happy aspect of actually being the Commander-in-Chief is all the nifty Commander-in-Chief stuff, like that shiny blue-green Marine One helicopter that takes him back and forth to the sweet, sweet ride on Air Force One, and that big armoured Cadillac that he gets to ride around in – it’s so heavily plated, tricked-out and souped up that they call it The Beast!! Just look at this thing:
Now that shit is fun, like great a great big Tonka Toy, and The Donald surely does love his Tonkas – remember when he got to play in an 18-wheeler they drove on to the White House grounds for him? Vrooooom!! Wheeeeeeee!!
Still, he already owned lots of toys as a private citizen, including a plane that was almost as good as his current ride, heck, folks even called it “Trump Force One”:
So he’s a tough man to impress. Nothing merely redolent of obscene wealth is fit to blow his combed-over hair back these days. What Donald needs to really get going are toys that only the honest-to-God President of the United States gets to play with, toys in a whole other category to things like missile-proof cars and modified civil airliners, which, really, any billionaire could buy if he felt like it. Well, any real billionaire could, or maybe Donald if he managed to snag some more of that Russian Oligarch dough, or perhaps he could try to straight-up borrow it and then go bankrupt again, except actual banks won’t touch him or any of his shell corps with a barge pole. Anyway, you get the idea, vehicles like The Beast are keen and everything, but not out of the question for any mortal civilian with enough filthy lucre. What you really need is something like an aircraft carrier! Yeah! Remember how delighted Donald was when they let him dress up like the C.O. of a nuclear powered super-carrier, and run up and down the passageways like he owned the thing?
They gave him a hat that said “USS Gerald R. Ford – CVN-78”! They let him on the bridge! He got to sit in the Captain’s chair! Top that Warren Buffett! And wait, wasn’t Gerald Ford a President too? Sure he was. Why then, just think of it, a couple of years from now it could be the USS Donald J. Trump, CVN-Something, 82, say. 82 is higher than 78. Or 85. Laugh it up then, you New York elite bastards. We’ll see who’s too snooty to want a membership at Mar-a-Lago when the goddam USS Donald J. Trump, CVN-100, is anchored off shore.
Military Tonkas, that’s the thing. People kept telling him that only tyrants and dictators are apt to perch on reviewing stands wearing lots of ribbons, saluting and clapping while military hardware and legions of disciplined troops stomp by in their honour, and that just wasn’t a good look for the chief executive of a democracy. “Please Mr. President”, they’d say, they’d say “Mr. President, we just don’t think this is the sort of photo-op you want on the eve of the vote to repeal Obamacare”:
So OK, but bummer. Then, though, Donald went over to Paris to see that French guy, what’s-his-name, you know, he had a hot wife, older, but hot, not Melania-hot but sort of trim and fit-looking – whatever, you know who I mean, the point is, he was sitting there with Mr. French Guy on some important French holiday or other, and damned if he didn’t hold a military parade! Shit! It had tanks, and airplanes zooming overhead, it was the bomb! Right there in the middle of the E.U.! Donald was so thrilled he gave the little foreign bastard an attaboy, which isn’t his usual thing, but damn! The man had armoured vehicles at his beck and call, and that really says something about a guy. Even if he is French.
Obviously, then, being some sort of frigging democracy, whatever that was, didn’t stop you from putting on a really impressive show with tanks and guns and shit. Like when the circus used to come to town, with the big leathery things, they were grey, they had long noses, the things, with the tusks, right? Like that, except tanks and planes. This French guy did it. Why then shouldn’t he, The Donald, have one? Was he not The Donald? Did not America own lots of hardware you could form up into tidy ranks and parade back and forth? Listen, the last defence automation bill – was that what General Kelly called it? Automation Bill? Authorization? Something like that – it funds the army etc., and that thing came in at something over 700 billion dollars. Seven Hundred Billion Bucks. That’s more than you could squeeze out of frigging Oleg Deripaska, even on a good day after the weekly drug money infusion into that Cypriot bank he uses. For that kind of dough, there’d better be a tank or two lying around, you know it, there’ll be dozens, maybe even hundreds of tanks, believe me. Soldiers too! Has to be! Forget the French, if sad Little Rocket Man can do it, how hard would it be for the goddam United States of Fucking America to muster up something like this?
Listen, Stalin did it, and he couldn’t even get them to grow enough potatoes! What gives?
But no, back comes the Mayor of D.C. with a price tag of something like 92 million semolians for one lousy parade. Everybody in the communications office had a shit fit, I think Huckabee-Sanders damn near had a gun in her mouth thinking about the next press conference, so fine, fuck it, no parade.
Screw all of you, he’ll go to the French one again.
Re buying more jet fighters, it feels almost churlish to point out that 92 million isn’t quite enough to purchase a single F-35 at the current flyaway cost (it’s understandable, because they’re invisible, you can’t see them at all, that’s correct isn’t it? That’s right, right?)
So far, officially, the parade isn’t permanently off the table, it’s just delayed until a year from now, in 2019, when maybe somebody can find another reason why it’s impossible. Who knows – maybe by then there won’t even be any Trumps kicking around Washington any more, and they won’t have to.