Donald Trump is Looking ... Energized?

Donald Trump is allegedly looking better than ever before, but that entirely depends on who you ask.

Over the weekend, Trump was photographed at Mar-a-Lago schmoozing with guests at a dog rescue fundraising event hosted by his daughter-in-law Lara. Appearances have become an integral part of Trump’s post-presidency routine, and given his penchant for golf and being fawned over, it makes sense. Sure, it’s a little weird to see a former president reduced to being a greeter at his own resort. But it’s even weirder to see sycophants fawning over how good and strong and healthy he looks when he very clearly doesn’t look any of those things.

It’s not clear what exactly about these images of Trump is supposed to be freaking liberals out. Is it his pasty skin? The vacant, dead look in his eyes? The fact that he’s managed to put on pants with a belt? This isn’t necessarily to make fun of Trump, who looks like a dried out sack of boil-in-bag rice as any reasonable old white Floridian man should. But it serves to wonder why these leeches feel the need to publicly flatter his looks and energy specifically when he appears unwell and unenergized.

Trump sycophancy is part of the Faustian bargain creeps like author Nick Adams (first tweet) make. He’s one of many right wing media types whose entire personality and relevancy is tied to Trump. He is the oxygen required to sustain their lives and obscure relevancy. Servile praise is to be expected no matter what. Still, this seems to go beyond couched admiration for Trump’s every waking breath. Adams and Brigitte Gabriel and others can see the president and have either taken these pictures themselves or know someone close to Trump that did. They know a certain number of their followers will drool over any compliment they post about Trump no matter how unkempt he looks.

But it seems equally possible they’re saying Trump’s sun-dried appearance is triggering libs in an effort to actually get libs to make fun of them—and if so, well done. To assume otherwise is to conclude they have zero self-awareness and think he actually looks healthy and energized (which is also a distinct possibility). It somewhat reflects the abject lunacy of his voting base since Joe Biden’s inauguration fueled by a media landscape now rabidly obsessed with cancel culture. Even Trump doesn’t know what to do with his free time—when he’s not being slobbered over at an event, he’s issuing desperate statements about how he hopes people “remember” him when they get their COVID-19 vaccine. It’s as hilarious as it is pathetic.

Of course it doesn’t really matter whether Adams and Gabriel actually think Trump looks good, the same way it doesn’t matter if he actually looks good. Through sheer force of personality and grift, Trump has built up a network of media leeches willing to refer to even his bowel movements as presidential. It’s the same effect Trump’s had on the Republican Party, which just can’t seem to quit him (as if they have a choice at this point). It’s dangerous and more than a little gross, but at least we can laugh at the results.