Farewell, Donald Trump, you mangled apricot hell beast

Welcome to Declassified, a weekly column looking at the lighter side of politics.

In memoriam: This column would like to mark the passing of the political career of Donald J. Trump, without whom I would have had to put some effort in rather than simply copying and pasting what he said. So farewell to F**kface Von Clownstick, a sentient CAPS LOCK button, xenophobic sweet potato, Rome burning in human form, mangled apricot hell beast who served as 45th president of the United States of America. It really is the end of an error.

Before he left, Trump pardoned a few of his cronies, including alt-right provocateur Steve Bannon and rapper Lil Wayne. Sadly, there was no pardon for the American housewife whose attempt at making “British tea” involved putting it in the microwave, that episode of “Friends” when they went to England, or himself.

Speaking of doing favors for your buddies, Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador held a press conference in which he unexpectedly played the assembled press corps a clip of the 1960s cartoon “Top Cat” — Don gato y su pandilla in Spanish — because the actor who did some of the voices was a longtime supporter. The actor hadn’t just died, by the way, he passed away several years ago, so it wasn’t a tribute but merely López Obrador showing that he really is a Mickey Mouse president. Good job there’s not a global pandemic on!

Speaking of which, in Indonesia they’ve had to grapple with the same issue as every other country: who should get the coronavirus vaccine first. Frontline health care workers? Care home residents? The government (in Portugal’s case it should definitely have been the government as they’re superspreaders)? No, Indonesia went for social media influencers.

One of the lucky influencers, Raffi Ahmad — who has almost 50 million followers on Instagram — posted a video of himself getting the shot above the caption “Alhamdulillah [Praise be to God] a vaccine … Don’t be afraid of vaccines.”

A senior health ministry official said the decision to include influencers (and also, in the interests of fairness, more than a million healthcare workers) in the first round of inoculations was a deliberate communication strategy to eliminate scepticism and definitely not a spelling mistake in which “influencers” was written down instead of “influenza.”

CAPTION COMPETITION

“Listen carefully, Navalny walks down these steps and then we release the shark.”

Can you do better? Email [email protected] or on Twitter @pdallisonesque

Last week we gave you this photo:

Thanks for all the entries. Here’s the best from our postbag (there’s no prize except for the gift of laughter, which I think we can all agree is far more valuable than cash or booze).

“Facing a shortage, Madrileños make their own knuffelcontacts!” by Helen Darbishire.

Paul Dallison is POLITICO‘s slot news editor.



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