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By Donnie Wahlberg

Where Donald Trump plays the role of Gary Busey — fighting it out with Bernie Sanders in the role of Meat Loaf — and we the people rule the boardroom.

What more can be said about Donald Trump that hasn’t already been said?

Regardless of how you feel about him, Mr. Trump is only a few more GOP primary wins — and a potential Hillary Clinton federal indictment — away from assuming the job of President of The United States of America.

Once upon a time, that concept seemed impossible. Today, it seems very possible.

Some Americans are embarrassed by this development. Some are angry. Many more are terrified. Like, really, really terrified.

I, however, can’t help but see the incredible irony in the fact that his presence has reduced this year’s election process to a real-life version of his own long-running reality TV series, “Celebrity Apprentice.”

I was a very big fan of “Celebrity Apprentice.” Seriously, it was an awesome show. Trainwreck TV at its finest: Former stars like Gary Busey, Meat Loaf, Dionne Warwick and Jose Canseco all took turns trying to raise money for charity (and resurrect their careers) by playing various business roles, in hopes of eventually being “hired” by Mr. Trump. Beyond the show’s victorious celebs, most had no idea what they were doing, and were often in way over their heads (much like Mr. Trump appears to be when discussing foreign policy).

At the end of each episode came the climactic and infamous boardroom scene. A scene where the celebrity contestants showed up in the dreaded “boardroom” and pleaded their cases to a scowling Mr. Trump. The contestants name-called, lied, backstabbed, cheated, manipulated and threw each other under the bus (basically, what Mr. Trump has reduced every single GOP debate to). All with the hope of convincing Mr. Trump, that they were worthy of the job, and to avoid hearing him utter the two most dreaded words in all of reality television: “You’re fired.”

The show was a ratings sensation, just like candidate Trump is now for the many news networks that can’t get enough of him.

We could choose to be appalled by the fact that one of the most important presidential elections of our lifetimes has been reduced to comparisons with “Celebrity Apprentice,” or we could choose, instead, to accept this process for exactly what candidate Trump has turned it to — a reality TV game show.

Call it, Presidential Apprentice.

Except in this version of the reality series, the roles are completely reversed.

In Presidential Apprentice, Donald Trump is not the powerful CEO. Instead, Donald Trump is relegated to the role of the desperate celebrity with the bad spray tan, in way over his head. Haplessly bumbling through challenge after challenge in the hopes of securing a job from the real boss — the American people.

That’s right, in Presidential Apprentice we assume the role of The CEO, and (for the purposes of this commentary) The Donald is assuming the role of Gary Busey — the star of “Celebrity Apprentice” Season 13.

A bit of casting that is actually not that far off when you compare:

Busey in “Celebrity Apprentice”:


Trump as Presidential Apprentice:


Many see Donald Trump as a danger to America — a bigoted, spoiled, sexist, unprepared and untrustworthy bully.

However, many others see him as a savior. They are a passionate, emotional group of voters who see Mr. Trump as an unfiltered, unapologetic, anti-establishment straight talker, who is their only hope for change.

I happen to be of the opinion that Mr. Trump is a man who is looking for a second act. A billionaire who can have whatever he wants, and has decided that what he wants now is to win the job of being the most powerful man in the world. Except that is not the true definition of being President. The job of President is actually to be a public servant.

I suspect that Mr. Trump may not consider the word servant to be part of any job description he would ever want — but that’s exactly what he is signing up for. Because it’s not a President’s job to be America’s boss. In America, the citizens are the boss, just as the Constitution intended. In America, we do not work for the federal government, the federal government works for us. Mr. Trump may not yet realize that this is the case, but it’s time for us to start reminding him that it is. More importantly, it’s time for us to start reminding ourselves that this is the case. Because sadly, many Americans seem to have forgotten this. Many Americans seem to want to relinquish their power by squandering their vote, and abstaining.

Look, I get it. People are angry. Mr Trump’s supporters certainly are. They are disappointed with unfulfilled promises, and have become disinterested and disenchanted with Washington. But any businessman worth his salt will tell you it’s never wise to make emotional decisions. Well, almost any businessman. Especially when that emotion is anger. But if voting for Trump out of anger is unwise, then so too is abstaining from voting out of anger.

Sure, it’s tough to find the “perfect candidate” this go-round — it usually is. But if your only plan to prevent someone like Donald Trump from becoming the leader of the free world is to threaten to move to another country (as I’ve heard many celebrities promise), and helplessly wait for election results, then you have truly lost perspective. Not when it comes to Donald Trump. Rather, you’ve lost perspective of how this country actually works. You’ve lost perspective of the power that you possess. You’ve lost perspective of the fact that you have what Donald Trump most desperately wants, needs and definitely cannot become President without: your vote.

Donald Trump’s famous tagline in “Celebrity Apprentice” is, “You’re fired.” In Presidential Apprentice, your vote is the equivalent of those two words. But they carry even more weight this election cycle. Because you’re the boss. Which means that Donald Trump can’t bully your vote away like he does to little old ladies’ homes using imminent domain. He can’t push you around, and insult you into submission, like he did to Jeb Bush. And he certainly can’t throw you out of your own boardroom.

Your vote is more valuable to Mr. Trump, and all Americans, than any of the billions that he possesses. He really wants to win this game of Presidential Apprentice. He’s all in now. He’s Gary Busey fighting it out with Bernie Sanders in the role of Meat Loaf, and we the people get to decide who wins.

I’m not saying who you should vote for. I’m not even saying Donald Trump is the only dangerous candidate in the field — fascists and socialists both threaten our liberties.

I’m simply saying that all it requires for us to fire him, or hire him, is to execute one of our most sacred rights as Americans citizens — our right to vote.

[splash.suntimes.com]

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