It’s time I come clean and confess.
I share my bed with a rabid right winger and have since 2018. My head filled with woke thoughts that keep me awake most nights, rests on a Mike Lindell My Pillow.
When I purchased the pillow, politics were the furthest thing from my mind. Or more accurately my mind was so full of disastrous politics, I couldn’t sleep. Hoping a new pillow might offer some relief, I went in search of a new one.
My brother Andy mentioned that my picky-about-pillows sister-in-law had recently found a heavenly headrest. I had every reason to trust her opinion. A former journalist, she had done her research in pursuit of a perfect pillow. To my surprise, she raved about the My Pillow. She now slept soundly through the night.
Clutching my 20% coupon in my hand off I went to Bed Bath and Beyond. The cashier remarked that they couldn’t keep the item in stock fast enough. The pillows were flying off the shelves. The power of television was made clear to me.
Of course, it turns out, it wasn’t a pillow causing the problems in my restful nights. It was Donald Trump and the state of our country. No pillow could help with that. Little did I realize the two would intersect.
Politics Makes Strange Bedfellows
When I purchased the pillow, Mike Lindell was just that ubiquitous mustached guy, with the heavy mid-west accent on TV. He was annoying but innocuous. I was as oblivious to his political affiliations, as I was about any late-night spiel meister.
His oratorial pitches were filled with attention-grabbing, superlative-laced descriptions, and repetitive mention of the product’s unique usefulness. It all boiled down to selling never before possibilities and potential.
The same kind of pitch Trump was famous for. The salesman and the showman shared a lot of traits
Now of course Lindell is as well known for his far-fetched right-wing political advocacy as for his pillow business. An outspoken supporter of Donald Trump, the pillow Magnate is a magnet for MAGA crazy conspiracy ideas.
Should I toss out my pillow?
As Seen On TV
Once upon a time product spokesmen and pitchmen didn’t polarize us politically. They were, I liked to think neutral and apolitical. Their beliefs didn’t go into my purchasing decisions.
I had no idea what Mr. Whipple’s worldview was other than a strong commitment to maintaining the freshness of his Charmin toilet paper.
In 1979 this spokesman for toilet tissue was voted as being the most recognizable face in America even beating out then-president Jimmy Carter. But did I ever once consider what his opinion on the energy crises was?
Did Sy Sperling, the Hair Club for Men “I’m not only the hair club president I’m also a client” guy support Gay rights? Where did he stand on the gender pay gap?
Was Crazy Eddy truly crazy or was he a right-wing-gun nut?
But Wait There’s More
I never once pondered if the prince of infomercials, Ron Popeil was pro-Roe v. Wade. And when he shouted out “But wait there’s more!” did I expect him to pontificate about his political agenda?
However, there once was a famous product spokesperson who nearly entered politics aligning himself with a very Trumpian character.
Kentucky Fried Chicken’s “Colonel” Harland Sanders.
In 1968 Alabama’s Democratic Governor George Wallace, the embodiment of resistance to the civil rights movement considered another Southern gentleman as a running mate in his presidential bid. Kentucky Fried Chicken King “Colonel” Harland Sanders. As the sole spokesman for his enormously successful company, Colonel Sanders was very recognizable and well-liked.
It was not the first time that the dapper Sanders dabbled in politics. He did actually try to run for the Kentucky state senate as a Republican in 1951 but lost. Perhaps if he had had as catchy a slogan as “Finger-Lickin’ Good,” he might have stood a better chance.
Of course, George Wallace was not lacking a snappy slogan. His classic “Segregation now, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever” continued to strike a chord with a lot of populists.
The 78 years old Colonel politely declined the offer to be the thirty-ninth vice president, though he did contribute to the Wallace campaign.
With the jovial colonel out of the picture for VP, Wallace cast his net wide.
He looked over Paul Harvey, a right-wing newscaster, and Orval Faubus, the racist ex-Governor of Arkansas. He nearly chose A. B. (“Happy”) Chandler, the former Governor and Senator from Kentucky, but Chandler proved too moderate on the race issue. Wallace ended up with a doozy-reactionary retired Air Force General “Bomb ‘em back to the stone age” Curtis LeMay.
We never had the chance for a Vice President Harland Sanders. But had Mike Lindell been available, the pillow pitchman might have been a perfect choice as Wallace’s running mate.
Wallace ran a campaign that vilified Blacks, trashed liberals and government bureaucrats, called his opponents traitors, and attacked intellectuals as enemies of the people. Just the sort of candidate Lindell could get behind.
In fact, he is.
Sally, good post. Too many folks have failed to learn the lesson that your reputation is influenced by the company you keep. The happiest people in America in the last eight years are those who declined to work for Donald J. Trump. They truly dodged a bullet. The second happiest are their spouses and significant others. The ones who did accept his offers watched their reputation burned by flying to close to the Trump sun. Thomas Wells, an attorney who worked for Trump penned this important op-ed before the 2016 election. It tells you all you need to know about the person. Keith
Thanks for sharing. I think anyone who escaped being drawn into the destructive orbit of Trump can consider themselves lucky. Most don’t escape unscathed.
Do you really sleep with that Lindell guy’s pillow?
If so, any nightmares?
Trump launching his presidential campaign in Waco, Texas.
I really do have that pillow. Sleeping on the pillow has not increased my belief that Trump won the election nor caused me to have Qanon-worthy dreams. All I get is a stiff neck. Good point about Waco- there are no coincidences.
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Rick Wilson’s “Everything Trump Touches Dies” pretty well covers the Trump curse.