America spent the day watching Sam Nunberg, a former aide to Trump’s presidential campaign, have the kind of cocky, self-destructive spiral normally reserved for characters in the third acts of Scorsese movies, calling up and popping into every news show that wouldn’t suggest he go talk to someone who cares about him instead, where he railed against special counsel Robert Mueller, Trump, Trump’s administration, Russia, and the unbearable burden of emails.
It has been something to watch—quite literally. It has been something to gawk at, anyway, as Nunberg emerged from seemingly nowhere to offer a transfixing, hours-long, cross-channel rant about his principled refusal to spend “80 hours” of his clearly precious days searching his inbox for subpoenaed messages in which he, his distant spiritual father Roger Stone, and forwarded racist meme Steve Bannon whiled away the hours “talking about how much we hate people.” Rather, he said, he’d prefer to spend his time doing less ridiculous things, such as appearing on every TV station sounding like he’s taunting the Batman, daring Mueller to jail him while he goes off on tangents about how much he hates Trump and how Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders should “shut her fat mouth.” Oh, and then he caved and said he’d probably do it anyway.
Nunberg has truly been a surreal, distracting soap opera twist storming in from the wings of the circus tent. Anyway, does it surprise you at all that Nunberg and Trump first met at Wrestlemania? Or that there’s footage of it? Does anything surprise you anymore?
The story of Nunberg and Trump apparently dates all the way back to when Nunberg was just a 5-year-old acting disconcertingly on camera, as captured in the recent Channel 4 documentary, Trump: An American Dream. As the clip below shows, Nunberg was attending 1989’s Wrestlemania V at Trump Plaza, where he happened to be sitting right behind Trump. Magnanimously, Trump had Nunberg’s family move up to the first row, where cameras then caught the young Nunberg, clad in his Hulkamania gear, performing the signature arm-flails of New Zealand WWF tag team The Bushwhackers. And as the documentary announcer explains dryly, it was a mere 22 years after this hate-fueled vaudeville that “Nunberg was with Trump when he tried the ‘birther’ issue out for the first time.” Are you not entertained?
Anyway, as a a self-proclaimed protege of Roger Stone, the D-battery hucked at the body politic, Nunberg has a long history of being used as a sort of valuable idiot, to be placed in front of Trump and do a goofy dance to catch the camera’s attention whenever it suits him. And yes, the fact that Nunberg’s political career began while doing “The Bushwhacker” at Wrestlemania V has the kind of lazy symbolism we’ve come to expect from this over-the-top season of USA RAW. But you have to admit, folks, you didn’t see that one coming! This is why we just can’t help tuning in for the next three to seven years! Nunberg turned heel, just like when Macho Man Randy Savage left Hulk Hogan to join The Big Bossman—sadly as apt a metaphor for our current political situation as any!
Trump: An American Dream is reportedly coming to Netflix later this year. All this other shit is coming to your television incessantly.