We’re not sure if she still stays out too late, but she’s definitely got nothing in her brain – that’s what people say.
Surprising, impressing, and influencing no one, Taylor Swift this week endorsed Joe Biden for President. Notwithstanding that Biden does not know what office he’s running for, cannot remember Mitt Romney’s name, told 56 percent of Americans to not vote for him, and promised 200 million Americans would die during one of his speeches, Swift’s endorsement means nothing. Celebrities endorse Democrat politicians because it gets them free publicity from an obliging left-wing press corps and acts as cover for their lives of otherwise unforgivable luxury.
Swift – who probably voted for Trump in 2016 – had always been silent on politics until 2018, when she came out swinging as a woke woman warrior, pushing back against Marsha Blackburn’s candidacy for Senate in Tennessee, Swift’s home state.
Blackburn went on to beat her opponent by 11 points and carried the most counties ever in an open senate election in Tennessee history.
But apparently the Blackburnt hand doesn’t always teach best. She, or more likely her publicist, has continued lashing out in favor of leftist causes. Her 2019 single “The Man” set out to challenge the patriarchy, and stuff, but was hard to take seriously coming from someone who’d been a millionaire since she was a teenager by marketing traditional femininity.
In another single that year – “You Need to Calm Down” – Swift took a “bold” stand on LGBT issues, with a video depicting Trump supporters as some kind of hysterical mob, ignoring the reality that Donald Trump is the most pro-gay President ever, having been the first to pose with a rainbow flag, appoint an openly gay Cabinet member, and call for the decriminalization of homosexuality worldwide. This just all makes her look unaware at best and stupid at worst. Why on Earth is she doing this?
The answer is simple: she’s not as popular as she used to be and she wants attention.
Swift is not a young woman anymore, so there’s no demand for the endearing, teenage love songs that – to her great credit – she wrote herself. Her two most popular songs – “Shake It Off” and “Blank Space,” which used to be in the top 10 of all time on YouTube, have sunk to #17 and #27 respectively. And her attempt to transition into a film career with last year’s “Cats” was a disaster for everyone involved, particularly her as she was the headlining musician in a musical.
(Yet) another millionaire celebrity pretending they care about income inequality won’t move the dial for Democrats, and posturing as (yet) another millionaire celebrity Democrat won’t move the dial for Swift. Her Biden endorsement looks almost as stupid as The Rock’s last week, who should now be forced to change his nickname to “The Cave.”
If Swift wanted to give her career over age 30 a jump start, she needed to do something truly bold. She should have endorsed Trump and be campaigning for him every day. There are so many celebrities latching on to free publicity from Democrat media that jumping on the bandwagon doesn’t make another one special – even for Swift, whose otherwise conservative upbringing and persona should have been a bigger win for Democrats than a celebrity who already has a liberal brand.
Leftist-mob rage would have backlash, drawing more love for Swift than she knew what to do with.
Standing out as a conservative superstar would make her special, otherwise all we have to warm our hearts from popular culture is “get woke, go broke” schadenfreude. Although we’re somehow guilty of all the “systemic racism” extant in our institutions of culture, we have no power over them at all. We can’t keep the NBA, NFL, Hollywood, or even corporate America from delivering stupidly political messages; all we can do is mock them when they fail.
If Swift had enough courage, or her publicist had enough brains, they would have realized this and pivoted her rightward. Biden is going to lose anyway, and Swift will have damaged her brand with millions who could have revitalized her career.
Ah well, she can shake it off.
Jared Whitley is a long-time DC politico, having worked in the US Senate, White House, and defense industry. He has an MBA from Hult International Business School in Dubai.