Henry Kissinger rings him in 1972 and says: Robert, I need your help. And calls him out to Palm Springs where they stand on the 18th tee of the golf course, and he says: we’re standing here because everything is bugged. He says, I’m about to be thrown out of the administration because this jew-boy’s getting a little uppity, and asks Robert Evans for advice as to how to help him. And Robert Evans thinks about all sorts of different things and comes up with simply the idea that you live by the press, you die by the press. Called Time Magazine, got him on the cover, and as a consequence of that Kissinger survived. But the phrase Kissinger says to Evans is: You know, politics is just really second-rate showbusiness.
Simon McBurney, on BBC Radio 4’s Start the Week, March 6th, 2017
Think of cult-of-the-personality types mythologizing themselves on film — Mussolini on horseback, Mao in the river, Putin bare-chested in the backwoods. Think of the rest of them too — Obama larking around with Bear Grylls for TV, Theresa May’s fashion shoot in Vogue, and all prominent politicos everywhere endlessly applying foundation for the studio lights. Think also of that creepy clown in the White House, the carnival con-man, and remember how, when he was still a candidate, Frankie Boyle said he looked like someone playing the president in a porn.
Second-rate showbiz indeed. Well said, Henry.
But real world consequences. We haven’t forgotten how B-52 bombers, fulfilling Kissinger’s grandiose designs, wrecked millions of Cambodian lives. While today’s potus, who sensibly dodged the draft during the Vietnam War (medical deferment: bad feet) but desperately craves the respect of military men, has now got a taste for posing in the War Room and launching missiles. Lights, camera, action!