Strange things happen in showers. There he was, all soaped up and scrubbing away in Kris Jenner’s shower when it struck him like a bolt out of the blue: A celebrity president in the Oval Office, a background in reality television, an established brand and a personal fortune to fund the campaign. No, no — we’re not talking about Donald Trump here, because Kanye West actually has a $1 billion dollars to his name.
Think of it — the West Wing — it’s already named after the hip-hop artist. And Kim has lots of experience already as the First Lady of the Kardashians and would be right at home there at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
As he explained on Wednesday, Kanye gets some of his best rap lyrics under the shower, and running for president just popped into his head. No sooner had he dried himself off than he’s thumbing away on Twitter — well it is the established medium now for presidents to communicate with Americans, I guess — and saying he’s running.
Look, never mind that he faces a real challenge to get himself on ballot papers in some 35 states now if not impossible in 15 already, Kanye says he’s running.
Besides, what else could possibly satisfy his ego now that he’s fresh off a $1 billion blockbuster deal with fashion brand The Gap, has his own sneaker brand and partnered with Adidas to have them front and centre on their shelves, and has a tenth studio album due out any day now.
The rapper says he’ll model his administration after Wakanda, the fictional super-kingdom from the movie Black Panther. Why not?
I mean Americans wouldn’t be foolish enough to elect a celebrity president, would they, one with no experience in politics and with a hit reality show?
That seems way too random, doesn’t it?
But the 43-year-old says he is serious in having a go now. I mean, it couldn’t get any worse, could it?
No soon had Kanye posted on Twitter on July 4 — only in America could Independence Day manage such political fireworks — that he was running than Elon Musk, the billionaire entrepreneur and space geek whose been known to enjoy a puff of whacky tobacco now and then, throws his support behind him.
And Kim too, obviously is in her hubby’s corner. If Melania had a modelling career of her own before the Don entered the White House, Kim knows only all too well how to strut her stuff at the glamour end of a lens — so much so that racy photos of her balancing a champagne glass broke the internet six years ago.
Curious as to what a West presidency might look like? The rapper extolled its virtues to Forbes magazine and promised that Musk would be placed in charge of the space programme for good measure.
The death penalty would go by the board.
And agenda and policies? The rapper says he’ll model his administration after Wakanda, the fictional super-kingdom from the movie Black Panther. Why not?
According to Forbes, West will make up his mind for sure within 30 days — yes, that tenth album has to be released first — and no doubt political scientists and music critics will be parsing every syllable and line for a hint of what to expect should West indeed decide to follow through with his threat to take on the Washington establishment. Gosh, that almost sounds a bit passé now, doesn’t it, after these past three years? Could we really manage four more years?
If he does indeed decide to stand, it would be under the banner of The Birthday Party. “Because when we win, it’s everybody’s birthday,” he explained to Forbes. Yes, I can see him — and Kim — in their birthday suits too, another day when the internet will break, for sure.
As usual, the rapper is not short of self-confidence. “Like anything I’ve ever done in my life, I’m doing to win,” he says. “When I’m president, let’s also have some fun. Let’s get past all the racism conversation, let’s empower people with 40 acres and a mule, let’s give some land, that’s the plan.”
Just like as was done for freed slaves at the end of the US Civil War.
President West would prioritise ending police brutality. Americans too could look forward to cleaner chemicals “in our deodorant, in our toothpaste”.
Admittedly, he’s a bit weak on foreign policy right now — yes, that’s not new — but the presidency would be “focused on protecting America, first, with our great military”. And that doesn’t seem to be new, either, me thinks.
But at least we know things would change when it comes to China. “It’s not China’s fault that disease,” West says. “It’s not the Chinese people’s fault. They’re God’s people also. I love China. It changed my life. It changed my perspective, it gave me such a wide perspective.”
Yep, he admits to being a little sketchy too when it comes to how exactly he would govern. “I don’t know if I would use the word ‘policy’ for the way I would approach things,” he says.
“I didn’t have a policy when I went to Nike and designed Yeezy [sneakers] and went to Louis and designed a Louis Vuitton at the same time. It wasn’t a policy, it was a design. We need to innovate the design to be able to free the mind at this time.”
At least he knows who his running mate will be — Michelle Tidball — an obscure preacher from Wyoming.
A college dropout who was born in Atlanta but grew up in Chicago, West has parlayed his musical success into a marketing empire, with he and Kardashian-West front and centre.
Who else could possibly come up with such names for their four children together — North West, Chicago West, Saint West and Psalm West.
Besides, just imagine the size of the crowd in Washington come Inauguration Day. Hey — stranger things have happened.