A generation ago, a Presidential contender like Trump wasn’t conceivable. Jimmy Carter brought smiling populism to the White House, and Ronald Reagan was derided as a Hollywood cowboy, but both of them had governing experience and substantive ideas that they’d worked out during lengthy public careers. But, as public trust in institutions eroded, celebrities took their place, and the line between politics and entertainment began to disappear. It shouldn’t be surprising that the most famous person in politics is the former star of a reality TV show.
George Packer, “The Unconnected”, The New Yorker (31 October 2016), 60.