‘Get Me Roger Stone’, the power of one political operative
LOS ANGELES, May 16, 2017 ⏤ Rightwing political operative Roger Stone has popped up throughout the years in American politics, from Watergate to the rise of Donald Trump. Netflix has just released an original documentary with Stone as its subject.
The documentary shows Stone proud to be a political operative who enjoys the nickname “Prince of Darkness.” It brings in political reporters like Fox News host Tucker Carlson and New Yorker writers Jeffrey Toobin and Jane Mayer to examine Stone’s career.
The main narrator is Roger Stone himself, who speaks freely throughout the documentary.
Stone proudly paints himself as a dirtbag and sleazeball on a drive for fame. He is a regular on Infowars and a hero among the Trump followers. The documentary is split into his discussion of the principles he lives by, also known as “Stone’s rules”; his first rule is, “It is better to be infamous than to never be famous at all.” Another: “Hate is a more powerful motivator than love.”
While the film details Stone’s influence on the Republican Party, it also describes the Party’s history over the last 50 years. It begins with Stone’s time as a young activist, before he became a political operative. He ended up one of Washington D.C’s most powerful lobbyists, joining forces wit Paul Manafort.
“Get Me Roger Stone” shows Stone’s talent at disinformation and his use of that ploy in creating attack ads, highlighting his fight against Ross Perot’s Reform Party in 2000. He encouraged Donald Trump to run, with the intention of splitting the party’s vote.
Stone has been a strong supporter of Trump for years. In the film, Trump talks about Stone’s willpower and his efforts to get Trump to run since 1987. Stone does not deny it, saying, “I was like a jockey looking for a horse. He was like a prime piece of political horseflesh, in my view.”
Throughout the film, it becomes clear that Trump’s message is similar to Roger Stone’s. Stone was a key figure in the Trump campaign, the man who convinced Trump to fire Corey Lewandowski and hire Paul Manafort, who was later replaced by Breitbart executive Steve Bannon.
The film paints an image of men who are driven by power and money, not as much by political ideology. While Americans may hate him, Stone says he enjoys their hatred. “I revel in your hatred,” he says. “Because if I weren’t effective, you wouldn’t hate me.” Stone proclaims early on another of his rules: “The past is f***ing prologue.”