So, you thought Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) was the new Sarah Palin? Think again. With his reliance on a simplistic world view and skin so thin you could probably see his internal organs, Donald Trump is the new Palin. And like his fellow reality-TV star, he is using this new burst of fame to further an agenda. For Palin, it was and continues to be about making money. For The Donald, whose net worth is “many, many, many times Mitt Romney,” the ultimate goal remains unclear because he won’t get anywhere near the Oval Office.

Dan Balz had a terrific piece on what is basically the Trump Doctrine. You name the crisis and the answer for Trump is “so easy.” Taking Libya’s oil, telling the OPEC ministers that “your fun is over,” and threatening the Chinese with a 25 percent import tariff if they don’t stop manipulating their currency might make folks in the cheap seats of the Trump spectacle feel good, but it’s terrible foreign policy. Meanwhile, the Atlantic Wire highlights Trump’s fondness for calling out his media critics with a Sharpie. Gail Collins of the New York Times has written about the time Trump went postal on her years ago after calling him a “financially embattled thousandaire.” And folks outside the media have gotten slammed. Jerry Seinfeld showed backbone and principle last week when he pulled out of a September charity event hosted by Trump’s son because of his father’s birther craziness. After piling on the insults, Trump told Seinfeld, “You should be ashamed of yourself!”

No, Trump should be ashamed of himself. He’s playing the Republican Party for chumps. They’ll realize this sooner or later. Right? The heightened scrutiny on Trump will help hasten that moment and relegate him to the same status as Palin: sideshow rather than main event.