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Listening to Trump


Listening to Trump

Christian Parenti

Leaning into the mic, face flushed, speaking with unhurried and angry deliberation, Donald Trump told a cheering New Hampshire audience: “We’re gonna bring businesses back. We’re gonna have businesses that used to be in New Hampshire, that are now in Mexico, come back to New Hampshire. And,” pausing for applause, “you can tell them, to go fuck themselves! Because, they let you down, and they left!”

The crowd roared its approval.


Trump masterfully [but sinfully] used an Orwellian approach to induce a cognitive dissonance in almost half of the voters that rendered them loyal to him--Big Brother. They loved Big Brother.

Didn't hurt that the option was Big Sister...


Regarding Professor Parenti's question - ". . . the left must understand why almost 60 million Americans voted for him." Because, like the author himself (as evidenced by many points in the article), they got conned.


Christian Parenti provides an excellent explanation of the appeal of Trump. I didn't listen to Trump during the campaign because I wrote him off. Most of my information concerning Trump came through the comedy of faux news shows. I can understand now how so much of the country was conned considering the poor choice the Democrats provided. Sanders or Stein would have been heaven compared to what the country was suckered into.


Trump voters came from the following mix:
1. racists, misogynists, and neo-wingnuts
2. disaffected (formerly) middle class people with blue collar or agricultural-related backgrounds
3. Clinton haters

Category 1 people will always be around - Trump gave them a mainstream voice.

Category 2 people have been left behind with the loss of labor unions to counter globalism and consequent loss of blue collar jobs with decent pay. Trump made them promises he can't keep, and they bought it. These people need to be retrained and retooled for the 21st century, and Trump isn't the answer. Sanders would have done them a lot more good, but they were put off by "leftist, liberal" labels cast by MSM and the mainstream Dems.

Category 3, partially pollinated by misogyny, is what it is. They voted for Trump to somehow get even with HRC. That they supported Trump rather one of the other candidates, given his own misogyny, contributed to their candidate choice.

The worst thing about it all is that Trump is so ill-qualified for the job. He will be used and guided by his advisors and cabinet to forward their own agenda. The people in all three categories made this happen, along with an outdated electoral system. I have nothing but disgust with them.


The "country" wasn't suckered in - a minority plurality was. At least if Sanders had been the Dem nominee it would have removed the Hillary haters, and perhaps made an electoral difference.


Sanders, resounding YES. Stein: she's the dog forever chasing cars, but would have no idea of what to do if she caught one. Plus, she's so smug. I wish that this election would see the last of her...but probably not.


Good article. We need more such that go beyond the standard line of writing off Trump voters as a bunch of deplorables. If the Democrats and Clinton had done their homework and dug a little deeper, rather than get obsessed with all of Trump's vices, they might have been much more effective at preventing the erosion of some of their constituencies. Most of all, if the Democrats continue to bury their heads in the sand by making no attempt to understand their role in Trump's victory, as they appear to be doing, they'll only set the stage for another Trump. The party needs to get its collective head out of its ass, right now.


Clinton got the most votes but because the electoral college give more power to rural voters than urban voters per person she lost. The biggest difference between Clinton and Trump was that Clinton was advocating the strength of a racially and ethnically diverse society while Trump was promising a better society for white people. Clinton was not able to turn out the Obama coalition because Obama is black and Clinton is white. By any reasonable standard Clinton was far and away the better candidate. Whatever Trump said in his speeches it was clear he had no specific policies to make anything happen and as a human being he was unfit to be president. He clearly had no sense of decency and was mean and vindictive. He was also obviously a scam artist that has stolen millions from his victims and it was well documented that he constantly lied about virtually everything. The only way a person this unfit to be president could be elected was to become the champion of white people who were angry that the United States was turning into a country where white people would no longer be the majority. This election was not about economic class, it was mostly about race and ethnicity.


I'll say it and say it and say it. THE ELECTION WAS STOLEN. All the analysis, even the most well-meaning and intelligent, like Parenti's---- is meaningless. THE ELECTION WAS STOLEN.


Do you have a reference for this claim? Assuming you are talking only about the effect that more rural states are smaller and thus have a greater ratio of Electoral Votes to population, this is false based on my spreadsheet. I looked up Census Data at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2010_United_States_Census which I used to compute perfectly proportional (and thus fractional) electoral votes and then gave the same winning states to each (splitting 1/4 of Maine to Trump and 3/4 to Clinton and calling Michigan for Trump). In that case Clinton loses 299.835 to 238.165. I searched for this computation before doing it which I was sure would be out there, but I couldn't find it.

If however you are just referring to the Popular Vote then that is a result that everybody knows. However we don't have a National Popular Vote election and one can argue that both candidates would have campaigned differently and perhaps some voters who didn't vote would have and maybe even vice-versa. It is completely wrong and unfair to say a current election should be decided by the Popular Vote and it is absolutely the only right answer to move to the Popular Vote for the first election we can. This racist garbage Electoral College is one of the dumbest things about this country. I completely support any ways to get there including the state by state compact that my state (CA) joined.


I find it absolutely astonishing that people still can't figure out why Trump won. Surreal really. We could go through a laundry list of reasons, but I'll keep it simple and boil it down to two points: the economy and the warfare state.

If you have been following the real "fake news" i.e. mainstream media, you would be lead to believe that everything is awesome. They have essentially served as Obama's mouthpiece. Funny thing about propaganda is that it can't stand up to reality. So, when half the country is poor, 95% of the economic gains since 2008 have gone to the top 1%, and the real wages for the rest have declined (along with the loss of homes, jobs, and security), they are going to call out that bullshit.

The Democrats even doubled down on their arrogance by referring to the all the malcontents as deplorables. Let's get this straight; they pushed the TPP, NAFTA on steroids; Wall Street unanimously backed Clinton; the DNC was held at the Wells Fargo Center, the same Wells Fargo who just recently ripped people off and committed mortgage fraud; you have Warren Buffet, a major investor in Wells Fargo and recipient of massive bailouts from the 2008 crisis, actively supporting Clinton. They obviously have an extremely low opinion of the electorate.

The economy is shit for the majority of the people, infrastructure is crumbling, healthcare costs are crushing them, but there is no shortage of money for the military. We can spend $500 million on illegally training five "rebels" in Syria, but we can't allocate $120 million for Flint. Under Obama we have illegally bombed seven countries, and even ran out of bombs to drop in Syria (a year before Russia was legally invited), all paid by the tax payer.

The more astute saw that Clinton was a war hawk that was going to lead us to WWWIII. Imposing a no-fly zone in Syria would do just that. For goodness sake, Negroponte, Albright, and Kissinger supported her!

They don't need to be economists to realize the all the growth has gone to Wall Street and the Defense industry at their expense. The apologists are quick to point out that Trump conned them. He offered hope and change just like Obama, and he will most likely turn out to be a conman like his predecessor. But just as important is that they did not vote against their own interests. The Democratic "Bully" Party gave them a big Fuck You and they responded in kind by either not voting for them, or at all.


In Germany in the late 1920s & 1930s , the elites basically ignored the working class. Hitler spoke directly to the working class. And he used racism and nationalism to appeal the basest human instincts, giving those in the working class convenient scapegoats. And while the oligarchy of the time did everything they could to drown out & marginalize the progressive voices of the day, Hitler was secretly currying favor with the same oligarchs he was bashing publicly. I am so glad that cannot happen here. I am also glad there is no way we will possibly go down a simular path like Germany did.


You gave us a good example of smugness. Care to give us one about Stein.


And from Sanders:

2016 Democratic primary election fraud evidence hub


To take an issue seriously anyone has got to look at it for some period in the abstract. Donald Trump appears to have taken competition seriously. Perhaps that is why he has a better grasp of what going up against Assad (in addition to ISIS) would entail. Better that is than the folks who want to do this in Obama's own State Department. Nothing spelled out on China (despite a lot of hints), however, tells me he hasn't taken China seriously...at least in light of current macroeconomics. For sure, guarded threats won't cut it (Harold Meyerson has some ideas which I hope will resonate with my idea of common sense once I give them appropriate attention).

I think he's taken his own idea of economics seriously, but it seems to me his ideas on economics would be too involved to commission some ghost writer to really encapsulate. From what I gather that book's just a kind of idealistic window dressing. IMO his real ideas on economics would have to constitute a sort of a border-world between shadow economics and straight economics. I don't think he's taken straight economics seriously.

To take straight economics seriously he'd have to realize the infrastructure we need for global warming. He'd have to realize (and promote) "demand driven" versus "debt driven." It's the laborers that need money...and that money is the only money that will spur the economy. Private ownership of bridges is the last thing that'll accomplish this...along with unpaid-for gov layouts (due to decreased taxes--entities abroad can cash in their treasury bonds, leaving us where?). There's no deal-art that can get him around it. The infrasturcture jobs must benefit many, many laborers, not future infrastructure owners.

"Ultimately, given the advances in technology that is replacing humans in even complex jobs, Frank said in an interview with BillMoyers.com, the next president may want to consider an even more radical method of sharing the wealth: A guaranteed income and a broad public works program that would subsidize displaced workers to take on socially useful tasks like planting green spaces, transporting the frail elderly and assisting in day care centers." http://billmoyers.com/story/tax-conspicuous-consumption/


I don't have any examples of Stein acting smug, but I do feel the Greens can do a lot better. Pandering to 9/11 truthers or anti-vaxers was a huge mistake. If you want to just come out and say you believe either one of these - do so, then as voters we can judge you. If you want to appeal to the faction of left leaning anti-war, pro-environment, pro-worker's rights voters that takes a scientific rational view of things, then take a firm stance (and I'm guessing she doesn't actually believe either of these things - she just doesn't want to lose those voters). I ended up voting Green anyway because I live in California and I can't stand Clinton (but would have voted for Bernie had he won the nomination in a more fair contest), but Stein's lack of character on these two issues alone had my seriously considering a Bernie write in (which in CA would have been counted). I'm starting to wonder if I wouldn't be happier with the Science Party if we could get them (in Australia and U.K.) to start one here.


Her concern was with the influence of the Pharmaceutical Industry within the FDA.

Baseless “Anti-Vax” Attacks Against Dr. Jill Stein Distract from Her Call to End the Corrupting Influence of the Pharmaceutical Industry Within the FDA

In her own words:

As a medical doctor of course I support vaccinations. I have a problem with the FDA being controlled by drug companies.

That is a completely reasonable position. As far as the 9/11 pandering, the recently released classified pages show that the Saudi government was involved, and that we knew about it. But we still went ahead and destroyed two different countries anyways. Calling for a new investigation in light of this new evidence and the subsequent destruction of the Middle East seems quite reasonable. Especially when we are participating in war crimes by supplying Saudi Arabia with weapons and support in the massacre of Yemen.

My guess is that you got these ideas from John Oliver. May I suggest Jimmy Dore:

John Oliver Smears Jill Stein With Anti-Vax Bullsh*t

John Oliver's Smear Tactics Exposed As Establishment Propaganda


I'm inclined to think that Sanders would have beat Trump handily, but, remembering how McGovern, Dukakis, and to a lesser extent, Carter and Mondale were rendered stammering fools by Republican red-baiting, troop-hating-baiting and tax-and-spend-baiting , I also have my doubts. Imagine what Trump would have done with "he and his first wife honeymooned in the Soviet Union" - and imagine Sanders response.


Baffled by BS, bamboozled by a carnival barker, led by the nose to the soon-to-be brink of disaster. Ignorance was a major contributor to this farce of an election. This devil incarnate tapped into the dark side of human nature with its hate for the "other," racism, bigotry, and lasciviousness...look at the bullying, targeting, etc. in schools nationwide. DJT supporters will find that his words were empty (as is his head), his promises not worth the breath used to frame them, and that he certainly is NOT their friend (unless they have something he wants or can use) and will dump them without looking back or a second thought.

What is tragic is that the result of their support of DJT will severely and adversely impact our nation, the world, our planet and all life...and they will not be immune to the destruction.