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 Note to America: Don’t Be So Sure You’ve Put Trump Behind You


#1

 Note to America: Don’t Be So Sure You’ve Put Trump Behind You

Gary Younge

I’ve been living in Britain for the last year and have returned to the United States to cover the election from a small town in Indiana—with the experience of Brexit on my mind.


#2

I think you're right about this "third lesson," but what DJT has deluded his supporters about is that he is any more in touch with the needs and pains of the population. He merely parrots back their uninformed complaints. The iron and steel mills will not be returning to Muncie, no matter who gains the White House. The huge factories providing lifetime semiskilled jobs are just not coming back. Immigration is not going to stop. And actually, DJT not only has no idea how to resurrect the White-dominated "great America" economy, he has no interest in resurrecting it.

Those unheard communities must indeed be attended to. But all of them must be attended to. And that's the job of progressives, to hold them up to the light of the new administration.


#3

I would like to wake up after the election with nobody winning. My fictional scenario sees the House of Representatives in gridlock and unable to straighten up the electoral college mess and pick a new president.

Two years go by and the new pirate party and vitalized greens sweep away warmonger liberal interventionists and republican war industry corruption. The new congress gets thing organized by about June of 2019 and eventually decides the next presidential election is so close that it is best to let the people decide who the next president should be.

The US discover it did quite well without a war hawk pentagon lobbyist as the usual fake president and begins work on controlling corporations and regime change wars. People rediscover how rich they are and begin rebuilding US railroads and closing airports and corporate agriculture.


#4

Last year when I began to see the Trump juggernaut take root, I quickly acquired and read Sinclair Lewis' It Can't Happen Here (1935). While Bernie appealed to populism's better angels, Trump (channeling Lewis' Buzz Windrip character) is appealing to the dregs of populist ideologies--all based in the debasement known as hatred. This D(r)ump(f) (shit) is going to stink for a long time. Trump has rolled back the clock on a lot of tolerance that had been nurtured through trial and error over the course of decades. A pox on his vitriolic narcissistic fascism!


#5

Using the term "radical change" in the context of this article confirms how fascist the blue and red parties have become.

Recall George Orwell's admonition: "In an era of universal deceit, anybody telling the truth is labeled radical". We ignore Orwell at our own peril.


#6

There are some lessons from Britain but there are also some big differences in culture and history between the US and Britain. To some extent the Civil War never ended in the US so there is a lingering anger in the South about the North where the financial, intellectual, and cultural centers of the US are mainly located. Also, there was frontier in the US which created a culture. And there are Great Plains and Rocky Mountains where there is a lot of resentment against big government. And there are single issue voters in the gun show culture and pro-life movement who will vote with the right wing regardless of how extreme it is. The similarity between the US and Britain is that there are factory towns where the factories have left. These people are led to believe that there problem is due to globalization and to some extent that is true but mainly there problem is most due to increasing automation. But since there is no easy answer to that the politicians basically ignore that problem and treat it as though it doesn't exist. Governments probably have no good answer because automation is going to increase greatly because of robotics and improvements in artificial intelligence. I think the anger of those left behind is likely to get worse. A guaranteed income might be a possible solution.


#7

That is what Bernie Sanders is about and "Our Revolution" will continue. Bernie has been working on down ballot progressives to get elected and change the face of this dysfunctional Congress. Too many elite dems that don't work for we the people but only themselves. No more, we want public servants but high rollers.

It is up to each and everyone of us to make sure that we hold our elected officials accountable. We got to do a better job of it than we did with Hope and Change Obama.

Now we have Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, Jeff Merkley and more and more progressive.


#9

I think the following points need to be considered:

  • It is the elites, via mainstream media, who are touting that Hillary has a comfortable lead in recent polls.

  • The underlying premise that is "understood" in this article is that Hillary has already won the election. She hasn't. The election isn't over yet. Furthermore, the more reports that come out that early voting (Iowa, as an example) is showing a tight race, will benefit Trump as he is what many in working class America see as representing change ... not Hillary. Hillary is seen as poster child of "more of the same."

For those who think the election is all over and that Hillary has it all wrapped up, I encourage you to visit some conservative websites that include a forum. It will scare the hell out of you.

The scariest thing to me is that those on the right, especially the radical right, are ready for direct (even violent) action that brings the issue of injustice (especially financial injustice due to the loss of good-paying jobs caused by globalization and deindustrialization) in the U.S. to a point where it can no longer be ignored.

The result of those on the right winning the narrative and solutions to the issue of financial injustice will, without a doubt, result in actualized jingoistic neo-fascism.

We on the left often times mock those on the right who support Trump is if they are genetically and intellectually inferior. That "I'm smarter than you" attitude could have, just possibly, brought to life our most feared election result when it's all over in this presidential election.

I hope I am wrong. If I'm not, the future for the working class in the U.S. will be much, much dimmer than we can imagine as the elite ruling class already has near unlimited power.


#10

Even these are only polls, self-reports, not actual votes, and therefore even more unreliable than carefully randomized opinion polling. And there's the Electoral College complication. Iowa, your example, gets only 6, so it matters even less how the early voting there is going. Whoever gets even a plurality of the official vote tally will get all 6 of those votes, but will need 264 more to be inaugurated.

And no, I'm not afraid of the peasants coming with their pitchforks and torches, unless it's to get DJT in one of his gilded castles (not the good brass of the Old Post Office building, where he cannot sell what he does not own). It's when he does nothing but retire to his new news channel that they'll be angry and disappointed.


#11

That is precisely the fucking attitude I was talking about!


#13

Populism is a two-edged sword. Sure, populist leaders promise and often deliver benefits to the working class - especially early in their time as leaders - but it is all usually pursuant to the leader's desire for power and influence with very little democratic participation allowed. So, over time, as new democratic thinking is needed to address changing conditions, the leader digs his or her heels in and the essential anti-democratic nature of populism reveals itself. Invariably corruption is discovered in the populist leadership and the doors are opened for the forces of capitalist reaction to take over. Lather, rinse, repeat.


#14

Good points. My only quibble is that the xenophobic, global warming-denying, authoritarian, goals of the Trump supporters have very little in common with the goals of the left. The Trump supporters dislike Hillary for entirely different reasons than the left dislikes Hillary.


#16

My sense looking at the trends is that the election of Trump is very likely. All it will take is one or two populous, close-race states swinging to Trump (Ohio and Florida) to assure his election, while I see no chance of any states swinging toward Hillary on election day.

So everything Mr. Younge wrote here is likely to be a moot (corrected) point.


#18

I am on the side of reason and logic. I also live here - in the US rust belt - and encounter Trump supporters, including family members, every day - all of them - to a person, vociferously supported the invasion of Iraq. Most, like Trump, would be very happy to see a US/Israeli bombing of Iran. And, they regard Palestinians (and all Arabs) as nothing but a bunch of terrorists to be exterminated.

I have undone my "like" of your post and have flagged it for personal attacks.


#21

I flagged you post for hostile uncivil language and personal attacks, not because of any disagreement. In fact I gave your previous post a "like".


#23

Far from being "intellectually inferior" the hard-right in the USA has a talent for organizing and galvanizing discontent that the left has completely lost. The left (at least in my city) has fallen into utter disarray and confusion from those optimistic days in the late 1990s - early 00's.


#24

Oh, that helps. Pick out one metaphorical phrase and attack my attitude (emphasis added by @mbrownec, btw).

How about the ideas?


#25

Let's put your "metaphorical phrase" into some perspective as it relates to a recent event.

The mentality involved of the radical right that were involved in the Malheur National Wildlife Preserve in Oregon was hardly that of "peasants coming with their pitchforks and torches" since the occupiers utilized pistols, rifles and military arms to keep law enforcement at-bay.

To make matters worse, seven occupiers were just acquitted of charges against them relating to their paramilitary occupation of a National Wildlife Refuge.

Maybe I see more of the dangers involved in this event and judicial outcome than you. While you clearly aren't fearful for yourself, I suggest you consider the lives around you that you care about.


#26

Yunzer, that is the truism of the day!


#27

These were exactly what I had in mind, the modern equivalent, at least among the cowboy class (do you like that metaphor better?). The travesty of the Bundyites' acquittal is just evidence of what can happen when a prosecutor is too cocky to make his case, or fails to obtain a mistrial when a juror has to be dismissed for asserting he never planned to consider conviction, or perhaps to pay attention when selecting the jury in the first place. But I don't see the Bundys going very far in support of a defeated DJT. They have their own further troubles to deal with.