jrising: (zen)
[personal profile] jrising
The rise of Trump can only be understood in a global context. It isn't just Citizen's United or the Voting Rights Act-- or rather, these are symptoms of wider trends. Trump's election parallels the shock of Brexit, the rise of extremism and anti-semitism in Europe, and the rise of religious extremism in the United States and Middle East.

This is a movement against much we hold dear: humanism, pluralism, progressivism. This is a rejection of the institutions upon which society has functioned since World War II.

The progressive movement believed that what people wanted was a good job, health care, stability and peace. And surely people do want that, and Clinton won the popular vote because of it. But there is another group in society that is anything but fringe. Apparently they form a third of California, Massachusetts, and New York voters. What they want is entirely different, but I do not know what.

Is this the end of a pluralistic world? Is this a new rise of global fascism? Is it a lead up to world war?

Extreme inequality and technological disruption are certainly partly to blame. But what role does our most treasured innovations have to play: the Internet, the capacity of data science, and the guilty benefits of vertically integrated corporations, in particular?

And finally, what do we do? This was never a problem just with the presidential election. If we are going to understand Trump, and ultimately eliminate him and reverse his damage, it is going to be by taking a hard look at the foundations of our own society, because ultimately, that is where his support has come from.

Date: 2016-11-10 08:56 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] http://users.livejournal.com/little_e_/
Technically, anti-semitism is on the rise in Europe primarily due to Muslim immigration. Muslims aren't too keen on Jews. Trump himself has a Jewish daughter, son-in-law, and grandchildren. Some of his supporters are vocal anti-semites, but the man himself isn't, and he certainly doesn't agree with Muslim migrants harassing Jews in Europe.

What they want is entirely different, but I do not know what.
Come now, they're nearly half the country. Surely you've met and talked to some of them at some point? They're nationalists. They want a country that looks out for the interests of its own people.

Long story short, liberals have been kind of jerks for the past few years. When bakers get sued out of business and their lives destroyed because they didn't want to bake someone a gay wedding cake, even people who are in favor of gay marriage think things might have gone a wee bit too far toward punishing people who disagree with them. That's a minor example; what happened at the Bataclan as a result of liberal immigration policies (thanks, Merkel) is much bigger. The message from the left has been "White privilege!" often coming from people who are much more privileged than the people they're calling privileged. A lot of white people don't like feeling like they are being attacked for being white and told that they have to accept a bunch of new people into their country, who, btw, are the same race as a lot of the people already attacking them. (even the term "POC" makes it clear that all non-white groups in the US see themselves in solidarity against whites.)

Meanwhile real wages have been stagnant ever since, well, sometime about when mass immigration started. Funny how that works. The rich get richer, factories close, and the poor die of heroin overdoses. Death rates are up, at least among whites.

You might say that no one meant to make Trump fans feel alienated, or that everything that's been said about whites is totally true, or that all of the problems are actually the fault of the Republicans in Congress, or whatever. And that might be true, but it doesn't change what they feel.

Hillary failed to connect with voters. She didn't make people feel like she cared about *them*--or maybe she made some people feel like it, but she certainly didn't reach out to working class voters. Trump has a plan to fight the heroin epidemic: cut the amount of heroin coming in from Mexico. What's Hillary's plan? I don't know. Trump has a plan to address unemployment (limit immigration.) He has a plan to address crime (which has been up in a lot of cities since the police scaled back as a result of BLM protests.) What's Hillary's plan?

I'm not judging between the two. I'm not saying Hillary's bad or Trump is good. I am saying that Trump had specific policies that responded to his voter's specific interests. Trump made people feel like he loved them and cared about them and would fix things for them. Hillary hung out with Cher and Soros. Maybe her ideas are better, but she didn't sell them well.

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