Tagged: the deplorables

The lights

Trump’s deplorables have been radicalized by Breitbart, Fox News, and extremist Christian academies.

Weak willed people are susceptible to the propaganda of a strongman like Trump. One sees the same phenomenon in Turkey and Russia.

Trump supporters are precisely the sort that “founders” like Hamilton and Madison worried about.

Worse yet, the Republican Party is acting as a fifth column.

The first act of Trump’s presidency is likely unconstitutional. It won’t be the last time this happens. The courts are the only thing that stand between democracy and dictatorship.

Gallows pole

The CIA knows Trump is lying before he does.

One word sums up a Trump presidency.

Ugly.

Breitbart is opening offices in Paris, Berlin, and the Wolf’s Lair.

After the repeal of Obamacare, the Deplorables opioid scripts will no longer be covered. What will they sell on the black market then?

Hwylio mewn cyfog

Western democracies have been around for two centuries. There’s no revolutionary force in existence of any sufficient weight, whether progressive or regressive (i.e., today’s gutter populism), to suggests there’s a threat of their demise on the near or distant horizon.

The endless stream of “end of this or that” columns (e.g., the end of liberalism, the end of neoliberalism, the end of the elite, the end of the state, the end of globalization, etc.) is a shopworn brand of political prognostication. It does show, however, the futility of ideology critique in the era of late capitalism and the worldwide culture industry (as per Adorno), whether immanent or transcendental.

The critical question is whether today’s forces of regression (e.g., Brexiteers in the UK, Deplorables in the US) are strong enough to undo all democratic institutions without facing significant resistance from the forces of enlightenment and reason.

Gong show

Cartoon politicians like Farage and Trump are the pacifiers of the working man and woman.

Mr Trump is on a victory tour, first stop in my hometown of Cincinnati. It’s only a matter of time before he starts pinning military medals on his suit jacket.

Mr Trump’s election was a global 9/11. He could very well turn the US into a Verbrecherstaat.

In psychoanalytic terms, he’s a psychical infant.

Infantile psyche + Twitter = global clown show. This is the quality of entertainment the Deplorables crave.

There’s no way back to the economic and cultural insulation of the Shire. As Marx wrote long ago, the cheap commodities of the bourgeoisie have battered down all Chinese walls. Brexit and Trump walls will fare no better.

On reflection

Mr Trump is a failed President even before taking office. He’ll have to answer to the pitchforks and patarini who elected him sooner than later.

His fate depends on what motivated the Deplorables. If they were motivated by the prospect of manufacturing jobs returning in mass numbers to the US, their belief will be shattered. However, if they were motivated by identity politics (i.e., misogyny, xenophobia, and racism), then their faith will be fully rewarded by Trump’s Presidency.

There are pockets of reason and enlightenment strewn over a landscape of inbred cultural backwardness. Radical cosmopolitans must stand up and say no to ignorance and cultural backwardness, whenever and wherever revanchist populism surfaces.

*

There are also historical precedents for the Trump-Farage-Le Pen-Petry phenomenon. Cola Di Rienzo, Savonarola, Luther, and Robespierre attempted to channel the anger of “the people” towards various political ends. They lost control (the Peasants’ War of 1524-25, which was crushed with Luther’s help) and lost their lives in the process (Savonarola, Cola, and Robespierre).

Lumpenocracy

It is a platitude that art becomes caviar to the general when the reality it imitates no longer corresponds even roughly to the reality recognized by the general. Even then, however, the resentment the common man may feel is silenced by the awe in which he stands of the patrons of this art. Only when he becomes dissatisfied with the social order they administer does he begin to criticize their culture. Then the plebian finds courage for the first time to voice his opinions openly. Every man, from the Tammany alderman to the Austrian house-painter, finds that he is entitled to his opinion. Most often this resentment toward culture is to be found where the dissatisfaction with society is a reactionary dissatisfaction which expresses itself in revivalism and puritanism, and latest of all, in fascism. Here revolvers and torches begin to be mentioned in the same breath as culture. In the name of godliness or the blood’s health, in the name of simple ways and solid virtues, the statue-smashing commences.

Clement Greenberg, “Avant-Garde and Kitsch” [1939], The Collected Essays and Criticism, Volume 1: Perceptions and Judgments, 1939-1944 (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1988), 18-19.