Loading...

advertisement
Home Blogs > Business

HOW DID TRUMP DO IT? Get all the dum racist voters!

Mar 15 '16 | By La Afrique Media | Views: 71 | Comments: 0

When Trump announced his candidacy for the Republican nomination nine months ago he had miniscule support from the party hierarchy and not much more from the rank-and-file. But he quickly perceived that his ambitions could be furthered were he able to attract a significant segment of the party’s constituency largely composed of white working class and lower middle class conservatives, many of whom ended their education with a high school diploma. This sector has long existed within the partY, going along with the decisions of party leaders with negligible complaints.

But times have changed in recent years as working class jobs have be sent abroad and existing jobs are often insecure with longer hours, lower pay and fewer benefits causing considerable resentment toward the powers that be. Since this conservative sector tends to regard itself as super patriotic and is intolerant toward many other Americans who think or look different than they do, it is imbued with a large degree of racism and nativism.

The 2008 recession and its lingering consequences were contributing turning points for many right wing workers who began to blame a variety of factors including their own party leaders as well the upper class, bankers, Wall Street, snobbish elites, Democrats, President Obama, and various government agencies. Up to a point they had something of a case, but they turned further right, not to the left, and also blamed African Americans, Latinos, Muslims, and others for transforming their “American Dream” into a bad dream.

Trump set the stage for winning support from this disaffected sector by promoting his own larger than life personality. I’m not a politician, he declared — immediately gaining some support from white working class and middle class Republicans who seem to blame the politicians for everything wrong in their world. I am a rich and successful businessman who knows how to get things done — a big selling point in a party that worships big business and capitalism. I hosted 14 seasons of “The Apprentice” on TV and newspapers always write about me so you gotta love me! — and many do because of his celebrity.  But what really did the trick was this:

He figured out what this sector deeply hated and what it deeply feared. He then made clear in his outrageous demagogic, vulgar, threatening and racist remarks at mass rallies, that he shared their hatreds and was ready and able to protect them against their fears if he became president.

Their main hates and fears evidently evolve around how the leaderships of both parties are mishandling the country’s economic, social and political priorities. Some examples seem to include resentment at being governed by a black president (whom Trump has been saying for years is a foreign-born Muslim); fear of economic insecurity and stagnant wages; fear of losing white privileges, white power and the fact that the white population will no longer constitute the majority in 30 years; the absence of decent jobs, which some blame on minority competition and others on the Democrats; the hatred of Mexican and Latin American “illegal” immigration; refusal to accept refugees from the Middle East; fear of foreign countries that Trump says are “ripping off” the U.S. economically; and opposition to some advances in recent years for women and LGBT people.

When Trump articulates their hatreds in speeches or debates his supporters go wild with adulation because he says openly what many in his crowds usually say in private to their “own kind.” By doing this he also validates racial prejudice. This may be why his fans praise him for “saying what he thinks.” Trump’s popularization of the slogan “Make America Great Again” not only speaks to international imperialist dominance but to the good old days when white meant right, and people of other colors knew their place. Make America White Again! is perhaps the underlying slogan.

The discontents in both parties are transpiring because the economic, cultural and political contradictions that have been developing for decades in America are reaching a peak at a time when democracy itself is being auctioned to the wealthiest oligarchs and political paralysis is nonchalantly engulfing Washington with few criticisms in Congress or the White House because so many politicians benefit from the process.

Sanders has a good program to cut Big Money campaign contributions, which he already rejects. Clinton largely depends on the richest people and companies in the U.S. to finance her political ventures. While still collecting from the 1% et al., the former First Lady now claims to support campaign finance reform, thus conflating words and deeds. The New York Times, which has endorsed Clinton’s nominationhas repeatedly requested she make public the texts of six speeches to Goldman Sachs, for which she was paid $225,000 each. Her defense for keeping the texts secret was that “Everybody does it.” to which a perturbed Times responded Feb. 25 that her response “is an excuse expected from a mischievous child, not a presidential candidate…. Public interest in these speeches is legitimate, and it is the public — not the candidate — who decides how much disclosure is enough.”

WHAT’S CLASS GOT TO DO WITH IT?

The working class, lower middle class, a sector of the middle class and the multitude of low income and poor workers are disgruntled by the absence of good jobs, many millions of which have been “globalized” and sent to lowest wage countries by American corporations seeking higher profits for stockholders and executives. These same U.S. workers are being cruelly exploited economically by their bosses who deny them decent wages and benefits. Teenagers are finding far fewer job opportunities these days. High school graduates have a hard time locating factory jobs that pay enough to cover the rent, much less ever to buy a house. College students and new graduates, burdened with educational debts and limp job prospects, are anxious about the future.

Both parties have supported the trade deals that offshored the jobs. Both parties exhibited indifference to the by now incredibly successful 40-year campaign by big business to lower wages and reduce benefits for American workers. Both have failed the youth of the nation. Both have failed the union movement, and that includes the Democrats who watched it decline and did nothing to help. The government controlled by both parties has not offered significant social programs to the masses of people in nearly a half-century. Both parties have supported the nearly 15-year wars in the Middle East. Both parties agree to surround Russia and China with U.S military power.

Republicans are worse than the Democrats, we all know that, but can there be a doubt that both partieshave failed the American people — and that this is a main cause of popular discontent among working people that is manifesting itself this election year?

Commenting on the uprisings in both parties, left wing analyst James Petras, a professor emeritus of sociology at New York’s Binghamton University and the author of more than 62 books, wrote the following in his Feb. 24 article “Presidential Elections 2016 – The Revolt of the Masses”:

The rise of a social democratic movement within the Democratic Party and the rise of a sui generis national-populist rightist movement in the Republican Party reflect the fragmented electorate and deep vertical and horizontal fissures characterizing the U.S. ethno-class structure. Commentators grossly oversimplify when they reduce the revolt to incoherent expressions of ‘anger.’

The shattering of the established elite’s control is a product of deeply experienced class and ethnic resentments, of former privileged groups experiencing declining mobility, of local businesspeople experiencing bankruptcy due to ‘globalization’ (imperialism) and of citizens’ resentment at the power of capital (the banks) and its overwhelming control of Washington.

The electoral revolts on the Left and Right may dissipate but they will have planted the seeds of a democratic transformation or of a nationalist-reactionary revival.”


Share:
No comments
You need to sign in to comment
advertisement

Search People, News and more..

Advertise

WHY SHOULD YOU BECOME A MEMBER?

La Afrique Media has more than 100 Thousand Members. Get news and info that matter to you, a daily brief on what’s happening in your network, and a quick way to reach out and keep in touch. Connect. Find. Rate. Be found. Learn. Share & Post a Story

Become a member