The Dim-Post

October 15, 2016

Trouble ahead

Filed under: Uncategorized — danylmc @ 7:40 am

The thing that really scares me about Trump is not that he might win the US election – that never seemed likely to me at all – but that he’ll lose because of his personality flaws and transparent ineligibility for office: his ‘unpresidentialness’ – not his values, or racism or misogyny or ideology (such as it is), and that in four years time we’ll see the rise of a more politically astute, ‘credible’ version of Trump running on the same authoritarian – really, basically just fascistic – white identity politics platform. The death of neoliberalism looks a lot uglier and scarier than the left thought it would be.

48 Comments »

  1. A Bolshevik might rejoice, for the exposure of capitalism for it is will create the ideal fertile ground for revolutionary ferment.

    Comment by Sanctuary — October 15, 2016 @ 8:07 am

  2. I just watched Trumps 46 minute, rambling, conspiracy laden Breitbart style speech in West Palm beach (hey, no one else is up yet, whattaya going to do?) and the cheese has completely slid off the cracker. What a nut job. My theory is post election it will be revealed Trump (*sniff* *sniff*) has a gigantic cocaine habit that get’s him pumped up for his speeches and explains his erratic bellicosity. I have also concluded that you see is what you get – he is a very stupid egotistical maniac.

    The problem with your argument Danyl is it isn’t possible to run on a fascist platform of authoritarian white power and appear to be “credible” no matter how hard you might try. Trump is what Trump does because he is Trump. You can’t imagine Nazism without Hitler, or Latin fascism without Franco and Mussolini. Being a complete crackpot is part of the territory, and the ascension to power of fascist crackpots is only possible because of the decadence of the political systems they sweep away. In other words, the next Trump will be just like Trump who will only win if the United States ruling class has slid into even deeper dysfunction.

    Comment by Sanctuary — October 15, 2016 @ 8:28 am

  3. Isn’t his misogyny quite prominent these days and significantly contributing to his downfall? And his racsim and his lack of ideology/values caused some republicans to abandon him early on.

    Comment by eszett — October 15, 2016 @ 8:31 am

  4. Conspiracy theory #17,469: The Bilderbergers figured Hillary would never make it on her own, so the other glove puppet would have to be so awful that Hillary would look good in comparison. “Let’s use a narcissistic chauvinistic billionaire who hasn’t a clue about foreign policy & will be happy to nuke any bunch of foreign trouble-makers. Ah yes, Donald Trump! Sure to freak middle of the road voters into heading left.”

    Comment by Dennis Frank — October 15, 2016 @ 8:47 am

  5. Except Hillary by no stretch of the imagination is “left”.

    Comment by jmcveagh — October 15, 2016 @ 9:49 am

  6. I’m still laughing at the first comment. Trump is as far away from capitalism as tax’em Hilary. We’ve become clueless.

    Comment by Mark Hubbard (@MarkHubbard33) — October 15, 2016 @ 9:52 am

  7. Before we get to Trump’s successor, Danyl, we have to get through Hillary. Depending on who you believe, she could be an even worse prospect. Time will tell.

    A.

    Comment by Antoine — October 15, 2016 @ 11:12 am

  8. Cliff, rather than that jackass, how about this guy?

    Comment by Clunking Fist — October 15, 2016 @ 11:15 am

  9. “The death of neoliberalism looks a lot uglier and scarier than the left thought it would be.”

    How does that expression go again? “Be careful what you wish for”?

    Comment by Clunking Fist — October 15, 2016 @ 11:23 am

  10. Here’s Trey again. But you won’t watch it on the basis of TL;DR or summit.

    Comment by Clunking Fist — October 15, 2016 @ 11:25 am

  11. Both the Washington Post and Vanity Fair have speculated that his goal is the creation of a new far right media empire, as Fox News has obviously not been as nice to him as he would have liked. And perhaps it’s too tame for him. His bromance with Sean Hannity (whose contract comes up for renewal soon), the appointment of Breitbart’s Bannon as his campaign chief, his friendship with ex-Fox Ailes (they probably share groping tips). The thought is that Trumpissimo will be looking for a way to “monetarise” his acolytes.

    Comment by McNulty — October 15, 2016 @ 11:28 am

  12. his personality flaws and transparent ineligibility for office: his ‘unpresidentialness’ – not his values, or racism or misogyny or ideology

    If you consider these to be one and the same, which I do, then a Hillary win is a win over both and a substantial and long lasting win for liberal values.

    US voters are going to vote against Trump because of his personality and what it represents. And in substantial numbers. It’s hard to see that emphatic rejection as paving the way for some far right takeover.

    Comment by NeilM — October 15, 2016 @ 11:47 am

  13. Demographics amongst other things militates against such a scenario.

    White males with no college education – the core Trump support are a diminishing influence.

    Comment by NeilM — October 15, 2016 @ 11:51 am

  14. We are all going to get a dress rehearsal of this when Winston leads the next NZ left wing government. Just think, the left’s leading politician will be Winston Peters and their leading thinker will be Martyn Bradbury. Oh, happy day!

    Comment by Tinakori — October 15, 2016 @ 12:28 pm

  15. Grounding:

    Clinton is not a capitalist – she’s a statist using a shallow and toxic identity politick to get elected.
    Trump is not a capitalist – as Danyl said he’s a fascist bully (and not that bright).

    But:

    Generation Airhead views Clinton as the Left (as meaningless as that term is).
    Generation Airhead views Trump as capitalist and Right (as meaningless as both those terms have become).

    Thus:

    On the advent of negative interest rates (US on 0.25% for 95 months) that was the end of this disastrous experiment in Big State Keynesian economics organised from command central banking. Western centralised economies have so many distortions that have destroyed the ability to save (or have savings) because of bubble valuations for all financial assets, the only fix is a total economic collapse.

    Thus:

    My only hope for this (insane) presidential election is Clinton wins (which is the end of the republic anyway) so Generation Airhead can’t (so readily) blame capitalism (even though they have no understanding of what capitalism is and even though they will try coz reasoning is not their strong suit). From that it may be possible to build a free society from the ashes in about another century, albeit I have no real hope.

    Off to the wineries.

    Comment by Mark Hubbard (@MarkHubbard33) — October 15, 2016 @ 12:30 pm

  16. Don’t you mean “Back off to the wineries” ?

    Comment by paritutu — October 15, 2016 @ 1:22 pm

  17. Googling Generation Airhead doesn’t produce much. Could be their generational impact is as light as a feather? I was hoping to see the years that bracket it. Any airheads here want to specify those?

    Comment by Dennis Frank — October 15, 2016 @ 1:37 pm

  18. “Trump is as far away from capitalism” is exactly why the F word is appropriate and Godwin’s Law is dead. You know… Hitler didn’t call his movement “National Capitalism”.

    Comment by Bill Bennett — October 15, 2016 @ 1:41 pm

  19. I would not be excessively concerned. The very powerful American media tries to make every election seem as close as it possibly can.

    Comment by Korakys — October 15, 2016 @ 1:42 pm

  20. @Clunking Fist,

    Trey Gowdy, huh? He’s the future? Well, I guess he did such a bang-up job on nailing Hilary for Benghazi that he’s proved his worth to the GOP. Oh, wait … that sort of fizzed out, didn’t it?

    Still, he’s a Trump believer, so I guess he’s in the right camp: http://www.goupstate.com/news/20161011/rep-trey-gowdy-stands-by-trump-for-president

    Comment by Flashing Light — October 15, 2016 @ 2:20 pm

  21. This is pretty good:

    If anything, Trumpism has, in part, made the rest of the nation all the more eager to ignore the millions of white voters living on the edges of the economy. Many may now be written off without guilt, because they have shown themselves to be not just unfortunates but undesirables—irredeemable hate-mongers itching to reassert their cultural dominance. Of course, the political establishment will first need to spend a couple of months piously lecturing Trump fans. But once the finger wagging is done, non-Trump America will return to their regular lives, leaving disappointed Trump devotees to stew in the resentments and anxieties he, among others, has nurtured.

    No matter where you fall on the political spectrum, this is a tragic outcome. It leaves Americans that much more segregated and alienated from one another. It’s exactly this kind of cross-cultural suspicion and mistrust that has enabled Trump to come within spitting distance of the presidency. And it’s what threatens to keep his supporters isolated and fuming on the sidelines, long after their champion has forgotten them.

    http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2016/10/what-will-happen-to-the-trump-die-hards/504032/

    The issue is, I guess, whether Trumpism is the last dying spasm of a group (non-college educated whites, men especially) who have lost majority status in the US and are mad as hell about it, or is it the beginning of something worse?

    Comment by Andrew Geddis — October 15, 2016 @ 3:09 pm

  22. In 2012, David Smick of the WaPo theorised the following:

    “Here’s a prediction: The political party that controls the White House after January [2017] could, four years later, be out of power for a generation. The economic challenges are that daunting.

    I’m not talking just about the fiscal cliff or America’s “budgetary crystal meth” habit, as financier Bill Gross recently described Washington’s inability to contain today’s exploding debt.

    The risk stems from something more fundamental: The globalization model of the past 30 years is cracking up. And there appears to be no new model to replace it.

    Since April, an ugly economic world has turned uglier. The annual growth rate of total global exports has collapsed. Exports were a crucial engine in powering the U.S. economy out of the worst of the recession in the second half of 2009 and remain important for growth.”

    Since that article was published, the “new model” that seems to be emerging is some kind of Mussolinian corporatism/nativism, in the wake of Trump and Brexit.

    Comment by Kumara Republic (@kumararepublic) — October 15, 2016 @ 3:12 pm

  23. Recommended read – Matt Taibbi on what Trump’s loss means: http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/features/the-fury-and-failure-of-donald-trump-w444943

    Comment by Sacha — October 15, 2016 @ 3:26 pm

  24. I might also predict a second GOP split, 1912-style, into a corporate establishment wing (led by the Bush family and Marco Rubio), and a neo-populist wing (led by, of course, Trump, and Pat Buchanan)

    I think also the Dems are also overdue for a split, into centrist Clintonites and Left-leaning Sandersites. All the more so if Hillary doesn’t pander to Sanders supporters.

    Andrew Geddis: Trump isn’t just courting support from the ‘Rust Belt’. He’s also got endorsement from high-up figures like Rupert Murdoch & Roger Ailes of NewsCorp, Peter Thiel, ultra-Likudniks including casino tycoon Sheldon Adelson and propagandist Pamela Geller, and a large chunk of the European far-Right leadership.

    Comment by Kumara Republic (@kumararepublic) — October 15, 2016 @ 3:37 pm

  25. “You know… Hitler didn’t call his movement “National Capitalism”.
    Indeed it was named to emphasis its supposed anti-capitalist anti-big business, anti-bourgeois rhetoric as völkisch nationalism. The latin root word socius really just means ‘allies’

    Comment by ghostwhowalksnz — October 15, 2016 @ 3:54 pm

  26. Andrew Geddis: Trump isn’t just courting support from the ‘Rust Belt’.

    Oh, sure … but the “average” Trump supporter is older, with higher household incomes, more likely to be male, white non-Hispanic, less likely to hold a bachelor’s degree or higher education and more likely to work in a blue-collar occupation: https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2822059

    The people you mention who are endorsing him see this segment of the population as amenable to their ideological goals, so Trump is a useful vehicle for them.

    Comment by Andrew Geddis — October 15, 2016 @ 3:55 pm

  27. @Kumera: although Trump might have “endorsement from high-up figures”, that is not a meaningful demographic. By definition there aren’t many “high-up figures”, and by definition, “high-up figures” are also the establishment who have plenty of power and freedom vested in the current system. The extent that they support somebody like Trump, is simply the extent that they feel he will favour and entrench their particular establishment interests. And for the media-sorts it is hardly a coincidence that they want a candidate involved who focuses and creates the media circus.

    Perhaps the Republican party will split, if Trump loses, but it seems incredibly unlikely that Trump himself will have much to do with either faction. At “best” he’ll appear again next election as a potential candidate, but surely he’ll have found something else to amuse himself with by then.

    Comment by RJL — October 15, 2016 @ 4:03 pm

  28. Re (17) we’re now ‘back from the wineries’ and turning our minds to martini night Saturday. Beach first.

    Comment by Mark Hubbard (@MarkHubbard33) — October 15, 2016 @ 4:31 pm

  29. Will the GOP split, or will Trump lose, then lose interest and walk away? Then the GOP can get back to the religionists v the libertarians.

    Comment by Clunking Fist — October 15, 2016 @ 7:22 pm

  30. Pat Buchanan and Donald Trump who are both close to 80?? I disagree

    Comment by max — October 15, 2016 @ 8:58 pm

  31. The notion that a Trump defeat is the harbinger of a fascist take over seems to be a bit of a thing.

    It’s often accompanied by – why are we focusing on all this stuff about women when we should be concentrating on the really import issue of is Trump a fascist?

    Which sort of misses the point. Trump’s misogyny isn’t a mere soap opera peccadillo – it’s a defining feature of his politics and the culture wars in the US.

    A rejection of that is an important indication of where US society is heading. Inventing these scare scenarios of fascist take overs while ignoring advances on major liberal issues seems to me to be indulgent attempts to appear radical – mostly by males.

    Comment by NeilM — October 16, 2016 @ 12:04 am

  32. My ten year old knows Trum is an idiot. But why? Since when did 10 year olds give a flying one about the next President of the USA. Oh yes, a concerted drive to promote a particular perception about Trump has extended intothe cyber world to such an extent that even children are now unwitting pawns in the discourse.

    Meanwhile, the forces of good reel under the attack that Trump represents, because well everything is so fucking wonderful in US politics as we speak, this bogey man Trump might ruin freedom and democracy for us all. Unless ….:

    Comment by leeharmanclark — October 16, 2016 @ 7:36 am

  33. At present Trump is doing worse with non-college educated whites than Romney.

    The big shift has been college educated whites now voting for the Dems.

    So Trump doesn’t represent a resurgence of white identity politics. What’s happening is a shift in the white population to the Dems.

    If current polling holds, Mrs. Clinton would be the first Democrat in at least 50 years to win college-educated whites. Republicans have won white voters both with and without degrees in each of the last four elections, with Mitt Romney in 2012 winning the biggest margins among both groups of any GOP nominee since at least 1992.

    http://www.wsj.com/articles/voters-education-level-a-driving-force-this-election-1476401440

    So with Trump the Dems aren’t losing non college educated whites – which have traditionally voted Dem – and are gaining significantly with college educated whites.

    Trump is playing to a particular constituency buts it’s not a growing one and he’s not doing it as well as Romney.

    It’s the Dem’s sucess in shifting the white vote that’s most notable.

    Comment by NeilM — October 16, 2016 @ 9:58 am

  34. Oh yes, a concerted drive to promote a particular perception about Trump has extended intothe cyber world to such an extent that even children are now unwitting pawns in the discourse.

    A “concerted drive”, huh? So, who’s behind it all – the Jews, the Bankers (same thing, right?), the media (with their Jew owners), the Societas Rosicruciana, the Bilderberg elite, the “establishment”? Because there’s something going on, dontchano … and now they are after our children!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Alternatively, Trump is a complete publicity hound who has been hoisted on his own petard.

    Comment by Flashing Light — October 16, 2016 @ 10:06 am

  35. At present Trump is doing worse with non-college educated whites than Romney.

    That isn’t certain – other polls have different numbers: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2016/09/25/in-2012-white-voters-backed-romney-in-2016-theyre-splintered/

    Also, what is different between 2012 and 2016 is the tone of the support. With Romney, non-college educated whites were called on to support an establishment figure whose campaign essentially reflected the concerns of the Republican Party’s financial donor base (as the alternative to that foreign born coloured socialist pretend “President”). When he failed, the party base essentially said “that’s it – no more compromises” and went for the guy saying the stuff they really wanted to hear. Getting them to go back to a Paul Ryan/Marcio Rubio figure in 4 years time when there is bound to be a smarter version of Trump (Joe Scarborough?) running is going to be pretty tough.

    Comment by Flashing Light — October 16, 2016 @ 10:27 am

  36. Getting them to go back to a Paul Ryan/Marcio Rubio figure in 4 years time when there is bound to be a smarter version of Trump (Joe Scarborough?) running is going to be pretty tough.

    That could be a problem for the Republican Party but the angry white male non college educated voter is not a growing demographic. Whites are moving to the Dems. The base for white right wing identity politics is shrinking.

    While a smoother talking more intelligent version of Trump might arrive on the scene – a risk in all countries – there’s no reason to believe this is a greater danger than at any other time. But they would still have to sell Trump’s policies and Trump has been losing all the way through the campaign even before all this stuff had come out.

    It all suggests that white identity politics just does not have enough appeal to get someone into the White House.

    Comment by NeilM — October 16, 2016 @ 11:14 am

  37. @NeilM,

    I’d say it’s a problem for the USA as a whole. White identity politics may not be enough to win the (ironically named) White House, but it can fuck up domestic politics and society in a pretty ugly way. Especially when you have Trump already delegitimising his inevitable loss as the result of a “rigged system”.

    Comment by Flashing Light — October 16, 2016 @ 11:29 am

  38. Give the US public some credit: whilst voting Trump would have been a nice FU to “the establishment”, as polling day draws closer, they have come to see that voting to burn the house down whilst you are still in it isn’t the way to go. So they’ll probably just stay at home on polling day. Same as last time…
    But maybe next time:

    Comment by Clunking Fist — October 16, 2016 @ 2:05 pm

  39. @Clunking Fist,

    You do know that in 2012 Allen West lost his seat in Congress after just a single 2 year term – losing to a 29-year-old novice Democrat candidate despite raising $17 million and running in a reliably Republican district that voted for Mitt Romney over Obama? So if he represents the promise of “next time” … well, I guess there’s always another next time after that.

    Good news being that we might actually have a bit more time to worry about stuff like this, now that some serious action is being taken to address anthropocentric climate change: https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/oct/15/climate-change-environmentalists-hail-deal-to-limit-use-of-hydrofluorocarbons

    Comment by Flashing Light — October 16, 2016 @ 3:47 pm

  40. Ironically, militant Trumpoids complaining about ballot rigging are themselves threatening to engage in voter intimidation:

    Comment by Kumara Republic (@kumararepublic) — October 16, 2016 @ 6:13 pm

  41. Hey – in his spare time, Danyl is masquerading as a former Australian foreign affairs minister and former NSW premier!

    http://www.smh.com.au/comment/if-you-think-donald-trump-is-bad-imagine-who-the-republic-who-is-coming-next-20161014-gs2qbu.html

    Comment by Andrew Geddis — October 17, 2016 @ 10:02 am

  42. “HFCs – a key contributor to greenhouse gases” Pffft.

    I’ve not been paying attention, so please tell me whether the world’s co2 emmissions have fallen at all in the last few years?

    Comment by Clunking Fist — October 17, 2016 @ 10:41 am

  43. 21 “Trey Gowdy, huh? He’s the future? Well, I guess he did such a bang-up job on nailing Hilary for Benghazi that he’s proved his worth to the GOP. Oh, wait … that sort of fizzed out, didn’t it?”

    When Congress can’t get access to witnesses, when the press & media collectively shrug and stop reporting it, it does sort of fizzle out. It’s a pretty sad state for democracy when a parliament can’t hold an administration to account on even the most major of cover-ups.

    Comment by Clunking Fist — October 17, 2016 @ 1:44 pm

  44. Granted: he wears his hair like a child molester or vampire…

    Comment by Clunking Fist — October 17, 2016 @ 2:09 pm

  45. Hey, it’s like Kevin McCarthy and Richard Hanna said – Gowdy had just one job (to make Hillary Clinton’s numbers drop) and he couldn’t get it done. Don’t cry about the being unable to mount a blatantly partisan witch hunt (literally, in the Republicans’ eyes) because of blatantly partisan interference from the target.

    Comment by Flashing Light — October 17, 2016 @ 3:41 pm

  46. “Gowdy had just one job (to make Hillary Clinton’s numbers drop) ”
    But he was fighting Trump, who is actively making Hillary’s numbers rise…

    Comment by Clunking Fist — October 18, 2016 @ 4:35 pm


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