How did Trump come this far?

September 20, 2016

Q: In your opinion – how did someone like Trump come this far?

A: I am not going to respond to this question. As it will not produce good results. I don’t mean to come across as forwardly rude. However. The question to me, is not how did Trump come this far. Rather what are the factors that are operable which makes it possible for such a person like Trump to come this far.

I think when you just focus on the personality alone without factoring the prevailing political, economic, social and technological context it can mislead terribly.

Besides it’s not fair to Mr Trump.

Q: So what you are saying is Trump appeared at the political scene at the right time and place?

A: Yes! And you should not be surprised as Hitler, Lenin and perhaps even every nutcase dictator including most recently Duterte before came into power by inserting themselves meaningful into the discourse of the prevailing sentiment.

Otherwise how can their crackpot message resonate with the masses?

In the case of Hitler, Germany under the Weimar Republic was a failed state and since it was forced to accept the crushing dicta of the treaty of Versailles this created fertile conditions for a mad man to come into power.

The paradox is if the League of Nations in 1919 had not imposed such harsh conditions on Germany it’s very likely Hitler and his motley crew would just end in the garbage heap of history.

Q: So what do you consider to be operable in the case of Mr a Trump?

A: Look there are so many things wrong with America. I really don’t know where to begin to list the multitude of cause and effect.

Q: Why don’t you share with us three of the most cogent drivers that you consider operable for the rise of a personality like Mr Trump.

A: The presidential race is really a blood test of the body politic of the US and it revealed multiple problems in what I can only describe as the disunited states of America. You really have so many divisions at some many different levels – we are not only talking about class war, but there is also the idea that within America there are already so many Americas.

But just to give you the broad main constituent parts – one segment of Americans voted to change and these incidentally are also the same group who benefit least from globalization. The other seems to be voting for the status quo and they are the elites.

And that really a summary of the US – a country starkly divided between the have’s and have not’s, between the US that is essentially comfortable with globalisation, diversity and cosmopolitanism and the US that continues to be gnawed by it’s its anxieties and resentments about identity loss and not having a voice.

To say it’s just about class alone tells us very little about why Americans have suddenly decided to be xenophobic, parochial and insular, but it’s also about generational aspirations as well – specifically the breakdown between yearning and the fulfillment of that desire especially in mellinials – young Americans don’t have much faith in their leaders or for that matter the political machinery in being able to help them actualize their dreams.

Q: So what you are saying is the American dream is broken?

A: I think that is certainly one way to describe the intensity of the divide in the US. As in the past US politicians have always been reliable purveyors of dreams – FDR was a good example of the prototypal paternalistic president and he more or less set the bar for the other presidents to follow. I guess in the past, it was significantly easier for presidents to deliver economic growth and that in part has to do with the life cycle of economics.

But of late the idea of growth has not only spluttered but it’s riven with so many boom’s and bust – and that has really amplified the mood of pessimism thus exacerbating the chasm between president and people.

To add insult to injury. The elites in the US seem to be untouchable. Even when firms belly up and thousands of cookie cutters are retrenched or have to see their pension nest egg go up in smoke – these conceited lot seem to be able to get creamy bonuses. So all this adds to the perception, something is very very wrong with capitalism and the whole political machinery.

So yes…you are certainly very perceptive to sum it all in one sentence unlike me who has to bore you with lengthy wind bag explanations – the American dream is certainly broken.

Q: Has Obama contributed to Trump’s success?

A: To be fair to Obama many of the problems the US faces today predates the Obama administration and goes right back to the heady days of Bush junior.

Having said that Obama’s foreign policy especially in the Middle East has been largely rudderless comprising of a strategy of appeasement and not getting caught up in a quagmire and that has really worked against America.

Q: Do you think that is why Trump admires Putin and wants to have closer ties with Russia?

A: Well I think once Trump gets a ‘for your eyes only Mr President’ briefing from the director of the NSA, joint chief of staff, Jewish lobby proxy Mossad and the CIA. He wouldn’t be too hot about sharing the tub with Putin.

Q: You mean Putin is that bad for America?

A: Well that’s putting it mildly as I believe in the case of Putin it’s got to be very personal. After all Putin used to be a KGB man and he’s still very sore about how Boris Yeltsin sold off Russia to NATO and the CIA by annexing chunks of the USSR away to the EU for a case of double malt whisky. So Putin is very determined not to allow history to repeat itself again – that is why Russia is so determined to hold on to the Crimea and that could also explain why he has decided to take a very aggressive stance against ISIS in Syria.

Putin is reinstating the soviet sphere of influence doctrine first promulgated by Stalin that goes, ‘you’re weak, I take!’ And Obama is weak. As he wants out. Hence his non existent foreign policy on the Middle East.

Q: Will Hillary Clinton be able to offer something credible and attractive to the US electorate that will throw Trump’s chances of being elected president?

A: I don’t see how she can. What you need to understand here is this is perhaps the only occasion in the entire history of the presidential elections when the US electorate is faced with two options that they much prefer not to vote for – to say the prevailing sentiment is seething cynicism cum terminal ambivalence is not too far off the mark. But having said that the battle lines are pretty clear – a vote for Clinton can be construed as more of the same or “establishment” – conversely a vote for Trump is a departure from the status quo ante and probably a leap of faith.

Q: Who do you think will win?

A: It’s very hard to say. As the disunited states of a America is really quite a different country – in the past you could say although there were divisions. But these divides never threatened the core values that used to unite Americans. But these days the average American voter is disinclined to listen to the advice of wise men. They don’t even want to listen to the meditations of the serious men any longer – this is not only happening in the US, but as we have seen recently in the UK – the divisions between have’s and have not’s, the informed and the ignorant, the cosmopolitans and the Eastender is really quite stark and alarming.

I don’t know. Your guess is really as good as mine.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: