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28 November 2015

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bell

maybe americans consume too much mass media producing a bloated with ignorance look..

William R. Cumming

Richard you nailed "it" and him IMO!

Mary Rogers

i'd like to know what you think of current prez!! probably admire him! libs are so good at justifying their choices!
if TRUMP is that evil, he does not take a back seat to the real monster!
btw I am one of the ignorant unwashed you speak of!
I hope you and yours will suffer when we anoint our new PRESIDENT!

The Beaver

Mr Sale,

Trump and his followers remind me of the Roman imperial propaganda which consisted of traditional themes endlessly repeated for impact. The message then was that thanks to the leadership of the emperor, the frontiers were secure, order reigned at home, and the citizens were able to go about safely about their business and prosper. Now King Trump believes that the world will bow to his majesty and his military super power

Tyler

Good thing it was Black Friday - you can buy a new keyboard since you probably broke your old one when you typed this with clenched fists.

Exclusive video of Sale writing this article: http://imgur.com/g0mFmYH

Charles Michael

I don't envy any of my american friends if they have ever to choose between Donald and Hilary.

no one

Richard, what you say is obviously true. I know we've covered this ground before, but I continue to fail to see how everything you say isn't equally applicable to Hillary Clinton - or, for that matter, to any of the candidates, albeit in a more sedate and pleasant presentation.

So Trump resonates with white longshoremen. Do white longshoremen not deserve representation in our government? I ask because no other candidate is speaking to what that class/crow experiences every day with their own eyes and ears.

We sure do have Trump-like tactics being used to win over other classes; blacks, women, the wealthy. It's all divisiveness based on distortions of reality.

Unless you believe that law enforcement really is implementing a genocide on black youths and that there's a war on women, etc, etc, etc

crf

So, how do ya like that Trump character, eh? ;-)

Jack

Mr. Sale

My dear Dad born in the early 30s says that we are where we are due to the changing character of the majority of the American people starting with his generation. Sound principles have been eschewed for magical thinking of the permanence of free lunches with no adverse consequences.

my.comment

Mr. Sale, thank you for this column.

Trump's supporters cheer wildly at his promise to include torture as a key feature of his foreign policy; they cheer wildly at his promise to 'bomb the shit' out of middle eastern countries; they cheer wildly at the assault of demonstrators who (misguidedly/stupidly) interrupt his appearances; they laugh at his mockery of a physically disabled reporter (and then lie that it happened -- read thru the wapo comments); they cheer wildly at the promise to round up 11 million illegal immigrants for deportation; they cheer wildly at the promise to monitor all muslims in the country thru data collection (certainly), and physical markings (hint/hint)... (Just imagine how many new recruits Trump has gathered to enroll in the scam that is Trump University -- no doubt maxing out their credit cards and selling their homes.)

But it took that mockery of one of their own, Mr. Kovaleski, before the media finally stepped up and called him out for his lie of denial -- despite video evidence. And, now, I suspect it's far beyond the point of stopping him; the more 'establishment' types rail against him, it only cements and grows his support among that demographic. A demographic that the Christian Right and GOP have been feeding fear and contempt for 'the other' to for decades. And now they have no control nor influence over them.

It's worth noting that in a 1990 profile in Vanity Fair, Ivana Trump revealed that Donald kept a book of Hitler's speeches by his bedside.

greg0

The first I heard of Trump was over 30 years ago waiting for the plane to take off from NY to Europe. Local news was on while we waited. Some new Trump edifice was opening and the reporters all fawned over the blowhard. Couldn't believe the attitudes or that it was newsworthy.

jonst

I'm not clear why it is so surprising that 'white people' would eventually get around to embracing the exact same identity politics everyone else plays in America. And plays rather profitably, it must be added, at times. This is all the more expected as media talking head after talking head announces, with some mirth in their tone, how 'whites' will be in the 'minority' soon enough. It may be lamentable...it may not be so. But it seems fairly predictable and logical. To me.

And comparing Trump to Mussolini strikes me as not only grossly premature, but over the top. What he MAY ONE DAY BECOME, or, what anyone may ONE DAY BECOME, is one thing. What they are now? And really Richard, have you really studied Mussolini's history? His early socialist years? His war (First World War) years? The failure of the monarchy, and his time during this failure, as Italy collapsed, in the wake of WWI, as editor of Italy's largest newspaper? Come on...you are comparing Trump to a caricature created by the West. A caricature perhaps earned by Mussolini, I grant you.

And who then is Hillary? Édouard Daladier? A self-serving, amoralist, soulless, technocrat? Ready to sell anyone and any value out, to gain public office. And then proceed over the collapse of the 2nd Republic? And to slide into collaboration? Come on Richard, come to expect better or you than that.

Hunsdon

Nuance much?

walrus

The person Mr. Sale is describing is a Fascist. His appeal to undereducated White working class types is a fascist appeal - all emotions and no substance.

Robert Paxton accurately described Fascism and Trump's appeal in 1998.

Is this not Trump?

"Fascists despise thought and reason, abandon intellectual positions casually, and cast aside many intellectual fellow travellers. They subordinate thought and reason not to faith, as did the traditional Right, but to promptings of the blood and the historic destiny of the group."

http://w3.salemstate.edu/~cmauriello/pdfEuropean/Paxton_Five%20Stages%20of%20Fascism.pdf

kao_hsien_chih

Mr. Sale,

I mean no disrespect, but I suspect that you might be a bit blinded by your own elitism to see the forces behind support for Trump.

There is no question that Trump supporters are not particularly well-educated or understanding of the finer aspects of politics. But that also means that they refuse to see the world through the prism of the political conventional wisdom (including a lot of Borgish groupthink) and that is potentially a good thing. They are genuinely wondering what good comes out of the grandstanding internationalism-cosmopolitanism of the political elite and they are not getting a straight answer, in part because, let's face it, they ARE getting a raw deal. All they get are only derision and contempt for being "ignorant rubes." "Well, we the ignorant rubes can still vote and we'll show you" is the force that galvanizes them. In other words, their very existence in large numbers is the testimony to the failure of our political classes: as I keep repeating, it's not just the people in Syria or Ukraine that our so-called leaders (of both parties) don't understand. It's the people in West Virginia, Arkansas, and Wisconsin that they don't understand--and refuse to understand. This willful ignorance is coming to bite them in the behind.

Having said as much, I will say that I agree with you that Trump is likely the wrong man to front this crowd--although I don't know who could possibly be the right man. An angry crowd that simply knows they'd been wronged and looked down upon cannot be expected to provide a clear direction. It (the crowd as a collective) probably cannot even figure out what it really wants. They can be recruited by demagogues to do evil. On the third hand, though, I do think, as far as potential demagogues go, Trump is a fairly benign character: I occasionally call him "redneck Steve Jobs": both are brilliant PR men with many natural gifts and equally numerous character flaws who figured out how to convert publicity into profit, the one difference being that while Jobs seduced the self-appointed elites, Trump appeals to the undereducated...but other than their audiences and the "styles," same differences, really. I don't think he has a "real" diabolical plan beyond simple opportunism.

No, I don't want to see Trump win. But I do hope that this phenomenon wakes up the political crowd enough that they actually pay attention to the "rubes" who support Trump. If they don't, we might actually see someone more sinister draw on the same crowd...and have a more serious chance at capturing real political power.

Richard Sale

well your reply seethes with malice and venom, I give you that.
So you think Obama is a monster. I wish you would write more about him.

Richard

Richard Sale

The world won't.

Richard

Richard Sale

I detest Hillary.

We are a democracy. I thought everyone deserved representation.


Richard

no one

My.comment - "Trump's supporters cheer wildly at his promise to include torture as a key feature of his foreign policy; they cheer wildly at his promise to 'bomb the shit' out of middle eastern countries....."

So I'll ask you the same I asked of Mr. Sale - how is anything you wrote about Trump different than, say, George Bush Jr?

Why the emphasis on Trump?

Richard Sale

I think your dad was absolutely right. a sound political system takes hard work.

Richard

Richard Sale

That is extremely disturbing if it's accurate.

Richard

Richard Sale

I have indeed studied Mussolini. But the Italian buffoon shares a lot of qualities with the Trump buffoon.

Richard

Richard Sale

Walrus is dead on.

Richard

kao_hsien_chih

Walrus,

Personally, I think that definition of "Fascism" is elitist BS.

Most voters, regardless of country, are not terribly intellectual. They are not very politically sophisticated. They don't always know what's going on. The really successful politicians are those who can tap into how they understand the universe, by making an appeal that is decidedly NOT grounded on rigorous intellectual positions. While that may have been MO of a Long or a Mussolini (not THAT much in case of Mussolini--he didn't win elections to get into power.), it is also the MO of successful politicians who did not go the "Fascist" route: say, a Reagan or an Obama, to use American examples ("change" much? whatever that means...but whatever it was, it was a simple emotional appeal that was devoid of "political sophistication" that clearly meant something to many people.) I repeat my position that the rise of demagoguery in politics is the product of failure among the political elite, of which contempt of the "unwashed masses" is an important cause and symptom. It is potentially dangerous because it may allow a "real" fascist into power, but to root out such danger, we need better politicians in the first place (and perhaps the voters who realize this).

Tyler

If you're going to write an article complaining about someone's rhetoric and hyperbole, you probably shouldn't do it coming off like a hysterical woman.

Seriously name another candidate who's foreign policy isn't start seven wars in the Middle East the day after Inauguration Day with a domestic policy of turning America into a 3rd World sewer cum bazaar. I'll wait.

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