• jamalrob
    2.1k
    Deplorables: Trump, Brexit and the Demonised Masses

    Whatever you might think of the weirdos at Spiked, I think this is a pretty good video. It's far from a deep or original analysis, but it makes some points that I mostly agree with and that I think people have to learn from, especially Leftists. And really I just like it because it stands up for people who are being derided in liberal and Left circles. I have a humble desire: that we understand what led people to vote the way they did, rather than dismiss them. Their concerns should be ours.
  • god must be atheist
    883
    There was no proletarian class in America roughly between 1950 and 2010. There was a huge middle class. The left left the working class because there was no proletariat. Now the working class is emerging again, but it's not really a proletarian class, only a bunch of unemployed, poor people. The system as it's shaping up in America these days, does not fit the Marxian pattern of classes in a bourgeois system.

    The left has assumed for its platform a pattern of humanitarian considerations, while the right has assumed for its pattern a pattern of nationalism, religionism, and covert racism.

    I deny that the left or the right actively helps the rich to get richer and the poor to get poorer. That economic transformation is not partisan-directed, or helped. It is a system growing on a natural basis by itself.

    I think the system which everyone likes to deplore: the rich who is getting richer, and the poor getting poorer is not part of a Marxian class system, as described by Marx; it is, instead, a phantom oligarchy. Marx's basic tenet in capitalism was, or one of them, that the ruling class exploits the ruled class. But what is there to exploit in people who are not even working? Or in the golden era of middle class (1950-2010) who wanted to fight against oppression and exploitation? There was no oppression, and exploitation was not an issue, because nobody felt exploited: everyone was fat and earned lots of money. If anything, people were happy to work, and to earn money; if someone came up to them and told them they are being exploited as workers (which was true in the Marxian sense), then these people would have grinned and declared, "If this is exploitation, gimme more."

    The left has left the working class for these reasons. The working class did not need the help of the left; and the needs have shifted to ease the plight of the poor.

    ----------------

    What I find funny -- and this is not my original idea, or an idea born in me independently of others, but I read it in the New York Times some decades ago -- is that part of the Christian ideal is to help the poor, and heal the sick, and give dignity to all humans. Yet the left assumed it is their responsibility to endeavour these aims, while it is also the Left that harbours most atheists, and it is the right that harbours most extreme fundamentals and practically all strong religionists. (I bow to the exceptions in both cases.)

    I find it funny, because my father was a devout Christian, all his life (although he put it in "dormant" status during his career), yet he was the first one or one of the few first who joined the Communist Party of Hungary in 1945 or 46. He was an idealist, he wanted to help the poor, the sick, the downtrodden. That's what he thought the main secular goals of a Christian ought to be, and he saw it clearly that the communist party had the very same ideals in view.
  • god must be atheist
    883
    "They have failed these people either through bureaucracy or through being tone deaf." "They" being the liberal left who "owned" politics, and "these people" being the working class Americans who had lost their jobs, their towns, their pride.

    THIS is the main problem. Not seeing the forest from the trees. IF and ONLY IF you are looking for culprits to see what made "these people" miserable, then you have to look not in the direction of right, not in the direction of left, but to the direction of the East.

    China. Everything costs ten to hundred times less if you order it from China. It does not matter if you want as simple and low-volume an item as one order of a USB drive, for yourself, or billions of dollars worth of merchandise annually, like WalMart.

    There is shit-throwing contests: demonizing the deplorables, criticizing the liberal left, ridiculing or hating Trump, etc etc. These are not tectonic plate movements; these are the effects on the social superstructures of the tectonic movements; the tectonic movement was the discovery of China, along with its economic savings on costs, which the American public as well as the American Ruling Class (whoever they are) have capitalized overnight, and keep on capitalizing.

    There is no "bringing jobs back" to America. If you want Americans again to forge steel, to build cars and hydroelectric dams, to build industry and work hard, you have to convince them to do it for seven cents an hour. Their Chinese counterparts think seven cents an hour is a god-given fortune. And what stupid idea is it, to spend $200 for a cubic foot of steel, when you can get the same for $10 on Amazon, including shipping?
  • unenlightened
    4k
    especially Leftists.jamalrob

    So as a leftist, I have a somewhat different story. About 6 mins into the vid, the Trump apologist says that he made a very populist speech similar to one that Bill Clinton made. And that has the ring of truth to it, because back here in Blighty, the Labour party too had been transformed into a populist party (from a party of principle) From Blair onwards, Labour was indeed "the establishment" and all parties were the establishment.

    Populism promises people what they want; it is the crack dealer of politics. and a lot of people are going to have to die before folks realise that they better not have what they want.
  • Terrapin Station
    13.3k
    I've explained this before, but I voted for Trump. As I've said many times, I'm a very idiosyncratic sort of libertarian socialist. I can't stand either Democrats or Republicans. I can't stand that we have a system in which only two parties are practically viable. With respect to my concerns, Democrats and Republicans are far more alike than they're different. Normally I vote for either Libertarian or Green candidates, but practically, both are "wasted votes," because typically the best showing for a third party candidate is about 0.4% of the total vote, and the percentage hasn't grown in decades.

    So why did I vote for Trump? Well, I liked how iconoclastic and unapologetic he was being. I liked that he was promising to shake things up in Washington and trash a lot of the traditional way that politics is done there. And I liked that he was focusing so much on bringing jobs back to Americans. That hit on two of my major agendas: the system needs an overhaul (if it's not simply just trashed and rebuilt), and politicians need to be focusing on things that make a practical difference in their constituency's daily lives. Having a decent job obviously makes a difference in folks' daily lives.

    The fact that Trump came from the business world rather than being a career politician--I'm not fond of career politicians and I'd not be opposed to requiring that we don't have any (by say, only allowing someone to occupy a office one time/one term, and not more than two different offices total; I'd also make their income as politicians hinge on their success re accomplishing things that have a practical, positive effect on folks' lives, as well as not increasing--with a bonus for decreasing, total legislation)--gave me hope that he might be able to change things.

    Stuff like Trump talking about building a border wall I didn't take at all seriously, because the idea of it is so ridiculous. I took it to be him basically trolling in a positive way--an example of being iconoclastic and f-ing with norms (of campaign rhetoric in this case--I almost saw him as doing some sort of odd performance art rather than just interpreting him to be a moron), because the system needs to be changed.

    Of course, Trump turned out to actually be serious about the border wall much to my chagrin (I'm for worldwide open borders--I'd prefer we didn't even have separate countries; I'd only screen for wanted criminals/known terrorists/terrorist associates), and aside from that, he basically did jackshit to change the way politics is normally done in Washington or to make any practical difference in folks' daily lives. Mostly what he seemed to do was get into flame wars with people on twitter (and in the media more generally). Not that any other politicians are helping, of course--focusing on crap like the "collusion" nonense, trying to get Trump impeached, etc. is also doing jackshit to make anyone's lives better in a practical, daily sense. How about we stop worrying about nonsense like that and figure out how to make sure that no American has to go without healthcare/specific health procedures, medicine, etc. they need, just because they can't afford to pay for it?

    So would I vote for him again? Not in a million years. But I voted for him in the first place because of misguided optimism (I tend to be an "irrational optimist") that he would actually shake things up and focus on practical things that mattered.

    So I'm going back to voting for Libertarian and/or Green candidates mostly. Not that I fully agree with either party--obviously, as they're opposites in many ways, but they're the two parties that can get on major ballots that I actually share some views with.

    Oh, and why I voted for Trump may not be why most people who voted for Trump voted for him. I have no idea whether it would be or not. But it's important to keep in mind that people probably voted for him for many different reasons, many of which aren't going to be obvious. The only way to find out is to talk to a bunch of different sorts of people about why they voted for him (and hopefully they'll be honest and can be articular and detailed about it).
  • Maw
    1.6k
    I've explained this before, but I voted for Trump. As I've said many times, I'm a very idiosyncratic sort of libertarian socialistTerrapin Station

    Oh my god
  • Artemis
    1.4k
    That's what he thought the main secular goals of a Christian ought to be, and he saw it clearly that the communist party had the very same ideals in view.god must be atheist

    I've always said Jesus would've been a long-haired, tree-hugging, bleeding-heart, commie-swine hippie (which is why I'm mostly sympathetic to his parts in the Bible).



    I think it's obvious to lots of us lefties that the official Left has abandoned class issues in favor of identity issues. But I also think there's a movement obvious through Bernie and Warren looking to refocus on just those causes.

    The Right pretends to be for the working class by appealing to their fears of the Other and some mythology about "trickle-down" effects and self-made wealth. These are just distractions to keep the lower classes from demanding a just and equal system.
  • Amity
    803
    Interesting video. Good to focus on the issues away from the lengthy Trump and Brexit threads.

    I think Clinton totally lost it when she spoke of a 'basket of deplorables'.
    Her contempt and disdain in this generalisation of voters was clear. It was not clever.
    It exacerbates the 2 party divide. But not quite as bad as the Trump strategy and rhetoric which won.

    In the video many expressed their views as to why they voted the way they did. So, is anyone wiser after watching this ?
    There is a desire to understand what led people to vote the way they did, rather than dismiss them. Their concerns should be ours.jamalrob

    The what that leads to why.
    A common thread which the hard right are relying on.
    Self-interest dressed up as national concern.
    This is not to be dismissed.

    The word 'populism'. That needs to be addressed. What does it mean - is it just another handy tool to bash people with ? The people or mob against the ruling class elite - whatever that means ? More generalisations and black-and-white thinking.

    We know how the Tories are going to frame the next general election.
    Simple divisive messages.
    No Deal Brexit v Corbyn.
    Patriotism v Traitors.
    Us v Them.
    People v Parliament.
    Friends v Enemies.
    Optimism v Pessimism.

    Simple slogans and empty promises.

    Sounds like same old, same old but not really.
    The language of war fills the air with its stink.
  • Amity
    803
    But I voted for him in the first place because of misguided optimism that he would actually shake things up and focus on practical things that mattered.Terrapin Station

    Most people love a message of Hope and Optimism.
    Politicians on both sides use this as cover for their real agenda.
    You fell for his bullshit. You were not alone.
    How easy it is to fool even those with intellect...
  • Terrapin Station
    13.3k
    Most people love a message of Hope and Optimism.
    Politicians on both sides use this as cover for their real agenda.
    You fell for his bullshit. You were not alone.
    How easy it is to fool even those with intellect...
    Amity

    Yeah, in this case it was because he was a political outsider and was being so iconoclastic.
  • StreetlightX
    4.2k
    I really enjoyed this. I think some of the most hard hitting stuff was from Lowry, the economist, near the end of the video. Worth quoting at length for those who won't watch the whole thing:

    "I do hear this argument that this is a proto-Nazi, a kind of fascist development in American society, that one must stand in opposition to it. It's an extreme, almost hysterical reaction, I think. It's an indication of people who have for too long have had their way at the editorial pages and in college classrooms and so on. And they've been accustomed to winning without arguing. The sky is not falling, I want to say to those people. Rather, the tectonic plates of American politics are shifting, they're shifting in ways that people you'd rather not hear from are now having a voice. Some of those people don't agree with your suppositions."

    "The notion that we got to get him out at all cost worries me deeply. I worry about this because those people are not going to go away, even if president Trump goes away. If you don't defeat those people at the ballot box, if you usurp their expression of democratic intent through extraordinary means, you invite the reaction. The way to defeat Trump is to get 50.1% of the vote, and vote him and those who support him out of office".
  • jamalrob
    2.1k
    :up:

    BTW I enjoyed your righteous ranting about impeachment recently in one of the Trump threads.
  • god must be atheist
    883
    Obviously people don't like to hear the China part.

    No truth is ever welcome. Anywhere.

    Even on a website for philosophical enquiry.

    You guys prefer instead to pontificate over what constitutes populism, leftism, rightism, Trumpism and impeachmentism. But to look at the kernel, the real root of the problem? God forbid!

    Sh'ma, o Yisroel!
  • StreetlightX
    4.2k
    Cheers! I need a good righteous rant every once in a while. The hysteria around impeachment (did no one learn from the Muller inquiry?) seemed a good a time as any.
  • frank
    3.4k
    I think you're wrong, though. By stone-walling Congress, Trump is producing a problem that has to be addressed. Maybe a few steps before that, it would have made sense to ride it out into 2020.

    I don't say that as an emotional voice one way or the other. Just looking at it mechanically. It's not about Nazis. It's about rule of law.
  • Amity
    803
    from video :"I do hear this argument that this is a proto-Nazi, a kind of fascist development in American society, that one must stand in opposition to it. It's an extreme, almost hysterical reaction, I think. It's an indication of people who have for too long have had their way at the editorial pages and in college classrooms and so on.StreetlightX

    I disagree. The argument that there exists a type of fascism in the form of Trump is not an extreme hysterical reaction. Also, this is dismissive of objective, academic analysis as explained here:

    5 min Ch4 interview related to the fragility of democracy. Yale professor Timothy Snyder :

    https://www.channel4.com/news/some-of-todays-politicians-have-learned-propaganda-tricks-from-1930s-fascists-says-yale-professor


    quoting from jamalrob's video: ''The notion that we got to get him out at all cost worries me deeply. I worry about this because those people are not going to go away, even if president Trump goes away. If you don't defeat those people at the ballot box, if you usurp their expression of democratic intent through extraordinary means, you invite the reaction. The way to defeat Trump is to get 50.1% of the vote, and vote him and those who support him out of office".StreetlightX

    'Those people' are not going to go away. Which people, the hard right extremists ?
    Under normal circumstances, it is clear that the ballot box and a majority is the way to defeat a would-be President. The majority are unlikely to be extremists, by definition. Neither are they 'deplorables'.

    Impeachment is not carried out lightly. In this case, I think the steady accumulation of Trump's action and behaviour have led to where it must be dealt with.
  • Amity
    803
    BTW I enjoyed your righteous ranting about impeachment recently in one of the Trump threads.jamalrob

    You give this a thumbs up ? Really ?

    Where can we read this righteous ranting ? In that sad, Bigly, rag tag Behemoth of a Trump discussion ?
    Is this thread gonna be Trump II ?
    Heaven forbid.
  • StreetlightX
    4.2k
    By stone-walling Congress, Trump is producing a problem that has to be addressed. Maybe a few steps before that, it would have made sense to ride it out into 2020.frank

    I don't disagree. I just think it's the worst possible outcome. Even in getting impeached, Trump will have made things worse for everyone.

    The argument that there exists a type of fascism in the form of Trump is not an extreme hysterical reaction. Also, this is dismissive of objective, academic analysis as explained hereAmity

    Synder is not particularly bright when it comes to political analysis. He just happened to write a bestseller that played perfectly into liberal fears and made everyone feel better about themselves. This was written a while back, and the numbers are outdated, but the trends outlined there largely hold true to today:

    "If Trump were actually serious about consolidating his power, he might start by, oh, I don’t know, consolidating his power. ... [Instead, Trump] has failed to fill 85% of the positions in the executive branch that he needs to fill in order to run the government to his specifications. It’s a strange kind of authoritarian who fails, as the first order of business, to seize control of the state apparatus: not because there’s been pushback from the Senate but because, in most instances, he hasn’t even tried.

    ...In March, I was on a panel of liberal scholars and writers where it was the universal consensus that Trump had an almost intuitive grasp of and control over public opinion – as evidenced by his tweets, which were held to be the invisible puppet strings of the American mind. This was not long after Trump’s travel ban had been overturned by the courts and Trump had responded by tweeting his contempt for and hostility toward the judges involved."

    I mean the fact is that Trump is horrible at statecraft. I mean possibly the most incompetent organizational head of state that the US has ever seen. To think that he's an authoritarian is an insult to authoritarians everywhere.
  • Amity
    803
    I need a good righteous rant every once in a while..the hysteria around impeachmentStreetlightX

    There's that word 'hysteria' again. What hysteria ? Who is it that is doing the 'righteous ranting' here ?

    The argument that there exists a type of fascism in the form of Trump is not an extreme hysterical reaction.Amity

    Synder is not particularly bright when it comes to political analysis.StreetlightX

    That is your opinion. I can only go by what he said in the Ch4 interview - the points made calmly and not in any way 'hysterical'.

    5 min Ch4 interview related to the fragility of democracy. Yale professor Timothy Snyder :

    https://www.channel4.com/news/some-of-todays-politicians-have-learned-propaganda-tricks-from-1930s-fascists-says-yale-professor
  • StreetlightX
    4.2k
    I can only go by what he said in the Ch4 interviewAmity

    That much is clear.
  • Terrapin Station
    13.3k
    Impeachment is not carried out lightly.Amity

    It's not going to be carried out period. Especially not in this term. Things wouldn't even really start rolling until the election is already here.

    Which underscores that this is probably just a ploy, just an attempt to time what they can hope to turn into a negative-press diversion just in time for the next election.

    Meanwhile, there are tons of people with real issues that need to be addressed . . . but that are just being ignored, because politicians are wrapped up in what's essentially flame-war nonsense.
  • Amity
    803
    I can only go by what he said in the Ch4 interview
    — Amity

    That much is clear.
    StreetlightX

    Wow. An attempt to be clever and demeaning ?

    That much is clear. I am using a specific example from someone new to me and probably a few other viewers. It is current, it made sense and was not 'hysterical'.
    Krishnan Guru-Murthy held Snyder to account with pertinent questions and received clear answers in return.

    You have a wider political knowledge - good for you.
    It doesn't follow that you are right.
    But it just might mean that you are an arrogant asshole.
  • frank
    3.4k
    I just think it's the worst possible outcome.StreetlightX

    I agree.
  • Hanover
    5k
    Worth quoting at length for those who won't watch the whole thing:StreetlightX

    Thanks for the quote. I couldn't watch the whole thing, work gets in the way sometimes.

    I'll give you a glimpse into the mind of the right:

    The suppression by the left of making the right appear so politically incorrect (racist, neo-Nazi, and whatever else) has led to the right not admitting who they will vote for fear of public reprisal. It's for that reason the polling data is so terribly wrong (Trump was down like 6% in polling in Pennsylvania on election night but won it).

    I will vote for Trump, regardless of how these impeachment proceedings work out. That is, if he is on the ballot, but no longer President, and capable of legally running, he has my vote. I don't really like him all that much to be honest, but the joy I would have in seeing him resurrected after a Democratic full on attack, I just can't explain. It would be like the giddiness I felt watching Hillary supporters crying on election night.

    That is honest guys, and so now I expect to hear all the scathing criticisms of my admitting my allegiance not so much to Trump, but to my absolute rejection of the sanctimonious and morally bankrupt Democrats who think they're just one more good lecturing away from swaying me to their wisdom. And my position is no different than about 50% of the population's.

    When Trump said that he'd still get the Republican vote even if he murdered someone in Times Square, he at least understood that. And yet what have the Democrats done? They've just pointed out how bad a person he is, even after Trump explained to them his supporters just don't care.
  • praxis
    1.6k
    If Trump were actually serious about consolidating his power, he might start by, oh, I don’t know, consolidating his power. ... [Instead, Trump] has failed to fill 85% of the positions in the executive branch that he needs to fill in order to run the government to his specifications. It’s a strange kind of authoritarian who fails, as the first order of business, to seize control of the state apparatus: not because there’s been pushback from the Senate but because, in most instances, he hasn’t even tried.

    The instinct to have as small and loyal a staff as possible is something you might expect from a dictator wannabe though. Who could be more loyal than family, for instance.
  • frank
    3.4k
    I just can't explain. It would be like the giddiness I felt watching Hillary supporters crying on election night.Hanover

    Lol. There is something wrong with you. You know that, right?
  • StreetlightX
    4.2k
    And yet what have the Democrats done? They've just pointed out how bad a person he is, even after Trump explained to them his supporters just don't care.Hanover

    The mind boggles that three years in, the refrain that "orange man is bad!" is supposed to make any political headway at all.

    What would you make of a Bernie or Warren candidacy?
  • StreetlightX
    4.2k
    The instinct to have as small and loyal a staff as possible is something you might expect from a dictator wannabe though.praxis

    Loyalty is good. Competency is better. And he lacks the latter is spades. And this includes his family. The legislative moves that he has been most successful at making have largely been those of the Republican party at large - McConnell's agenda, and not his.
  • Maw
    1.6k
    I don't really like him all that much to be honest, but the joy I would have in seeing him resurrected after a Democratic full on attack, I just can't explain. It would be like the giddiness I felt watching Hillary supporters crying on election night.Hanover

    Unabashed political nihilism
  • frank
    3.4k
    Unabashed political nihilismMaw

    I know the feeling he's talking about. It's a kind of derangement. It's the reason the Penguin laughs before he poisons Gotham's water supply.

    It's not true that 50% of the American population feels that and votes for Trump as a result. It's just the occasional Penguin.

    As for the reasons the British voted for Brexit: that probably is widespread Penguinism.
  • Terrapin Station
    13.3k
    What would you make of a Bernie or Warren candidacy?StreetlightX

    With Bernie, I can't imagine that a lot of people wouldn't be leery about a president being only about six months shy of 80 years old before he even enters office.

    Maybe I'm overestimating the number of people who'd be cautious due to that, but do the Democrats really want to have potential additional handicaps working against whoever they nominate? I would think they'd want to find someone with the least amount of handicaps possible. Can't the Democrats get someone like Peyton Manning to run?
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