‘Sharing the capital of education.’
From across the pond, we hear of the chaotic White House, of Trump antics that never cease to amaze us, and we um and ah and ridicule this extraordinary man, the POTUS. Not the sort of extraordinary that I would necessarily admire, but extraordinary for sure. There is an attractiveness about the extraordinary, the renegade, the iconoclast that appeals to us all. Robin Hood, Guy Fawkes, and Dick Turpin all live in our folklore and we still celebrate their lives disreputable though they were.
There’s something of Guy Fawkes about Trump, he wants to metaphorically at least, to blow up the establishment, he is clearly self-possessed and obsessed with the mission. He believes that he can create change in his own way and in his own image, and around 38% of Americans believe him.
They don’t believe him because he’s prescient or clever, they believe him because he’s potentially the man who may bring down the status quo. They believe him because he speaks in generalities (some would say inanities) about making America great again, and creating hundreds and thousands of jobs. No detail here, just clarion calls to the dispossessed. That 38% of the voting population believes him is a staggering fact, and it may be a low Presidential rating, but it’s a high electoral support bank.
The incidental background about immigration, Mexican walls, and phony trade wars is what the 38% want to hear. That it is unlikely to make any difference whatsoever, is neither here or there, it’s Mr. Trump’s trumpet they want to hear, and the more he shouts the more they listen. Any criticism from the traditional media is seen as part of the liberal elite’s perfidy, the denial of the blue collar rights. Let the great revolution come!
Are they right? Well, the educated liberals don’t believe they are, the question is what do they do about it?
Only the French would rally round the smooth Macron, an elitist with liberal visions. In so doing they have claimed the number one spot on the soft power stakes. Trumpism, on the other hand, does the opposite, and smacks of isolationism and xenophobia. And yet the 38% of American voters are oblivious to the value of soft power or for that matter America’s place in the free world.
It is the arrogance of the educated classes that has alienated the blue collar right wing, capitalism has generated humumgous gaps between the rich and the poor. The most dreadful gap is not all about money it’s about education and the sooner we all wake up about this the better.
Meanwhile, Mr. Trump I fear is bound to flourish.