What Republicans and Democrats don’t “get” about Donald Trump

Yes, Trump won another state, absolutely crushing the opposition. Even more impressively, his presence on the ballot drove participation up, by a lot:


And yes, the Republican Establishment is in full panic.

Why? Well, Trump has no use for them. The positions that they advocate: lower taxes for the wealthiest, cutting social security and Medicare, are deeply unpopular ones. But those who need establishment money in order to run have to abide by those positions:

As pundits are discovering to their horror, there’s probably more to the Trump phenomenon than mere celebrity. The fact is that the central planks of modern conservatism — slashing taxes on the rich and benefits for the public at large — are deeply unpopular. Republicans have won elections only by wrapping these policies in other stuff; it’s about cutting benefits for welfare queens and “strapping young bucks” (that’s a Reaganism, in case you’re wondering) buying T-bone steaks with food stamps. And this in turn means that there is a sort of empty box in U.S. politics waiting to be filled.

The matrix here shows the possible positions. A welfare state available to all is the Democratic position, which is pretty much what other Western countries call the social democratic position. The dominant role in the modern GOP is played by a faction that links de facto disdain for Those People with a desire to slash social insurance. Libertarians are, in principle, small-government without the undertones; they are also basically absent from the actually existing electorate.

And then there’s the empty box. Once upon a time that box was filled by southern Democrats, who preserved Jim Crow while supporting the New Deal. But they’ve all moved over to the GOP now, and in the process become anti-social-insurance. But there are plenty of voters who want Social Security and Medicare for people who look like them, but not those other people. And at some level Trump is catering to that unserved population.

True, this Krugman article was penned prior to Trump’s actual tax plan coming out, and the actual plan wasn’t so hot. But at least he is on record as saying that hedge fund managers should pay more tax and that progressive taxation is not “socialist”

Of course, some liberals are horrified that Trump is doing so well; obviously those who support him are ignorant bigots. Here is but one example.

I still remember watching the first debate with my wife. She thought that Trump bombed; I told her that he did great.

Watch him give a polite “STFU, I don’t care what you think” to Megyn Kelly:

Let me be clear: I am for equality of opportunity, and in years past, climates WERE hostile toward minorities, women, gays and different people.

But things have swung too far these days; right now you have self-appointed social justice warriors demanding that you be accountable to them. Here is but one example. It has become ridiculous.

Don’t get me wrong: I am not voting for Trump. I think that intelligence and knowledge and the ability to work with those you don’t have the authority to fire are important too.

To see what I find presidential, listen to how Hillary Clinton handled some Black Lives Matter “activists”. They were whining about “blaming the victim” (admitting that people’s behavior impacts how well they do) and she politely told them that you can’t change hearts but you can change policy. Her statement was direct, useful, but civil and polite.

Being in a class that IS being treated unfairly doesn’t make you right.

Trump would have just called them losers and kicked them out.


February 24, 2016 - Posted by | politics, politics/social | , , ,

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