In the midst of increasingly shrill denunciations of Donald Trump, I’m vainly waiting for someone to acknowledge the obvious. He’s our boy. Politicians and their media allies want to pretend that Trump is some sort of aberrant outlier, but he’s the embodiment of the values that our country represents. Trump is American as apple pie.
Trump epitomizes greed-is-good, where wealthy businessmen and bankers are held up as heroic role models. Has everyone forgotten The Apprentice? Since the Powell Memo, we’ve glorified greed as we’ve destroyed the safety net that aids the least fortunate members of our society, and watched as inequality has soared. Four hundred Americans now have more wealth, totaling $2 trillion, than 50 percent of all Americans combined. We have also officially become an oligarchy, where only corporations and the super wealthy are able to influence policy.
Trump epitomizes the vast corruption that has overtaken our republic. In the US we don’t have businessmen delivering suitcases of money to politicians like in a banana republic. No, here we do it in a more civilized way, where if your a good little boy or girl when you’re in power and follow your corporate diktats, there will be a lucrative job waiting when you retire. The upshot has been complete collapse of political class legitimacy.
Then, there’s Trump’s noted penchant for evading the law or getting a favorable ruling from a friendly magistrate. This is the new normal in the USA where we’ve eviscerated the rule of law, creating a bifurcated legal system where if you’re wealthy and powerful you’re above the law while if you’re poor and powerless the full weight of our punitive criminal system crashes down on you.
Finally, Trump epitomizes the xenophobia that’s overtaken America since 9/11. When Trump denounces Muslims, it’s related to actions taken by Bush and Co. to scare Americans into supporting our never ending war to maintain the US empire. Yes Virginia, our fair country maintains a violent empire, effectively bombing into submission any country that dares oppose Washington’s global hegemonic ambitions, often in total disregard of international law. Frightening Americans with Muslim terrorists is almost as effective as scaring them with communists during the cold war, although the Russian are making a comeback.
Both Democrats and Republicans want to pretend that before Trump came along there were mature, civilized leaders running their respective parties, but I remember Nixon’s Southern Strategy, and Saint Ronnie’s destructive policies in 1980’s. I also remember the things that the Clinton gang did back in the go-go 90’s even if no one else seems to.
Trump is the logical outcome of the political, economic and military policies we have pursued as a nation since the 1970’s.
Trump is us. He’s our boy.