Donald Trump is good

Written By: - Date published: 8:00 am, November 9th, 2016 - 70 comments
Categories: International, us politics - Tags:

Donald Trump

He’s revived identity politics. It really means something. To be humiliated. Divided. Shamed. Affiliation, political identity, orientation: it’s real and it can retreat and we have to fight to hold on.

He’s smashed US party politics. Conferred name: nothing. Machine: zip. Elite guidance: hah! Funders: near-immaterial.

He’s pulled apart the lazy compact of media commentary and liberalism. “All that pc crap”. Isolated and vilified reporters and stations. Newspaper, magazine, and TV endorsements: pfft. Mean-boy blogs have stuck a sword through msm stations and twisted it. He remained uncowed to the end.

He’s reminded us of the power of the liberating negative. Rapey Mexicans: booooooo! Nasty bleeding women: booooooo, and boohoo! Jail her! Haaaaaate things! And suppressed hate groups have flourished, into the open like they should on a democracy, for real contest.

He’s let the political Id fly. Ten foot walls. Double-sized guns and military. Halve taxes. Tear up the deals. Brag. Swagger. Look like you enjoy it, and enjoy it. And love all the hate: let it run as a power.

He’s merged politics and entertainment. Let it be fun. Be the Masked Wrestler. Pull the chicks. Have a gold toilet. Orchestrate stadium laughter. Fart and laugh.

Deny the presumed moral righteousness of the left altogether.

He communicates. Preaching out. Policy language and nuance out. Commas, hyphens and facts: yawneee yawn-yawn with bite me on the top. Simple, funny, one-clause, tough, wild. This is politics renewed.

I’ve no idea if ‘lessons will be learned’, or ‘the system will always win’. But it’s figures like Donald Trump who alter history.

‘All shall love me, and despair.’

70 comments on “Donald Trump is good”

  1. Tony Veitch (not the partner-bashing 3rd rate broadcaster 1

    And all made possible by being put up against “the best qualified person to ever run for the presidency” according to Obama!

    In any sane democracy Trump would have been laughed off the stage. It speaks volumes for the disordered American system that he has been taken seriously, and may yet, even have a chance of being president.

    • Well Fed Weta 1.1

      To be fair, TV, in a ‘sane democracy’ they both would have been laughed off the stage.

  2. lprent 2

    Curiously I was just contemplating a post on the same disruptive effect. Essentially if the Republican party can survive what he has exposed.

    FFS this buffoon defeated one of the strongest lineups of their best people in the primaries..

    I suspect it is going to have a profound and detrimental effect for the GOP on the Senate and House races this time around (in the slow fashion that extreme gerrymandering forces), and will probably reverberate over the next few elections.

    I am wondering if the GOP will survive it in their current form.

    • Lanthanide 2.1

      The GOP had a big lineup, but I don’t think it was really a lineup of “their best people”. That’s precisely why it was such a big lineup – because there wasn’t any obvious nominee amongst them; compare to Hillary who saw off all the other contenders to the degree that they never put their hat into the ring.

      • Siobhan 2.1.1

        “they never put their hat into the ring”..and those that did had their hat stomped upon by the DNC and their media lackeys.

      • lprent 2.1.2

        I think that the breadth of the lineup was the biggest issue.

        I was actually impressed with some of their candidates before that started to try to out-trump the Trump.

    • Colonial Viper 2.2

      The GOP will likely NOT survive in its current form. Especially if “nevertrumper” Ryan loses the Speakership and uber conservative leader Toomey loses his senate race.

      If that’s the case here’s the good news: Donald Trump will naturally become the new power broking/change agent nexus in the Republican Party IF he gets a strong popular vote.

    • Scott 2.3

      I think the GOP’s problem seems from their candidate selection process. The GOP place the decision in the hands of its members. So to win the nomination the candidate has to appeal to them (assuming they are too self-obsessed to select who might be best to win them the election, which seems to be the case).

      Members of political parties are far from representative of the wider public. The Tea Party showed the influence the extreme can have in that context, and Trump picked that up and ran with it. In the process he beat out people who may well have beaten Clinton. People who he GOP leaders would have chosen if they were able to.

      Democracy in these things is all well and good, but it only works well if the voters are selecting for the right reasons rather than just to have the person who “represents” their views (without any appreciation that their views are minority views). The skill set the job needs is wider than that.

      Yep, I think win or lose the GOP is in trouble.

      • AmaKiwi 2.3.1

        @ Scott

        USA “party members” are nothing more than people who when they registered to vote were asked if they wanted to be listed as Republican, Democrat, or Independent.

        There are no membership fees, no membership cards, no commitments, no meetings to attend. Unless you ask to be on the party’s contact list, the party you supposedly “belong to” has no information about you except what is on the voting roll: your name and address.

        It’s a very amorphous form of party membership compared to NZ, UK, etc.

  3. ianmac 3

    Much truth in what you say Advantage. Political “norms” can become tired old platitudes with each politician avoiding anything of note in order to avoid alienating the voters. This also is exacerbated by the other politicians and the media, attacking the trivia in order to diminish new ideas. To me most of what Clinton and Key says is just blah, blah, blah.

    So will NZ have a credible spanner in the works? Maybe Mr Morgan?

    • dukeofurl 4.1

      Yes, hes so popular ??

      It wasnt the narrative to show Clinton as being popular- apparently its a white male thing that they dont notice someone whos not like them.

    • Colonial Viper 4.2

      Let’s see the Clintons turn up at a polling booth in their home of Arkansas and see what reaction they get.

    • Richard Rawshark 4.3

      I’d take that with a pinch of salt.

      Is there any other reason this could happen..

      Democrat tactic, knows it’ll be on TV might sway the odd undecided.. that’s possible
      The world hates Trump, possible
      Lone wolf agitators doing there bit to track and gewt their feeling out at trump-possible

      really a pinch of salt, and I bet it was the same wherever Hillary goes.. so meh.

  4. Draco T Bastard 5

    I’ve no idea if ‘lessons will be learned’, or ‘the system will always win’. But it’s figures like Donald Trump who alter history.

    No it’s not and that’s been proven by the anthropologists. It’s groundswell from the people that changes things. All those famous people from history? Didn’t change a damn thing.

    The idea of The Hero coming along and changing things is nothing more than RWNJ snobbery.

    This isn’t to say that he hasn’t had a polarising effect but he’s still not going to change things. But will it be enough for the rest of the USians to force change on their political system which is obviously not fit for purpose?

    • McFlock 5.1

      It’s groundswell from the people that changes things. All those famous people from history? Didn’t change a damn thing.

      That’s a rather bold and sweeping statement.

      A world without Turing or Kissinger would be a very different place.

      • Bill 5.1.1

        “A world without Turing or Kissinger would be a very different place.”

        Maybe not so much “the world” McFlock, so much as our current establishment – unless you view the establishment as constituting the world…

      • Draco T Bastard 5.1.2

        Ah, but did they lead the change or did they simply implement what the people already wanted and the rich were adverse to give?

        I think that you’ll find that it was the latter.

        • McFlock

          Turing was instrumental in protecting UK supply lines and damaging Axis supplies (especially to north africa). As in “WW2-changingly” instrumental.

          Would Cambodia, China and Latin America (as well as the rest of the world) have fundamentally different recent histories without Kissinger? Probably.

          • Draco T Bastard

            Neither indicates a massive change because of one person. Both could have happened, and probably would have, without them.

    • Wainwright 5.2

      Hear hear.

  5. Manuka AOR 6

    Oh yeah, and he will probably try to prolong the “fun” if he can:

    • lprent 6.1

      I suspect that Trump will try to hog the limelight for as long as possible after the election either way. He will do it through his usual means – gratuitous and unreasonable litigation.

      Looks like he has already started in Nevada.

      Caught the end of it. The judge turned it down for now.

      • Richard Rawshark 6.1.1

        There seems to be some lack of prep for the mass of voters turning out, they must have prepped for past numbers and have been caught off guard, I wonder if they will get all the voters through by time?

        I mean, this alone could wreck the election if at close there’s still massive lines at voting stations nationwide. The judge putting it on hold for now I think would have this in mind.

        I am no wondering if it gets that badly done , whether the election result will end up a non result?

        • lprent

          I did posts on both the last two elections in the US looking at poll booth lines.

          They are always long in many areas. That is because the elections are handled at the state (or even local) level and subject to their budget (and political) constraints.

          • Richard Rawshark

            Cool thanks mate. When the political turmoil dies a little i’ll check out some past posts I find interesting your site has plenty of good reading material.., apart from troll posts 🙂

  6. Manuka AOR 7

    The lead up with Trump has been “good” – even essential it might be argued, – in the way that it is “good” to loosen up and then clean all the crap out of a dirty pot, before using it to prepare your next meal.

  7. miravox 8

    Demagogues are not disruptors who alter history in a constructive way, they’re destructors and deprivors of other people’s rights. If these people alter history its through chains and war. To call their role in the political world ‘good’ is outrageous, imo.

    Disruptors are people like Bernie Sanders, Jeremy Corbyn and the leaders of Spain’s Indignado. They reset the political discussion and change becomes irresistible – without destroying people.

    He communicates? Bullshit – this implies a two-way conversation (listening as well as talking). He doesn’t have that… can’t even listen to his advisors – he’s so immune to other people’s voices prepared teleprompters are useless and they had to take away his twitter – ffs.

    He tells people to unleash their hatred and that’s all. We know bugger-all about how he plans to do the stuff he thinks ‘will make America great again’. This piece reads to me like a thinly-veiled attack on progressive politics. People like Mike Hoskings, Paul Henry, Silvio Berlussconi, Tony Abbott etc, etc. do that kind of stuff every day without producing an ounce of good.

    • Ad 8.1

      You’re aware there have been populist lefties in history as well?
      Quite effective ones?

      • miravox 8.1.1

        “You’re aware there have been populist lefties in history as well?”

        Yup. Does that change my argument? Populists on the right or left or anything else don’t always tip over into tin-eared, destructive demagogues like Trump, imo.

        • Colonial Viper

          Your definitions of disruptor vs demagogue is arbitrary – and often times only history can judge. If you are talking about chains and war then you only need to examine Obama’s defence of mass surveillance, the record breaking use of the espionage act to attack whistleblowers, and of course drone wars in 7 countries.

          That is, if you can bear to look at the facts.

          • Ad

            You’re just going to love my post on Obama coming up.

            • Richard Rawshark

              Well, if it’s going to question how his daughters worth 11.8 million and Obama is worth 12 million i’d be very interested how that young daughter of Obama came into such wealth?

          • miravox

            “That is, if you can bear to look at the facts”

            The fact is, despite surveillance, drones and all, Obama* does not fit the description of a demagogue. Putin however…

            *As always an abhorrence of Trump does not indicate support of drones, surveillance and war in the Middle East.

            • Colonial Viper

              The fact is, despite surveillance, drones and all, Obama* does not fit the description of a demagogue.

              That’s because you’re speaking from the perspective of a privileged westerner leaving in a secure, wealthy country that is an allied part of the Anglo-US empire.

              Maybe you should ask Afghanis who lost all their friends and family in a US drone strike, or the Yemenese who suffered 600 people killed or injured at a funeral by US armed and assisted Saudis at a funeral in Sanaa.

              Also you’re looking at the old fashioned concept of totalitarianism where a demagogic personality at the top runs the show.

              An outdated idea, I’m afraid.

              • miravox

                Seriously, while he has his flaws and actions he’ll need to reconcile with his conscience, Obama* is not the same type of politician as Putin, or Trump. For one, he hasn’t threatened voters or changed the law to subvert the electoral process.

                *As always an abhorrence of Trump does not indicate support of drones, surveillance and war in the Middle East, or Afghanistan, Pakistan or anywhere else.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Again, you’re speaking from the privileged standpoint of a westerner living in a secure, wealthy country that is part of the Anglo-IS empire.

                  You make the argument that Obama is not Putin. Definitely he is not. For starters, Putin is more popular.

                  But more seriously, Obama has continued to support terrifying woman-hating dictatorships all throughout the world, and reduced other countries (like Libya) to the level of failed warlord states.

                  But of course, he’s not a demagogue. Although it may look differently from the point of view of the subjects whose tyrants he props up.

                  • miravox

                    you’re speaking from the privileged standpoint of a westerner living in a secure, wealthy country that is part of the Anglo-IS empire.”

                    Anglo-IS empire? That’s stretching it. Mind you, you’re talking from exactly the privilege you supposedly think I’m talking from.

                    *As always an abhorrence of Trump does not indicate support of drones, surveillance and war in the Middle East, or Afghanistan, Pakistan or anywhere else.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      my mistake heh Anglo-US empire, damn slip of the keys

                      BTW if Trump is President I recognise that he is only one man versus the momentum of the entire US war machine with neocons positioned throughout senior levels of the government.

                    • miravox

                      Phew – typo – That’s good. I couldn’t work out what I was missing

                      “I recognise that he is only one man versus the momentum of the entire US war machine with neocons positioned throughout senior levels of the government.”

                      This machine includes the economically liberal, socially conservative Iraq war supporter he chose (sold-out) for VP. Pence would run the show on behalf of his Koch Bros funders the same way Cheney did for Bush.

                      Another small point – while accepting the assertion that I, like you, have the privilege of living in a secure, wealthy country, I’ve not lived in parts of the ‘Anglo-US empire’ for quite some time. I live in a country that values its neutrality and social democracy. There is an interesting difference in perspective.

            • Stuart Munro

              Obama, in his campaigning years, was long on rhetoric and pretty good at it. But I think a majority of those who voted for him would rate him disappointing. Much of this may be due to an obstructive congress, but he talked a far better game than we have seen. A demagogue, but a moderate.

              I think Trump would have been infinitely worse however. There is a pattern whereby Trump blunders into trouble and blusters his way out of it. The Republican party needs to work on developing some principled standards, following the Tea Partyers seems unlikely to lead to a brighter future.

              • miravox

                Certainly rhetorical, certainly unable to break the congress, and ultimately compromised. But, no Obama, while a charismatic speaker, doesn’t fit the the description of a demagogue, whereas Trump fits it to a T.

  8. Manuka AOR 9

    And, he brought another country into the US elections (none of that “Nationalistic” isolation bs, eh)

    (How do you write a sarc emoticon?)

    • Colonial Viper 9.1

      Actually looking at the facts it was the Clinton Campaign who brought up Russia into the election campaign, in order to deflect from Hillary’s record. Over and over and over and over again.

      • mauī 9.1.1

        I saw Obama was at a Clinton rally yesterday going for gold on the putin/russia and trump thing. The democrats have their own fear mongering tactics.

        • Colonial Viper

          Scott Adams describes it very well. Clinton and Obama have cleverly positioned Trump as the new pro-Russian, Putin backed, despicable woman hating, unstable nuke launching world destroying proto-Hitler.

          Therefore any level of personal abuse and attack of Trump (and his supporters) is thoroughly rational and reasonable. And indeed, a moral duty.

  9. locus 10

    I think the results of the election will clearly reflect that the majority of all Americans are utterly disgusted with Donald Trump’s slanderous lies, misogyny, explicit racism, self-worship, and aggressive insulting attitude towards anyone who disagrees with him.

    Once Donald is defeated in the election he will be a nothing to the Republican party.

    As for staying in politics, Trump’s ego will not let him, since every day he will be reminded of his failure to win against a woman and a candidate who was – at the beginning of this contest – unpopular, uninspiring and widely considered as unelectable

    Trump has, for his followers, legitimised public displays of hatred and aggression. For everyone else he has denigrated politics, belittled and slandered his opponents and made politics absolutely – not fun.

    The following quote from Andrew Sullivan in the Daily Intelligencer sums it up eloquently. The whole essay is worth reading.

    The Republican media complex have enabled and promoted (Trump’s) lies and conspiracy theories and, above all, his hysteria. From the poisonous propaganda of most of Fox News to the internet madness of the alt-right, they have all made a fortune this past decade by describing the world as a hellhole of chaos and disorder and crime for which the only possible solution is a third-world strongman. The Republicans in Washington complemented this picture of crisis by a policy of calculated obstruction to every single measure a Democratic president has attempted, rendering the Congress so gridlocked that it has been incapable of even passing a budget without constitutional crisis, filling a vacant Supreme Court seat, or reforming a health-care policy in pragmatic fashion. They have risked the nation’s very credit rating to vent their rage. They have helped reduce the public support of the central democratic institution in American government, the Congress, to a consistently basement level never seen before — another disturbing analogy to the discredited democratic parliaments of the 1930s. The Republicans have thereby become a force bent less on governing than on destroying the very institutions that make democracy and the rule of law possible. They have not been conservative in any sane meaning of that term for many, many years. They are nihilist revolutionaries of the far right in search of a galvanizing revolutionary leader. And they have now found their man.

    • Ad 10.1

      There’s a Republican media complex?

      “The media are to blame” for Donald Trump’s easy rise?

      Think again.

      Exchange the name “Trump” for “Hillary” and you could re-do that entire paragraph from a Republican’s point of view, and it would be even more effective.

      • left_forward 10.1.1

        Nah, had a look at that – it doesn’t make any sense at all.
        The old false equivalence – age of untruth crap again.

      • Richard Rawshark 10.1.2

        is there a democrat media outlet like Fox news, that goes all bananas democrat?

        not sarc, straight up.

        • Bob

          “Some critics of the media say liberal bias exists within a wide variety of media channels, especially within the mainstream media, including network news shows of CBS, ABC, and NBC, cable channels CNN, MSNBC and the former Current TV, as well as major newspapers, news-wires, and radio outlets, especially CBS News, Newsweek, and The New York Times.[43] These arguments intensified when it was revealed that the Democratic Party received a total donation of $1,020,816, given by 1,160 employees of the three major broadcast television networks (NBC, CBS, ABC), while the Republican Party received only $142,863 via 193 donations.[44] Both of these figures represent donations made in 2008”
          “A 2005 study by political scientists Tim Groseclose of UCLA and Jeff Milyo of the University of Missouri at Columbia attempted to quantify bias among news outlets using statistical models, and found a liberal bias.[48][49] The authors wrote that “all of the news outlets we examine[d], except Fox News’ Special Report and the Washington Times, received scores to the left of the average member of Congress.””

          • Richard Rawshark

            Interesting, cheers Bob.

            some separation between political interests and corporate media ownership should be on the table for discussions.
            If democracy as the foundation of our governing system is too be improved for the benefit of democracy and the people it represents the likes of Murdock, Turner(presuming he’s still mogul material) et al, are in charge of the shape of their news delivery. In the sense of appointments to management defining the news bias.

            Similar acts to when they broke telecom apart IMHO.

  10. save nz 11

    The left is so busy looking at the Fucker to the right that they don’t see why the public don’t see a alternative government. Look in the mirror and see the war mongering, trade obsessed Blair and Clinton governments, and , re read the /the-intellectual-yet-idiot-class-knowing-whats-best-for-you/

    Think about how popular Corbyn, has been rejected by his political party and the so called left media like the Guardian. How Sanders has been pushed out by Clinton instead of embraced in to fight against Trump. How NZ Labour Fucked over Cunliffe.

    Worldwide the middle class is saying Fuck You if you won’t listen to us about globalism and the effect it is having on our lives, we will not vote or we will not compromise to a hijacked left party. The middle class and working class political public are as angry as wasps and they are stinging the IYI.

    Unfortunately the left have embraced many of the bad right habits without having the voter mandate to do it. They are then confused (an IYI moment) when they lose votes and there is massive conflict within their party and their voters.

  11. Wainwright 12

    Pretty appalling post. The people who are going to suffer from a Trump presidency don’t look like us, AD. I get its currently the fashion to be clever and find silver linings in the election of a genuine fascist to the most powerful job in the world but it feels a little nasty given the harm he’s going to do.

  12. The Lone Haranguer 13

    Wainwright, I have the benefit of a day on you – I got to see the election aftermath.

    The Trump acceptance speech was actually pretty good – it spoke of inclusiveness and making America great for ALL Americans. Obamas speech was pretty good too. I dont see the USA going to hell in a handbasket in the next four years, but I do see hope (the Obama slogan ironically) amongst ordinary working Americans.

    If Trump can:
    1) Avoid stupid wars in the Middle East
    2) Focus on jobs for Americans
    3) Kill the TPPA
    4) Make workable solutions for the cost of healthcare in the US
    5) Slow down globalisation

    Then I would say he will be a great American president. Honestly, none of those five points were high on Hillarys agenda or next four year workplan.

    Whether he can reform the GoP is another matter altogether. I think that will take a miracle worker, and as they have Congress and the Senate, Im doubting that they see anything wrong with their politics.

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