What Trumpism means for democracy

If Donald Trump secures the Republican nomination – an increasingly likely prospect – the party will implode and the US will cease to be a constitutional republic in all but name. Not that any of that will matter to Trump  

‘Trumpism is not a program or an ideology. It is an attitude that feeds off of widespread anger and alienation’.
‘Trumpism is not a program or an ideology. It is an attitude that feeds off of widespread anger and alienation.’ Illustration: Vin Ganapathy for the Guardian


Whether or not Donald Trump ultimately succeeds in winning the White House, historians are likely to rank him as the most consequential presidential candidate of at least the past half-century.

He has already transformed the tone and temper of American political life. If he becomes the Republican nominee, he will demolish its structural underpinnings as well. Should he prevail in November, his election will alter its very fabric in ways likely to prove irreversible. Whether Trump ever delivers on his promise to “Make America Great Again,” he is already transforming American democratic practice.

In contrast to the universally reviled Martin Shkreli, however, Trump has cultivated a mass following that appears impervious to his missteps, miscues, and misstatements.

What Trump actually believes – whether he believes in anything apart from big, splashy self-display – is largely unknown and probably beside the point. Trumpism is not a program or an ideology. It is an attitude or pose that feeds off of, and then reinforces, widespread anger and alienation.

The pose works because the anger – always present in certain quarters of the American electorate but especially acute today – is genuine. By acting the part of impish bad boy and consciously trampling on the canons of political correctness, Trump validates that anger.

The more outrageous his behavior, the more secure his position at the very center of the political circus. Wondering what he will do next, we can’t take our eyes off him. And to quote Marco Rubio in a different context, Trump “knows exactly what he is doing”.

Read more at the Guardian




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9 Responses to "What Trumpism means for democracy"

  1. CRM114  March 6, 2016 at 1:53 pm

    @Amelius, certainly you know that if Donald addresses the “Israeli firsters” at this point, that the already very evident multi front attack against him will intensify. Witness, for instance, how his statement that he would be “fair” in discussions between Israeli and the Palestinians has brought near yelling at him from Rubio and Cruz (with Hillary trumpeting the same from her end) that they will “always stand by Israel”, as if Trump had created some capital crime. He is well aware of what he is up against with AIPAC and PNAC. Regarding the latter, Bill Kristol is all but unglued over the thought of a Trump presidency, stating public that Trump must not win, and outlining the strategy now pushed by Romney to deny Donald Ohio and Florida. I completely agree with you there are those who have no intention of letting Donald interfere with what they have built.

  2. stonehillady  March 2, 2016 at 12:22 pm

    You guys are starting to spook a lot of us, on who you actually are really working for …Of course Trump is not perfect, but he is NOT a parasite, nor a religious fanatic, nor a neocon…….and another thing, why the hell didn’t you tell us that the thugs that shot Lavoy Fulicum in Oregon were UN people………..that is even a bigger crime being here on our soil then the shooting…..Why aren’t you on top of this……unless you are the cover for Federal Gov. and the UN.
    The Federal Gov. (BLM) is ruining ranching and and have no LEGAL authority, the Sheriff is top dog, and he can deputize everyone to take on the UN or whoever who comes into their county.
    I suppose you guys endorse Sanders which is absolutely insane, his free stuff give away, will only lead to less good paying jobs and the North American Union goes full blown…is that what you want ? Are you really NWO guys ?

    • CRM114  March 3, 2016 at 6:41 am

      Just a small bit of factual information from someone who knows something of Mr. Trump based on actual experience. Just do an internet search on how Trump wrested control of Central Park’s Wollman Rink from New York City back in 1986. The rink was dilapidated and had been closed for six years. It was an eyesore and the city pumped nearly $13 million into failed attempts to renovate it. It was the epitome of government ineptitude, cronyism and corruption. Trump was granted control of the project, rebuilt it for less than $2 million (under budget), in a contract wherein he waived any profit. He fixed in a few months what languished under city management for six years. The New York Times then opined that governments could learn from Trump’s example. The fact is that the establishment knows well that Trump will disrupt the golden goose they have fed off of up until now at the public’s expense. This and the fact that he has publicly denounced the prevarications of the Bush dynasty, and promised to release the full 9/11 report, has our handlers in full panic mode.

  3. Cold Wind  March 2, 2016 at 8:14 am

    It is my view, President Obama himself has made Trump possible, if not inevitable. Still, given VT’s tragic support for the current CIA choice leading Americans to ruin, one gets the sense that VT will end up supporting a similar but inevitably a worse choice for America, namelyHilliary Clinton. Either way, America is not going to survive another four years without ending the Federal Reserve System and without ending the decades long Zio-occupation and take-over of Washington.

  4. Edward Dodge  March 2, 2016 at 7:38 am

    “If Donald Trump secures the republican nomination,…, the US will cease to be a constitutional republic in all but name.” Where the hell has the author of this bee for the last 35 or so years? It figures this comes from the “Guardian”. We should expect no less propaganda from just one of many UK published tabloid rags. How’s your birdcage liner?

  5. Ajeocci  March 2, 2016 at 7:34 am

    The Republican party needs to implode. They have become as dirty as the Democrats. The people want Donald Trump because they are sick and tired of the same old shit year after year after year. The Republicans promised “big changes” if they controlled the House and Senate, but they have done exactly shit to stop Obama’s rampage. The Republicans insisted that Trump sign a pledge to align with their party, and now we see the G.O.P. elite doing everything they can to swamp his candidacy. The people are not going to stand for that. If they scuttle Trump, the Republicans can kiss their sorry asses goodbye. They have become almost as disgusting as the Democrats. Party of the people? Where? Not in America. Both parties think they have a tired old horse too weak to buck them off so they’re going to ride him ’til he drops. Disgusting bastards, all.

    • Dan  March 2, 2016 at 3:00 pm

      Actually it’s the Republican leadership that needs to be tarred, feathered, and run out of DC–stooges all for Zio-Wall Street’s rape of our economy, genocides for Israel, and the willing budget authorizers in every material respect of the Obama agenda. One thing has been made clear in all this Trump bashing, and that’s that Zio-Wall Street and the Zio-Neocons are the ventriloquists behind not just the Republican leadership, but Hillary and the costumed, Israel-first bureaucrats in the Pentagon we mistake for patriots and American military leaders. How many of those young amputees all over the VA hospitals these days, or those sent home dead in pieces, or those hundreds whose cremated remains were thrown into landfill dumpsters, or those committing suicide in shocking numbers because of the barbarities they were forced to inflict on Israel’s enemies do you imagine are the sons of these neocons?

  6. Foci  March 2, 2016 at 6:54 am

    Mr Duff : “If Donald Trump secures the Republican nomination – an increasingly likely prospect – the party will implode and the US will cease to be a constitutional republic in all but name.”

    Too late for the scare tactics, that horse already left the barn. The Patriot Act, NDAA, ACA which Roberts voted as a “tax” to make it legal.

    yea, vote for Hillary, what a joke…..or Bernie, just as long as it’s a big D, right?

    • Edward Dodge  March 2, 2016 at 7:42 am

      Where in this story is the quote you cite attributed to Gordon Duff? This article was written by someone named Andrew Bacevich, probably a tribe member, form Boston University.

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