When Donald Trump was campaigning he joked that he does well with “not so smart” people; this is something that has been screamed to the rafters by the American left wing and increasingly anyone with any capacity for critical thinking. So as this American White House administration produces daily scandals and drama that surely has House of Cards writers scrapping scripts to up the anti and compete with reality, I pose one question. So what can intelligent and thoughtful people learn from the campaign of a man who appears to have lied and blundered his way to one of the most powerful positions in the world? I pose that Trump has performed a great service; here are lessons that I feel we can take away from the Trump phenomena:
- Whenever there is a large disparity between the suffrage of the lowest on the wealth spectrum and the prosperity of those at the top of it, there is fertile ground for hate speech and a power grab using an Us vs. Them movement. This is sadly a reality of the times that we are in, where lessons of the past are ignored for ideas of re-inventing the wheel. America’s love of and allegiance to capitalism has been the catalyst for rampant greed and lowered empathy. America has been pillaged by their rich and technologically advanced by automation resulting in the bankrupting of a general labor industry. One also has to remember that the crash of the real estate market also impoverished much of the middle class in America, further compounding the woes of many who were ignored. The question is who noticed they could use the other to prop them-self up first, Trump or his supporters.
- Crush your enemy totally. I will get a lot of flack from many uber liberal and left leaning friends. I believe in honesty and truth and the truth is that in today’s current era of hate resurgence the left has sinned as well, and has done so for many years. Have you ever had a discussion with a hard lined liberal? They are just as blind to honest and logical discourse, full of self-righteous indignation and follow their liberal line of dogma. Law 15, of the 48 Laws of Power (Crush your enemy totally) was not adhered to and now the left find themselves with a powerless voice in politics. In short, the closed minded offensive dismissal of any argument and opposing proof presented to the hard lined right-wing person is more than just payback to the left, it is a reflection in the mirror. For a decade, the religious communities, conservative minded, blue collar populace of America were marginalized, silenced and systematically attacked culturally. Think I am being too harsh? Look how causal agnostic and atheist people publicly speak about religion, the religious and faith in general. It is one thing to not believe in something it is another to be disrespectful of and to ridicule that thing and the people who believe in it. If someone were to speak about liberal causes and people that way, we would call it discriminatory and bigotry; truth is truth. Bill Maher can be entertaining to watch but his blatant dismissal and ridicule of opposing ideas is just as brash as the nonsense Fox often spews. Abortion and the rights of both child and mother are complex issues with so many legitimate concerns and considerations where, ultimately, every argument comes from a place of preservation of both life and autonomy – is this debate characterized as such? Yes both sides have been guilty but the left side controls media and when you berate a group with the full weight of the American entertainment industry you create a whisper versus a megaphone situation. So when this community was presented a vile, bigot as a candidate that offered one last chance to fight back against being silenced, should we be surprised at the outcome? Donald spewed racism and coded white privilege speak, things that are not new and that are entrenched in America; Americans chose the devil they knew (well the majority didn’t but more on that later). The left fully dominated the right for a decade but they didn’t destroy their enemy, in this case, by convincing them of their leftist truth. Silencing your victim only guarantees the intensity in their voice when they do get the chance to speak.
- The power of belief and bold proclamation. Trump is not the ideal brand to prove the substantive power of manifest destiny or positive reinforcement, but the case can be made. I am disgusted by what comes out of his mouth and the fact that there are ears readily accepting him. Yet you will be hard pressed to find a more current, obvious example of one’s belief in one’s self to create and sustain a world they have built around themselves. Trump has no credentials, knowledge, experience or any other form of validity to run for the highest position in the highest office of the most powerful nation and yet there he is proving daily that he is not equipped to be President but by sheer will and belief there he sits atop the mountain.
- There is power in the boldness of a shameless liar. Some people will believe a statement simply if the person saying it says it with conviction. Donald Trump’s power is in his ability to shamelessly lie in the face of obvious, contradictory truth. His world is so defiant toward reality that him and his ilk have coined a term for the rules and norms there; alternative facts. Let President Trump’s ascension to the United States serve as a stern warning, more than your money is being sought after. Now your very perception and grasp on reality is at risk in the era of alternative facts, bold liars and the media’s fight against the label of fake news.
- Racism is still alive and deep rooted in America and in much of the European nations. The hate Trump’s campaign gave a renewed voice to put on display what laid just under the surface of America, an old tale of societies with different classes of citizens and the prosperity and plight of each. Tensions and awareness rose and influenced many of America’s friends across the globe. The privilege of the rich, old, white man in society was unabashedly and disgracefully trotted all over the civil rights of other cultures (races), black men and women, women in general, immigrants, Mexican’s specifically, Native Americans, the poor and others. Worst of all it seems some poor and middle class white citizens do not seem to realize that they too are being cheated.
- The greed of the wealthy community. Obviously this is not all-inclusive but the sheer amount of the wealthy in America that are willing to entrench through policy, callous and malicious regulations and loop holes is surprising. Add to that the countless Republicans that are willing to further impoverish their community for political allegiance is and the realization of what we are seeing becomes shocking .
- It is not enough to win, one must always be aware of ever changing rules and strategize accordingly to win by the current standards. Let us not forget that Hillary Clinton won the popular vote. I know, its been said and we, yes we (The world wanted her to beat Trump, albeit Bernie Sanders was the clear favorite), have been told to accept the results but think about the irony of it. A country that literally stands as the emblem and standard for democratic governance has a system where a candidate can win by 2.9 million more votes than their competition and still lose! America’s critic of foreign governments on many levels is losing ground to stand on. That being said, the Republicans play dirty in a more efficient way than Democrats do (Yes they do it too). They understand the loop holes and lie, cheat and grease to exploit the angles to win according to the rules. Democrats focused mainly on votes, ignored the changing opinions and therefore the landscape they were seeking to conquer. Even worse, Democrats backed the lesser of two options further separating them from success. Winning is never as easy as it looks and the hidden pitfalls one has to overcome to be successful takes constant vigilance to persevere against.
- You can easily disrupt the democracy of the most powerful country on Earth by playing to, arguably, it’s biggest weakness. America sells capitalism as its mantra and we are now seeing the ugliest side of that. Capitalism can be reduced to ruthlessly profiting at the expense of someone else and this, in part, is how America got ahead, be it with slavery, regime change of other countries or through strategic wars. The pitting of one people against another to oppose one of those two groups or both of them is an old tactic maintained from the days of colonialism. If America will ever achieve it’s true potential of greatness by curing itself of the disease of racism, class-ism and all other isms remains to be seen but while ugly angst based on the concept of race and the other remain, there will always be a weakness to exploit. Checkmate Russia.