At war with the world
We've come to this point:
Republican vice presidential nominee Mike Pence chided a Trump supporter Tuesday who talked about there being a post-election revolution if Hillary Clinton wins the election.
During an event Tuesday, a woman rose to tell Pence that she was concerned about voter fraud handing the election to Clinton said that she would participate in a "revolution" if Clinton headed to the White House.
"I don't want this to happen but I will tell you personally if Hillary Clinton gets in, I myself, I'm ready for a revolution because we can't have her in," the woman said.
Pence shook his head and waved his hand as he told the woman "Yeah, don't say that."
"There's a revolution coming on November the 8th, I promise you," he added.
The Deplorables, egged on by the most vile, vitriolic presidential campaign in modern US political history, are preparing for Hillary Clinton's likely victory by darkly bruiting thoughts of violence and revolution.
Sure, we've heard this before, in 1992 (Bill Clinton's election led to a growth spurt for the white militia movement) and in 2008 (Barack Obama's election had a similar effect). But never have we had a campaign which has actively stoked the fires of sedition by casting dark conspiracies about the likely winner. Mike Pence may have tried to tamp down talk of revolution; however, his boss, Donald Trump, tells his audiences to monitor "other communities" lest the election be stolen from him.
What we're seeing here in the US is being repeated around the Western world. Europe is in turmoil, traditionalists fighting back furiously against immigration and multiculturalism. Brexit was the canary in the coal mine, presaging similar movements in Germany, France, the Netherlands, Hungary, and Poland. Australia, like America a nation of immigrants, has seen its nationalist right wing rise in the face of undocumented immigration.
What ties all this together is a fear of a modern world which no longer adheres to the strictures of Western domination. Sure, the US is still the world empire; but globalism has changed us to a degree where we'd be unrecognizable to someone plopped in from the 1970s. The Deplorables are at war with a world they don't understand, and for which they didn't ask. Their brief is to turn back the clock to a time when their position was more secure, both at home and abroad. They want to erase the past 50 years, and go back to a time when everyone knew their place, and their own place was at the top. It's an impossible task, which makes its attempt all the more dangerous.
Of course the irony is that Trump is one of the beneficiaries of globalization, from his Scottish golf clubs to his Chinese sweatshops which make his unattractive clothes. If Trump has anywhere near the amount of money he says he has, it's mostly due to the globalized economy. The fact that he is now the pied piper of economic nationalism would make one laugh were it not so serious.
Do I seriously fear a widespread insurrection among Trump loyalists? Not really; they're easily distracted, as the Trump phenomenon itself has shown. But I do fear isolated incidents, even a degree of coordination, enough to dwarf what happened under Pres. Clinton's watch in the 1990s. Trump and his minions have inflamed hopes and aspirations; they will die hard among a good chunk of his followers.
Trump's lasting legacy will be the legitimacy he has given to the fringe elements of American politics. When he goes back to scamming the gullible out of their money, we will have to pick up the shattered pieces.
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