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Old 03-26-2019, 11:21 AM
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“Trumpism” without Trump...


A comment or two along the lines of “the Republican Party is all in on Trumpism” got me thinking.

First, it might be helpful to define the term. I’m not 100% sure myself; it seems that everyone using it has a different mental image. Probably has a lot to do with governing and speaking style, and very conservative social beliefs.

But more than that (and I’ve touched on it with previous posts about how I’m not at all sure “a smarter Trump” would ever work politically in the same way the man himself has), I wonder, if my first line is true, what happens when Trump is no longer President. We’ve seen in the last midterms that endorsing is a very different kettle of fish than personal popularity. If Republicans are all in on Trumpism, what does that mean when Trump’s power and public standing are significantly diminished? How do they deal with that? Is it sustainable?
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Old 03-26-2019, 11:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Leaper View Post
A comment or two along the lines of “the Republican Party is all in on Trumpism” got me thinking.

First, it might be helpful to define the term. I’m not 100% sure myself; it seems that everyone using it has a different mental image. Probably has a lot to do with governing and speaking style, and very conservative social beliefs.

But more than that (and I’ve touched on it with previous posts about how I’m not at all sure “a smarter Trump” would ever work politically in the same way the man himself has), I wonder, if my first line is true, what happens when Trump is no longer President. We’ve seen in the last midterms that endorsing is a very different kettle of fish than personal popularity. If Republicans are all in on Trumpism, what does that mean when Trump’s power and public standing are significantly diminished? How do they deal with that? Is it sustainable?
If they can find another racist asshole to worship, they will be ok. Otherwise, they will crawl back under their rocks.
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Old 03-26-2019, 11:36 AM
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But see, that’s what I’m wondering: if Trump’s zeitgeist is unique, or if just any “racist asshole” will do, because if it’s the former, I don’t see how the Republican Party doesn’t have some hard decisions to make.
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Old 03-26-2019, 12:52 PM
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The primary lesson of the Trump election and administration is that so long as you can keep people polarized and tuned into "news" outlets that support your agenda, you can do no wrong. Th truth is irrelevant, as are what would normally be considered scandalous behavior. Trump, whether by accident or design, was the first person to go against the conventional wisdom that making provable lies and behaving abhorrently would negatively affect your election chances, and that blatant partisanship itself can be a selling point rather than something that although useful should be publicly denied. However now that it has been revealed that whether the Emperor has clothes or not is irrelevant, others are sure to follow. The only hope is that somehow Trump gets smacked down hard. So hard that his name automatically takes on a negative connotation, the same way that Nixon and McCarthy do now. So that if anyone tries this sort of thing again he can be called Trumpian and dismissed.

Last edited by Buck Godot; 03-26-2019 at 12:57 PM.
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Old 03-26-2019, 12:58 PM
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IMHO, Trumpism is based off of the following platform planks and beliefs:

  • There is a double standard between how women, gays, minorities, Muslims etc. are treated and white/male/Christians are treated in America (specifically, white/male/Christian Americans are being treated worse and worse; in this viewpoint). Trumpism means speaking up on behalf of the latter group against persecution.
  • Political correctness is thought police that stifles truth, and must be fought against.
  • Flyover America and the Rust Belt have been neglected, and must be promoted and revitalized. This leads to some dubious economic approaches such as reviving coal (although not even Trump has really done that.)
  • Illegal immigrants are "illegal," by definition, and should be ejected from the nation, and a border wall built.
  • It's time to bring back the "good old days."

None of this requires Trump. In fact, Trumpism would flourish just fine, if not even better, under the leadership of another (R) candidate who espouses the following above 5 bullet points. It's an ideology, not about a person.
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Old 03-26-2019, 01:01 PM
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I don’t see any of that as new to Trump, though. Are you saying that “Trumpism” has existed in some form or another in the party for years now? Because I’d agree with that.
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Old 03-26-2019, 01:03 PM
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I don’t see any of that as new to Trump, though. Are you saying that “Trumpism” has existed in some form or another in the party for years now? Because I’d agree with that.
There has long been that undercurrent of "Trumpism" waiting to manifest in the Republican Party, but Trump was the first candidate to truly say such things openly. Which caused electric excitement among much of the GOP base - "finally, someone who will say what's been on our minds."

But Trump isn't a good spokesman for Trumpism. He just happened to be the first, and perhaps only, Republican candidate to embrace it only. A smarter, more competent candidate could have done it a lot better.
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Old 03-26-2019, 01:22 PM
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As soon as Trump is out of office, republicans will have no problems shit-talking him afterwards, like many are already doing with W.

Republicans want their agenda fulfilled, they don't care who does it or how big an asshole he is. If he manages to pull it off, he might be able to pull off permanent reverence like Reagan gets. That's not bloody likely though, imo.

If he hasn't by the end of his term, the'll turn on him just like Ann Coulter.

Last edited by Ashtura; 03-26-2019 at 01:24 PM.
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Old 03-26-2019, 01:34 PM
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Barry Sheppard presents a summary of "Trumpism." I'll give my own synopsis first:

First note strong similarities between Trump and Nazi and Fascist leaders:
* Overt racism, misogyny and other bigotry.
* An apparent willingness to start new wars.
* Favoring authoritarianism and restrictions on democratic rights.
* America-First jingoism.
* Urging supporters to attack protesters and reporters.
* Insistence on loyalty to the Leader.

Fascism gains a foothold in response to economic discontent. Often the rich elite will ally themselves with a Fascist demagogue to cement their own power, but this hadn't happened in the U.S. ... yet. Americans have suffered from increasing inequality and erosion of protections for almost 40 years, but Fascism had never been a threat — democratic virtues are firmly entrenched in America and there is no strong left-wing for corporate elites to worry about— so the rich elite never felt the need to embrace Fascism. After the 2007-2008 crisis, and a recovery that increasingly left the mainstream behind, the time was ripe for a demagogue with Fascist ideals.

Now, partly in reaction to Trumpism, left-wing politicians are getting a stronger voice; we might expect some businessmen to embrace right-wing Trumpism in reaction to this. Certainly the pro-business GOP has had no problem with most of the Trumpist rhetoric and agenda.

There is a risk that the GOP and America's super-rich will reject Trump himself, but embrace Trumpist Fascism, and replace Trump with a more competent demagogue who will better serve their interests. The coming years are critical for America's future.

Sheppard's article closes with a summary of Trump's achievements:
Quote:
In his nearly two years in office, Trump has intensified his racist rhetoric and actions, succeeding in intensifying attacks on immigrants, winning a partial ban on Muslim's entering the U.S., vilifying women, and everything else we are experiencing. His administration has enfeebled the Environmental Protection Agency on all fronts including measures to enhance fossil fuel production, is on a drive to privatize education, backing white Christian evangelicals' attacks on women, and much more.

He gives cover to the extreme white nationalist alt-right. Some of these groups do have fascist ideology, and some engage in violence against racial and religious minorities. Isolated individuals also are using violence, as we have recently seen in Kentucky, Pittsburgh and the pipe bomb packages. Trump encourages such violence with "dog whistles."

Last edited by septimus; 03-26-2019 at 01:35 PM.
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Old 03-26-2019, 02:21 PM
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Trump is their great white hope to push back against multiculturalism, and his disdain for democracy is a positive because they feel it'll make him more efficient in his hatred of Multiculturalism.

Any politician who promises to put non Christians, non whites, immigrants, feminists or their enablers in their place will be well reviewed by the gop base. A willingness to undermine democracy is a price they're willing to pay. It's like an effort to enforce a much weaker version of Jim crow nationwide. Undermine democracy to support white nationalism.

Basically its a fucked Up situation. Best case scenario, the elderly white people who make up the bulk of trumpists die off and their children are better people. But who knows, trumpism could be appealing to young people too. The rise of anti democracy right wingers who fear the others is a global problem.
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Old 03-26-2019, 03:15 PM
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...However now that it has been revealed that whether the Emperor has clothes or not is irrelevant, others are sure to follow. The only hope is that somehow Trump gets smacked down hard. So hard that his name automatically takes on a negative connotation, the same way that Nixon and McCarthy do now. So that if anyone tries this sort of thing again he can be called Trumpian and dismissed.
Bingo. I've been saying the same thing. I wish we could remove him, but that doesn't look likely. I do hope that MANY republicans that are fighting for re-election go down too. A message must be sent that decent people won't stand for a criminal moron as President.
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Old 03-26-2019, 03:53 PM
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Any politician who promises to put non Christians, non whites, immigrants, feminists or their enablers in their place will be well reviewed by the gop base. A willingness to undermine democracy is a price they're willing to pay. It's like an effort to enforce a much weaker version of Jim crow nationwide. Undermine democracy to support white nationalism.
(bolding mine)

or ... undermining democracy is an actual selling point? They fear that their opinions and interests are not actually in the majority - therefore, in order to keep running the country they need to install an authoritarian who's "like them" and will keep doing things they like. They don't need or want actual democracy
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Old 03-26-2019, 06:20 PM
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A message must be sent that decent people won't stand for a criminal moron as President.
You can't send a message that has no basis in reality, tho, and that message has no basis in reality. My cite is that it is currently 2019 and Donald Trump is (still) POTUS.
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Old 03-26-2019, 07:40 PM
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(bolding mine)

or ... undermining democracy is an actual selling point? They fear that their opinions and interests are not actually in the majority - therefore, in order to keep running the country they need to install an authoritarian who's "like them" and will keep doing things they like. They don't need or want actual democracy
Yeah, thats what I meant originally it just came out wrong.

Declaring war on democracy in the Jim Crow south wasn't something that was undertaken reluctantly. It was taken on happily because they knew by undermining democracy (suspending the bill of rights, voting rights, etc for black people) that they could hold back multiculturalism.

Its the same thing with Trump and his base. They actively declare war on democracy because it helps them resist multiculturalism.
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Old 03-26-2019, 09:16 PM
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Basically its a fucked Up situation. Best case scenario, the elderly white people who make up the bulk of trumpists die off and their children are better people. But who knows, trumpism could be appealing to young people too. The rise of anti democracy right wingers who fear the others is a global problem.
As you may know, after my home turf's disasters I moved to DC to work in the political side of getting the recovery financed. I live near a common mustering point for DC tours by high school and college groups, and lemme tellya, the souvenir shops can't keep enough MAGA hats in stock. The notion that somehow the Right Wing is actuarially doomed is dangerously fallacious. Right wingers have children, usually more children than progs, and a majority of those DO NOT reject their upbringing. I mean, really, it's coming up on 50 years since Woodstock and the conservatives are ascendant, should tell you something.

And nationalist populism BOTH left and right(*) is a worldwide phenomenon. Never mind Trump, Duterte, Bolsonaro, there's also Chavez/Maduro, Evo or Ortega. BUT, and there's the asterisk*, what's 'left' or 'right' about a particular nationalist populist brand often has only a pro-forma resemblance to what your traditional card-carrying conservative or leftist may have stood for in the last half of the past century.
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Old 03-27-2019, 01:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Velocity View Post
IMHO, Trumpism is based off of the following platform planks and beliefs:

  • There is a double standard between how women, gays, minorities, Muslims etc. are treated and white/male/Christians are treated in America (specifically, white/male/Christian Americans are being treated worse and worse; in this viewpoint). Trumpism means speaking up on behalf of the latter group against persecution.
  • Political correctness is thought police that stifles truth, and must be fought against.
  • Flyover America and the Rust Belt have been neglected, and must be promoted and revitalized. This leads to some dubious economic approaches such as reviving coal (although not even Trump has really done that.)
  • Illegal immigrants are "illegal," by definition, and should be ejected from the nation, and a border wall built.
  • It's time to bring back the "good old days."

None of this requires Trump. In fact, Trumpism would flourish just fine, if not even better, under the leadership of another (R) candidate who espouses the following above 5 bullet points. It's an ideology, not about a person.
That's just political "reaction," not really much to do with Trump.

Edit: Except inasmuch as Trump plays to it in order to gain a position for himself. What's striking about Trump is his insistence on appointing the corrupt & incompetent to cabinet posts. Wilbur Ross, really? But maybe this is on-brand for the post-Reagan GOP.

Last edited by foolsguinea; 03-27-2019 at 01:41 PM.
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Old 03-27-2019, 08:42 PM
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As a test case of what "Trumpism without Trump" might look like, take a look at the current Premier of Ontario, Doug Fucking Ford.

In a surprise leadership race for the Ontario Progressive Conservative party just months before a general election in the province, a lot of the PC party members went out of their way to vote for a Trump-lite candidate, largely because he's Trump-lite. They had at least two other perfectly reasonable choices they could have gone with, either of whom would have won the general election quite easily, but they went out of their way to put Dougie in the hot seat.

And then they fucking won anyways.


So, yeah, if Ontario can pull off such a faceplant, I'm sure the US could as well.
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Old 03-27-2019, 10:07 PM
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As a test case of what "Trumpism without Trump" might look like, take a look at the current Premier of Ontario, Doug Fucking Ford.

In a surprise leadership race for the Ontario Progressive Conservative party just months before a general election in the province, a lot of the PC party members went out of their way to vote for a Trump-lite candidate, largely because he's Trump-lite. They had at least two other perfectly reasonable choices they could have gone with, either of whom would have won the general election quite easily, but they went out of their way to put Dougie in the hot seat.

And then they fucking won anyways.


So, yeah, if Ontario can pull off such a faceplant, I'm sure the US could as well.
Watching Ontarians sell out for cheap beer was a hell of a thing.
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Old 03-28-2019, 07:40 AM
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Watching Ontarians sell out for cheap beer was a hell of a thing.


And then we didn't even get that.

And don't even get me started on how a former drug dealer managed to screw up the legalization of weed.
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Old 03-28-2019, 10:06 AM
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There really isn't any "Trumpism" without Trump himself; it's too tied up into his mercurial personality. I think it's an interesting question what happens to the GOP after Trump's presidency ends, however it ends. Unlike most previous US presidents, I just don't see him stepping aside and allowing other people any of the spotlight. He'll probably continue to try to run the Republican Party as long as he's alive. I mean, if he loses in 2020 he'll probably claim that it was fraudulent and scream for four years before trying to reclaim the position; if he gets re-elected and can't run again in 2024 I see him trying to be some sort of shadow president who still runs everything. Will someone else usurp his position as King of the Party, will they just acquiesce to his dominion, or will it revert to a more typical party with various power centers? I really have no idea.
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Old 04-02-2019, 08:31 AM
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To me the aspects of Trumpism less native to his party are:

Anti-intellectualism on steroids

Utter disinterest in winning a fair fight, thus language may be weaponized at all times

One way we may see the latter for years to come is in widespread reflexive complaining about fraudulent election results without evidence. The era of social media is exacerbating this partisanship from what I'm anecdotally observing. There seems to be a divide where anti-intellectualism and its alternatives will continue to feature prominently as well in campaigns, although it plausibly could recede to more typical pre-Trump norms.
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Old 04-20-2019, 08:15 AM
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Gaetz, Grenell, Crenshaw, etc.

Either the GOP just attracts the dumbest fuckers out there or they're self-aware and simply don't care, and thus go for the stupid vote since it's gonna be in the bag. Grenell is the dumbest ambassador I can think of in recent (20 year) history. Takes his entire life for granted, not realizing most of the GOP base views him as subhuman because he likes men and is married to a man. It's like Blacks and Hispanics who vote GOP and then bitch about being marginalized, 'cause at the end of the day your skin color is or name is what those yutzes will judge you for, not who you voted, which isn't visible.
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Old 04-20-2019, 09:24 AM
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I don’t see any of that as new to Trump, though. Are you saying that “Trumpism” has existed in some form or another in the party for years now? Because I’d agree with that.
Trumpism existed as a way to get the rubes to vote R in every election, this is the first time a candidate has actually gone all out trying to follow through on it once elected.
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Old 04-20-2019, 11:49 AM
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We underestimate Trump...


Quote:
Originally Posted by Ambrosio Spinola View Post
There really isn't any "Trumpism" without Trump himself; it's too tied up into his mercurial personality. I think it's an interesting question what happens to the GOP after Trump's presidency ends, however it ends. Unlike most previous US presidents, I just don't see him stepping aside and allowing other people any of the spotlight.
In our loathing for this guy we neglect his absolute genius for hucksterism. He manipulates people with consumate skill. If he loses in the next election or is impeached i can easily see him rabble-rousing his 30% of the electorate for years. The Republicans havenobody to counter this. (Can you imagineMitch McConnel inspiring anyone?) The Trumpist 30% will always be with us. Sadly, isuspect trump will be too until the maw of hell opens to swallow him.
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