Right wing populism

Despite what some say, trump was neither a fascist or a nazi (although he had some fascist moments, of course). Instead he was a Right wing populist=

However, now, Right wing populism seems to be also marked by really crappy responses to Covid=
Trump, Jair Bolsonaro , Narendra Modi, Rodrigo Duterte, Boris Johnson and others. They are all responsible for killing many of their own supporters, which could be considered ironic.

The idea behind Right wing populism is that it appeals to, and caters to, the lowest common denominator of voters. Covidiots.

Right wing populism is dangerous, and we need to watch for it.

Populism doesn’t generally lead to good, let alone consistent, policy or governance, because contrary ideas can be simultaneously popular with the populus.

  • Who’s for less taxes? Yaay! Count me in!!

  • Who wants better roads and schools and hospitals? Yes please! Way overdue!!

Actually reconciling those will leave half the voters unhappy, so generally populists don’t. They kick the issue down the road, blame shift, band-aid or fudge.

Covid was a high-pressure test of policy-making and trust in government. All the ones you listed failed, because all they have holding them in power is the promise of more ice-cream for all and the paralysis of never being able to deliver.

Trump wasn’t a populist though – he said some populist things, but his biggest achievement was reducing taxes on the wealthy and on corporations. He tried to get rid of the ACA (but failed), and then did everything he could to undermine it. Did he also initially resist the first COVID bill?

Populists don’t do that – they give out goodies to the people.

I could not say it better. It drives me up a wall how some voters think that effective governance means selecting everything you want, and nothing you don’t want, as if the bad things existed somehow only because people were dumb enough to want them.

Who wants the pandemic to be over soon? Us!! Yes!! No more pandemic!

Who wants to wear masks, do social distance, quarantine, lockdowns, etc. so that the pandemic can end sooner? NOT us!!

Here’s the Wikipedia definition of fascism:

Fascism is a form of far-right, authoritarian ultranationalism characterized by dictatorial power, forcible suppression of opposition, and strong regimentation of society and of the economy

The “strong regimentation” part doesn’t fit so well. But “far-right, authoritarian ultranationalism” certainly does, as does “dictatorial power, forcible suppression of opposition”. He was a White supremacist who had no interest in democratic principles, he did not accept any notion that the Constitution should limit his powers. And he attempted a coup. An incompetent attempt that failed, but still absolutely a coup attempt.

I think a central part of fascism is a cult of personality around the Leader. And Trump and his supporters have certainly embraced that.

He promised many such things.

He did appeal to the the lowest common denominator.

He also told his people that covid was no big deal, that there were cures, that masks were not really needed- all things they desperately wanted to hear.

Let us not debate whether or not he was more fascist, please.

There are many threads where trump was called one.

We do not need another.

I think that real populists actually deliver. That’s my understanding of Bolsonaro and that guy from Hungary, for example. He didn’t even try.

Well, “pie in the sky” is a typical populist move. In this case you have a guy who is a populist on the surface but deep down is a conman. Promise everything.

Has Modi or Bolsonaro actually delivered? Or just made promises? Boris did get them out of the EU, but all those millions of pounds flowing to National Health never showed up.

Is/was Netanyahu a populist?

I don’t really know what Modi or Bolsonaro delivered. I don’t think anyone calls Netanyahu a populist.

I would say that its the combination of populism with nationalism that is on the rise, and Netanyahu certainly fits on the nationalist side.

In addition to those mentioned I’d also add Erdogan, Viktor Orban, and a near miss with Marine Le Pen.

To my mind, the characteristic most shared by populist platforms is that they offer simple direct “common sense” solutions to complex problems. If the problem is people coming into the country illegally then just build a wall. The problem of course is that common sense is often wrong because it doesn’t account for additional factors. Experts are experts for a reason.

Trumps policies always reminded me of the sort thing I would expect to hear from a guy jawing with his buddies in a bar. The sort of conversation that wonders if black boxes are indestructible why they don’t just make the planes out of the same stuff?

Yeah, I see what you mean.

And trump, Boris, etc have taken it another step- promise those 'common sense" things, but don’t deliver.

At least one thing, I don’t know what they call it in their respective locations, but I believe that in the US parlance it’s referred to as “Liberal Tears”.

Many dead people from Covid, mass graves even.

I think you meant “Librul tears”. Gotta spell it right (AKA wrong) to get the full connotation of contempt.

I think right wing populism is different in the US vs other nations in this regards. In places like Poland or India, the right wing populists promote expanding the welfare state and helping the poor. In the US those things are not supported by right wing populists.

I think in Poland the right wing populists are trying to expand/improve the UHC system and increase the minimum wage. Modi tried to expand health care access.

'Zactly. In the US, RW populism is a lot more about religion, culture, and race than it is about economics.

Said another way, to RW populist members of the populace, it’s far more about relatively pushing the black, brown, immigrant, and non-Xian groups down than it is about absolutely elevating any group in any way, including their own.

It’s a boggling example of a social suicide pact: “Don’t laugh; you’re next!”

RW populism is about fucking over the “other”. The RW would happily spend $10 million drug testing welfare recipients if it means that enough would test positive and thus save $1 million in welfare spending. It’s not about fiscal responsibility, it’s about fucking over minorities. They embrace the current Jim Crow II voting restrictions, after all everybody they know has a driver’s license and has a precinct where one waits under 10 minutes in line to vote. It just so happens that in minority communities the wait exceeds five hours and proportionally more lack a photo ID. In their Calvinist mind, those who are morally superior wind up on top and those on the bottom must by their nature be morally inferior. They’re driven to fury by the thought that “illegal immigrants” are getting Social Security, despite the easily checked fact that they are not eligible for benefits. They’re horrified by brown-skinned asylum seekers trying to escape poverty, disease, and gang warfare because “they’re trying to take our jobs”. RW populism is nothing more than pure, unadulterated, 200 proof hatred.

This does not square with American Trumpists’ loathing of Hollywood, the media, professional sports, and the political elite. I think it really only applies to some idealized notion they have of the hardworking “bootstrap” Americans versus the lazy and entitled immigrants and minorities.