Donald Trump is the best friend Progressives in the US have ever had. As you will see, he has just managed to radicalize nine percent of the population -- and while that may not seem much at first glance -- it means change for the rest of us.
Hillary, if elected, would have been a continuation of Obama, a conservative in liberal’s fleece (to mix a metaphor) – no less right wing than any TeaBugger -- and no less dangerous to human rights, the environment or world peace – not to mention toxic for progressives – because she was someone the sheeple -- a majority of voters at least -- called their own. How fortunate that we do not live in a democracy and she wasn't voted in.
|Liberal = Conservative|
For a majority of people, leadership is all about appearances.
Obama was a handsome man with cute kids. He looked Black – so he must be liberal, right? Because blacks are…well…blacks. – even the white ones.
Hillary is a woman and wears pink pant suits so she must be liberal, too because women are…well…women, even the ones with balls.
Yet both Hillary and the Obummer were pretty much the same as Trump.
No, sheep are not actually stupid. But they are programmed to follow anything white and wooley. Sheeple.? Baaaaaaaaaaah…. You too -- right over the cliff.
|Are you next in line?|
It is not for nothing that we about “fleecing” a mark. The public is a flock -- born to sheared and eaten.
Now, Trump is ever so WYSIWYG.
Paint-on tan. Bad dyed hair. A man who is proud of how little he has read, who twitters and tweets and thinks in phrases of thre words, rather than sentences. He is superficial and greedy. Bad?
No Good. Appearances, remember. The Donald looks authentic.
Which….wait for it! ... makes him one of Us!
You are the Donald. Because you think you are authentic. Come on -- 'fess up -- you think you are real -- all indications to the contrary.
Oh, oh…. the pain of contradiction.
That is why we have “Liberal Moderation”, which is a way of reducing conflict.
It is a sort of dinner time politics thing that accepts all sides of an argument --politely-- in order to move on to dessert, no matter what the actual content. Back in the Reich.... "Shall we gas the Jews?" "Please pass the butter". "That might be a little extreme". "Maybe gas the Slavs instead". "Would you like some bread?"
A few people throw up after dinner.
Cognitive dissonance is like really, really bad indigestion. It puts things in perspective.
This is why "Nice'" people pretend not to be interested in politics, which we all know is not 'nice': throwing up is icky.
They don't talk about politics over dinner. They also often don't vote, which makes talking a side, even though, as we have seen, the "sides" are often the same, and the real choices -- Jill Stein, for example, are not seen as choices at all. If they voted, it might come up at dinner, which might mean something else coming up all over the floor later. You get the idea.
Now, Trump has politicized a minority of people.
This happens when the family is eating spam & beans most nights because Daddy lost his job and Mommy is working minimum wage at a coffee shop. This affects dinner time conversation.
He campaigned on “change” just as Obama did. So a lot of people voted for that. (When will we learn that “change” for a politician means “whatever is best for me and mine”?)
But Trump did the unthinkable -- he delivered. It was an accident -- an unintended consequence -- and not exactly the change promised or wanted-- but change anyway.
He didn’t have the money. He didn’t have the media on his side. He didn’t even have the votes finally. But he won. It is the death of politics as we know it. He killed the GOP . He killed the DNP. He didn't kill American democracy -- just clarified our lack of one.
He also did not kill the military, State, the NSA, the CIA and the One Percent (to which he belongs) which are stronger than ever – although now we can more clearly see their hairy butts shitting all over us.
The change that Trump has wrought no doubt means that the public as a whole are getting the shitty end of the stick – but, yes, things are now much more out in the open. Still a pay-toilet, America is now a toilet with no door.
Suddenly we don't even have the illusion of choice.
And how have most people responded? A few asked "Why do we have to pay to shit if there is no door?" A problem since spam and beans produces a lot of excrement.
To continue this metaphor, the Democratic Party hunched down on their mistakes – straining to give us even more shit than before. Constipative Dissonance. Naturally, the Dems blame the Other -- Aliens. The Russians. The Venezuelans. Aliens from Outer Space.
|WikiLeaks? Nah. The Aliens!|
And the GOP? Hahahaha.
Oh, when have they not been history? They haven’t even got around to noticing that the Tea Party have their balls in a jar. Gopsters are jumping around for joy at the notion they can take the US back to the Golden Age -- the Middle Ages with all those fun medieval tortures.
Goppy people also like blaming Aliens. Aliens from Muslim countries, Aliens from Mexico. Aliens in China.
You are probably asking why we --left and right -- have such a "thing" about Aliens.
But it is a momentary thought -- and then you go back to a video game about...um...killing aliens.
I digress....as is my want.... That is the nature of this blog. Not "regressive" left but digressive left.
In any case, whatever Trump has done -- or will do -- 90 percent of people don’t (won't) get it. They will bitch about the spam and beans -- but after a while they will get used to it, like all the other shit they put in their mouths. Shit in / shit out.
And anyway, they still have Netflix.
A majority of Americans, for example, applauded that recent war crime against Syria – where we bombed a airfield and maybe a nearby village, to tell Bashir Assad not to use chemicals on his people, which he didn't do and we had no reason to believe he had done. This was a crime even under American law. "Hooyah!" said just about everyone.
70 percent of Americans cheered when Trump dropped the “Mother of All Bombs” in Afghanistan despite the fact that:
• It probably wasn't that effective militarily
• It recent history is any indication, it killed more civilians than combatants
• It just royally pissed off the Afghans who will just fight harder
As the French philosopher Baudrillard has written: we no longer care about reality -- only about the Spectacle.
The Taliban responded with a successful attack on an Afghan military base, which was barely noted in the American Media.
The One Percent were happy. They profit from the idiocy of the 90 percent. Replacing those spent tomahawks and MotherFucker bombs just keeps the money flowing upwards out of your pockets into theirs. War = $$$$$.
So. in summary, were are fucked by ninety percent plus one percent.... That's a fuck rate of ninety one percent.
The remaining 9 percent of the population are pissed .....
And that is the Good News. Nine is the Magic Number
History (and statistics) teach us all you need to effect social change is a committed minority of 9 to 10 percent, --given 90 percent don't really care -- and one percent are too busy counting pennies.
This 9 percent, however, have to be ordinary people radicalized to become zealots, rejecting compromise and consensus and getting angrier with the day.
The radicalization part is important because if you were born a zealot, you are probably psychotic or religious (almost the same) -- which tends to result in things turning out badly.
What we need are Grannies with guns.
|The Digressive Left|
Now, the Death of American politics and the Rise of Trump more or less guarantees radicalization of a significant number of people.
This Nine Percent will stick to their (pardon the pun) guns, as long as the situation does not improve -- which -- under Trump -- will be the case. They will also not compromise with the "Moderate Majority"., the "Center", the "Middle", the Flab Class. Why compromise with or seek consensus with idiots? That is not democracy --but idiocracy.
Trump's nine percent are, as I have said, ordinary people who do care about ideological abstractions --“capitalism” or “free markets” “education” “freedom” or “democracy” or “justice” all ambiguous terms which mean different things to different people at different times.
The Radical Nine are motivated by present reality -- Trump -- not what they learned in High School. They also hate spam and beans every night.
They may have their mythological or religious fantasies, but the pressure of reality is too great for panaceas when you are just really, really pissed and steak for dinner and a toilet with a door.
Of course, radicalization has its dangers. As we mentioned, some people are born zealots. A few are twisted by experience.
ISIS, for example, was born in Iraqi prisons.
In an interview with The Daily Telegraph, contemporaries of al-Baghdadi describe him in his youth as being shy, unimpressive, a religious scholar, and a man who eschewed violence. For more than a decade, until 2004, he lived in a room attached to a small local mosque in Tobchi, a poor neighbourhood on the western fringes of Baghdad, inhabited by both Shia and Sunni Muslims.The Americans created Al- Badhdadi.
Hitler was not quite an ordinary man -- he was a limited artist who could draw landscapes and buildings but not people, lived on the street, sold postcards to Jews and loved Jewish singers, he bought into conspiracy theories -- Jews, Communists and so on. He was radicalized by poverty, failure, and finally WWI. As time went on his zealotry grew and intensified. Failure, prison, and repression did not matter. He was going to make a difference.
After years and years, he managed to sway first 9 percent -- that magic number -- and finally the mass of Germans, offering prosperity and social programs that benefited people in concrete ways -- and were retained and even developed further by the postwar German state.
Hitler's antisemitism and Aryanism came from his culture -- unconscious ideologies. We have our own versions of such things.
But try to imagine a Hitler without the Aryan mythology -- without the antisemitism, racism, and the other viciousness that resonated so well with the German Public Id. That Hitler -- the vegetarian who liked animals so much he passed laws to protect them -- might very well have created a thousand year Reich!
As mentioned, many of his programs live on today in Merkel's Germany and the EU.
In the UK, the most significant nine percent were socialists. They suffered for 70 years -- but did not compromise.
Their Trump was Hitler. And after WWII, they led the 90 percent to reform the UK offering advances in education and healthcare that led to Cool Britannia in the 70s. With Tony Blair however came compromise -- and the Labour Party died until (perhaps) resurrected by Jeremy Corbyn.
As Yoda says, we must eschew the Dark Side. Even if it means living in a swamp for years and years.
This should be a lesson for American progressives. Stay grounded. But do not compromise.
The focus needs to be on basic humanity and the community, empathy and cooperation, a sense of fairness and balance -- from these things flow the opportunity American culture purports to offer but never delivers. Follow Yoda -- not Darth Vader.
Trump has provided the moment.
Americans can hear that giant sucking sound (as Ross Perot famously called it) – in this case, resources, wealth and rights and privileges being vacuumed upwards to be hoarded by a few people at the Top, who haven’t the faintest idea of what to do with it. They can hear an equally giant flushing sound. That’s your children and their future being disposed of.
The issues here are not "redistribution" or "capitalism" or any of these things often used as code words in ideological discussions and which mean different things to different people. Rather the issues are "hoarding" and sharing -- not to mention the right to live your life your own way. Police violence and racism and gender discrimination are not issues -- bullying and standing up to bullies is. These are all things that even chimpanzees understand. So why not Americans?
Plain language. Plain thinking. You have heard the expression, "Think globally, act locally". Nonsense. Think locally. Act locally. "Global will look after itself". It all starts at the community level.
Take single payer health insurance in Canada. It began in Saskatchewan under the Tommy Douglas's CCP socialist party in 1962 and was at first bitterly opposed. The CCP stuck to its principles and the plan proved so successful -- and saved so much money -- that everyone everywhere in Canada wanted it.
But you need that committed minority to stick to their guns.
You need the nine percent.
The 90 percent won't do anything themselves. As mentioned, many don’t even vote. They are a huge aggregate in which inclusion dilutes the power of each individual. Aggregation means passivity, a mindless mob.
The one percent have money and power – but they are very few – which ironically they think amplifies their power.
The 9 percent are many – but not so many that their rage can be diminished by numbers. Unified by commitment, aware that they are the minority – their power is amplified. If they do not give up.
A committed minority must be an ethical minority.
Power = intensity x time.
Of course, this assumes the "committed minority" wants to sway the majority and is not led astray by impractical belief systems or mythologies. The Tea Party, for example, is simply reactionary and lost in abstractions, more cultish than "committed".
Ten percent of the US population is three million or so people. If they are all of one mind, focused on just a few things they want, inflexible and uncompromising and willing to do what it takes, even – if necessary – violence in defense of person. Then, you have a revolution. The 90 percent go with the flow. The one percent get their heads lopped off.
The American Revolution ?