Donald Trump, goodstrat, Martyn Jones, Martyn Richard Jones, Politics, Popularity, POTUS45, Strategy, USA
Bornheim, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany – 4th August 2017
Like him or loath him, the fact of the matter is that the 45th President of the USA is Donald Trump.
Many see him as a blow-dried extrovert who can close big business deals and get the important jobs done. Others see him as an uncouth, ignorant and potty-mouthed bully, totally unfit for any public office – even that of dog-catcher.
He may have lots of detractors both sides of the beltway, but Donald Trump, who has been compared favourably with Andrew Jackson, has retained considerable support, especially in the rustbelt and coal mining communities.
Personally, I could not support Donald Trump, or Hillary Clinton for that matter, and I am thankful that I did not have to decide between the two. But, I’m still interested in the reasons why so many people continue to offer him their support.
I pondered the question: what makes him so popular? And after a brief bit of research and analysis I came up with some undoubtedly arguable findings.
Let’s start easy. There has always been a strong anti-intellectual streak running through the USA. Back in the day, both Thomas Jefferson and John Quincy Adams, were accused of being unsuitable for political office due to their intellectual pursuits. If we start with the New York Times analysis of the typical non-Trump voter, we can observe that, in general, the less educated a person is, the more likely they are to support Trump.
The second one may be the most obvious of all. In spite of what seems like having lived through endless seasons of the Trump West Wing, he hasn’t really been in office for that long, and certainly not long enough for many people to radically change their opinions about him.
Here’s another one. The jobs of affluent middle-class Americans living and working in the commercially and culturally richer parts of the USA do not feel so threatened by people ‘coming in from outside’ and taking ‘their’ jobs. Not so elsewhere. People who managed to get by on the wages that were on offer, found themselves pushed aside as employers found they could offer undocumented “illegal” workers even less to do more work. That has obviously caused an awful lot of resentment, resulting in more support for the guy who promises to stop all of that “unfair” and “community and family destroying” competition.
Offshoring work from the USA to places like India, especially in fields such as Information Technologies and business application development, has also created a tremendous amount of bitter resentment amongst people who have been dumped onto the technological scrap heap. People see jobs being outsourced and offshored, they see lack of training, inward investment and social responsibility, and they blame it on globalisation. Again, a strong climate of resentment will favour the right-wing candidate, especially one who promises to fix their predicament and get them back to work, in part, by rolling back globalisation.
We should never underestimate the power of a good story. Trump is still popular with the older generations. He has promised to return the USA to its glory days. The older generations are made up of a lot of people who actually lived those days, they know what abundance and contentment were like, and many of them would like to see a repeat of that. Many people want to see the return to the opportunities and benefits that they enjoyed, so that their families and friends could also have the means to better pursue the American dream. The question of the viability of the return to an affluent, influential and simpler past is not seriously considered, as nostalgia, the promise of a brighter future and other ‘feel good factors’ are enough to sway many people.
Of course, there is another factor, one that is hardly ever mentioned in the quality presses. To the delight of much of working-class USA, the ‘liberal’ media simply can’t get over the fact that Trump is the President, and not Hillary Clinton. Whilst the media makes a lot of play of Donald’s midnight twittering, – “another cup of covefefe with that donut?” – Trouble is, a lot of people see much of what he says and puts on Twitter as a sincere, simple and direct form of communicating with his base. The liberal presses hate him? Yet another ‘reason’ for the continued support for Trump.
It’s reasoning along the lines of, “Well, if the hysterical and virtue-signalling liberal media is continually chucking mud at him and his, at any and every opportunity, then our boys must be doing something right.” By their actions, and omissions, the media (even in the UK), rather than undermining the Trump Administration, are ensuring continued support for it.
Trump supporters are more likely to buy into the toxic idea that Climate Change is bogus, that a wall between Mexico and the USA is a good thing, especially if Mexico is notionally going to pay to have it built, and that America can be made “great again”. Many social-democrats, liberals and others have a deep appreciation of the need for and the advantages of political correctness, however, Trump supporters are more likely stick with their man precisely because he is not politically correct. Just look at his views on immigration, liberalism, feminism, the elites and a whole series of etceteras.
That just about raps up my brief thoughts on the question of Trump’s continued support. What’s your view? I’d really like to know. Donald Trump… a New York hustler, opportunist and good-fellow with the barely disguised attitude of a pushy and hand-crunching Ned, or a down-to-earth pragmatic realist, patriot and successful business person who connects with the high-flying capitalists and entrepreneurs, the older generations and the everyday working schmucks?
What is it to be?
Don’t look to me for answers. I have no dog in this fight. I’ll leave that one for you.
Many thanks for reading.
Isaac Asimov, as dead as he is, believed that there is a “false notion that democracy meant that ‘my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge'”.
Have a great week.
Credit for image used about title.
|Date||25 July 2016, 11:17|
|Source||Vladimir Putin carrying his buddy Donald Trump|
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