The backstory of what is going on with the Trump campaign must be absolutely fascinating for political junkies of all stripes. This year's elections will be fodder for political scholars for decades to come. Nothing like this has happened in our lifetimes, perhaps ever. We're in a political never-never land. A circus. A goon-clown show. A WTF moment every day. Hunh? You've got to be kidding!
Something's happening here, but we don't know what it is.
Time to dredge up the Buffalo Springfield for the umpteenth time...
Yep, here we go again. We're living in Interesting Times.
I read in some newsfeed that Trump was lustily cheered yesterday when he made an appearance at the front entrance to the Trump Tower. He is mighty-mighty and his loins are heavy with seed. I mean come on... And his partisans have flooded the Intertubes to tell us all how mighty-mighty he is and how heavy his loins must be. This is the Man who ought to be King! Yay!
Something similar followed on revelations of Bill Clinton's infidelities, so I'm not at all surprised at Trump's partisans standing with him today. Of course they will; they must. They do not see the randiness of Boss Men as a fault. They see it as an Attribute. A Good and Necessary Thing. It is one of the ways to separate the Strong from the Weak.
But the Trump campaign, such as it is, appears to be falling apart. Rs of all stripes are "distancing" themselves from the candidate for his indiscretions, not his actions. They've never had a problem with his actions, nor in fact, so far as I can find out, have the members of his class, the Billionaire and Would-be Billionaire Boys Club, ever had a moment's problem with Trump's personal or business behavior.
Why should they? It's standard for men of his status.
Maybe he's a bit cruder and ruder than many of those in his class, but what he does -- never mind what he says -- is what nearly all of them do. They are no friend to the weak or downtrodden. They have little use for women except for what they can get from them. They are exploiters and oppressors. It is their emblem of Strength.
The pro-forma denunciations we're hearing are just that -- pro-forma. They don't mean anything but they are meant to bamboozle the weak-minded, to shift the story from one of outrage over what he said (never mind what he does) to one of Puritanical holiness on behalf of everyone else of his status. Bollocks and Bullshit. They're all like this. All of them. Every one. Well, nearly...
I've said many times that Trump is a particularly boisterous representative of his class; he is no aberration, he is an avatar of who they all are. For whatever reason, that insight has gained no traction, in part, I think, because most people simply don't want to believe the worst about Our Betters. They can't be that bad. Well, they are.
Many others see Trump's badness for what it is and celebrate it. Whoop dee doo, we're goin' to the Rodeo now! He liberates the badness in others. That kind of liberation, the removal of any requirement for restraint, leads to violence of course, but more than that, it redirects social energies.
He's been called a fascist, and in a classic sense he is. But our governance has been inwardly fascist for a long time, and every now and then it is outwardly and openly fascist as well. He is not, therefore, aberrant. He fits right in. Where he diverges from the right and proper way of doing things is in his demagoguery, his populist cant and rhetoric. No, no, no, no, no. This is not the way things are supposed to be done. A leader doesn't whip up populist sentiment -- you never know where it will go after all -- one suppresses the urges of the Rabble, and convinces them that their Betters know better, and in the end, the right and proper Leader governs contrary to the interests of the Public and disregards the People's Will. That's how it's done.
Trump violates these principles over and over again, and that -- to the oligarchs and kleptocrats who rule us -- is unacceptable.
Trump's campaign may indeed fall to pieces, and Herself may indeed be installed in the White House come January, partly because she is more acceptable to the oligarchs and kleptocrats, but also because her world-view is more in line with the conventions of the neoLibCons who have been so right about everything over the post-modern course of history (save me), and she has made clear she will follow their lead over the cliff if so ordered.
But... Trump has shown there is a future in his way of whipping up sentiment. There is no ultimate need to mask it. Our Betters can be just as bad as they want to be without the necessity of Bernays-ian bamboozlement and enough of the Rabble will go along with them, cheering them on, that the Others, sticks in the mud, won't matter. The mild form of populism, represented by St. Bernie (bow down) is simply too weak, you see, for consideration.
That's the lesson of Trump. A billionaire being openly bad is hailed a hero by enough of the Rabble to be electable. Ah ha! The light bulbs are going off all through the political class, make no mistake.
I've said he's a gangster and a con-man -- which he doesn't even try to hide, btw -- and I've been shocked that so many people want that kind of rule, but I can see how frustrated many people are with the status quo. Of course.
Millions upon millions of Americans have been forced into poverty by the economic unpleasantness of the last decade. No one who should be held responsible for it has suffered in the least let alone been brought to justice. In fact, they've been rewarded over and over again, while Rabble continues to be oppressed and looted. The status quo, represented by Herself, Ms. "No You Can't", will ensure that the way things are will continue without let up. And indeed, will ensure that conditions will worsen for the Little People indefinitely.
That's the post-modern, neoLibCon way. There is no alternative.
I'm not so worried about her warmongering. I see most of it as pretense. The implicit threat against real and imagined foes runs throughout the ruling class -- Trump and his familiar Pence express it just as strongly though against slightly different targets -- and it is part and parcel of their approach to global domination.
Hillary ("The Hag") is probably less likely to act on her warmongering than her opponents want you to believe, in part because the Obama Wars have been such complete clusterfucks, following as they do the regime-change pattern set under the Bush-Cheney regime, than which no clusterfucks have been greater. While it seems that neoLibCons are incapable of learning (they're worse than the Bourbons in that regard) as the misrule and anarchic "liberations" pile up, they've eased off adding more bungling and disregard to their litany of horrors. What they've done doesn't work for long-term imperialist gain in any case. The Hegemon suffers too much to keep doing the same things over and over. On the other hand, you never know...
What she's doing though, is perhaps more important in the long run. She's consolidating political power and the parties under her (or rather her owners') purview. The Republican Party elite is being absorbed by the borg of the Dems. I've never seen anything like it in the open, though it's been obvious as sin that the Democratic Party is for all intents and purposes a Rockefeller Republican Party in every way but name. This transformation has been going on since Clinton I. Perhaps it started under Carter but was temporarily aborted by Reagan's intervention. At any rate, the Dems are nothing at all like a leftist party. They are a "less evil" rightist party, whereas the Rs, to escape, have become the "most evil" rightist party. There is no genuine Left in American politics.
But Hillary is going much farther than I've seen any politician in my lifetime toward bringing in the opposition (supposed) under her wing. And it's working spectacularly. Her ostensible Republican support is essentially greater than her nominal Democratic support. At least it's more powerful.
She's in the process of transforming the Democratic Party into a consolidated Democratic Republican Party (of Unity?) that can be something like a permanent ruling party, serving the interests of Oligarchy against the popular will.
It is a historic political realignment.
Of course all the attention on Trump and his follies obscures it.