Some choice cuts from Janet Albrechtsen’s column in today’s Australian. Stop sneering, it’s high time to take trump seriously.
In the last few sentences, I’ve said much the same thing for at least the last 6 or 7 months or so. The elites just don’t get it. They don’t understand the phenomenon or what’s caused it and because they don’t or can’t, they don’t know how to handle it. The others, the ill informed or non informed, jabbering, chattering ignorant simply got caught up in the PC groupthink..
Tough. Suck it up and deal with it…
“..Donald Trump’s next book should be called The Art of Under-Estimation. Ever since the businessman announced his candidacy as Republican nominee for the US presidency on June 16 last year, political and media elites treated him, with few exceptions, as a joke.
That same day, Democratic National Committee press secretary Holly Shulman released this statement: “Donald Trump … adds some much-needed seriousness that has previously been lacking from the GOP field, and we look forward to hearing more about his ideas for the nation.” Vanity Fair enjoyed the mockery, applauding Shulman: “You shot, and you scored.
The punchline came last week when Trump clinched 1239 delegates to secure the Republican nomination. The dimwitted reaction from America’s so-called best and brightest in the media and politics has barely shifted. It’s just become more manic and more doggedly ill-informed..”
“..It’s fine for George Clooney to muster his red-carpet acumen to denounce Trump as “ugly”. The real ugliness resides in America’s economic stagnation. It’s all well and good for conservative commentators such as George Will to punch out earnest columns calling for a “time for prudence”, demanding Republicans purge Trump to “preserve the identity of their 162-year-old party”. To Trump supporters, prudence means status quo Washington politics. And what precisely is the identity of the 162-year-old GOP in 2016?
Our taxpayer-funded ABC streams the same dogged head-in-the-sand ignorance. On Radio National, PM recently homed in on Trump as a ratings boon for television networks, the appeal of Trump’s braggadocio, Trump’s $2 billion in free airtime, Trump’s celebrity factor, Trump as the lead player in political reality TV and so on. With an annual budget of more than $1bn, is this really the best analysis the ABC can offer Australians?
Rather than depicting Trump supporters as angry channel surfing reality TV deadbeats, what about explaining to Australians the genuine concerns of millions of American voters? And when will the regular Sunday morning snickering about Trump on Insiders give way to thoughtful analysis?
“…When Trump announced his candidacy, he said the American dream was dead. He promised to “make America great again … the old-fashioned way”. Any vox pop of Trump supporters echoes these eight words: make America great again, the old fashioned way. The beauty of Trump’s early refrain — and his campaign — is that it has come to mean different things to different people and it harks back to decades ago when the concerns of working-class Americans were taken seriously.
Reagan Democrats deserted the Democratic Party because it stopped being the natural home of working-class Americans, instead earning a reputation as the party of welfare recipients, feminists, African-Americans, Latinos, and other minority groups.Hardworking blue-collar workers asked themselves: who’s fighting for us?
Twenty years later, Reagan Democrats can’t find a home in the Republican Party either. As Eugene Robinson at The Washington Post identified last month, while leading Republicans slog it out among themselves (remember John Boehner calling Ted Cruz “Lucifer in the flesh”) the GOP has ignored the concerns of millions of these working-class voters who turned away from the Democratic Party…”
“…To focus only on Trump’s ugly side, and there is plenty there, is to miss the real point of his triumph last week. Trump may be the backlash presidential candidate and his supporters may be angry, but they also feel entirely abandoned by both political parties..”
As we comfort ourselves that Australian politics could surely never produce a Trump, the double dissolution election on July 2 may well produce a small army of backlash senators dropped into Canberra by voters who feel equally neglected by the Coalition and Labor. Sadly, if that happens, there will be more, not less, political paralysis and that will fuel greater disenchantment among voters. So it pays not to get too cocky because who knows where that will end.