Monday, June 20, 2016

811 Antifascist Trots, backed by Soros, to rally against Trump. Marc Faber backs Trump's Protectionism

Antifascist Trots, backed by Soros, to rally against Trump. Marc Faber
backs Trump's Protectionism

Newsletter published on 23 March 2016

(1) "Professional Agitator" beaten: "I Was Protesting Trump’s Fascism"
(2) "Antifascist" Trots plan rally against Trump
(3) Anti-Trump groups, backed by Soros' MoveOn, plan "Democracy Spring"
(4) Anybody But Trump - Anonymous Trots' "total war" on Trump
(5) "Anybody but Trump" campaign pans racism of White Working Class - wsws
(6) Why Trump Is Right On Trade Agreements - Zero Hedge
(7) Marc Faber backs Trump's Protectionism
(8) Trump vows to scrap U.S. trade deals; evokes dread among GOP elite
(9) Washington Post calls for brokered convention to stop Trump
(10) Trump national sovereignty vs Open Borders & "One World"
(11) Economic polarization makes Inequality the hot-button issue

(1) "Professional Agitator" beaten: "I Was Protesting Trump’s Fascism"

Meet The "Professional Agitator" Who Was Beaten At Yesterday's Trump
Rally: "I Was Protesting Trump’s Fascism"

Submitted by Tyler Durden on 03/20/2016 12:32 -0400

As reported last night, something surreal happened at Trump's Saturday
rally in Arizona: a man who, as part of a group that had donned KKK
attire and was occasionally giving out Nazi salutes in attempts to mock
and provoke Trump supporters, did just that when he was punched and
kicked by none other than a black man while being escorted out of the
building. The moment was captured on the photo below which will surely
become part of the 2016 presidential race archive.

Who is the protester?

According to a profile by the Arizona Daily Star, his name is Bryan
Sanders who describes himself as an indepedent "I'm not a republican,
I'm not a democrat", and in a video interview after he left the rally he
said the crowd was like an angry mob. What he ignored to note is that it
was him and his fellow protesters who were doing everything all they
could to rile up this "angry mob" and provoke them, ostensibly in hope
of being attacked - which is precisely what happened. In other words,
this group of Trump protesters which seem to follow him from state to
state may be nothing more than a group of provocateurs, who do their
best to get beaten up in order to stem up anti-Trump sentiment,
something Sanders implicitly admits.

This is what he said: "I was protesting Trump’s facism, his racism, his
lies, his women-hating," Bryan Sanders said in an interview with the
Arizona Daily Star.  Sanders said he was holding a sign that said "Trump
is bad for America."

"A guy grabbed the sign out of my hand as I was being escorted out of
the building and sucker punched me," he said.  Sanders, who as noted
above identified himself as an independent, said he also attended a
Bernie Sanders rally the night before.

‘We're gonna stop this; this is not going to continue," he said. "If it
takes somebody getting punched in the face, that's what it takes, no
problem." And Sanders will make sure it is  no problem by continuing to
provoke the "angry mob" at Trump rallies with everything he's got.

Meanwhile, Trump himself said earlier today that protesters who’ve
dogged his recent presidential campaign appearances should bear some
responsibility for violence committed against them by his supporters.

"These are professional agitators," the Republican front-runner said
Sunday on ABC’s "This Week With George Stephanopoulos." "There should be
blame there, too." [...]

(2) "Antifascist" Trots plan rally against Trump

Pro-Illegal Immigration Activists Plan Rallies This Saturday against
Donald Trump

by Lee Stranahan17 Mar 20166,256

A so-called "antifascist" group that supports illegal immigration is
planning a rally against GOP presidential front-runner Donald Trump this
Saturday in New York City, the same day that a Black Lives Matter
affiliated group that also supports illegal immigration is planning a
rally in Phoenix, Arizona.

The Facebook page for the recently formed group Cosmopolitan
Antifascists announces the Rally Against Donald Trump, using the hashtag
#CrushTrump, will be held Saturday at 11 AM at New York’s Columbus
Circle. The group’s Facebook announcement says:

     Donald J. Trump has made headlines in recent months with his
divisive rhetoric, hate speech, and extremist plans to "make America
great again". We, in fact, believe this will do the opposite to this
nation. Trump’s policy threatens many of us in the Black, Latino, LGBT,
Muslim, and other communities. These policies and this type of speech
has no place in this country, and certainly does not have a place in the
city that Trump grew his empire in, which is considered such a melting
pot and home for many of the same people Trump continues to wage war on.
Join us at Columbus Circle as we march to Trump Tower as we say no to
hate, no to divisiveness, no to fascist policies, and most importantly,
no to Donald J. Trump.

The Cosmopolitan Antifascists are soccer fans, working in solidarity
with English groups who combine pro-leftist sentiments with the sport.
New York City has a professional soccer team called the New York Cosmos,
although the group says it is not directly affiliated with the team.

     Stand for what you believe in.     —
COSMOPOLITAN AFA (@cosmopolitanAFA) February 29, 2016

     Football is such a brilliant and important vehicle for change. Kein
Fussball Den Faschisten!     — COSMOPOLITAN AFA
(@cosmopolitanAFA) February 29, 2016

The invite for the event leads to the Facebook page of Nathen Taylor, a
nose ring-wearing man who says he previously worked at Saatchi & Saatchi
London and who currently works as a digital designer at Leicester City
Football Club. Taylor’s recent Facebook cover was a photo of Democratic
Presidential contender Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) 16% . His Instragram
feed has a number of soccer related photos,  as well as pro-illegal
immigration messaging and one picture shows him wearing a Bernie Sanders
T-shirt, styled after the seminal Los Angeles punk rock group Black Flag.

As Breitbart London Editor Raheem Kassam points out, "We have a Bernie
activist/supporter using corporate brands across the Atlantic to agitate
against Trump."

Showing the wide range of anti-Trump sentiment from both the far left
and the GOP establishment, Cosmopolitan Antifascist’s twitter feed
recently retweeted both Democrat New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and
former GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney related to their
anti-Trump attacks.

     I didn’t realize this was in question. Behaves like a racist,
speaks like a racist…of course @RealDonaldTrump is a racist.     — Bill
de Blasio (@BilldeBlasio) March 12, 2016

     ICYMI: Watch my speech on the state of the 2016 presidential race     — Mitt Romney (@MittRomney) March 3, 2016

Meanwhile in Arizona, the "Puente Human Rights Movement"— a longtime
antagonist of Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio — is also planning a
rally against Trump. The group announced details on its Facebook page [...]

As Breitbart News exposed, that group is directly connected to Black
Lives Matter cofounder Opal Tometi, who serves on the group’s board.

Puente organized the rally at the very first large-scale Donald Trump
event held last year in Phoenix, and is heavily funded by leftist donors
including pro-illegal immigration group Philanthropy Unbound.

Aside from this Saturday’s planned anti-Trump rally, Puente recently
posted a video announcing another rally against what it terms as "a wave
of anti-immigrant bills" for March 23.

The Cosmopolitan Antifascist group expressed support for the recent
shutdown of Donald Trump’s plan speaking engagement in Chicago.

Donald Trump went on to win the Illinois primary on Tuesday.

Jerusalem bureau chief Aaron Klein, along with this reporter, explained
how the professional Left plans to shut down the conservative and
nationalist movement Thursday on Breitbart News Daily on SiriusXM:

(3) Anti-Trump groups, backed by Soros' MoveOn, plan "Democracy Spring"

Anti-Trump Groups Plot "Democracy Spring" - Largest Civil Disobedience
Action Of The Century

Submitted by Tyler Durden on 03/17/2016 12:00 -0400

Following their apparently delusional belief in the "success" of Tuesday
night's violent protests, anti-Trump groups are plotting "Democracy
Spring" threatening "drama in Washington" with the "largest civil
disobedience action of the century." The operation, backed by
Soros-funded among others, warns on its website that "We will
demand that Congress listen to the People and take immediate action to
save our democracy. And we won’t leave until they do - or until they
send thousands of us to jail."

With little fanfare and almost no news media attention, some of the same
radical groups involved in shutting down Donald Trump’s Chicago rally
last week are plotting a mass civil disobedience movement to begin next
month. As reports,

     They intend to march across the East Coast in order to spark a
"fire that transforms the political climate in America."

     ...     The group is backed by numerous organizations, including
the George Soros-funded groups, the Institute for Policy
Studies, and Demos.

     Next month’s Democracy Spring chaos is set to begin with a meetup
on April 2 at the Liberty Bell in Philadelphia.

     "Then, in the spirit of Granny D, the Selma to Montgomery marchers,
Cesar Chavez and the farmworker pilgrimage, and others who walked for
freedom, we will set out on a 10 day, 140-mile march from Philadelphia
to the Nation’s Capitol," states the website.

     In Washington DC, Democracy Spring expects "thousands of Americans"
to engage in a "sit-in on the Capitol building in Washington DC in what
will be the largest civil disobedience action of the century."

What do they want?

Despite the fact that many of the main groups endorsing Democracy Spring
are funded by billionaire Soros, the group complains that "American
elections are dominated by billionaires and big money interests who can
spend unlimited sums of money on political campaigns to protect their
special interests at the general expense."

     But if the status quo goes unchallenged, the 2016 election —
already set to be the most billionaire-dominated, secret money-drenched,
voter suppression-marred contest in modern American history — will
likely yield a President and a Congress more bound to the masters of big
money than ever before.

     The stage is set for a bold intervention to turn the tinder of
passive public frustration into a fire that transforms the political
climate in America, that sparks a popular movement that can’t be stopped.

The leaders of the group have already held training sessions, the
website says. Democracy Spring states it is requiring "mandatory
nonviolent civil disobedience trainings twice a day for those risking
arrest from April 11th-16th."

For those arrested, the group says it has already secured the legal aid
of an unnamed lawyer "with decades of experience with civil disobedience

The group says that it is not plotting violence.

(4) Anybody But Trump - Anonymous Trots' "total war" on Trump

  ‘You should have expected us’: Anonymous leak Trump’s public ‘private
data’ in #OpWhiteRose

Published time: 18 Mar, 2016 01:49Edited time: 18 Mar, 2016 18:37

Hacker squad Anonymous has leaked Donald Trump’s already public
"private" phone numbers, addresses and social security number in what
they called a new phase of their "total war" against the GOP
frontrunner, vowing it will get much worse.

Members of the hacktivist collective have data dumped what they claimed
to be some of Trump’s most sensitive information, which includes his
private cell phone number, SSN and address of his Palm Beach residence
in Florida. Moreover, the "doxxing" has targeted Trump’s personal agent
and legal representatives, whose phone numbers have now "gained publicity."

"These are provided for informational purposes only," Anonymous said in
a YouTube video. "… That might be able to assist you all in
independently investigating this would-be dictator."

While the latest "leak" was advertised as a Phase-II in the operation
against Trump, some in the hacktivist collective pointed out that the
released information was already publicly available or no longer accurate.

In fact Donald Trump himself shared the "private" cell phone number back
in August of last year on Twitter.

Anonymous is calling this anti-Trump operation #OpWhiteRose, after a
non-violent resistance group in Nazi Germany. Hackers announced the
operation on March 16, saying that its major goal was "to unite to fight

"The White Rose Society has risen again in the United States. They are
at Anti-Trump protests, and rallies in support of their Muslim and
Latino neighbors," the hacktivist collective said.

Just two days ago Anonymous declared "total war" on Trump, calling on
fellow hacktivists to unite with them in an attack against all of his
websites on April Fool’s Day. Dubbed #OpTrump, the operation is aiming
to "dismantle" Trump’s presidential campaign and "sabotage his brand."

Earlier in March, Anonymous already leaked some of Trump’s voicemail
messages from 2012, which uncovered American liberal media’s support for
the billionaire.

The hacktivist group first threatened Trump with war in December, when
he said he would look to ban all Muslims from entering the United States.

Since then, they’ve taken down Trump Tower website and launched a
petition, calling for Trump to be banned from entering the UK, which
gained more than half a million signatures.

(5) "Anybody but Trump" campaign pans racism of White Working Class - wsws

Trump and the Democratic Party

Patrick Martin

21 March 2016

With Hillary Clinton extending her lead over Vermont Senator Bernie
Sanders to more than 300 delegates, the contest for the Democratic
presidential nomination is nearing its conclusion. Either before the
convention or at it, Sanders will likely concede the nomination and urge
his supporters to back the former secretary of state, as he has said he
would do from the beginning of his campaign.

With Clinton, the multi-millionaire friend of Wall Street, the
Democratic Party will run in the fall campaign as the party of the
status quo, its candidate a longtime fixture of the state with close
ties to the military-intelligence apparatus. Clinton will present
herself as the continuator of the policies of the Obama administration,
essentially conceding the economically discontented to billionaire
demagogue Donald Trump, who holds a wide lead in the contest for the
Republican nomination.

Supporters of the Democratic Party are preparing for the next stage by
laying the groundwork for an "anybody but Trump" campaign. Their aim is
to obscure the Democratic Party’s role in creating the social conditions
that Trump is seeking to exploit.

The status quo character of the Democratic Party was summed up by
President Obama himself in his reaction to the March job figures
released by the US Department of Labor. "The facts don’t lie," he
crowed. "America is pretty darn great right now." Obama was referring
sarcastically, of course, to the slogan of the Trump campaign, "Make
America great again."

The "great" America Obama boasts of, however, is one of deepening social
crisis. The real unemployment rate remains in double-digits, once
discouraged workers and involuntary part-timers are included. Real wages
for non-supervisory workers have stagnated for decades. Poverty, food
stamp usage, homelessness and other indices of social misery are high
and rising. Social services like education and health care are
deteriorating, the physical infrastructure is collapsing and there is a
frontal assault on pensions and other social benefits.

Trump’s ability to win a broader base of support is generally presented
by supporters of the Democratic Party in the media as a consequence of
the irretrievable racism of white workers. When the underlying social
crisis is acknowledged, it is aimed at covering up for the Democratic
Party and the Obama administration.

Typical is the comment last week by Paul Krugman, a longtime defender of
the Obama administration. Krugman argues against those anti-Trump
Republicans who claim that there is no social basis for the anger among
white workers. He points to recent reports documenting the sharp rise of
mortality and other signs of distress among middle-aged white Americans.
"[T]he Republican elite can’t handle the truth," Krugman writes. "It’s
too committed to an Ayn Rand story line about heroic job creators versus
moochers to admit either that trickle-down economics can fail to deliver
good jobs, or that sometimes government aid is a crucial lifeline."

Notably absent in Krugman’s analysis is any mention of the role of the
Democratic Party in creating the social catastrophe facing the entire
working class, of all races. Regions where Trump has been able to win
support are those that have been devastated by decades of
deindustrialization, overseen by both Democrats and Republicans, aided
and abetted by the trade unions.

Obama, the candidate of "hope and change," bailed out Wall Street at the
expense of American workers, extended the wars and attacks on democratic
rights of the Bush administration, and presided over continued
deterioration of the conditions of life for the vast majority of working

Krugman also fails to note the widespread support among white workers
for Sanders, a self-described "democratic socialist" who initially
focused his campaign on the enormous growth of social inequality and the
dangers to democracy posed by the domination of American society by the
"billionaire class."

For all the media fixation on Trump, including its incessant claims that
he has become the voice of "working-class whites" in this election, more
white workers have voted for Sanders than for Trump, at least in the
swath of northern states where Sanders has been most competitive with
Clinton. Sanders has won more votes than Trump, in many cases
substantially more votes, in Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Massachusetts,
Michigan, Minnesota, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Oklahoma and Vermont.

This support for Sanders among white workers is ignored because it does
not conform to the political nature of the Democratic Party, which has
attempted to forge an alliance between the top 1 percent and sections of
the middle class through various forms of identity politics.

Sanders’ essential role has been to prevent the growing anti-capitalist
sentiment from breaking free of the political straitjacket of the
Democratic Party.

The anti-Trump campaign of the Democrats and their supporters among the
pseudo-left will be tailored to this same aim: blocking an independent,
socialist political movement of the working class, which is the only
basis upon which the danger posed by Trump can be successfully combated.
Their "anybody but Trump" boils down, in its essence, to "anything but

(6) Why Trump Is Right On Trade Agreements - Zero Hedge

Submitted by Tyler Durden on 03/22/2016 15:55 -0400

Submitted by Thad Beversdorf via,

Free trade is a great concept, as are free markets and freedom.  The
problem is none of these things exist in practice because they don’t
provide sufficient advantages to the ruling class.  The Fed and HFT
systems now dominate global markets, western nations systematically
overthrow any (freely elected) foreign government that doesn’t bow down
to them and free trade agreements are put in place to ensure investors
maximize profits no matter what the costs to society.  Let’s focus on
this last one.

You see rarely do nations turn away capital investment inflows.  And so
trade agreements are not created to allow for the free flow of capital
as is generally touted.  That is perhaps the biggest fallacy in the
public’s perception of ‘free’ trade agreements.  If a US company wants
to build a factory in Vietnam and employ 200 workers there they will be
welcomed with open arms.  So then if these trade agreements are not
meant to allow the free flow of capital what is their purpose?

It’s very simple.  In microeconomic terms, it boils down to risk/reward.
  That is, all investments will generate some expected cash flow but
will face some risks of realizing those cash flows.  One way to improve
return on investment is to lower costs, everything else equal.  So if I
can reduce my costs yet maintain my revenue and risk structures then I
am better off.  Corporations realized that one very easy way to reduce
costs is to move labour to undeveloped nations where labour costs are
only 5% to 10% of those in developed nations. That means I can greatly
improve my returns to investors if I go ahead and move my operations

The caveat in the plan remember though is I have to be able to keep my
revenue and risk structures the same.  And this is where corporations
realized they need a trade agreement.  You see moving hundreds of
millions in borrowed capital to a nation that has poor contract law and
unstable governments adds a tremendous amount of risk to the investment
model.  And so the added risk (which significantly lowers the
probability and thus value of future cash flows) creates new costs that
essentially negate the reduction in costs obtained through cheaper
labour.  This means ROI doesn’t improve, which was the point of moving
operations overseas.

Additionally I have a risk here at home that if a trade deficit becomes
too wide with any particular nation, Congress (via its trade agencies)
will impose tariffs to balance out that deficit.  Now while corporations
are very keen on employing workers at $5 a day they are acutely aware
those wages will not support the purchase of the items being
manufactured.  This means that corporations still want to sell their
products into the developed world where consumers can sustain higher
priced items and thus maintain revenue structure.

And so again, we see a need for trade agreements to ensure tariffs will
not get in the way of revenues here at home.  Have a look at our trade
deficit post NAFTA and Uruguay Round of GATT (which added services and
IP) around 1994.

Screen Shot 2016-03-21 at 2.58.11 PM

And as long as I’m drafting a trade agreement anyway I might as well
mitigate one more risk.  Now that I’m a big multinational player, I’d
like to ensure that my revenue structure across all my global markets
doesn’t move against me.  Specifically, I don’t like having the risk
that any government can legislate domestic policies that could interfere
with my revenue or risk structures.  And so I’d like to include a caveat
that makes foreign governments’ legislative powers subordinate to my
profits.  Enter the International Center for Settlement of Investment
Disputes (Icsid), a World Bank-affiliated institution based in
Washington D.C..  The Icsid is a private court system affiliated with
the western banking cabal used to punish governments who refuse to
accept that the trade agreements they signed onto do in fact legally put
government autonomy subordinate to profits.   Or in other words, the
Icsid protects the capital investments funded by western banks thereby
negating much of the sovereign risk taken on by chasing cheap labour.

Now I don’t want to suggest that trade agreements serve no good purpose
because they can and they do.  But my point here is that the main
beneficiary of existing trade agreements are corporations. Second to
finish are the undeveloped nations who receive employment and rising
wages which translate into higher living standards.  At the shit end of
the stick, as per usual, is your American middle class. Let’s have a look.

Screen Shot 2016-03-21 at 3.34.16 PM

The above chart depicts growth in corporate manufacturing profits vs
manufacturing wages both indexed to 100 in base year, 2000.  So while
those who generate investors’ profits through labour and consumption
haven’t seen a real wage increase in more than 15 years, the investors
have seen an almost 400% increase in real profits.  That means they are
not passing the cost savings onto the consumer through lower prices,
they are pocketing the savings!

And not only have these workers/consumers not seen any benefit but there
are far fewer of them actually working.  In fact, we’ve lost 3 million
of these jobs since 2000 as shown in the following BLS chart.

Screen Shot 2016-03-21 at 3.54.09 PM

And trust me this is not only impacting the manufacturing sector. Most
banks are currently in process of transferring many middle and back
office jobs to India or Eastern Europe.  In fact, here in Chicago (and
NY) I personally listened to several old colleagues tell me they are
spending their days at work training their Bangladeshi replacements.  To
ensure no one gets cute and leaves before the training of their
replacements is complete they have been threatened with losing their
severance package, an egregious act of moral decay. And this is a large
investment bank that was heavily bailed out with taxpayer money via the
TARP program.  Without the trade agreements these moves to India and
Eastern Europe would be too risky.

Now for the rest of you still with a job don’t get too excited.  Let me
show you how you’re paying for this transfer of labour to profit. The
corporations taking advantage of these agreements still need to sell
their products back here to US consumers.  But without jobs or wage
growth the consumption has to come from somewhere….

Screen Shot 2016-03-21 at 4.10.03 PM

Screen Shot 2016-03-21 at 4.17.34 PM

So it’s a good thing we can print money out of thin air to drop from
helicopters and make banks whole when their lending standards fail, all
on the back of public debt (now 110% of GDP).

And to get back on point, none of this would be happening if we allowed
the higher risks to match the lower costs of these undeveloped nations.
  But we don’t.  We give corporations their cake and we allow them to
eat it too and we do it through these so called ‘free’ trade agreements.
  Nothing free about them for the American middle class but they do
provide pure arbitrage (i.e. free) profits to corporations. That is,
corporations receive all the labour cost benefits while avoiding all of
the risk costs associated with undeveloped economies. And so what Trump
is proposing is to allocate back those risk costs.

The result is that those firms who seek to lower costs by way of cheap
foreign labour can still do so but they will not be able to increase ROI
as a result because the risk costs naturally attached to the cheap
labour (negated via the trade agreements) will simply be allocated back
against profits when they try to sell product back into the US. With no
improvement to ROI there is no incentive to leave the US in the first
place.  You see the American consumer is something every corporation
wants and so there is negotiating power there.  The result will be that
jobs remain with the American middle class.

Now to those who suggest that slightly lower prices are worth destroying
a few million American households you’re an idiot.  If you want lower
prices why not end a monetary system based on 2% annual price increases
that has raised prices by some 2500% over the past 100 years.  Or have
trade agreements that promote free trade but don’t transfer wealth from
the American middle class to investors.

It is entirely possible, it just isn’t the objective.  Have one more
look at the real objective (and thus result) of our existing trade
agreements and ask yourself again if Trump isn’t onto something…..

(71) Marc Faber backs Trump's Protectionism

  Marc Faber: I'd Vote For Trump Because 'Hillary Clinton Will Destroy
the Whole World'

Saturday, 19 Mar 2016 08:19 PM

Marc Faber, author of the Gloom, Boom & Doom Report, has thrown down the
gauntlet on who he thinks should be the next president of the United States.

During an interview on Bloomberg TV, Faber said that the U.S. would not
be a sound, well-run economy like Singapore "unless of course the U.S.
is run by Mr. Trump, then the U.S. will improve."

He tempered his assessment seconds later when asked if he was serious,
indicating that Donald Trump might not necessarily be good for the U.S.,
but that other options were worse.

"It's all relative," he said. "Given the alternatives, I would vote for
Mr. Trump because he may only destroy the U.S. economy, but Hillary
Clinton will destroy the whole world."

A statement befitting the title of his newsletter, to be sure.

"Look at her nation-building in the Middle East, how successful that has
been," he added with a laugh.

Asked about Donald Trump's protectionist leanings, Faber adopted a
stance very similar to that of the real estate mogul.

Faber said that restrictions on free markets were not ideal, but that
"the U.S. has essentially given in on a lot of things that benefit other

He indicated that emerging market economic outperformance of the
developed world in the new millennium served as statistical proof of
this assertion.

"Maybe we have to find a way to have a more balanced approach to global
trade," he said "I'm not saying protectionism, but a more balanced
approach that is fairer to the developed world."

This isn't the firebrand's first foray into the political sphere.
Following the 2012 presidential election, Faber said that Barack Obama's
re-election was "very negative" for the U.S. economy.

(8) Trump vows to scrap U.S. trade deals; evokes dread among GOP elite

Fri Feb 26, 2016 3:12pm EST

Trump's march stirs growing sense of dread among Republicans

WASHINGTON | By James Oliphant

Republican U.S. presidential candidate Donald Trump greets caucus goers
as he visits a Nevada Republican caucus site at Palo Verde High School
in Las Vegas, Nevada February 23, 2016. REUTERS/Jim Young Republican
U.S. presidential candidate Donald Trump greets caucus goers as he
visits a Nevada Republican caucus site at Palo Verde High School in Las
Vegas, Nevada February 23, 2016. Reuters/Jim Young

U.S. Republicans in Washington are coming to grips with what many of
them not long ago considered an unimaginable reality: Donald Trump is
likely to be their presidential nominee and standard-bearer.

The prospect of Trump winning the Republican primary had been the stuff
of Washington jokes, whispered hallway conversations and eye-rolls, even
as he led in public opinion polls for months and dominated debate after

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for hours

But with the brash billionaire now winning three straight contests in
New Hampshire, South Carolina, and Nevada, denial is giving way to a
mostly gloomy acceptance that he may have too much momentum to be
stopped, especially if wins big in key Southern primaries next week that
look favorable to him.

"It fills all of us with concern and dread," said Senator Jeff Flake of
Arizona, who has endorsed fellow Senator Marco Rubio of Florida,
considered the main hope of the Republican establishment to derail
Trump’s march to the nomination.

Trump has vowed to scrap U.S. trade deals, slap a tariff on imported
goods and raise taxes on hedge-fund managers, as well as retain some
sort of mandate to purchase health insurance - clashing with the
free-market principles that have long underpinned Republican economic

Some Republicans in Congress, such as Flake and Senator Lindsey Graham
of South Carolina, said a Trump nomination would do enormous damage to
the party and predicted a heavy election defeat in November to the
eventual Democratic nominee.

"I am like on the team that bought a ticket on the Titanic after we saw
the movie," said Graham, contending that Trump would be "slaughtered" in
the general election.

In a Republican presidential debate in Houston on Thursday night,
another Trump rival, Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, challenged him on his
electability, citing ties to Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton
such as a donation to the Clinton Foundation.

Trump responded by ridiculing Cruz for his inability to win more than
the early voting state of Iowa and taunted him for being behind the
billionaire in opinion polls in Cruz's home state of Texas.

Said Trump, "If I can't beat her, you're really gonna get killed, aren't

Another Rubio supporter, Representative Carlos Curbelo of Florida, told
Reuters he would not back Trump if he were the nominee. "If the nominee
is a fraud, and someone who’s offensive, and incapable of being an
effective president like Donald Trump, I won’t support him," Curbelo
said. [...]

(9) Washington Post calls for brokered convention to stop Trump

To defend our democracy against Trump, the GOP must aim for a brokered

By Editorial Board March 16 at 4:41 PM Follow postopinions

DONALD TRUMP’S primary victories Tuesday present the Republican Party
with a stark choice. Should leaders unite behind Mr. Trump, who has
collected the most delegates but may reach the convention in July
without a nominating majority? Or should they do everything they can to
deny him the nomination? On a political level, this may be a dilemma. As
a moral question, it is straightforward. The mission of any responsible
Republican should be to block a Trump nomination and election.

We do not take this position because we believe Mr. Trump is perilously
wrong on the issues, although he is. His proposed tariff on Chinese
imports could spark a trade war and global depression. His proposed tax
plan would bankrupt the government while enriching his fellow
multimillionaires. But policy proposals, however ill-formed and
destructive, are not the crux of the danger.

No, Mr. Trump must be stopped because he presents a threat to American
democracy. Mr. Trump resembles other strongmen throughout history who
have achieved power by manipulating democratic processes. Their playbook
includes a casual embrace of violence; a willingness to wield government
powers against personal enemies; contempt for a free press; demonization
of anyone who is not white and Christian; intimations of dark
conspiracies; and the propagation of sweeping, ugly lies. Mr. Trump has
championed torture and the murder of innocent relatives of suspected
terrorists. He has flirted with the Ku Klux Klan and other white
supremacists. He has libeled and stereotyped wide swaths of humanity,
including Mexicans and Muslims. He considers himself exempt from the
norms of democratic contests, such as the release of tax returns, policy
papers, lists of advisers and other information that voters have a right
to expect.

Does a respect for democracy require the Republican Party to anoint its
leading vote-getter? Hardly. We are not advocating that rules be broken
but that they be employed to maximum effect — to force a brokered
convention and nominate a conservative candidate who respects the
Constitution, or to defeat Mr. Trump in some other way. If Mr. Trump is
attracting 40 percent of Republicans, who in turn represent about
one-quarter of the country, that is a 10 percent slice of the population
— hardly a mantle of legitimacy.

There are some Americans, Democrats in particular, who are happy to
watch the Republican Party self-destruct with Mr. Trump at the helm. We
cannot share in their equanimity. For one thing, though Hillary Clinton,
the likely Democratic nominee, would be heavily favored, a Trump defeat
is far from sure. For another, the country needs two healthy parties
and, ideally, a contest of ideas and ideology — not a slugfest of
insults and bigotry. Mr. Trump’s emergence already has done grave damage
to American civility at home and prestige abroad. The cost of a Trump
nomination would be far higher.

On Wednesday, Mr. Trump offered what was meant as an argument for his
nomination. If he reaches the convention with a lead short of an
outright majority, and then fails to win, "I think you’d have riots,"
Mr. Trump said. "I think you’d have problems like you’ve never seen
before. I think bad things would happen."

A democrat disavows violence; a demagogue wields it as a threat. The
Republican Party should recognize the difference and act on it before it
is too late.

(10) Trump national sovereignty vs Open Borders & "One World"

The Ten Ideologies of America: As Donald Trump Overthrows the Old Order,
a Look at the New

by Virgil20 Mar 2016694

We all know that the old ideological labels, such as "conservative" and
"liberal," are worn out. Okay, so what are the new labels? What are the
new ideologies?

Let’s get right to it: These, below, are the belief systems of most
Americans. We will examine them in alphabetical order. But first, for
reference, here’s the full list:

Cosmopolitanism, Establishmentism, Green Malthusianism, Leftism,
Libertarianism, Libertinism, Nationalism, Neoconservatism,
Paleoconservatism, Populism

1. Cosmopolitanism

Cosmopolitanism is the view that we are all, everywhere, a part of a
single world community, and that such things as nation-states, including
the United States, only slow down the fulfillment of our true destiny—
coming together in a global harmonic convergence. As John Lennon sang,
"Imagine there’s no countries." Most ordinary citizens probably like the
country that they live in, but for many in the globetrotting elite,
that’s not good enough; they want to be citizens of the world.

We might further note a division within this category: There’s a Left
Cosmopolitanism and a Right Cosmopolitanism.

Left Cosmopolitanism means support for open borders, of course, and also
for multiculturalism. As might be said, "Celebrate diversity—or else!"

In addition, Left Cosmos love international organizations, such as the
United Nations; to them, that’s the future—one big New World Order.

Right Cosmopolitans also support open borders. In addition, being good
capitalists, they support free trade and anything else that
multinational corporations might wish for. And since they are
private-sector-loving corporatists, they avidly embrace pro-business
international combines, such as the World Trade Organization.

And it’s not just the WTO: When British Prime Minister David Cameron
announced, for example, that he supported his country’s staying within
the increasingly hulking European Union—that is, opposing "Brexit"—he
was expressing the Right Cosmopolite view, namely, that the EU matters
more than any country, even his own home country.

So then we might ask: Who are some leading Cosmopolitans? Well, in
addition to Cameron, we could cite Germany’s Angela Merkel, as well as
Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, both of whom have hungered, or still
hunger, to be Secretary General of the UN. In their minds, America is
just a place to hang one’s hat—nestled in between Algeria and Andorra in
the roster of the General Assembly.

On the Republican side, former Sen. Richard Lugar of Indiana counts as a
first-rate Cosmopolitan. In fact, he was too much of a Cosmopolitan for
Hoosier tastes; that’s why he lost his bid to be renominated by the GOP
in 2012. But today, freed from ever again having to go back to Indiana,
the internationalist ex-solon regularly holds court at the Lugar Center
at Georgetown University.

In addition to Lugar, most big corporate CEOs are also Republican
Cosmopolites. Sure, they yearn for more H-1B visas at home and new tax
havens abroad, but they still admire the GOP for its commitment to lower
taxes on wealth.

2. Establishmentism

Some people just like the status quo. They identify with power; they
instinctively take the go-along-get-along position. One might call them
"stand-patters," or "sticks-in-the-mud," or "kneejerk moderates."

It could be argued that Establishmentism is more of an approach, more of
an attitude than an ideology, and that might be the case. Still, whole
political parties, and many political careers, are based on the idea of
dutifully propping up the Establishment.

In the medieval past, such deference was described as the Great Chain of
Being; that is, there was supposedly a divinely ordained hierarchy of
things. In this vision, God had put the master in the castle, and the
servant at the gate. The English Tory Party, before it went Cosmopolitan
under Cameron, was mostly dedicated to the idea of "God Save the King"
(or Queen); everything else flowed from that vision of dignified obedience.

Yet Establishmentism is by no means limited to the political right: The
Soviet Communists of the ’70s and ’80s, under the doddering leadership
of Brezhnev and others, were as blindly devoted to Keeping Things The
Same as any Colonel Blimp.

Returning to the U.S., we can see that leading Establishmentists have
been fully bipartisan, including Mike Mansfield, Gerald Ford, George
H.W. Bush, Bob Michel, Jay Rockefeller, and John Boehner.

And, among those currently in office, such elected officials as Sen.
Susan Collins (R-ME) 14% , Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) 0% , Rep. Steny
Hoyer (D-MD) 6% , and Sen. Mark Kirk (R-IL) 19% all wear the
Establishment label—and proudly so. None of these incumbents, in either
party, are boat-rockers; they are not likely to get excited about any
idea in politics, except, maybe, deficit reduction—carefully balanced,
of course, between tax increases and spending cuts.

Most recently, we can also observe that Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) 79% ,
the Tea Partier-turned-Gang-of-Eight-dealmaker, made the mistake of
"outing" himself as an Establishmentist a little bit too soon. For his
sake, he should have waited till after the GOP presidential primaries
were over before  showing off his "Scarlet E."

And so, as things worked out for the Floridian, it was simply too easy
for his critics to portray him as the wannabe leader of the Bush-Romney
Restoration. And that was a big dud.

Not surprisingly, we can detect no small degree of willful smugness in
Establishmentists. That is, if they are on top, well, that must be the
way it was meant to be.

We can add that for those who entered into the upper classes at birth,
there’s the strong feeling, nevertheless, that they did it or on their
own, that they hit a triple—not that they were born on third base.

And among those who worked their way up—perhaps because they chose tax-
and trade-favored careers in such favored sectors as media and
finance—there’s also the inescapable feeling that they are the Anointed

In the unsparing commentary of lefty social critic Thomas Frank: "For
successful professionals, meritocracy is a beautifully self-serving
doctrine, entitling them to all manner of rewards and status, because
they are smarter than other people."

In this reckoning, the victory of certain connected classes is not an
inside job. No, not at all, it’s the natural order of things; we can
call it the modern American version of the Great Chain of Being.

Of course, Frank continues, there’s a cruel flip-side to such
self-congratulation: "For those who have just lost their home, for
example, or who are having trouble surviving on the minimum wage, the
implications of meritocracy are equally unambiguous. To them this
ideology says, forget it. You have no one to blame for your problems but

Yes, in the Establishmentist vision, if you aren’t a member of the
well-rewarded "creative class," then you’re a loser—and there must be
something wrong with you.

Not surprisingly, this harsh view spills over into politics. Just a few
days ago, one Jonathan Bernstein, opining for Bloomberg View—surely the
leading citadel of self-satisfied
this-is-the-way-things-have-to-be-ism—argued that Trump supporters had,
precisely, nothing to complain about:

     My view is that Trump is doing well precisely because things aren’t
particularly bad for the U.S. right now. In difficult times, voters take
their responsibilities more seriously, and wouldn’t embrace the
buffoonery of a reality-television star. People can indulge in Trump’s
fantasies in a period of (more or less) peace and (sort of) prosperity.

If such clueless condescension is a key part of Establishmentist
thinking, we can also note a more brutal aspect: the process of
bludgeoning the lower orders into submission.

Yes, this is an old story: the Establishment hiring courtiers and
henchmen, tasking them with keeping the peasants quiescent.

We might dub these henchmen—and, to be fair, henchwomen—as Compradores.
That’s a Portuguese word for middleman, which historians have used to
lump together all the in-country agents of old colonialism. That is, the
Compradoreswere the overseers, foremen, policemen, etc., assigned to
manage the colonial enterprise and, of course, crush any unrest.

We can quickly see that the Compradores had a rough life: In the
plantations and mines across the world, they were the hired bullies, the
hired guns, working for their masters—those aristocrats who enjoyed the
resulting profits in some faraway European capital.

We can further note that one of the perverse consolations of this system
was that the Compradores had the satisfaction of knowing that those they
were tyrannizing had it even rougher.

Thus the system was often a downward spiral of violence and brutality.
That is, the Compradores worked out their bad feelings about themselves
by treating the locals ever more badly.

Here in America today, we can observe a variant on the Compradore
system. As we have seen, smug journalists are happy to tell the "yokels"
that they should be more grateful for all the good things they have.

And yet for some Compradores today, there’s a further cruel edge: They
don’t seek to soothe the masses with oily bromides; instead, they attack
them with rhetorical viciousness.

Outright suppressive violence in America has been, happily, extremely
rare, and so American Compradores, instead, have relied on propaganda.
They hope that through adroit use of language, they can connive the
consent of the governed. And if conniving doesn’t work, well, they’ll
try clobbering.

Thus we come to a remarkable group of American Compradores, avowedly
conservatives, who happily pull out their verbal truncheons to beat down
the people. They might well have come from the working- or
middle-classes themselves, but by now, having moved to the bright lights
of the big city, they have totally absorbed the value-system of their
paymasters, and this inward propagandizing, in turn, leads them to hate
their "inferiors"—that is, to hate their former selves.

Yes, we are talking about such agent-propagandists/beatdown artists as
National Review’s Kevin Williamson and David French, and also The Weekly
Standard’s Matt Labash.

The nasty vituperation of such self-haters as Williamson and French is
well known to Breitbart readers. But just on March 18, Williamson and
French were joined by Labash, who published this ferocious, if familiar,
assault on Middle America:

     We buy cut-rate Chinese goods at Walmart, or better still, on
Amazon Prime, so we don’t have to put down the Doritos bag and budge
from our easy-chair rage-stations as our passions get serially inflamed
by Sean Hannity telling us how great we are and how hard we have it. Our
consumption of everything seems to be increasing— of carbs, meth,
anger-stoking shoutfests—even as our producers seem to be disappearing.

Okay, that’s standard-issue Archie Bunker-bashing. But then Labash piled
it on further, blaming the misprisions of the political class, too, on
the poor voters: "Maybe we have unimpressive politicians because they’re
our representatives, and we’ve become grossly unimpressive ourselves."

So that’s Establishmentism: both in its clueless-aristocratic form, and
also in its conscious-attack-dog form.

3. Green Malthusianism

The Greens, in the fullness of their state-enforced elitism, are a
familiar target for Virgil. Back in 2014, for example, he noted that the
U.S. government was sitting on $128 trillion in oil and natural gas, all
locked up because the Greens didn’t want it to be used. And the mineral
wealth under those same federal lands and federal waters is perhaps even
greater. More recently, he observed that old tactics are being revived
to achieve a new objective—namely, driving residents, American citizens,
off their land.

What is it that drives the Greens? Some say they are fulfilling some
pagan religious ritual. Others insist that they just like to enjoy a
lake- or ocean-front view without any riffraff cluttering things up.
Both views, of course, could be true.

In addition, we can note a further incentive for rich Greens to do what
they do: getting ever richer, by shorting the market—that is, betting
that the price of something goes down. And so, in 2015, if a rich Green
were to know that Exxon was about to be sued, as were the tobacco
companies were 20 years ago, well, that Green could make a lot of money
shorting Exxon stock. And sure enough, Exxon’s stock is down by a fifth
in the last 18 months, even as the Dow Jones average has gone up.

For context on this shorting phenomenon, we can add that leading hedge
funders, such as George Soros, have regularly been accused of seeking to
profit by crashing currencies, even whole economies. So why couldn’t a
billionaire Green such as San Francisco’s Tom Steyer play the same
cynical-but-profitable game? In the minds of the Greens, financial
manipulation is just another way of doing Gaia’s work.

4. Leftism

Everybody knows the Left, and everybody knows that Leftism has never
recovered from the collapse of communism.

Yet still, something interesting is happening here in the US: Even
though Republicans control most of the important political offices at
the federal and state level, the country is moving in a liberal,
progressive direction. That’s what untrammeled corporate power will
do—it will provoke a backlash. That is, a workforce of outsourced
employees, now becoming Uber drivers, is not a conservative voting bloc.

Indeed, we can observe that most Americans hold left-wing positions on
many key issues. As tallied by the left-wingers at Counterpunch:

     Support for raising the minimum wage: 70 percent.     Support for
free public college: 55 percent.     Support for addressing "now" the
rich-poor gap: 65 percent.     Support for raising taxes on people
earning more than $1 million per year: 68 percent.     Support for
Medicare-for-all universal healthcare: 58 percent.

And we might further ask: How about this new legislation, the Brokaw
Act, put forth by two Democratic senators, aimed at thwarting corporate
takeovers and shutdowns? The Chamber of Commerce aside, would most
rank-and-file Republicans oppose, or support, this bill if they knew
about it?

Yet not only are Democrats in the minority today, they are also likely
to stay in the minority tomorrow. And why is that? Why can we on the
right be so confident?

Because these days, left-leaning economics—New Deal-style, as opposed to
socialist or communist—is but a small portion of the Democrats’ agenda.

For example, just on March 15, Chelsea Clinton told an audience that as
president, her mother, Hillary, would support extending Obamacare to
illegal aliens. Such a promise might be a vote-getter inside the
diversitarian wing of the Democratic Party, but it’s a vote-shedder with
the nation as a whole.

The old Democrats of FDR’s time were happy enough with capitalism; they
just wanted to extend solidaristic job-protections, and basic
social-insurance plans, to all Americans.

By contrast, today’s Democrats, filled with Cosmopolitan dreams, want to
extend government benefits to the world—and that’s not just a
budget-buster, it’s also a political loser.

In truth, today’s Democrats aren’t much interested in the well-being of
working stiffs. Instead, they are enraptured with new plans to advance
identity politics, co-ed bathrooms, and #BlackLivesMatter. All the
while, of course, keeping the border open and suppressing energy
production and economic activity.

We can sum it up: #Losing.

5. Libertarianism

Libertarianism is as strong as red garlic among the intelligentsia.

Indeed, Libertarianism has such intellectual abundance that one must
divide it into a flowchart of sub-categories, from anarchists on the
left to anarcho-capitalists on the right. Also, there are the "orthodox"
Libertarians of the Koch Brothers’ Cato Institute, and the "rebels"
associated with the late Murray Rothbard or And then,
in their own little world, are the followers of the famed author Ayn
Rand, who have subdivided themselves into various feuding Objectivist

Yet for all this neural proliferation, what can not be said about
Libertarians is that they are numerous in the country at large. We can
prove this statement by examining the performance of Libertarian Party
(LP) presidential candidates, who have run in every national election
since 1972. In those 11 elections, their average percentage of the vote
has been a mere .37 percent; they have never won more than 1.06
percent—and that was back in 1980.

We can further observe that in the last quarter century, the LP has run
some seemingly credible candidates: Its nominees have included a former
Congressman, a former Governor, and even a sitting Congressman—that
would be Ron Paul, the LP candidate in 1988. (All these elected
officials, we might note, won as Republicans before switching).

Yet it’s important to emphasize, once again, that Libertarians loom
large in the wonk-chattering class. It’s hard to find a Republican
economist, for instance, who is not a "classical liberal."

And that reality is full of implications for Republican office-holders,
present and future. Wise old Washington hands have a saying: "Personnel
is policy." That is, a Republican might win office—maybe even win the
White House—and discover that "his" people are the same free-market
ideologues who ran the Bush 43 administration over a cliff.

6. Libertinism

If Libertarians are scarce as hen’s teeth nationwide, Libertines are as
plentiful as grains of sand on the beach.

As such, Libertinism poses a challenge to the American social fabric. In
our history, the Founding Fathers strongly believed in personal freedom,
but they also strongly believed in personal morality. "Liberty," John
Adams wrote, "can no more exist without virtue and independence than the
body can live and move without a soul."

Thus was born the American Experiment: The government would be small,
but institutionalized personal probity would be large. That is, the
churches and other civic institutions would gladly provide the personal
and patriotic instruction for the benefit of the populace, at no expense
to the taxpayer. As we can see, the old system was sort of a free
lunch—and on the menu was virtue.

Yet in the minds of most Americans, the idea of an ordained structure
that determined personal behavior started dying in the19th century; as
Herman Melville explained to his fellow novelist Nathaniel Hawthorne in
1851, "The Godhead is broken up like the bread at the Supper, and we are
the pieces."

For the intellectuals, this breaking up of the old faith-based codes was
mostly the result of Darwinism; for the masses, later, it was mostly the
result of consumerism.

Either way, these days, the values of "Do your own thing" and "Live and
let live" are now pre-eminent.

Some might ask: Isn’t this Libertine trend really Libertarianism by the
backdoor? And the answer is, not really.

For some, Libertinism is a gateway to rugged individualism, which is to
say, it’s a recapitulation of ancient Stoicism. And while most ordinary
folks, over the ages, have never heard of the philosophers Zeno,
Epictetus, or Seneca, they have known innately that the values of
restraint and delayed gratification are not only keys to happiness, but
  also the keys to health and even survival.

Yet for most, Libertinism seems to offer no political lessons; it’s just
an appetite: Do whatever you want, and someone—maybe parents, maybe the
welfare system, maybe the Federal Reserve—will pay for it.

Of course, if one truly wants to give oneself over to Libertinism, it’s
best to be rich. What do I mean? Only this: It helps to have money handy
to pay for all those counselors and clinics.

7. Nationalism

For the last 400 years, the nation-state has been the preferred form of
political organization—and certainly the most powerful. And the fuel of
the nation-state is Nationalism. It’s inherently powerful because it
derives from the most primal forms of human organization—family, tribe,

After the 17th century, when the Reformation had broken the
supranational authority of the Catholic Church—even in Catholic
countries—individual nation-states rose to fill the vacuum. The Holy
Roman Empire, for example, was soon displaced by Austrian, German, and
Swiss principalities, and then, eventually, by the nations of Austria,
Germany, and Switzerland.

Later, in the 17th and 18th centuries, Nationalist patriots from Holland
to England to America to France fought revolutionary wars to achieve
national sovereignty and self-determination.

Meanwhile, wily monarchs, too, got aboard the Nationalism train, because
they recognized that they needed some sort of Nationalistic imprimatur.
Frederick the Great, King of Prussia, bonded to his people by declaring
himself to be der erster Diener des Staates—"The first servant of the

In other words, the nation-state was where the power resided. People
would fight, and fight hard, for kith, kin, and patriot graves.

Of course, Nationalism has taken on diseased forms as well: The Nazis
leap to mind. And even here in America, it’s possible to identify
malignant kinds of tribalism, such as the KKK or the Black Panthers. But
as the pundit George F. Will has said, the four most important words in
the English language are, "Up to a point." That is, anything can be
taken to a loathsome extreme.

And yet just because something can be taken to a bad end doesn’t
necessarily make the thing itself a bad idea. Overeating is a bad thing,
to be sure, but that doesn’t mean that eating itself is a bad thing.

Yet without question, the residue of Hitlerism has been so noxious that
even today, more than seven decades after Hitler’s death, "nationalism"
is still a pejorative, at least among elites in the West. Back in 2014,
I wrote about Nationalism, defending it against its many critics, here.

However, today, in 2016, Nationalism has made a "yuge" comeback, thanks
to Donald Trump. His signature line, "Make America Great Again," clearly
plucks Nationalist notes in our mystic chords of memory.

Yet it remains to be seen what, exactly, Trump the Nationalist has in
mind. Building a wall along the US-Mexican border and eliminating ISIS
are ideas certainly to be applauded, but nations are capable of much
more. In the past, the United States has dug canals to connect the
oceans, cured dreaded diseases, built infrastructure to empower all
regions of the country, and even landed men on the moon. Trump has
hinted at such ambitious projects, but we won’t know for sure what he
has in mind until he wins—if he wins.

8. Neoconservatism

In many ways, Neoconservatism resembles Libertarianism: It is an
ivory-tower theory, and thus it connects better to theoreticians than to
actual voters.

Indeed, if anything, Neoconservatism is even less broadly popular than
Libertarianism: Not many Republicans, for example, look forward to a
return to the days of the Iraq War—the signature project of the Neocons.

We can add that it’s perfectly possible to seek to annihilate terrorists
and not be a Neocon: The politically winning answer is to annihilate the
bad guys, preferably with bombs or cruise missiles—and not to invade,
liberate, and nation-build, all in an attempt to turn terrorists into
small "d" democrats.

Most of today’s Neocons would trace their intellectual lineage back to
Woodrow Wilson. It was our 28th president who gave us such seductive
abstractions as, "teach [other countries] to elect good men," fight a
"war to end war," and achieve "peace without victory."

In addition, Wilson also gave us such ivory-tower gems as this, from his
"Fourteen Points" speech to Congress in 1918: "Open covenants of peace,
openly arrived at, after which there shall be no private international
understandings of any kind but diplomacy shall proceed always frankly
and in the public view."

No private understandings? No secret treaties? That’s how the world
works? Really?

Yet even though Wilsonianism was crushed at the polls in 1918 and then
really crushed in 1920, the idea of idealism lingers on; in the last few
decades, it has re-emerged as Neoconservatism—on the left, as well as
the right.

Here’s former UK prime minister Tony Blair, dreaming aloud in 2001:

     The starving, the wretched, the dispossessed, the ignorant, those
living in want and squalor from the deserts of Northern Africa to the
slums of Gaza, to the mountain ranges of Afghanistan: They too are our
cause. This is a moment to seize. The kaleidoscope has been shaken. The
pieces are in flux. Soon they will settle again. Before they do, let us
re-order this world around us.

Yes, those are words to remember: Let us reorder this world around us.
Under Blair, the British joined us in an attempt to reorder Afghanistan
and Iraq—how’d that work out for them?

Of course, the all-time champion Neocon is George W. Bush. In his 2005
inaugural address, he declared, in a stunning paean to non-conservative
Neoconservatism, "We have lit a fire… a fire in the minds of men… one
day this untamed fire of freedom will reach the darkest corners of our

Yes, that’s the way Neoconservatives actually talk—about "untamed
fires." In the same ill-fated address, Bush sailed on: "It is the policy
of the United States to seek and support the growth of democratic
movements and institutions in every nation and culture, with the
ultimate goal of ending tyranny in our world."

If such intoxicating talk about "ending tyranny"—that is, fundamentally
transforming human nature—is your drink of choice, well, you might be a
Neocon. But there aren’t many of them in the country these days, as the
2006 and 2008 elections decimated the Bush-ized GOP.

9. Paleoconservatism

As noted, Christianity hasn’t been a source of much real-world political
science since the 17th century; the theocrats were defeated, first by
the autocrats and aristocrats, and then, more recently, by the democrats.

Yet of course, many, if not most, Americans think of themselves as
religious, so religion-based Paleoconservatism has always had strong
appeal. A century ago, Prohibition was written into the
Constitution—even if it was soon to be written out.

More recently, in 1938, one Wilbert Lee "Pappy" O’Daniel, a popular
country singer, ran for governor of Texas on a simple platform: The Ten
Commandments. O’Daniel won the election, although in light of the
corruption that shadowed his political career, it’s safe to say that the
Decalogue was not advanced during his time in Austin.

Yet we can note that Paleoconservatism survives to this day, mostly in
the form of the Right to Life movement. And on that important issue, of
course, the Palecons have solid ground. And so it’s possible that the
RTL movement will continue to chip away at Roe vs. Wade.

Yet even so, Paleoconservatism is mostly going the way of Holy Roman
Empire; most of the time, it just isn’t a politically relevant force.
(This observation, of course, applies to America; in other parts of the
world, notably the Middle East, religion is still heavily influencing

And oh yes, there are some mostly secular Paleocons, such as those
clustered around The American Conservative magazine. Those who prize the
old agrarian ways are honorable and even erudite nostalgics, but they
are not numerous or influential.

10. Populism

The Populist worldview can be expressed simply: The big boys are out to
get you! So get there first and burn it down, or blow it up—whatever it is!

Lest we be seen as dismissive of Populist concerns, we can immediately
observe that, as often as not, the Populists have a legitimate
grievance—the little guy is getting the shaft.

Moreover, we can add that Karl Marx was right: The state is a tool of
the ruling class. Of course, the challenge is to define "ruling class"
correctly—to see that it’s not just arch-capitalists and their
governmental hirelings, it’s also top dogs in foundations, law firms,
media, NGOs, thinktanks, and universities.

So the Populists have a right to be paranoid—they really do have
enemies, and lots of them.

However, even if the Populists are correct in their diagnosis, they
still must prove that they are also correct in their prescription. And
here the record of Populism in power is, frankly, pathetic.

Across history, almost without exception, Populists have come into power
and found themselves to be totally ineffective—or, sometimes, totally
co-opted. Being "mad as hell" is often a good way to win an election,
but it’s a terrible way actually to govern.

Okay, but what about Donald Trump, the Great Populist Hope? What are his

We don’t even know, of course, if Trump can win the Republican
nomination, let alone the general election. And while he has spelled out
some of his policy views, his future is, necessarily, a cipher.

But for now, we can say this: Trump is an atypical Populist. It takes
nothing away from him to stipulate that he was not exactly born in a log
cabin, and that, unlike most Populists, he has proven himself to be a
master of the political game as it exists today.

Moreover, Trump is as much of a Nationalist as he is a Populist. And
that, of course, is a good thing; intelligent Populism is, after all,
ultimately Nationalism. That is, Populism, to be effective, must be
harnessed to big ideas and enduring institutions, such as the nation-state.

Whew! So that’s it; that’s our Ten Ideologies.

This year, as they have in every election year for a more than a
century-and-a-half, Republicans and Democrats will be seeking to
assemble the various ideological blocs into a majority-winning
coalition. It’s a hard task, but one of the two parties has always
succeeded—or at least been slightly less of a failure than the other.
And even if the politicians are only muddling through, it still helps to
have an up-to-date road map.

(11) Economic polarization makes Inequality the hot-button issue

Inequality and Modernization

Why Equality Is Likely to Make a Comeback

By Ronald Inglehart

Foreign Affairs, January/ February, 2016

During the past century, economic inequality in the developed world has
traced a massive U-shaped curve—starting high, curving downward, then
curving sharply back up again. In 1915, the richest one percent of
Americans earned roughly 18 percent of all national income. Their share
plummeted in the 1930s and remained below ten percent through the 1970s,
but by 2007, it had risen to 24 percent. Looking at household wealth
rather than income, the rise of inequality has been even greater, with
the share owned by the top 0.1 percent increasing to 22 percent from
nine percent three decades ago. In 2011, the top one percent of U.S.
households controlled 40 percent of the nation’s entire wealth. And
while the U.S. case may be extreme, it is far from unique: all but a few
of the countries of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and
Development for which data are available experienced rising income
inequality (before taxes and transfers) during the period from 1980 to 2009.

The French economist Thomas Piketty has famously interpreted this data
by arguing that a tendency toward economic inequality is an inherent
feature of capitalism. He sees the middle decades of the twentieth
century, during which inequality declined, as an exception to the rule,
produced by essentially random shocks—the two world wars and the Great
Depression—that led governments to adopt policies that redistributed
income. Now that the influence of those shocks has receded, life is
returning to normal, with economic and political power concentrated in
the hands of an oligarchy.

Piketty’s work has been corrected on some details, but his claim that
economic inequality is rising rapidly in most developed countries is
clearly accurate. What most analyses of the subject miss, however, is
the extent to which both the initial fall and the subsequent rise of
inequality over the past century have been related to shifts in the
balance of power between elites and masses, driven by the ongoing
process of modernization.

In hunting-and-gathering societies, virtually everyone possessed the
skills needed for political participation. Communication was by word of
mouth, referring to things one knew of firsthand, and decision-making
often occurred in village councils that included every adult male.
Societies were relatively egalitarian.

The invention of agriculture gave rise to sedentary communities
producing enough food to support elites with specialized military and
communication skills. Literate administrators made it possible to
coordinate large empires governing millions of people. This much larger
scale of politics required specialized skills, including the ability to
read and write. Word-of-mouth communication was no longer sufficient for
political participation: messages had to be sent across great distances.
Human memory was incapable of recording the tax base or military
manpower of large numbers of districts: written records were needed. And
personal loyalties were inadequate to hold together large empires:
legitimating myths had to be propagated by religious or ideological
specialists. This opened up a wide gap between a relatively skilled
ruling class and the population as a whole, which consisted mainly of
scattered, illiterate peasants who lacked the skills needed to cope with
politics at a distance. And along with that gap, economic inequality
increased dramatically.

This inequality was sustained throughout history and into the early
capitalist era. At first, industrialization led to the ruthless
exploitation of workers, with low wages, long workdays, no labor laws,
and the suppression of union organizing. Eventually, however, the
continuation of the Industrial Revolution narrowed the gap between
elites and masses by redressing the balance of political skills.
Urbanization brought people into close proximity; workers were
concentrated in factories, facilitating communication; and the spread of
mass literacy put them in touch with national politics, all of which led
to social mobilization. In the late nineteenth century and early
twentieth century, unions won the right to organize, enabling workers to
bargain collectively. The expansion of the franchise gave ever more
people the vote, and leftist political parties mobilized the working
class to fight for its economic interests. The result was the election
of governments that adopted various kinds of redistributive
policies—progressive taxation, social insurance, and an expansive
welfare state—that caused inequality to decline for most of the
twentieth century.

The emergence of a postindustrial society, however, changed the game
once again. The success of the modern welfare state made further
redistribution seem less urgent. Noneconomic issues emerged that cut
across class lines, with identity politics and environmentalism drawing
some wealthier voters to the left, while cultural issues pushed many in
the working class to the right. Globalization and deindustrialization
undermined the strength of unions. And the information revolution helped
establish a winner-take-all economy. Together these eroded the political
base for redistributive policies, and as those policies fell out of
favor, economic inequality rose once more.

Today, large economic gains are still being made in developed countries,
but they are going primarily to those at the very top of the income
distribution, whereas those lower down have seen their real incomes
stagnate or even diminish. The rich, in turn, have used their privilege
to shape policies that further increase the concentration of wealth,
often against the wishes and interests of the middle and lower classes.
The political scientist Martin Gilens, for example, has shown that the
U.S. government responds so attentively to the preferences of the most
affluent ten percent of the country’s citizens that "under most
circumstances, the preferences of the vast majority of Americans appear
to have essentially no impact on which policies the government does or
doesn’t adopt."

Because advantages tend to be cumulative, with those born into more
prosperous families receiving better nutrition and health care, more
intellectual stimulation and better education, and more social capital
for use in later life, there is an enduring tendency for the rich to get
richer and the poor to be left behind. The extent to which this tendency
prevails, however, depends on a country’s political leaders and
political institutions, which in turn tend to reflect the political
pressures emerging from mobilized popular forces in the political system
at large. The extent to which inequality increases or decreases, in
other words, is ultimately a political question.

Today the conflict is no longer between the working class and the middle
class; it is between a tiny elite and the great majority of citizens.
This means that the crucial questions for future politics in the
developed world will be how and when that majority develops a sense of
common interest. The more current trends continue, the more pressure
will build up to tackle inequality once again. The signs of such a
stirring are already visible, and in time, the practical consequences
will be as well.


For the first two-thirds of the twentieth century, working-class voters
in developed countries tended to support parties of the left, and
middle- and upper-class voters tended to support parties of the right.
With partisan affiliation roughly correlating with social class,
scholars found, unsurprisingly, that governments tended to pursue
policies that reflected the economic interests of their sociopolitical

As the century continued, however, both the nature of the economy and
the attitudes and behaviors of the public changed. An industrial society
gave way to a postindustrial one, and generations raised with high
levels of economic and physical security during their formative years
displayed a "postmaterialist" mindset, putting greater emphasis on
autonomy and self-expression. As postmaterialists became more numerous
in the population, they brought new issues into politics, leading to a
decline in class conflict and a rise in political polarization based on
noneconomic issues (such as environmentalism, gender equality, abortion,
and immigration).

The success of the modern welfare state made further redistribution seem
less urgent.

This stimulated a reaction in which segments of the working class moved
to the right, reaffirming traditional values that seemed to be under
attack. Moreover, large immigration flows, especially from low-income
countries with different languages, cultures, and religions, changed the
ethnic makeup of advanced industrial societies. The rise of religious
fundamentalism in the United States and xenophobic populist movements in
western European countries represents a reaction against rapid cultural
changes that seem to be eroding basic social values and
customs—something particularly alarming to the less secure groups in
those countries.

All of this has greatly stressed existing party systems, which were
established in an era when economic issues were dominant and the working
class was the main base of support for sociopolitical change. Today, the
most heated issues tend to be noneconomic, and support for change comes
increasingly from postmaterialists, largely of middle-class origin.
Traditional political polarization centered on differing views about
economic redistribution, with workers’ parties on the left and
conservative parties on the right. The emergence of changing values and
new issues gave rise to a second dimension of partisan polarization,
with postmaterialist parties at one pole and authoritarian and
xenophobic parties at the opposite pole.

The classic economic issues did not disappear. But their relative
prominence declined to such an extent that by the late 1980s,
noneconomic issues had become more prominent than economic issues in
Western political parties’ campaign platforms. A long-standing truism of
political sociology is that working-class voters tend to support the
parties of the left and middle-class voters those of the right. This was
an accurate description of reality around 1950, but the tendency has
grown steadily weaker. The rise of postmaterialist issues tends to
neutralize class-based political polarization. The social basis of
support for the left has increasingly come from the middle class, even
as a substantial share of the working class has shifted its support to
the right.

In fact, by the 1990s, social-class voting in most democracies was less
than half as strong as it was a generation earlier. In the United
States, it had fallen so low that there was virtually no room for
further decline. Income and education had become much weaker indicators
of the American public’s political preferences than religiosity or one’s
stand on abortion or same-sex marriage: by wide margins, those who
opposed abortion and same-sex marriage supported the Republican
presidential candidate over the Democratic candidate. The electorate had
shifted from class-based polarization toward value-based polarization.


In 1860, the majority of the U.S. work force was employed in
agriculture. By 2014, less than two percent was employed there, with
modern agricultural technology enabling a tiny share of the population
to produce even more food than before. With the transition to an
industrial society, jobs in the agricultural sector virtually
disappeared, but this didn’t result in widespread unemployment and
poverty, because there was a massive rise in industrial employment. By
the twenty-first century, automation and outsourcing had reduced the
ranks of industrial workers to 15 percent of the work force—but this too
did not result in widespread unemployment and poverty, because the loss
of industrial jobs was offset by a dramatic rise in service-sector jobs,
which now make up about 80 percent of the U.S. work force.

Within the service sector, there are some jobs that are integrally
related to what has been called "the knowledge economy"—defined by the
scholars Walter Powell and Kaisa Snellman as "production and services
based on knowledge-intensive activities that contribute to the
accelerated pace of technical and scientific advance." Because of its
economic significance, the knowledge economy is worth breaking out as a
separate category from the rest of the service sector; it is represented
by what can be termed "the high-tech sector," which includes everyone
employed in the information, finance, insurance, professional,
scientific, and technical services categories of the economy.

Some assume that the high-tech sector will produce large numbers of
high-paying jobs in the future. But employment in this area does not
seem to be increasing; the sector’s share of total employment has been
essentially constant since statistics became available about three
decades ago. Unlike the transition from an agricultural to an industrial
society, in other words, the rise of the knowledge society is not
generating a lot of good new jobs.

Initially, only unskilled workers lost their jobs to automation. Today,
even highly skilled occupations are being taken over by computers.
Computer programs are replacing lawyers who used to do legal research.
Expert systems are being developed that can make medical diagnoses
better and faster than physicians. The fields of education and
journalism are on their way to being automated. And increasingly,
computer programs themselves may be written by computers.

As a result of such developments, even highly skilled jobs are being
commodified, so that even many highly educated workers in the upper
reaches of the income distribution are not moving ahead, with gains from
the increases in GDP limited to those in a thin stratum of financiers,
entrepreneurs, and managers at the very top. As expert systems replace
people, market forces alone could conceivably produce a situation in
which a tiny but extremely well-paid minority directs the economy, while
the majority have precarious jobs, serving the minority as gardeners,
waiters, nannies, and hairdressers—a future foreshadowed by the social
structure of Silicon Valley today.

The rise of the postindustrial economy narrowed the life prospects of
most unskilled workers, but until recently, it seemed that the rise of
the knowledge society would keep the door open for those with
sophisticated skills and a good education. Recent evidence, however,
suggests that this is no longer true. Between 1991 and 2013, real
incomes in the United States stagnated across the educational spectrum.
The highly educated still make substantially larger salaries than the
less educated, but it is no longer just the unskilled workers who are
being left behind.

The problem is not aggregate growth in the economy. During these years,
U.S. GDP increased significantly. So where did the money go? To the
elite of the elite, such as the CEOs of the country’s largest corporations.

During a period in which the real incomes of even highly educated
pro-fessionals, such as doctors, lawyers, professors, engineers, and
scientists, were essentially flat, the real incomes of CEOs more than
tripled. The pattern is even starker over a longer timeframe. In 1965,
CEO pay at the largest 350 U.S. companies was 20 times as high as the
pay of the average worker; in 1989, it was 58 times as high; and in
2012, it was 273 times as high.


Globalization is enabling half of the world’s population to escape
subsistence-level poverty but weakening the bargaining position of
workers in developed countries. The rise of the knowledge society,
meanwhile, is helping divide the economy into a small pool of elite
winners and vast numbers of precariously employed workers. Market forces
show no signs of reversing these trends on their own. But politics might
do so, as growing insecurity and relative immiseration gradually reshape
citizens’ attitudes, creating greater support for government policies
designed to alter the picture.

There are indications that the citizens of many countries are becoming
sensitized to this problem. Concern over income inequality has increased
dramatically during the past three decades. In surveys carried out from
1989 to 2014, respondents around the world were asked whether their
views came closer to the statement "Incomes should be made more equal"
or "Income differences should be larger to provide incentives for
individual effort." In the earliest polls, majorities in four-fifths of
the 65 countries surveyed believed that greater incentives for
individual effort were needed. By the most recent surveys, however, that
figure had dropped by half, with majorities in only two-fifths of the
countries favoring that. Over a 25-year period in which income
inequality increased dramatically, publics in 80 percent of the
countries surveyed, including the United States, grew more supportive of
actions to reduce inequality, and those beliefs are likely to intensify
over time.

New political alignments, in short, might once again readjust the
balance of power between elites and masses in the developed world, with
the emerging struggle being between a tiny group at the top and a
heterogeneous majority below. For the industrial society’s working-class
coalition to become effective, lengthy processes of social and cognitive
mobilization had to be completed. In today’s postindustrial society,
however, a large share of the population is already highly educated,
well informed, and in possession of political skills; all it needs to
become politically effective is the development of an awareness of
common interest.

Will enough of today’s dispossessed develop what Marx might have called
"class consciousness" to become a decisive political force? In the short
run, probably not, because of the presence of various hot-button
cultural issues cutting across economic lines. Over the long run,
however, they probably will, as economic inequality and the resentment
of it are likely to continue to intensify.

It was the rise of postmaterialist values, together with a backlash
against the changes that the postmaterialists spearheaded, that helped
topple economic issues from their central role in partisan political
mobilization and install cultural issues in their place. But the
continued spread of postmaterialist values is draining much of the
passion from the cultural conflict, even as the continued rise of
inequality is pushing economic issues back to the top of the political

During the 2004 U.S. presidential election, for example, same-sex
marriage was so unpopular in some quarters that Republican strategists
deliberately put referendums banning it on the ballot in crucial swing
states in the hope of increasing turnout among social conservatives in
the middle and lower echelons of the income distribution. And they were
smart to do so, for the measures passed in every case—as did virtually
all others like them put forward from 1998 to 2008. In 2012, however,
there were five new statewide referendums on the topic, and in four of
them, the public voted in favor of legalization. Crosscutting cultural
divisions still exist and can still divert attention from common
economic interests, but the former no longer trump the latter as
reliably as they used to. And the fact that not just all the Democrats
but even several 2016 Republican presidential candidates have pledged to
abolish the tax break on "carried interest" benefiting elite financiers
might well be a portent of things to come.

The essence of modernization is the linkages among economic, social,
ideational, and political trends. As changes ripple through the system,
developments in one sphere can drive developments in the others. But the
process doesn’t work in just one direction, with economic trends driving
everything else, for example. Social forces and ideas can drive
political actions that reshape the economic landscape. Will that happen
once again, with popular majorities mobilizing to reverse the trend
toward economic inequality? In the long run, probably: publics around
the world increasingly favor reducing inequality, and the societies that
survive are the ones that successfully adapt to changing conditions and
pressures. Despite current signs of paralysis, democracies still have
the vitality to do so.

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