All The Rage

Sanders and Trump represent two different sides of American populism—and the uprisings they sparked could topple the established political order.

On November 9, the day after this year’s election, Donald Trump may well join Bernie Sanders as a footnote to U.S. history. But that doesn’t mean that their candidacies will vanish without a trace. In a decade or two, American politics may look as strange to us as the conservative politics of the 1980s looked from the liberal vantage point of the 1960s. And part of the reason will be Trump and Sanders, and what they revealed about the soft underbelly of our political system.

Trump and his followers are regularly denounced as fascist, nativist, misogynist, and racist. “We want him off the stage,” political scientist Peter Dreier declared in August, “and we want his racist followers to know that they represent a tiny sliver of America.” Sanders was dismissed by Clinton backers and Republicans as a “utopian socialist” whose supporters were “naïve idealists.” But such simplistic dismissals overlook something essential about both men’s campaigns—and about the impact they are likely to have.

h/t Norman in NY

  • G

    If Trump loses the elites will pat each other on the backs and laugh and sneer about how they saved the country from the “stupid, red-neck, rubes”.

    What they don’t realize is that Trump is just the latest incarnation of a growing snowball of anger, frustration and rebellion against the ruling elite.

    When they neutered the Tea Party, when they hounded out Sarah Palin, both times they thought they had won.

    If they beat Trump, then the Trump/Palin/Tea-Party 2.0 incarnation that comes 5 years from now will be stronger and even more radical.

    • I am inclined to agree, the rot at the top is plainly evident in both the GOP and Democratic parties and we are seeing it here in Canada as well.

      Politics as a lifestyle choice has to end and the predator class of public service unions and politicos smashed for good.

      • ellake

        Yes, but in Canada it is worse. I do not see any politician I would like to vote for.

        • Waffle

          I echo your sentiments. My fear is that Canada will disappear. Listen carefully to the narrative being laid out by Trudeau/Butts.

          Without a strong economic hand helming our very fragile ship of state, there will be a tug of war over our wealth — China already has a toe hold in our oil sands and also in our strategic minerals.

          Russia has already signaled its interest in the high Arctic.

          And the least said about the selling of our considerable gold reserves, the better (it makes me sick just to think about it). Plus, there’s the potash, our water and more. But the Wynne, Notley, Trudeau/Butts wrecking ball is making sure that ordinary Canadians will not benefit from any of it.

          Sadly, we are a rather passive people. Revolution is not in our DNA; We chose the rather tepid “peace, order and good government” as our motto unlike our cousins to the south who oped for “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness”.

          • G

            I don’t hold out much hope for Canada either.

            I think conservative/traditionalist Canadians like the ones who seem to post on this blog will not find relief through the ballot box.
            (And …NO…***I AM NOT** talking about any sort of violent change of government. – That sort of thing is Soldier-Of-Fortune bullshit fantasy).

            What I *AM* talking about is being crafty. Fly below the radar. Hide your assets. Screw the government out of every tax dollar you can. Teach your children to be crafty as well.

            People have lived successful lives under totalitarian governments before. They just kept their heads clear, their moral compass straight and their mouths shut.

    • The Deplorable Rosenmops

      But a few more years of open borders could put Democrates in the majority permanently.

  • BillyHW

    Bernie Sanders is a sellout.

    • Clausewitz

      About the only thing I remember that pins down Bernie perfectly.

  • jack burns

    I usually agree but Sanders is an opportunist hack. He sold his ass cheap.

  • Hard Little Machine

    My sense of it is that if he loses there will be a long era of civil anarchy, disintegration, economic calamity overseen by a largely unelected autocracy of the left. More or less an end of America as we recognize it and a descent into 2nd or 3rd tier status for America. Which is fine too. I really don’t care. Give the lunatics their heart’s desire and stand back and watch the famines, the failure and an unwinding of the clock 200 years. I’m pretty sure my grandchildren will tell their grandchildren of an age when we had cars and planes and space travel and CAT scanners and they will call them liars because it will sound like science fiction to them.