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Re: <nettime> What is the meaning of Trump's victory?
Keith Hart on Wed, 9 Nov 2016 23:17:23 +0100 (CET)


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Re: <nettime> What is the meaning of Trump's victory?


I have just posted this on Facebook. It is not the sort of thing you
would expect on nettime, but is meant sincerely, even if I could
change my mind about a lot of it pretty quickly.

You will learn more about Trump in coming months. He isn't the
Mussolini (but with frightening power) that he threatened to be in
trying to win the election. He once said that he became a Republican
because Republicans will believe anything if they like to hear it.
But his anti-establishment, anti-ideology, anti-neoliberal pitch will
carry over, modified to meet new circumstances. Now he has to broaden
his appeal without alienating the Reaganite following that got him
where he is.

His first words on becoming President are significant and not just
temporary expedients like lock up Hillary, ban Muslim immigration and
build a wall to keep Mexicans out. He will not survive for long if
he doesn't deliver economic improvement to the white working class
who elected him (with the Southern racists -- the old Democrat core
coalition).

That's why his first promise was to introduce a Roosevelt New
Deal programme which would address home problems (inner cities,
infrastructure, while creating jobs). People like Krugman and Stiglitz
(and Keynes before them) have already been banging on about spend
don't save. Trump is serious about America first, so he will try to
dismantle the international trade regime, the ruling class, the banks
and anything else that got us into this mess. On foreign policy his
line about how he will treat nations fairly that don't oppose us is
chilling. He will attack Russia, China, Mexico and others who get in
the way and is willing to risk another world war.

But remember Nixon's "mad dog" strategy in the Cold War -- if the
Kremlin really believes that he is crazy enough to push the nuclear
button, they will be better behaved, than they were with Kennedy for
example. And they were. Just to make sure Nixon made an opening to
China which would be good for US trade and keep the Russians occupied.
He was the most effective world statesman that the US ever had --
and another Republican president, Eisenhower, completed the task of
building up infrastructure that Roosevelt had begun, while stopping
the generals from pulling the nuclear trigger at least three times.

On balance I do think WW3 is nearer today, but don't bank on Trump
lighting the blue touch paper. If the Chinese continue to contest the
dollar or Putin keeps flexing his muscles, they had better watch out.
The Russians were the China of their day (10% p.a. growth, 1890-1913)
and look what happened next. But Trump knows that his home economic
policy depends on demand staying up in the world as well as at home
and a general war would disrupt that. Trump's actions will destabilize
ruling powers everywhere, in Europe and South Africa, for example, as
well as Russia and China.

WW3 could come from anywhere, not necessarily as a result of Trump's
direct military initiative. But the US would win and come out of
a general war globally more dominant than before, while China
would probably collapse if trade, transport and communications are
disrupted, as they were in the previous world wars, forcing countries
to become more self-sufficient. You can bet that the Pentagon with
State have been mulling over all this for a while. The people who
actually run the country are smarter than most people think -- and
that includes Comey.

Yet, the world and especially the US will become a much more dangerous
place. I can't bear to think what kind of world my 14-year-old
daughter will become an adult in. To be Black, Latino, Muslim or even
a woman in America will be a lot worse -- the first signs of this came
within hours of Trump being elected.

On Wed, Nov 9, 2016 at 9:44 AM, Brian Holmes
<bhcontinentaldrift {AT} gmail.com> wrote:

> The shock that now assails the ruling classes is in direct proportion
> to their blindness. If you were shocked, then you shared in that
> blindness.
>
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