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Re: <nettime> John Harris: Liberals can’t hope to beat Trump until they
Flick Harrison on Mon, 4 Sep 2017 20:35:13 +0200 (CEST)


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Re: <nettime> John Harris: Liberals can’t hope to beat Trump until they truly understand him (Guardian)


On Aug 31, 2017, at 16:06 , Morlock Elloi <morlockelloi {AT} gmail.com> wrote:

The bs implication here is that the current POTUS lies more than the previous 44, and that this curiously elevated level of lying prompted multiple credible academics to engage in credible studies of this singular lying, and they all came to same conclusions.

Nothing more dangerous right now than this false equivalence that the far left is declaring between [neo-nazi / Trump / Republican / Koch brothers] and the [mainstream media / liberals / Democrats / Soros].  Maybe you don’t like the Better Deal or even the New Deal but it’s a lot better than “Arbeit Macht Frei.” Sure there’s plenty to resist in both these camps but if you can’t see the difference you’re doing it wrong.

Made worse by the deadly division on the left between [antifa / identity warriors] vs [brocialist / left libertarians].  I wish someone would synthesize these visions rather than hammering wedges into the divide.

I feel like I’m struggling to understand these divisions, and there’s overlap and contradictions in these camps of course (in a polity of 300M that’s inevitable) but I think there’s a real opening for someone on the left in America to synthesize identity and economics, without privileging one over the other… I mean the Nazis are doing it on the evil side, why shouldn’t someone who’s not evil be able to do the same?  The New Democrats in Canada are the closest thing to this synthesis, a social democratic party still too beholden to Israel and white middle-class labour, but better than anything on offer in the USA.

American identity folks paradoxically accepted Hillary as a feminist choice, even if they scowled at the memory of Superpredators and don’t actually like anything about her - her identity trumped everything for them, leaving them oblivious to her neoliberal economics and hawkishness, despite their suspicion of the white male Democratic establishment.  Even the fact that Bernie was better on identity than Hillary was.  These ID folks have the energy to confront nazis in the street but without an economic program they are doomed to fail, and they foolishly lumped Bernie supporters into the "white male” category, thus delegitimizing it all in their eyes… and even the women’s march was weakened by suspicion by intersectional feminism of the white mainstream bias of the movement… 

Brocialist / libertarians meanwhile think anti-racist activism is somehow a distraction from the class war, as if shooting black people in the street and protesting against that are both equally “divisive” of the working people against the 1%. They also resent the fact that Hillary was female, giving feminists something to cheer for during the election instead of recycling Republican attacks against her.  If they’d put half the energy into attacking Trump that they put into attacking the loser, meaningless Wasserman-Schultz, we wouldn’t have World War III starting tomorrow with Korea.  But the brolibs still think Hillary’s measured confrontations with Putin are somehow equivalent to Trump wiggling his nuclear-trigger finger at PyongYang.

What makes this split worrisome is that the talking points of the [brocialist / libertarian] camp are quite close to Team Trump’s:  Anti-racism is “divisive,” Putin isn’t a threat to anyone, Soros is financing everything [though the Trumpies put his name in Jew brackets], antifa is morally equal to neo-nazis, Hillary is a corporate hawk [ok well I agree], Bernie was robbed, MSM is fake news, etc etc.

I mean even the trade rhetoric that Trump spouts is straight out of the anti-globalization playbook, minus the part where we care about workers in other countries or even brown or female workers in our own.  He sounds more socialist than the identity-politics people, and that is a crippling problem.

The worst of these Trump / brocialist / libertarian talking points is the label “fake news” applied to anything you disagree with, as if making up slanderous destabilizing lies in Moscow or Fox News Headquarters is the same as seeing life from the perspective of a New York moderate.  Nothing can move forward when every discussion takes place across non-intersecting universes.  Especially when many of the people discussing are bots or trolls.

If Trump wasn’t a billionaire I think Assange, Greenwald and Hedges might vote for him, but they can’t on general principle. I do worry that Trump will win these people over sooner than later, and we’ll have a serious problem, or a worse serious problem.  In Canada, for instance, where these tendencies spill over, the loss of the socialists from the social-democratic camp would have immediate consequences for the New Democrats as our third party… I can see the white male economics professors throwing up their hands at “political correctness” and joining the conservative party out of frustration… if poked in the right nerve...



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