I Told You So…
by Bernard Brandt
Trump won the election. Those four words are as painful to me as the four of the title of this piece above. I take no pleasure in his victory. I also take no pleasure in having been right in what I have been saying for the past year. I only will repeat this: I told the lot of you that you had underestimated Trump, calling him a bully, or a liar, or racist, or a woman hater, and disregarding his intelligence and his ability to learn. I told you that Gingrich, Carson and even Bernie Sanders were better candidates, and were the only ones likely to prevail against Trump. You didn’t listen.
And it cost you the election.
Do I have your attention now?
If so, can we move on? Can we try to salvage something from this mess? Can we quickly move past the stages of denial, rage, bargaining, and acceptance, and just cut to the chase of getting on with life?
I have several suggestions as to how to do that.
First, can we please stop with the demonization of the man, and of those who voted for him? You know, all of those little terms of endearment, such as racist, or sexist, or misogynist, or Nazi, and so on down the fecal roster. Why, just look how well they worked for Hillary’s campaign, for instance. That happened because, in many cases, the words weren’t true to begin with. It isn’t racist to want the laws of immigration to be enforced, for example. Culturally chauvinistic, perhaps, but not racist.
And even if in some cases the words were true, they fall into Douglas Adams’ category of ‘true, but unhelpful’. At present, and as to those voting for the guy, your over-use of those words has come to mean for them ‘the names a SJW calls you when said SJW is losing an argument’. And as for Trump himself: look, if the guy really IS a monster, calling him that is the worst thing that you can do. I’m reminded of that scene in Young Frankenstein, where Dr. F is calling the creature a ‘monster’, and the creature gets more and more enraged.
Guyz, this is not a seven and a half foot tall, fifty-six inch wide gorilla we’re talking about here. This is now the Commander in Chief of the most powerful armed forces in the world, with his finger on the button of several thousand rather naughty nukes. So, please take Igor’s advice, and ‘Ix-nay on the onster-may!’
The next thing I would suggest would be an end to all talk, or action, towards armed insurrection. Remember that talk about ‘Commander-in-Chief’? It includes access to all National Guards, local militia, and police forces in the country. Don’t try pushing this guy in that direction. The German Communists tried that with the National Socialists in the ‘30s. That didn’t end well. If it gets down to him starting something, then y’all would be a lot more effective with non-cooperation and civil disobedience. Try reading folk like Thoreau, Tolstoy, Gandhi, and King. And if it should come down to that, I will be there with you.
Hell, you might even try reading Trump’s proposed policies, which you can find here. Since he has not only the presidency, but a Republican majority in both the Senate and the House, he is more than likely to be able to accomplish them, or at least some of them, in the next two or so years.
Now, how this goes from here on is largely up to you. You could go all oppositional/defiant, like the Republicans after Obama was elected. In short, you could be just as stupid and ineffective as they have been for the past eight years, in spite of their present majority.
Or you could learn from the Pubs’ mistakes, and be more effective than them. You could look at the call for the rebuilding of the American infra-structure, and help out with that, by your votes and by your letters to your representatives in the House and the Senate. You could look at his proposed reform of health care, and agree where it is right, and disagree when it is wrong. And finally, you could attempt principled opposition to any of his efforts which may appear un- or extra- constitutional. Your call.
Finally, two more suggestions. The first is that you stop listening so uncritically to the propaganda masquerading as news these days. In case you haven’t figured it out yet, seven corporations run most of the newspapers, magazines, radio stations, and television stations in this country. The message which those corporations have pushed are to the direct financial and political interest of those corporations. The possibility exists that the agendas of those corporations may not be the same as those of your own interest. Wikileaks has recently made quite clear that those corporations and their minions, er, journalists, have been more than willing to misinform you when it is to their interest to do so. As with this recent election, for example, when the polls all said there was no chance of the Donald winning this one.
I’m not asking you to start watching Alex Jones, or other bearers of tin-foil hats. I am, however, asking you to get your information from more and other sources than the nightly news. The Economist, for example. The Wall Street Journal, for another. European, Mid-East, African, Asian and Australian online newspapers and journals. Al-Jazeera. But always, when you read, consider the source, and their obvious or implied biases.
At last, I would suggest that you read more widely in history, literature, and political theory. Find alternatives to the present standard issue progressivism which seems to be running this country, and running it into the ground. Classical political theory, starting with Plato and Aristotle, and running through Dante, Machiavelli, up to the Founding Fathers and beyond. Try Mencius Moldbug. Don’t avoid Marxist theory, but consider that a political philosophy that has led to a hundred megadeaths might just have a few bugs in the system. Try a bit, or even more than a bit, of Chinese political theory, from Confucius and Lao Tze up to Sun Tzu. Noam Chomsky is also helpful, especially for his work, Manufacturing Consent.
Learning languages might also be helpful. Russian is one. Mandarin and Cantonese are others. Arabic and its several dialects are yet others. Spanish and Portuguese would also be helpful. The list goes on. But stop being ugly Americans. Try being beautiful instead.