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2016
Trump and the “White Resentment” Theory
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  • Andrew Allison

    They just share his (and my) contempt for the political establishment.

  • Arkeygeezer

    It is interesting to note that TAI does not want to take a position on “Black Lives Matter”. but is more than willing to discuss Donald Trump’s supposed “Trump is popular because racism” issue, which is patently a non-issue.

    • Martín Ffluge

      (Or been gunned-down by any Cops).

  • wigwag

    The candidate of white resentment isn’t Trump, it’s Bernie Sanders. Support for Sanders is, at least so far, limited almost exclusively to pampered, upper middle class, highly educated white voters. The number of black Democrats who back Sanders can be counted on one hand. As for the support of Latino Democrats, Sanders has very little. If the polling is to be believed, while Sanders is catching up to Clinton amongst all Democrats, Clinton still has a wide lead amongst black and Latino Democrats.

    Of course, this begs the question of what exactly those angry and wealthy liberal Democrats are so angry about. Are they unhappy that there are too few Starbucks for them to buy their lattes? Are they infuriated that they have to wait until Christmas until Downton Abbey comes back to television? Are they miffed with the radio reception when it’s time to listen to “All Things Considered” on NPR? Were they hoping for the death penalty for the Kentucky county clerk who refused to issue marraige licenses to gay couples instead of a jail sentence for civil contempt?

    Perhaps they think Sanders can remediate all of their terrible grievances. One thing is sure, white gentry liberals have every right to be angry, and angry they are.

    Doesn’t Via Meadia get it? The candidate of angry white people isn’t Donald Trump, it’s Bernie Sanders.

    • fastrackn1

      “Of course, this begs the question of what exactly those angry, wealthy, liberal Democrats are so angry about. Are they irked that Starbucks raised the prices for lattes and skinny frappuccinos?”

      Maybe…or perhaps they are still mad at George Bush for tanking the economy which forced the closing of 600 Starbucks stores in 2008….

      • wigwag

        Yes, I’m sure your right; to our pampered, progressive elites the closing of 600 Starbucks would be considered a far more serious wound than the closing of 600 factories. Think of all of the poor, laid off baristas. Those baristas aren’t just anybody after all; their the sons and daughters of the progressive elites just trying to make a buck or two after those grueling hours spent listening to college lectures. It simply goes without saying that laid off baristas are far more important than laid off manufacturing workers. Those guys who work on the factory floor; they’re just so disgusting and to make matters worse, they buy their morning coffee at Dunkin Doughnuts.

        The closing of 600 Starbucks is truly calamitous when your beverage of choice is an overpriced cup of warm milk with just a smidgen of java.

        • fastrackn1

          Agreed!

          And I am happy to say that I have never bought anything from SB in my life….

  • Nevis07

    Trump just isn’t politically correct; words and tone do matter because they shape the context of the debate, which is why he’s been associated with the whole racist sentiment. But people respect the fact that he doesn’t really care what the media and broader public say about him. In fact, that’s probably why so many white Americans, such as myself, feel angry that they are called racists for simply calling for immigration reform and desiring to having a wall built on our southern border – and there’s nothing wrong with that! So yes, his message resonates with many white people, including me. Having said that, I’m a Rubio and Carson fan and I don’t like Trumps carefree language toward Mexicans, but I do agree with (many) of his ideas and respect at least some of them. So yes, Trump attracts some racist elements, but that’s not the core of the message, its just the core of a single political demographic among many that supports him. Trump gets a lot of support from many elements for many reasons. I suspect that just like white Americans tired of being called racists out of knee-jerk reaction, there are many other demographic groups that feel the same way of his non-PC language – note that many legal immigrants are quite supportive of him for example.

  • Boritz

    “ordinary peoples’ desire to flout conventional norms of behavior.”

    Who knew the Clinton’s were ordinary people?

  • Episteme

    “There is clearly something to this. Various white nationalist individuals and groups support Trump. His immigration proposal is extreme. And as Ben Domenech has explained, “white identity politics” is a real phenomenon in democracies across the Western world.”

    There’s a distinction to be made between (A) a candidate using identity rhetoric to appeal to voters and (B) identity voters supporting a candidate whose proposals they see as conforming to their politics. While I agree that Trump’s proposal is unrealistic (and constitutionally dubious) and his rhetoric is bombastic – I’m not a supporter of the man-as-candidate – I disagree with Domenech’s connection of his candidacy to larger White Identity Politics. Ever since William F. Buckley excommunicated the John Birch Society, the American Right hasn’t had a place for the sort of Far Right nationalist politics that one sees in the European Right. You see the occasional David Duke try to step in, but his was more the case of where a ballot opening was prior to 1994’s Southern Realignment; even paleo-conservatives like Pat Buchanan aren’t the equal of what you hear in the parliaments of Europe.

    So, the fringes are going to try to find a candidate who sounds vaguely like them. It’s shows how the American Left and Right aren’t the same creature as the European Left and Right that the “European Far Right” are this quasi-socialist nationalist breed whose American cousins are latching on in equal measure (if not equal coverage by the media) to Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders. That Donald Trump, if you look deeply at his policy ideas, is more than anything a 21st century iteration of an 1840s Whig following Henry Clay’s “American System” (with China substituted for the British Empire like a find-and-replace in a Word document) is lost on the media and partisans alike – identity politics just makes for a better story than looking at Trump’s own talk about loving Abraham Lincoln domestic economy policies and then looking up what those policies were (lo and behold, they’re pretty much what Trump’s suggesting now)…

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