Simon Jenkins gets it. But no-one on the left is listening:
Trump made it almost arrogantly clear that his formally scripted criticism of the right was merely to appease Washington’s “liberal elite”. He promptly erased it in the sort of street fight with the media that his followers love. Every time this happens, Fox, Drudge, Breitbart and his social media operators gleefully edit clips and feed them to his millions of supporters. A BBC documentary by Jamie Bartlett this week showed how Trump may be a gastronomic and sartorial throwback, but he is a master at social media.
And of course, the MSM isn’t. Because it’s a rival, and they never bothered to get good….
The basis of Trump’s second-term appeal is already emerging: the tried and tested technique (see Margaret Thatcher) of taking on his own government and keeping up the fight.
I can really see a second term happening. Because the voters are the deciders, and they know who the enemy is:
Forty-two per cent of American adults are classified as white working class. For two decades they have seen incomes shrink in favour, as they see it, of welfare recipients, “identity groups”, graduates and the rich. Defining them as racist xenophobes and “deplorables”, as did Hillary Clinton, when they craved jobs and income security, was a sign of the “class cluelessness”, analysed by Joan Williams in the bestseller White Working Class. Written like a Victorian explorer encountering unknown tribes on the Congo, it has joined JD Vance’s Hillbilly Elegy in charting the origins of Trump’s appeal.
These people made up the bulk of the 63 million who voted for Trump. Insulting him insults them.
Spot on! And they just can’t help themselves. They simply will not stop playing right into his hands.
It’s almost pathological.
If Trump wins again, it will be by convincing voters “the system” still cares nothing for them. He will say that it will be an eight-year job to bring his anarchic rage to bear on a smug establishment, and let him “finish the job”. I would rather not help him to that ambition.
It doesn’t matter. You’re just one man. The rest of your tribe is going to carry on regardless. You may have seen the light, but no-one’s listening…