28.1.16

QUESTION THE PRESIDENTIAL CARGO CULT.

I'll never lack for opportunities to elaborate on this theme.  "It may take the failure of one or more of the New Deal or Great Society or Hope and Change constructions to trigger the emergence."  Trumpmania is the latest manifestation of the fundamental contradiction.
In that sort of environment, it is also difficult to make the case that perhaps a weak and ineffectual government is a reason to place less reliance on the machinery of government.  Perhaps, though, Mr Trump's "make America great again" is a ritual incantation of the presidential cargo cult.
But there's a fine line between Executive Power and A Man on a White Horse, and there's more than a little fear of fascism in Trumpmania.  Julian Adorney of The Federalist points out that we're hearing "Happy Days are Here Again."
FDR was both powerful and destructive. He was not Mussolini, but he ran roughshod over the rule of law, and dramatically transformed American politics—which should serve as an example of what a Trump presidency might look like.
Yes, and Mr Roosevelt didn't have a pen and a smart-phone.
In fact, a Trump presidency could be even more dangerous, because the powers of the presidency have expanded. The White House can place citizens on terrorist watch lists—spying on them and preventing them from flying. The president can order U.S. citizens who are abroad, like Anwar Al-Awlaki, to be assassinated without a trial.
Rolling back overweening government, however, involves a long twilight struggle, in which the opposition stands there with its principles, and the establishment stands there with its installed base of voters and palace guard Morale Conditioners.
This doesn’t mean a Trump presidency would lead to brown shirts on the street. But there is more to fascism than goose-stepping and military style uniforms, and Trump, like FDR, displays many such characteristics. So when people look at Trump’s agenda and claim “it can’t happen here,” they’re ignoring history that’s not even a century old. Not only could such things happen, they already have.

The only sure way to guard against Trump is to roll back the enormous power of the government that he would be managing. History, even in the United States, shows that dangerous men dupe voters and take power. We should shrink government so that when they’re elected, they take as little power as possible.
The gentry liberals, and the academic-entertainment complex, have done much damage, as have the rent seekers.  But like any other ruling class, they will not relinquish power graciously.

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