After thinking a while about the Trump campaign and in particular Donald Trump Jr’s speech at the RNC convention, I figure most of his appeal is the “anti-intellectual nature of the campaign. This kind of anti-intellectual movement is nothing new; Hitler, Mussolini, Mao, Stalin to name a few all went after the intellectuals first.
Donald Jr. Said about his father,
“He spent his career with regular Americans. He hung out with the guys on construction sites, pouring sheet rock and hanging — pouring concrete and hanging sheet rock,” Trump Jr added. “He listened to them and he valued their opinions as much and often more than the guys from Harvard and Wharton, locked away in offices, away from the real work.”
it was a speech designed for Archie Bunker, a person more interested in sound bites and simple solutions rather than digging in and having real discourse about an issue. This pretense of representing the middle and lower working classes is what is most objectionable about Trump and his campaign. For a man who received a million dollars from his dad to start his business to pretend and talk about how he is for the average American is obscene. Most of his rhetoric reminds me of the kind of talk that used to happen in bars and dinning room tables when a bunch of laborers got together to complain about the immigrants stealing their jobs or opportunities. Without recognizing how Ronald Reagan’s “trickle down” economics really was to blame. My own father sounded much like Trump does today , but that was 30 years ago.
it is not just on social or economic issues that Trump is pandering to the supporters of the good old days, its also doing the same with science. Trump called the idea of global warming a “hoax.”
Trump Jr also said in his speech,
“Our schools used to be an elevator to the middle class, now they’re stalled on the ground floor. They’re like Soviet-era department stores that are run for the benefit of the clerks and not the customers, for the teachers and the administrators and not the students…”
The trump campaign pretends we are still stuck in a 1980’s battle of ideology with the Soviet Union and it’s the teachers’ fault that the country can’t compete with the world. Trump is trying to capture the glory of an inglorious time. That’s what’s so maddening about all of his campaign. We lived in that time, we remember that time and it wasn’t “great.”