Lessons of the Trump VIctory


1. The elites know nothing. It is not only that every op ed columnist or talking head predicted the election incorrectly. More importantly, they had no idea of what was going on in the country. Krugman described the Obama Presidency as a smashing success that had eliminated poverty and saved the economy. Blow described the country as moving toward a multicultural, multiracial democracy, white people as an out-of-fashion retrograde minority. All the elites justified Obama and Clinton's theory of "baby steps," constantly repeating the President can't do much. Wait and see how much the President can do.

2. We need a new national newspaper. The New York Times has done many terrible things, such as legitimating the war in Iraq but they set a new low in their coverage of this election. Every headline for a year was some putdown of Trump. They just occupied as the mouthpiece for Hillary, whose idea of a campaign was to go on about how bad Trump is. Just consider this: The New York Times has many, many feminist, gay, Black spokespeople and so forth as columnists, not to mention conservatives, but not one person who speaks from a Sanders-like position (democratic socialism).

3. Feminism is no substitute for a Left. Feminism is needed and is a good thing, even the shallow male-baiting feminism of people like Lena Dunham and Elizabeth Warren is useful, though I find it repulsive myself. But feminism cannot substitute for a left. This country is run by the wealthy; class is what organizes social relations-- in education, housing, even law, not to mention global power. And please don't tell me the rich people are mostly white men. That's not even true.

4. African-Americans need new leaders. Obama is a product of the government crackdown on the Black Community in the 1960s and 70s. Figures like Malcolm X, Martin Luther King and Fred Hampton were murdered and a new generation of conservative, deferential "pragmatists" like Obama, Corey Booker and Charles Rangell were produced. This is the generation that supported Clinton, undoubtedly the least inspiring, least representative candidate they could find. Without the Black primary vote Sanders would have been the candidate and even if he lost, the Democrats would stand for something. Black Lives Matter, many of whose activists supported Sanders, is critical here, but violent confrontation will not help at this point.

5. Sanders is the most important leader we have. Sanders was the first politician in a long time that spoke truthfully. It is an unbelievable crime that a country this rich doesn't have health care as a right, universal education, and all the rest. Sanders was the model for all that was new and powerful in the Trump campaign: the recognition that the economy and politics are rigged. The Democratic Party is a power vacuum. The Clintons have any destroyed politicians but their own followers. They are completely discredited but of course they will try to rise again, just as Obama couldn't figure out how to lead the country, but fell back on the Clinton machine (not just Hillary)> This si the time for a whole new generation to enter the Democratic Party and take it back from the rich, Ivy League sycophants. This is the time for a new generation of Sanders Democrats.