Five not thought through theories on why people are flocking to Trump, Clinton, Moore, etc, and movements based on hashtags
- It is a natural reaction to either tribal identities getting more fun in the age of the internet/social media (we’re all performance artists now). The tribal identity is improving relative to the American identity
- The American identity is getting worse in the age of the internet, i.e. we’re closer to the bad parts, and we’re farther away from the good parts. The “cost” of being American first (in Hoffer’s use of the term, and sort of my grandfather’s) has increased
- The notion of an “American” identity has hidden requirements, namely dispersed income growth (among other economic factors) that are no longer as strong
- The notion of an “American” identity was a historical quirk caused by the world wars that is slowly washing away, leaving us with our regional differences
- Identity politics is easy, and we’re just way lazier and sedentary than before. Ideology requires work.
Just some thoughts after reading this essay by Kevin Williamson, specifically
The Republican party took the lead in seeing off both American slavery and worldwide Communism under the leadership of men including Abraham Lincoln, Dwight Eisenhower, and Ronald Reagan. The most today’s Republican party can say for itself is: “You can’t prove our guy was a serial molester of adolescent girls! That’s up to the people of Alabama to decide.”