What is happening in American politics? We’re in the midst of a rebellion. The bottom and middle are pushing against the top. It’s a throwing off of old claims and it’s been going on for a while, but we’re seeing it more sharply after New Hampshire. This is *not* politics as usual, which by its nature is full of surprise. There’s something deep, suggestive, even epochal about what’s happening now.
Sourced through Scoop.it from: patriotpost.us
We’re in the midst of a rebellion. The bottom and middle are pushing against the top. It’s a throwing off of old claims and it’s been going on for a while, but we’re seeing it more sharply after New Hampshire. This is not politics as usual, which by its nature is full of surprise. There’s something deep, suggestive, even epochal about what’s happening now.
Yes, it is about the Democratic National Committee, that house of hacks, and about a Republican establishment owned by the donor class. But establishment journalism, which for eight months has been simultaneously at Donald J. Trump’s feet (‘Of course you can call us on your cell from the bathtub for your Sunday show interview!’) and at his throat (‘Trump supporters, many of whom are nativists and nationalists…’) is being rebelled against too.
Their old standing as guides and gatekeepers? Gone, and not only because of multiplying-platforms. Gloria Steinem thought she owned feminism, thought she was feminism. She doesn’t and isn’t. The Clintons thought they owned the party — they don’t. Hedge-funders thought they owned the GOP. Too bad they forgot to buy the base!
All this goes hand in hand with the general decline of America’s faith in its institutions.
We feel less respect for almost all of them — the church, the professions, the presidency, the high court. The only formal national institution that continues to score high in terms of public respect (72% in the most recent Gallup poll) is the military.
A few years ago I gave a lecture to a class at West Point – The U.S. Military Academy, the text of which was: You are entering the only U.S. institution left standing.
To New Hampshire: The rejection of the establishment’s preferred candidates in both major parties is a big moment. It is also understandable, the result of 15 years of failed presidencies. It is a gesture of rebuke toward the political class — move aside. It’s said this is the year of anger but there’s a kind of grim practicality to Trump and Bernie Sanders supporters. They’re thinking: Let’s take a chance. Washington is incapable of reform or progress; it’s time to reach outside. Let’s take a chance on an old Brooklyn socialist. Let’s take a chance on the casino developer who talks on TV.
In doing so, they accept a decline in traditional political standards. You don’t have to have a history of political effectiveness anymore; you don’t even have to have run for office! ‘You’re so weirdly outside the system, you may be what the system needs.’
They are pouring their hope into uncertain vessels, and surely know it. U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders is an actual radical: He would fundamentally change an economic system that imperfectly but for two centuries made America the wealthiest country in the history of the world. In the young his support is understandable: They have never been taught anything good about capitalism and in their lifetimes have seen it do nothing — nothing — to protect its own reputation.
The mainstream journalistic mantra is that the GOP is succumbing to nativism, nationalism and the culture of celebrity. That allows them to avoid taking seriously Mr. Trump’s issues: illegal immigration and Washington’s 15-year, bipartisan refusal to stop it; political correctness and how it is strangling a free people; and trade policies that have left the American working class displaced, adrift and denigrated. Mr. Trump’s popularity is propelled by those issues and enabled by his celebrity.
In winning, Donald Trump threw over the GOP donor class. Political professionals don’t fully appreciate that, but normal Americans see it. They get that the guy with money just slapped silly the guys with money. Every hedge-fund billionaire donor should be blinking in pain. Some investment!
Anyway, we are in some kind of moment. Congratulations to the establishments of both parties for getting us here. They are the authors of the rebellion; they are a prime thing being rebelled against.
Connected to that, something I’ve noticed.
In Washington there used to be a widespread cliché: ‘God protects drunks, children and the United States of America.’ I’m in Washington a lot, and I’ve noticed no one says that anymore. They stopped 10 or 15 years ago. I wonder what that means.
– Peggy Noonan is columnist; The Wall Street Journal (IN: The Patriot Post : http://patriotpost.us/opinion/40654)
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