At least since the end of the second world war we have had a neoliberal system – probably since we had universal suffrage, now ordinary people are paying for this compromise. Neoliberalism allowed for public political parlour games in the West. Over regular periods (usually 4 or 5 years) we went through a sham of electoral democracy in which politicians stood up for marginally different versions of the same deal, neoliberalism, with the parties (usually two in each country) offering different levels of token support for ordinary people whilst carrying out 1% policies.
And the left has now paid for their own compromise with this neoliberalism.
Here is an example that happened to me. I don’t know what the current CP tactics are but back in the 80s the CP asked its members to compromise with the neoliberal system in order not to split working-class or union support. Typically this involved extremely distasteful actions. In my own case I attended the NUT conference, and at this conference I was asked to support the Broad Left which included the mainstream leadership. I attended their disco (I attended discos then) and watched a degree of sycophanticism that was so distasteful I walked out. It was undoubtedly true that the Trots, known as the Socialist Teachers’ Alliance then, were adopting policies that would have split the union if their conference motions had been passed. So I understood why the CP asked me to do what I did, but it was distasteful. More attempts at building bridges on the left against the neoliberalism could have been made but they weren’t, and there was an impasse with built-in stagnation. Such analysis concerning these bridges was not around then, so all of the left needs to accept responsibility for this. I think it significant that there was no recognition at the time concerning neoliberalism. The analysis was simply bourgeois and proletarian, and working within the labour movement, either in the unions or the labour party, to remove the impact of the opportunists. The weakness of this analysis, lacking any emphasis on the neoliberal system, was significant in the lack of bridge-building. Because the emphasis was on mass movement unity, battles existed on the left (typified by Trots vs Commies), and the direction of the discourse was always towards unity within the mass movement. However that unity, supposedly considered as unity of the proletariat, effectively meant unity on the left, and there was never any real efforts to unify with the right wing – whether in the union or the labour party. In the minds of the left the populist right, because of their politics lacking compassion for liberal issues were being identified with the 1% when in fact they were populist right and needed to be included within the mass movement against the 1%. To me this weak position was the early causes of the separation of the populist right and move to fascism that is indicated by votes for Brexit and Trump.
Soon after this NUT conference I left the UK so I don’t know how the CP and others on the left have dealt with neoliberalism since then, but I do feel this stagnation continued. Supporting the 1%-Labour, Blair Labour and Blair unions, might well have been CP strategy in order not to split the Labour movement. How awful – supporting war.
As a result populism, those on the right against the 1%, has taken the stage. Now we have a far harder battle, how to unite with this populist right, against the 1%. If we don’t accept that this is the way forward, then fighting against the 1% will be self-evidently impossible when the 99% are so divided. How many of the 99% could now be described as on the left and against the 1%?
I suggest that the left in the 99% have dissociated themselves from the populist right, primarily because of the platforms that I have assessed as being part of the populist right:-
1) Work against the 1%, its influence, the lobbyists that Trump described as the swamp.
Whilst the first two are clearly unifying the third is intended to be divisive by the 1%.
However if the power of the 1% is to be minimised, both the populist right and the liberal left need to compromise against the real enemy – the 1%. In the US such a compromise seems almost impossible but it has now become necessary otherwise people are in for a very difficult time with the increasing rise of fascism. This is a compromise that is far more distasteful than the compromise I had at the NUT disco but without it fascism will increasingly take centre stage.
It is my understanding that Trump supporters actually believe he will support them against the 1%. Undoubtedly he has strategic plans for buying off his supporters such as providing jobs in Trumpland, and it is conceivable that whilst adopting 1% and anti-liberal policies (racist, sexist and against LGBT) he will maintain his vote-base.
This division of the 99% between the liberal left and populist right can be laid straightforwardly at the hands of neoliberalism, what has neoliberalism done for these hard-working white people on the right – in Trumpland? Nothing, why would they? The 1% seeks only to exploit for their own profit. But what is far worse, what has the left done for these people? Nothing. The left has fought other legitimate battles, often involving identity politics, and as a result these working people whose personal politics have not been compassionate – such as racist, sexist and anti-LGBT – have lost their incomes and become attracted to the populist right. Yet our interests are the same, and it is self-defeating to turn around and demand that because they are part of the 99% they should change their views and join us. They haven’t, and in the US they have chosen Trump – been conned by Trump – been conned by the 1%.
Because the liberals have supported neoliberalism, have been myopic in the politics they have been involved in, and ignored a significant proportion of the 99% – a proportion that Trump has strategically manipulated, the US now has a 1%-government that will move the US towards fascism.
There is an aspect of US media that I have not seen discussed but is the practise. I watch US comedy progs such as John Oliver, Daily Show, Samantha Bee, Saturday Night Live – these are the only US comedies I find funny. When I am watching them I see nothing but pro-Democrat party propaganda. I see attacks on Trump – OK I agree he is preposterously funny, not attacks on the 1%, and I see the progs increasing divisions within the 99%. These progs add to the problem because they perpetuate and increase the divisions with the rest of the 99%. I can enjoy the humour without being sucked into the division, but can most of the watchers? Can they see that the intended divisions are also part of the 1% mainstream media strategy of dividing the 99%? Without discernment liberals and the left will continue to be part of the problem.
Similarly left-wing media in the UK are attacking and ridiculing Trump, they are perpetuating the situation. The populist white right who are inclined towards UKIP are being ignored by this left-wing, and the 1% are agitating against the 99% using similar tactics to the US. This situation is different to the US because the government is right-wing. However it is functionally the same. Divide the 99% – left against right. Identify the media as left wing, identify the mass movement – labour party and unions – as not being interested in white people. Not being interested in protecting the jobs of white people. Similarly there are attacks on PC in general thus the populist right are ignoring much truth that is spoken by professionals such as teachers, social workers and care-workers. Underlying the rhetoric of this populist right will be blame – blaming the left (liberals in general although the use of that term is not as common in the UK because of the Liberal party and their alliance with Cameron). Neither right nor left are sufficiently focussed on the impact of the 1% in the UK.
Because liberals have supported neoliberalism, the 1% has divided the 99% by financing the populist right. Because liberals have failed to persuade more white people that what liberals are doing is right, we now have a situation where the populist right has grown significantly; liberals and the left do not put forward uniting policies such as fighting the 1% and maybe morality and compassion, they simply promote their own dogma and expect the populist right to accept it. We now have a situation where the liberals, left-wing and populist right need to court each other in order to provide a united front against the 1%. For years the liberals and left have ignored this populist right, and the 1% have managed to cleave apart the 99%. The populist right have peddled preposterous statements such as left-wing mainstream media, and because the left has previously ignored this populism such statements now have significant traction. The 1% have financed this populism with their main purpose being to divide the 99%, and there is such a strength of rhetoric against the left-wing, much of it built on lies and propaganda such as the anti-PC movement, creating unity will be hard. Not all of the populist right can be won over as there is a significant proportion of deplorables, but amongst the rest are compassionate, moral people, who, because of the propaganda, in the US manage to support a horrendous man (Trump) who is immoral and lacking in compassion – being racist sexist and anti-LGBT. In the UK the pattern similarly shows support for the Tories and UKIP, both of which are parties for the 1%. These moral people, quiet white people, need to feel ashamed for supporting Trump and Brexit (and UKIP) but that also means that liberals need to eschew their neoliberalism, and show the non-deplorable on the populist right that there is a unity of interest against the 1%. Both populists and liberals need to change their focus away from each other and towards the real enemy – the 1%.
I have looked a little into the mindset of this moral populist right, and I do not understand it. Yet we must understand each other. Through unity of purpose against the 1% communication needs to be built between the left, liberals and the populist right. This will be difficult because of the years of antagonism, but if we don’t do this Trumps, and to a lesser extent Farages, will continue to arrive on the scene as fascism increases.
To my mind the onus of communicating lies with the liberal left. For all of last century the left has recognised the need to build the mass movement, yet after a century of such building in the US a member of the 1% standing for president has managed to divide the 95% in only one campaign. Not only is the candidate a member of the 1% he is an overt racist and sexist, yet he still split the vote. Why?
1) He promoted racism and sexism and other forms of bigotry. Voicing such enabled the deplorables. But those that should be ashamed also voted for him because they have been convinced that within the propaganda their compassion does not have to recognise racism and sexism.
2) Trump has managed to convince many on the populist right that he is the person to vote for in fighting the 1%. To people on the left this seems ludicrous but this is because the left has failed to see how they have been compromised by neoliberalism. Below I discuss Obama as an example of neoliberal failure. Because of this neoliberal failure leaders on the populist right have been able to convince members of the 99% that mainstream government and media is controlled by the left. How can the liberal left have been so remiss? Because they failed to identify and attack neoliberalism, even with Occupy opening the territory the left within the Democrats failed to take advantage. The Democrats did not identify themselves with Occupy, and so they lost the high ground with regards to attacking the 1%. Left-wing press clearly do such 1%-attacks, the Democrats don’t as a whole, and the populist right have identified the 1%-Democrats as the Left enabling a right-wing vote for the Deplorable.
3) And of course the main failure of the left has been its failure to embrace all in the 99% including those on the right. White racists and white disguised racists have lost their jobs as a result of 1% accumulation. Despite their lack of this compassion many of these people are hard-working trying to look after their families, and the left-wing have not represented them. This is shamefully ignorant as they have had years of analysis, understood that it is only through unity that the 99% can win yet such people have been ostracised because they lack liberal values – and compassion. If you genuinely believe in mass movement politics then you have to embrace white racism with all its faults. By being inclusive these people will hopefully see beyond the racism into recognising their interests are the same as all working people including liberals. At present they don’t and that has been as a consequence of the neoliberal system – a system that too many on the left have accepted.
4) The liberal left have become pre-occupied with identity politics. Rather than attacking the 1% the liberal left have focussed on legitimate issues such as gender equality, racial equality, LGBT equality etc Because they also failed to dissociate themselves from the neoliberalism, much of this focus worked on getting these identity groups better pay. From the perspective of the populist right all that appears is that the left agenda is to increase the pay of these identity groups at their own expense. Identity politics needs to fit into the struggle against the 1%, and this is clearly not the case. This is again a failure of the left to struggle against neoliberalism.
Voting a black man as president in the US alienated this populist right. This could have been alleviated if Obama had adopted policies that included the white right. When you consider the rise of Black Lives Matter, he didn’t even promote the interests of black people. When you examine with discernment, what he has done he has mostly acted as a puppet for the 1%. Prior to the elections and soon after mainstream left-wing media, what little I know of it, were fawning over Obama. But what has he done in the struggle against the 1%?
To conclude, the blame for the rise of the populist right and their manipulation by the 1% into accepting Trump and Brexit can be laid very clearly at the hands of the liberal left. They failed to focus on the real problem – the 1%, and the majority of them have colluded with the neoliberal system. The left have focussed their energies on identity politics thus alienating the populist right who have started to identify with neo-fascist groups. Even moral compassionate white people have thus identified because they have become alienated from the left part of the 99%. It is time for the left to change, re-orient their dominant strategies into fighting the 1%, and work towards including the populist right even though there is divisive racism and sexism within the right.
I would like to see a change in the use of the term neoliberalism – new liberals? How can the populist right recognise the difference between left liberal and neoliberalism? Without such a recognition how can there be a united 99%? A long blog!
Brexit and Trump have also brought home to me another important issue – what is truth? Speaking the truth is part of the 8-Fold Path, Magga (4 Noble Truths), and never has it been more important to recognise the truth when the representatives of the powerful are lying so much.
The first thing I learned about the truth as an adult was when I started on the Path and began to develop insight. At that time seeing people or knowing stuff was so important. Basically it was a reaction to all the lies that education and upbringing had given me. Developing insight is the most important tool for understanding the truth, and very few people discuss this. Insight is definitely not taught in schools!!! At the same time, in the search for truth recognising insight in others became an important aspect of discerning truth. It is not possible for one person to know the truth in all things. So a pre-requisite for truth is insight and the recognition of insight. One key aspect of recognising insight is that of sila – moral integrity. Recognising moral integrity is almost as difficult as recognising insight but there is an obvious corollary to this:-
If a person does not have moral integrity, then they certainly do not have insight and would not see truth as important.
Having moral integrity and talking about morals is definitely not the same thing. There are many people who use morality within religious institutions as a means of control, and yet they themselves do not have morality. In other words religion and morality are not the same although within the religious institutions there are people with insight and moral integrity.
Compassion is the most important fundamental concerning truth. Compassion means the freedom from suffering for all, and in this I include Gaia. So in seeking the truth the person must show compassion. Therefore a person speaking the truth will be working towards compassion, and therefore someone who is sexist, racist, or does not support LBGT rights is not compassionate, and is therefore not speaking the truth. So there are yardsticks, how compassionate is the person and how much insight do they have?
Of course these yardsticks are absolutes, and applying these absolutes in everyday situations especially in something as criminal as politics is very difficult.
But trying to use these yardsticks let’s examine the political situation but not as yet in terms of party politics. What politically exhibits the least compassion? Quite obviously the first political yardstick is war. Who benefits from war? People don’t but corporations do, the global MIC, Military Industrial Complex does. So we have a political question to ask as a benchmark concerning support for the MIC and the corporations – I will use the vernacular the 1%. The most heinous weapon of war is the drone, these are hugely expensive to make and generate huge profits, a definite plus for the MIC. The immigration crisis is blowback, a huge consequence of interfering wars and the heinous use of drones.
These corporations work hand-in-hand with global finance institutions such as banking and insurance. So for me the 1% of MIC, banking and finance are those that control global politics, and politicians who stand against the 1% are those who I support. I have not mentioned BigFood and BigPharma but these corporations have similar interests as the other corporations of the 1%.
For me Occupy stood against the 1%, so I support the Occupy movement. It is my understanding that the Occupy movement stood behind Bernie in the US and Corbyn in the UK. Whether this is true or not what Bernie and Corbyn say stands against the 1%.
But is what they say what they mean, are they telling the truth? Or is it just rhetoric?
In Corbyn’s case I have sufficient personal knowledge of the man to know that he is genuine although I haven’t always agreed with his tactics. In the UK in London from 1985 through to 1992 I was a political activist, and this brought me into contact with Corbyn’s sphere of influence – he was an MP and community activist in North London then. For me there was no doubt about his moral integrity and compassion, but at the time I was active I felt his tactics were mistaken. Now I support him, times change.
I support Bernie. His rhetoric is good, and I have a general feeling that he is moving in the right direction. But because of the lack of personal connection I cannot be so definitive. My intuition makes me feel he merits support, but I would not go beyond that because of my lack of personal contact.
What is most interesting about these two political candidates is that they are both struggling with their party hierarchies. There is a movie I often recall called Lifting the Veil. Whilst the movie does attack both the Labour party and the Democrats, it is more concerned with attacking the system. It is my understanding that the movie claims that the electoral system has been manipulated by the 1% as a media circus, and that there is never any intention of genuine democracy – government by the people for the people. This is in line with the approach of neoliberalism as most notably discussed by Noam Chomsky (for me).
Given that I accept that the political system of neoliberalism is the problem, the question then is how it is to be defeated and what is it to be replaced with? For me compassion means that I am seeking a system that treats people as equals without regards to “race creed or colour”; I would also now add gender preference. This is fundamentally the rights of all people over the few, the 99% compared to the 1%. At present we have governments directed by the 1% against the interests of the 99% who they want to exploit as their workforce. So the question is how do we organise for a government by the 99% (or 100% where the government treats all people as equal)? In determining veracity I would be investigating whether the politician is genuinely interested in a government of and by 100% of the people.
So far I have avoided political terminology in describing truth. And this is because of problems with the media and education. It is my view that western societies (and probably global societies) are inundated with propaganda that is directed by the 1% for their benefit. The terms 1% and 99% are very similar to the Marxist terminology of bourgeois and proletariat, and there has been continued propaganda against Marxists, socialists or any who subscribe to Marx’s theories. There is much to be learnt from Marx’s dialectical approach. But the main point of Marxism is that all the people need to work together against the self-interests of the 1%. In my adult years I have never seen people more divided, and I think propaganda and obfuscation by the 1%-media are the main causes. Typically I have seen mainstream media organisations described as left-wing when I have always described them as right-wing. In terms of compassion this site might well have the same objectives – healthy people, but in terms of the media our descriptions could not be further apart. In this the 1% have been so successful in dividing us.
There is another reason I have not promoted myself as socialist, I believe that sticking to ideas or an ideology is a mistake. While ideas can guide, holding to an ideal restricts the mind. Adhering to dogma stagnates an institution whether it is religious or political, people also become restricting if others are expected to fit in with ideals. So another point of truth is enquiry. Does the truth hold up to inspection of the enquiring mind? For many years dogma has been thrown at me either from the left wing or in religious circles, but none of this dogma alone produces clarification. It is only with insight that dogma moves beyond the idea. Examining a situation in the light of compassion and through enquiry examining the dogma and situation is a process to determine the truth. Does what is said fit a set of rules is not truth-determining?
I often draw parallels between US and UK politics, typically Republicans vs Democrats and Conservatives vs Labour. In the UK historically the conservatives have supported the 1% with token liberal rhetoric for the welfare of the people and nationalist populism in the interests of the white population, and whilst historically Labour grew out of the working-class its representatives are now simply opportunists. In the UK a nationalist populist, Nigel Farage, has arrived on the scene promoting racism, and this populism has recently been accepted by many people – a significant factor in Brexit; his party UKIP primarily attracts disillusioned working-class Labour voters.
The I in UKIP stands for Independence, and I think this term independent is significant. In UKIP’s case it maybe means independent from the EU – Brexit. But in character UKIP supposedly represents an alternative to the conservatives and labour (the neoliberal system). At the same time it discusses the people’s interests over that of an elite – again appealing to an understanding of those against neoliberalism, but its appeal to the British electorate is because it is white nationalist. In my view UKIP is an appeal to white popular racism, and although sadly they are increasing in popularity their only impact so far has been their contribution to Brexit which also included majority conservative influence. In the UK this populism has divided the 99%, and in the UK I believe that is why UKIP has been funded and given more coverage in mainstream media than is warranted for a small party.
In the US the situation is slightly different but the impact of nationalist populism combined with the conservative interests has led to the election of Donald Trump. Because of my compassion I cannot support either UKIP or Trump because of their racism – and in Trump’s case overt sexism. (I suspect also LGBT issues but I am not certain of that). Initially I said that if a person does not have moral integrity I cannot believe that they will tell the truth, that applies particularly for Trump although I also distrust Farage.
In the US many people rue the election because Hillary was not elected. However in the neoliberal system Hillary represented the 1%-system elite of the Democrat party, and so she lost the populist vote. For the same reason support from Occupy was not strong because of the same neoliberalism, and because of the way the Democrat party cut out Bernie.
In terms of truth it is worth examining how events have panned out in terms of the way they have benefitted the 1%. Particularly in the US nationalist populism has benefitted the 1% by splitting the 99%. The populists have however elected a member of the 1% to deliver an anti-1% platform, can that ever happen? We will have to wait and see. Is Trump a political “whistleblower”?
In terms of truth this splitting is very important because it explains much that goes on with populism. Within the framework of blaming the elite the primary purpose of the populism is division. When you examine much of the analysis in both camps it places the source of the problem with the 1%. Two important platforms of US populism were “draining the swamp” and “against Wall Street”, both of which any left-winger would be happy to support. But then comes the division because the most important attack politically is to blame the left. And here is the inconsistency, the swamp and Wall Street are not the Left.
When considering the populism we have to examine emphasis. The 1% have no problem with being blamed if their strategy of dividing the 99% works so the rise of this nationalist populism just benefits them. For me the main political truth is that the 1% cause our problems, and that we should all fight against the influence of the 1%. In blaming the 1% I seek unity against the 1%, and seek strategies that negate their financial power and influence. This strategy unites all working people, it unites small business owners who are trying to balance their books, but it works against people who manipulate financial laws for their own profit. Such small business owners do not go bankrupt and start up again. Such people pay taxes however unfair the tax system might be because those taxes provide education and infrastructure for ordinary working people. The 99% have all this in common, and if we all worked together then the 1% cannot exploit us.
However divided we become manipulable so it is in the interest of the 99% to divide the left and right. The internet has succeeded in doing this. By investing in the internet the 1% have developed websites that present their divisive populism.
At the same time populism has inconsistencies because the strategy is division and not the interests of the people themselves. The government is described as left-wing and yet a major popular platform is the swamp – the revolving door of the 1% that controls the government. How can the government be left-wing and 1%-controlled? And Trump himself is a major inconsistency, how can a member of the 1% be interested in fighting 1%-control? However these inconsistencies don’t matter if the purpose is division, that division is a consistent purpose:-
Consistency – division
Such inconsistency is for me a good measure of the truth.
Where next do I go in terms of the truth? Over the years I have developed mechanisms for determining the truth. These are based primarily on the arena of politics that I know – what has been called the “left”. I know these people, and have developed some insight into their degree of truth-telling. Over the years I have seen how important the truth is to the left wing, if there are any doubts in the veracity of a left-wing statement there is a huge mainstream backlash. More responsible left-wing people are very careful with the truth, but that is not all left-wingers for sure with some of the more vociferous getting carried away with rhetoric; so there has to be truth-discernment from within. Based on my experience and insight I would use certain left-wing evidence and avoid the rhetoric. This can only be a personal approach to truth.
Political correctness is also worth discussing when examining the truth. PC developed throughout my lifetime, and in my view it developed because language was a significant part of racism and sexism. Demanding that people were not racist or sexist in the language they used was a good position when trying to remove the embedded racism and sexism in society. As a result racists and sexists were expected to improve their use of language. This gave an illusion that people were less racist or sexist but in the UK Brexit showed that people had not truly changed. At the same time there has been a backlash against the “PC police”, people who have too vehemently reinforced the change of language without helping people change their attitudes. With UKIP and Trump those people who have been straitjacketed by the PC police have been allowed to express their racism and sexism. Because there was a repression there has been a backlash against PC in general, and as a result truth has suffered because much truth came out of the research those people did.
At the same time it is populist to reject what PC people have said because populism attacks the left wing. As I have said, this is a change that I find hard to understand as the government has always been a puppet of the 1% so for populism to claim government is left wing is difficult for me to grasp. Again this is an indication as to the ability of the 1% to influence. Look at what has happened. The 1% continue to dominate and their profits continue to increase despite the crash of 2008. Governments have applied austerity measures as a consequence, awarded bankers bonuses, and yet populism has divided the 99% so that there is an obfuscation concerning the left wing. The power of money is amazing.
So to conclude how I determine truth:-
1) Overlying everything else is compassion
Finally since this has been mainly concerning truth in politics, I ask that we recognise a political delusion that has been perpetrated. Most people vote for economic reasons ie vote in a way that they think will give them most money. Vote for greed. When greed is voted for we get manipulated by the greedy. Why not change the way we vote to that of compassion, vote for people who genuinely talk about caring for others and the environment. This would change the political arena.
I have moved past Trump depression but this thought struck me “we get our governments because of the way we vote”.
How do we vote? Primarily we vote out of self-interest, a mistaken view of self-interest that we inherit through our communities. Workers’ self-interest is supposedly Labour, and owners and business people vote for the Tories; in the US they similarly vote for Democrat and Republican. In many cases Republicans voted with their tradition, Trump, even though their heart told the “nice” ones that Trump was/is deplorable.
This mould needs to be broken, and it is this message that has not got across. Correct analysis about the recognition of 1% does lead to breaking this mould – not some token right-wing limited idealism connected to 1% that allows some to vote Trump, but few accept this correct analysis. First and foremost it is the 1% who are destroying the middle-class, causing small businesses to crash and middle-class home-owners to lose their property. Because the 1% own mainstream media they divert attention to race or government incompetence to explain this.
The working-class are now also misguided because the Labour party are not the party of the working-class, they are simply a better shade of blue. To understand this we need to look at neoliberalism, and the way the 1% have controlled the elections. Both Labour and Conservative (Democrat and Republican) are parties of the 1%, neither are the parties of the people. Look at the way Labour is destroying itself to prevent Corbyn from gaining power, this is not socialist principles but neo-liberal manipulation. In the same way the mainstream pushed Bernie out of the democratic nomination.
Once you see the neoliberal control of the elections, we can see little point in elections as there is little that is available for ordinary people. There is strategic voting but that is all.
Given that this is the situation further discussion is relatively pointless, but this is still an analysis using self-interest as the benchmark. Because of community tradition, voting patterns for conservative and labour (republican and democrat) are based on self-interest and allows for manipulation, a manipulation that has been taken to extreme by Deplorable.
Forget self-interest, why aren’t our votes for all people – compassion? When have we had a compassionate government? Why not? Surely a compassionate government would have the interests of the people at heart. There are compassionate tendencies amongst people who have been forced to vote Republicans and conservatives but by tradition they do not vote for compassion. Compassion is not even discussed as an approach, why not? Why do we accept that government is about economy first? What about a compassionate government that puts the people first? Not the self-interest of the rich nor the self-interest of the poor but compassion – measure actions by compassion. No wars for profit – just compassion. Changing the benchmarks of the elections by introducing compassion can only be positive because it would mean the mainstream liars would at least have to pay lipservice to compassion. BUT some might use it to make real change.
In parts of Europe there is a pirate party that has grown to change the agenda in part, far better to change the agenda through the Compassion party. The Pirate party has electoral candidates, maybe in time the Compassion party would have candidates – but realistically to what avail in a neoliberal system? And remember tactical voting in the delusory electoral system, such a vote might be non-productive.
But compassion. Compassion would help move the agenda. At least we could have a compassionate momentum. Engaged Buddhists, work for a compassionate momentum.
Trump upset me – quite depressed, and led me to a rethink. Am I sufficiently up-to-date and in touch if I didn’t see it coming? This is a summary of my blogs to give a context.
In Trumped I guess at the impact. In Left supports Trump I attack a Jewish activist who is very knowledgeable but is missing an understanding of neocolonialism – the Veil and elections. Blame the liberals takes a similar tack about the Veil – neocolonialism.
Shame of White People begins to look at the real problem – the racism of white people, why aren’t these people ashamed to vote for a DEPLORABLE like Trump? 53% of white women voted for a blatant sexist and exploiter of women, how can they? Growing up afraid starts to look at my background community – the white people who voted for Brexit and who are typical of the silent Trump supporters. In Brexit is racist I make it clear that I see Brexit as a racist vote, and point to the problem that is not the deplorables but “nice” white people. In “nice” white people I detail a description of the demographic of the silent foolish racist white people who have supported Brexit and Trump. In Rising Fascism I point out the fascism that these “nice” racist fools have been tricked into creating. And finally I look at what the left needs to do to consolidate.
To what avail? These “nice” white people will be bought off and matters will get worse. At least I know not to listen when people tell me racism is better now, and millennials are you any different to the mentalities of the hippies and so on I grew up with whose materialism changed them to Brexit? Millennials when you are invested in the economy will you also be fooled into this “nice” white racist position – especially when the rising fascism will mean that good understanding through controlled media will not be as easily accessible?
Before I look in more detail at these articles there are issues to be considered. First and foremost, leftwing politics needs to be clear about the Veil or neoliberalism, it matters not which mainstream political party is in power the system works for the 1%. The electoral process is not intended to offer genuine alternatives, the mainstream parties do not usually offer the people candidates that will genuinely represent them. With both Trump and Brexit right wing ignorance amongst white voters was manipulated, and these right-wing populists will be shown for what they are – con-artists. However these ignorant white voters accept being conned because they are racists, and I don’t mean simply the racists of the Trump mobs but the polite disguised racists of “normal” white communities, racists who should be ashamed at their inhumanity; those ignorant voters often with education who voted for the right emotionally because their emotion of fear is personal greed and self-interest rather than compassion for humanity – “nice white people”.
If we understand the Veil then we do not seek genuine solutions in the electoral process, for the genuine left-wing the electoral process can never be a matter of conviction-voting because the 1% will never allow genuine democratic candidates. This picture has been slightly clouded by the emergence of two genuine candidates – Jeremy Corbyn and Bernie Sanders, but on both sides of the Atlantic the mainstream has shown its preference for the right at the expense of the parties themselves. The Democrats and Labour who are complicit with the 1%, the opportunists, prefer to lose an election than allow Corbyn or Sanders into power. Without an understanding of this reality the left can never consolidate the problems that have been shown up by Trump and Brexit.
Liberals however in general do not recognise the electoral system for what it is – a delusion (Veil), and they are beating their chests with remorse. Liberal analysis is weak and emotional – as intended. Understanding the Veil for what it is a revolutionary understanding, whereas expecting neoliberalism to deliver a solution is a reformist position. These two words I have used because they were used by Bell Hooks in describing feminism yet these are words which can be used to describe the left in general and anti-racism as well. Genuine left-wing understanding has to be revolutionary, reformism can only be liberal. And by revolutionary I am talking about a deep insightful change in the mindset, what I discussed in transcendence; I am not talking about Marx’s “communist revolution” nor revolutionary violence.
It is the reformism of the liberal, and the arena of that reformism that does need to be questioned. Reformist liberals have been manipulated into turning in onto themselves. So often liberal arguments attack each other – much like the liberal analysis that has followed Trump and Brexit, what have we liberals done wrong? But they have not attacked the source of the problem – the reformism. In terms of the election liberal voters are clearly Labour or Democrat, yet they attack each other. Why? They seek reform within the system, they do not describe the system as broken. Reformists will support Beyonce as a feminist icon because of her success rather than seeing her as being exploited by the capitalism of the music industry – no matter how much money she has. Reformist liberals are happy with her as an icon, do not see her being part of the system as a problem, and will attack what I am saying as being chauvinist rather than understanding it as revolutionary. For such reformists Beyonce has used the system for her benefit, and within the system good luck to her, but she is not helping to change the system that exploits black people – women and poor. The purpose of reformism is to demand that the individual reformers become entitled to a greater part of the cake, but this cake is only the remains that the 1% have left. Reformism basically accepts the system, and fights against each other (of the 99%) for what the 1% have put on offer.
In the US election reformism meant that we chose between Hillary and Trump, and whilst the choice is obvious for any sensible non-racist yet 53 % of white women still voted for Trump. But voting for Hillary is only a token part of the struggle, the electoral system is part of the establishment – and not something we should see as a focus of our fight. Yet Liberals see this as important, and are beating themselves up over these votes.
And the issue of arena is important here, liberals are ashamed that they have lost but they have not taken the fight to their families. How many liberals are ashamed that their families have voted for the right? And when they accept the system as reformists these liberals are unable to question their bosses who are voting for the right. When their bosses are racist and sexist what can they do? As reformists they are seeking the cake the bosses are offering, how can they then attack them for fundamentally lacking compassion – being racist and sexist. Liberals need to bring shame to the people who are not liberals. Polite discourse that is disguised racism and sexism should not now be tolerated because tolerating it has allowed Trump and Brexit. These disguised white racists voting for their greed will always bring in fascism. The deplorable crimes of the racist and sexist thugs need to be laid at the doorstep of these “nice” white people, and not turned in on the liberals. Liberals need to question why they accept reformism, but whilst they are accepting that reformism they need to consider where they are targeting the reform. Arguing with reformists at dinner parties does not make a change, they need to bring more people into the reformist arena – that for me is the liberal failure of these votes; the liberal reform has not spread wide enough, and closet racists have been allowed to exist without being publicly brought to account through shame. Increased violence as a consequence of the racist votes for Trump and Brexit needs to be placed firmly on the shoulders of the “nice” white people who emotionally voted for greed.
Hillary people are questioning why their campaign failed. This questioning needs to lead amongst those who genuinely seek change to an understanding of the role of Hillary’s democrats in the system. She does not represent the people – she said that as part of this “deplorable” clip, what is most ironic is that an exploiter like Trump managed to manipulate public opinion into thinking that he represented people; from someone outside I find that ludicrous but the fear and ignorance of “nice” white people never ceases to amaze me – and never ceases to anger me. The racism was not ludicrous to black pundits who warned about it – see Keith Ellison and Van Jones warning us.
The consolidation on the left has to take a dual approach – revolutionary and reformist. I am only prepared to talk of white people, other peoples must decide for themselves – I am unsure of how important the non-white vote for Brexit was; non-whites did not vote for Trump. The reformist liberals need to expand their horizons working on the “nice” people who are not bigots but still find it acceptable to have voted for racism and sexism; this is not what good people should have done and those liberals within the electoral process need to question themselves about this.
But reformism does not offer an alternative, and the genuine working-class alternatives of Corbyn and Sanders need to be championed. Blairite centrism does not offer these “nice” white people an alternative, Corbyn does. Fascism of Brexit and Trump appears to offer an alternative. By blaming non-whites they say to racists we will favour you above the non-whites, essentially what colonialism stood for – exploiting non-whites to make Britain a power. They do not however offer an economic alternative because the cake the 1% allows the 99% to fight over is such a small cake; the 1% are happy to see us fight for the small cake. Corbyn is fighting for control of all the cake by the people, this always has and always will be the only effective way for change.
Owen Jones is talking about the bigotry that existed amongst my comrades in the 80s Trades Council – as well as the bigotry in the Communist party; the old white left. To some extent I can understand their claims that “come the revolution ….” Because I am from that old school I do not identify with the struggles for identity but because I am directed by the mass movement I accept that direction. A consolidated left must embrace the identity politics. But identity politics cannot simply be reformist, if they stay as reformist then they will simply be fighting over the small cake. I do not know how many of my “dinosaurs” still dominate the movement but if they are there they need to change. Help the reformists become revolutionary, work with them and not direct them.
In early 1990 I was on the poll tax rally and we marched from Brixton – or maybe it was Kennington? On the way to Trafalgar Square, in Lambeth I passed numerous estates where black people hung out of their windows offering support. Sadly I knew why they were not on the rally, the organisers just told black people it was their class and in their interest to be there. But the rally had no black identity, and so was rejected. I have no idea whether things are still the same. The racism is the same so I suspect the rest is similar. At that time the so-called leaders of the mass movement were not responsive to black identity. It appears from Owen Jones article that this responsiveness is lacking within the movement. Mass movement politics is diverse, and if the movement cannot embrace that diversity then it will fail. LBGT rights are repressed by the 1% because the 1% only allow a small cake. LBGT rights and mass movement struggle have the same interests. The “nice” white people become fascists because they are not worried about the size of the cake so long as they always have the same amount. Trump and Johnson who represent the 1% say “nice” white people should have the same amount, and turn white people against their class – a standard historical tactic. And because “nice” white people are still racists they fall for it. It is not the increase in demand for rights from different identities but the size of the cake that is the problem. That cake should be 100%, all that is on offer. Identities do need to see this as their struggle as well, but if the arrogance of intellectuals still dominates the movement then it won’t happen.
The issue concerning white women is perhaps worse, 53% of white women voted for Trump – is that 53% who owned up to voting for him it could be more – I don’t know. There is the often contextually-misquoted Susan Sarandon who said she would not vote with her vagina, the context was the Bernie debate. Hillary is a reformist feminist icon so why so many white women did not vote for her I don’t know. How successful as a woman has she been in the political world. But as Susan was pointing out in different words, Hillary was not a revolutionary feminist. The failure of reformist female liberals is most notable in the US because of this 53%.
In this article the writer points at women’s misogyny. She gives some reasons but in the end I have to ask female liberals “why do women hate women?” Or better “why do women still hate women after 50 years of Liberal training?” Did these Liberals try to train all women? How many of the 53% are “nice” white women who with encouragement could learn to recognise how voting for Trump puts the clock back for women?
Why is gender still an issue in the mass movement? Why is race still an issue? And so on …. why? Because liberals and others have rested on their laurels. Over the last 50 years the control of the 1% has increased. As a result of that control there have been advances made in identity politics but because those advances have been reformist they have only increased the pressures on the miniscule cake the 1% allow. These identity politics have been used to divide the movement. Whilst the 1% have vastly increased their wealth over the last 50 years they have deluded the reformists into thinking that they, the reformists, have made advances. Pointing at overt sexism, racism and homophobia in the 60s they say that things are much better now. But no overt racist has ever been in the White House since the 2nd world war. Nowhere near as many wars for profit have ever been fought. When the whole cake is bigger the 1% offer more, and delude reformists.
I feel angry at the white people in my country and the US who demonstrated their fear by voting for racism, but in the end the 1%-system is so powerful what do you expect. Being deluded in voting for racism, thinking things are better, these are just lies portrayed by a media with an agenda, the 1%-agenda. Fight complacency, maybe Trump and Brexit are wake-up calls for reformists to become revolutionary????
The insecurity surrounding the Trump presidency is creating fear throughout the world, and fans the ego of this horrendous man. When you look at Hillary you see a career politician, a paid-up member of the Veil and a Bilderberg agent. With Trump nothing is certain, and much of the following is speculation.
Liberals see the vote as an aberrance that can be fought and possibly reigned in but I see it as far worse than this. About the only policy that he has been democratically certified for is no-policy. There appears to have been an electoral deal – Carrier. Apparently they had said they would move their plant to Mexico, now Trump has given them tax breaks maintaining some of the jobs in Indiana – his heartland. The cost of these jobs seems prohibitive, and effectively the tax-payer has funded a new automated Carrier plant.
This type of manipulation, if repeated, will make Trump a favourite with business and his “nice” white people leading to a further presidency. I foresee a term in office that will be 100% self-serving – promotion of his presidency and his business with targeted benefits for his voters.
What this means for the rest of us is not certain. Government will not act as a break on the wars-for-profit hawks behind the scenes of Washington. At the same time he will not act as a break to the Wall Street demons so long as they will enable his second term; his finance picks support Wall Street. He has not drained the “swamp”, but given them access through his picks. If the “nice” white people get jobs and his “nice” white communities are favoured, they will ignore the promises about the “swamp” – ultimately this personal wealth is all that interests the racism of “nice” white people.
Who does it look bad for? The state sector and the minorities. The state sector offers him nothing, and he has no votes there. As for the minorities the future looks bleak. On the campaign trail Trump gathered around him a violent mob of horrendous people, these people Hillary accurately described as deplorables:-
For some reason the campaign withdrew this slur, I don’t understand this. Those deplorables will always vote Republican – or not at all; Democrats have no chance with those votes. But they were never Trump’s target audience. His target was the Klauses, arrogant white people connected to small businesses who seek security at whatever compassionate cost. For these “nice” white people there is no concern for the wider society, their communities are relatively peaceful and there is still a community ethic. They help each other, and look after each other. The costs of the wider society are just a drain on their resources. Their contact with minorities is limited, the minorities who live up the road fit into their community and will be helped as would any of their neighbours. The slums and the ghettoes of the inner cities are not their problem. Trump need not target the compassionate society to maintain his votebase.
Hillary was not talking about “nice” white people when she talked of deplorables. She said 50% of Trump supporters were deplorable. I am ashamed that the community I was born in were part of the other 50%. I am ashamed of them, I am ashamed for them, and I am sad that they are not ashamed. Hillary’s tactic was to try to separate the deplorables from “nice” white people, and to try to make those “nice” white people think for themselves. The tactic failed miserably but personally I don’t think the tactic was wrong but she did not follow through on it.
Basically people will be left to fend for themselves, and this suits the relative affluence of rural white societies. But in the inner cities this will lead to greater vulnerability to gang culture.
As for Muslims there will be increased Islamophobia where every Muslim will be seen as a terrorist. Because Trump has given credence to the deplorables, they will feel they have the right to demand the US for the whites. This would be especially so given some of the right-wing picks of the Trump government. As Trump will not want to “waste” money policing the inner cities and protecting the Muslims from these deplorables, their lives will become much worse – suffering random acts of violence.
The insecurity of the Hispanic community will worsen. Throughout his campaign there has been talk of the wall and Mexican rapists, this will allow the deplorables to be violent to Hispanics. At the same time Trump will continue to allow cheap labour where his votes are not affected, I am not sure how this will work; it will be a balance in which he will curry favour with business to enable jobs for his voters.
This of course will lead to a rise in racism, why do I see it as a rise in fascism? Here is wiki on fascism. Reading this do you not see mega-similarities with the Trump campaign – with Brexit. The fear of war that was at the basis of my upbringing has not dissipated but morphed into racism, and appeals to that racism echoes authoritarian nationalism– the basis of fascism. “Nice” white people who believe in their own compassion are hastening the emergence of fascism as a solution, how can that be??
“Nice” white people is a crucial demographic that is being manipulated by the 1% across the world but by the very nature of the demographic they don’t see themselves as a demographic nor as being manipulated. They are crucial because they are what has caused Brexit and got Trump elected. These are the people who should be ashamed, and they make me ashamed because they are the community of my birth and in my life I have not helped change them. What is also important is that liberals do not try to “educate” them because they are the community of their upbringing or even their parents, and liberals are ashamed to admit this.
What are the characteristics of these “nice” white people? They are not rich but not poor, have worked (sometimes very hard) all their lives to provide an income for their families, and feel others should all work hard for their money. Whilst they might recognise that there are the 1%, they refuse to recognise all the problems come from the 1% because they cannot do something about them. They can blame scroungers. They would not see themselves as racists because they would be fair to the occasional black person they met. And if there were black people in their community they would treat them equally if the black people behaved the same way as them.
There is a level of arrogance to these “nice” white people, they have made a go of life and have survived, and this means something to them. Life is hard and the life they have made for themselves and their family is not to be sniffed at. Because of this survival they resent being told what to do by petty-minded bureaucrats, they have worked hard for their money – it is theirs, they care for their family friends and community, isn’t that enough? This is important because these people are manipulated into resenting everything PC. There are unnecessarily aggressive politically correct people (PC police) who demand a certain attitude of others and these “nice” white people don’t want to be told what to do by them.
Their anger at the PC is significant in how these “nice” white people are manipulated. Political correctness came in because of racist approaches like “he’s a good nigger” or “calling a spade a spade”. These “nice” white people used such derogatory language but when meeting black people they were fair and pleasant – not two-faced just ignorant. Because they were fair they did not see the need to change, and it became necessary to develop political correctness because the deplorables (not “nice” white people) took advantage of this. PC was a necessary step to control misuse of language, and bring in a more outwardly tolerant society. This use of the language was resented by these arrogant “nice” white people because they were arrogant and treated people fairly most of the time. There developed this PC police who became too focussed on the language and not enough on genuine fairness so there was a clash between PC police and “nice” white people. This clash was manipulated to alienate these “nice” white people from being compassionate; the PC police were ego-driven with their demands and this clashed with the arrogant egos of the “nice” white people. Because they were “nice”, “nice” white people kept this to themselves but it was underneath and came out with Brexit and Trump.
The damage this PC antagonism caused was significant because “nice” white people avoided all things PC including all the compassionate people who worked within the caring community that these PC police were connected to. If “nice” white people were thinking clearly they would identify with the caring community because they cared about their community, but to them the caring community became PC – this was the manipulation. Other than the caring that occurred within their “nice” white community, the wider caring community got tarred with the PC police brush. This meant that the “nice” white people did not associate themselves with compassion, did not want to call themselves liberal because of the PC police, and “nice” white people moved to the right.
“Nice” white people had their opinions, and these opinions were reinforced by the circles (community) they moved in. Opinions were repeated until they became held firmly as facts yet were not based in fact. PC people quoted facts, had the statistics to backup their opinions, but the ego-clash with the PC police meant that these “nice” white people avoided those that did not function in the same way as them – as a result facts did not matter if the opinions they held were confirmed in their communities and felt right.
To convince the “nice” white people that their ill-formed opinions are not foolish they had to prevent these people from wanting to access the truth. PC avoidance is key to this. Where is the truth? Truth lies with compassion, people should be compassionate, “nice” white people are compassionate as we can usually see in their interactions with neighbours. Where is compassion in our society? The caring professions. But where are the PC police? Intermingled within these professions. Because of PC “nice” white people avoid these professions and are fooled into avoiding compassion. At the same time these caring professions are employed by the government. Everyone blames government, that is what they are there for – politicians are thick-skinned liars who are willing to take the brunt of the distrust and anger for future reward. Who is really to blame? Everyone knows the answer to this – including “nice” white people – THE 1%. But the 1% cannot be easily accessed – and “nice” white people need their money (as represented by Trump) so government is the target – in the US paying taxes is the target because that funds government. The caring professions are paid by government so that is another reason not to listen to them. “Nice” white people have been tricked into avoiding compassion whilst at the same time considering themselves compassionate.
Because they believe they are compassionate it is easy to convince them of anything, Jewish conspiracies, black men and Mexicans raping their daughters. Normally facts would prevent compassionate people from believing this stereotyped rubbish but these “nice” white people do not listen to facts because facts are the domain of the PC – the caring professions.
And what happens if you try to tell these “nice” white people this? You are PC and have been fooled by the PC brigade so you don’t have to be listened to.
It is crazy how indoctrination works. All you need is arrogance, a belief in a set of ideas, and what is common sense – compassion – is thrown out of the window.
And if you ask these “nice” white people “who are the indoctrinated?” they deride other people – never seeing their own arrogance.
And how do I know the above is true? Because it serves the interests of the 1% to have “nice” white people not be compassionate – it serves the 1% not to have a compassionate society.
I don’t like the PC police personally but that does not prevent me from being compassionate because I see who is the real enemy first. But according to “nice” white people I would do that because I was in a caring profession.
And within all of this there is a nationalism. How these people have survived is a sense of pride and that pride includes nationalism. In Britain, it is because they are British that this demographic survived. There is no logic to this, it is a feeling and when you have this feeling of nationalism racism follows – because these “nice” white people are white. It is a feeling within their community “because we are British”, and although this emotion is not connected with why these “nice” white people live the lives they live it becomes a reality – it contributes to the racism as institutional racism.
When you don’t listen to fact-based arguments you have Brexit with the 350 million pound slogan on the bus. You have the all-powerful EU that were imposing on the will of the British people – the nationalism. And you have PC people giving you facts as to why these feelings about the EU are not true. You have the problem with immigrants without the blowback connection that it was British forces who were involved in the Middle East – causing the immigrants in the first place. Because being a “nice” white person is a feelgood arrogance based in fear, when the community talks with each other they do not discuss these facts, and when the PC do discuss them they have been marginalised by the PC-clash manipulation so facts are not heard.
With Brexit it is clear that the deplorables would increase their racist attacks, “nice” white people why didn’t this matter to you? You are compassionate people in your community, why didn’t it matter to you that innocent people would be hurt because of your vote? Why have you become so emotional about your nationalism, your hatred of the PC, that you don’t see the harm that will obviously be caused to other human beings? How can you allow your compassion to have been so manipulated that you voted for a campaign (Brexit) that has fascism written all the way through it?
And in America the deplorables are more extreme yet “nice” white people voted for a deplorable candidate, a man whose actions would cause him to be shunned by the very “nice” white people and their communities that voted for him.
And it is important to recognise you “nice” white people, you have been played. Your arrogance has been pandered to. As a demographic your trust in your own opinions (not based in fact) has been manipulated into believing “facts” that have no basis in truth. This happened more with Trump but the same was true with Brexit. How can anyone believe that an economic community would not respond and cause economic problems simply as a matter of self-protection? You “nice” white people who are so concerned by your little fortunes have stabbed yourselves in the foot far more than Labour ever did because your arrogance has been manipulated. And yet many of you “nice” white people complain that other people are manipulated because they are stupid.
And this is happening all over the world, this manipulation of the “nice” white people demographic manipulated by the 1% into a world that is more fascist.
I (would) vote with compassion, I put people first before profits – even though I maybe benefit from authoritarian regimes. I am afraid of the fascism that “nice” white people are moving towards.
I feel depressed because all my life I have worked towards a more compassionate society, and whilst within the compassionate branch of my society there has been much improvement because of these manipulations my whole society is far worse. My parents lived in fear because of the fascism that had blighted their upbringing, yet in my lifetime this fascism is returning because of “nice” white people.
The emergence of the expression of white racism exemplified firstly by the Brexit vote and then the vote for Trump deeply saddens and angers me.
My parents were in their teens during the second world war, and were grateful for the peace that followed. As was the frightened community I grew up in that was racist and sexist, and the fear brought out violence including in myself. But mostly this violence was reactionary, the establishment (1%) fighting any form of change.
When I started to think I rejected the fear-based system in the community I grew up in. As an adult I tried not to be racist and not to be sexist, and I tried to work for peace eschewing any violence. For this my community said I would grow out of it. I am proud to say I never have, and trying not to be racist or sexist – and not being violent – are attributes I am proud of.
However significant proportions of the community I grew up with have not changed. Rather than educating themselves into overcoming their fear by being compassionate, they have clung to their fears and this clinging shows in their racist vote patterns. The media claims that Brexit and Trump is a symbol of liberal failure, and looking for something different. They claim that the white racist vote is voting for a change, but neither Brexit nor Trump offer change they only offer a return to the fear and racism of the community I grew up with. Apart from rhetoric and falsehoods what policies that benefit these people have we heard from Brexit or Trump? With Brexit we see the confidence of the money markets manipulating the exchange rates leading to economic loss – hopefully temporary. At the same time there has been an increase in racist violence, will there also be an emergence of increasing domestic violence? What do you think of that possibility 53% of US white women?
There is no rationale to these votes. Trump offered these US racists the sacrificial excuse of “Crooked Hillary”, an excuse which might be valid if the alternative had integrity but when you see the depravity that is Trump how can any rational person vote for him?
My childhood community was not founded in rationale but fear. In this world of fear they went to work, their standard of living grew, as the 1% exploited the peace that followed the second world war and exploited the neo-colonialism in Africa and other ex-colonies. The 1% grew rich and my community went to work leading to a safe but comfortable standard of living. In all of this racism and sexism did not matter because they were afraid of the war.
But these people did not move on. They were happy to call people becoming aware of these social crimes as young people who will grow out of it. And they never grew. They hankered for the past, the peace that followed the post-war community. The needed change was reacted to by the 1%, and those people chose to see those changing as being the cause of the violence – this of course was the stance of the mainstream media (part of the 1%). This fearful community chose not to develop, hankered for a racist sexist post-war peace, and had their fear manipulated by Brexit and Trump.
Instead of describing this ignorance for what it is – a racist and sexist reactionary white community, the mainstream chooses to call this racism a vote for change. Instead of shaming these white people for a racist sexist ignorance, there is a token respect for their willingness to vote for something different. The fact that they are voting for “something different” that is fascist is glossed over. It should not be glossed over, this Brexit/Trump vote is a reactionary vote for racism and sexism. These people should be made to feel shame not excused because they are “seeking change”. Corbyn offers change but this is not fascism so votes for Corbyn are not considered votes for something different.
The Guardian should have the word “shame” plastered all over the front page. But unfortunately this shameful group of “nice” white middle-class and upper working-class are too powerful so the mainstream does not cry “shame”. My extended family are “nice people”, they go to church and help each other and their neighbours. I will not ask but most of them I suspect voted for Brexit, their American equivalents voted for Trump. They are not the bigoted Trump rabble from his rallies who were portrayed in the progressive media, but the quiet white people, amongst the 53% of white women, who voted for Trump. I am ashamed of them. I have always been the aggressive outsider critical of the mainstream, and they pointed out my anger as a weakness. They did not look at their own racism and sexism as a weakness. So many times I sat quiet as disguised racism was the polite conversation, this is now not acceptable. I am ashamed of their vote, they should be ashamed. I should not be the one who has to be quiet in polite conversation, they should be because their racism is shameful.
I grew up afraid but with nothing to fear – or better afraid of the wrong thing. This fear characterised my environment, a quiet Manchester suburb where we conformed to a way of life – a way of wage-slavery. But it was better than war – the second world war, so I soon learned to understand where that came from. I live outside the UK now but when at uni my friends went abroad – I was afraid. As I hit bottom and came out of the conditioning and the fear, travelling was still not the answer because of this fear. But I was developing as a person working on the fears created in the UK. When I was 40 I moved abroad and never turned back to the UK environment that is so dominated by fear.
This fear explains so much that is wrong with the UK, including the racism that underlies Brexit; I am sure it explains Trump but I don’t know those people well enough. Whilst I grew up afraid I grew up feeling a sense of being imprisoned – repressed. This was what my environment did to me. For a long time I saw the problem as being my father, but whilst there are individual characteristics there – that it is not appropriate to discuss – my focus on him at the time was not justified. It was the fear that came from the suburban environment. You can understand it. The parents were all people who had been involved in the war, their adolescence was as children in a country at war. In my house it was never discussed but the fear was there. Wage slavery was just accepted because it was better than war.
When I went to uni it was as part of a generation who were questioning. At uni I don’t remember questioning much as my life was dominated by the bottle, but I suppose I must have because after 18 months of the world of work I hit bottom. And never looked back. I have always seen that hitting bottom as breaking out of conditioning – the academic mindset, but it was more. It was breaking the restrictions that fear had put on me. I carried that fear with me a long time even after I had hit bottom. But hitting bottom was the beginning of breaking through the fear.
What did that fear do to the UK? I grew up surrounded by racism, sexism and violence. At teacher training college I went to a fancy dress ball in a dress for some reason – I had some strength having hit bottom three years previously. A trainee teacher who was a rugby player touched my dick that was showing through the tight dress, I touched his back in a blasé way and he thumped me – I walked away; I was not a fighter and he was bigger than me anyway. Why was he violent? At the same place another teacher promised to buy a bike from me. We agreed that I would leave the bike outside my house and he would collect it and pay me some money. Maybe he was drunk, maybe he didn’t want it – that is not my point. A year later I was teaching so was he. He was living in a squat with a colleague. She told him what I said, he told her if I ever told her the story again he would come and hit me. Fear breeds the kind of violence these two teachers showed. They grow up with fear, and then defend themselves by being violent. I chose those stories because these people were teachers, the violence amongst less educated is worse. Violence is not an acceptable way of life but it is created by systemic fear and is integral to western way of life. For me this is a significant part of Britain, and why I don’t live there.
But the violence that is British is not unique in the West, nor am I saying that it is uniquely western. But what is the excuse for such fear now? My parents had grown up during the war (I am 64), so they had fear. My generation grew up with that fear but actually had nothing to fear. Yet the fear continued. Why? Conspiracy theory; remember conspiracies like this just develop, not some idea from a smoke-filled room. Fear worked to create profits. My parents, my environment, was an excellent place for profits. Through the 50s and 60s the fatcats made huge profits based on a compliant workforce, and why was the workforce so compliant? Because of fear of war. Look at the history. Slowly in the 50s and 60s began to fight off the fear that was repressing them. Violence dogged that breaking out because that was the fatcats holding onto their post-war profits. Young people expressing themselves brought out that fear, and arms of repression, police and others, jumped on them. For 20 years the fatcats made huge profits at the expense of a low-paid workforce. During the 70s the workforce sought their due recompense and the fatcats refused to budge and closed the country down. This increased people’s fear, and with the media defending the fatcats people turned that fear on themselves – against the unions, and voted in Thatcher. Thatcher then fostered that fear in other ways, and so on until the present day.
In British society what is there to be afraid of? There is no second world war that parents had lived through. But there is the fear and violence that has been fostered ever since my childhood. There is racism that has been built up by the media. Fear of losing jobs to immigrants, a fear that is not borne out by statistics. A fear that is fanned by the media which is the PR arm of the fatcats who will do anything for a profit especially not pay fair wages. There is however a legitimate fear that is rarely discussed because it would affect the fatcats’ wealth, the fear of blowback from all the wars for profits; this is not a fear recognised by many.
How I would experience that fear if I was growing up in Britain now I do not know. But what I do know is that that fear is manufactured by the establishment to maintain a compliant workforce – to maintain the fatcats’ profits. That fear is so strong that the equivalent environment to the one I grew up in voted Brexit. Now I am not a big fan of the EU as I am an internationalist and don’t like Fortress Europe (against the USA). But for the people of my background to be voting for Brexit shows how bad that fear still is. And yet that fear has no legitimacy, it is created by the divisions the fatcats through the establishment impose on society in order to increase profits.
In Britain we now grow up with fear because they want us to be afraid. That is a reality we should know. How you deal with it I don’t know, after all the bully boys the system creates still are violent – however educated.
In this Guardian article, it says “53% of white women voted for Trump, according to CNN exit polls.” And in this article, 42% of women, 53% of white women, voted for Trump. Whatever an individual woman might say the general reality is that a competent woman politician who had been smeared incessantly did not attract the votes of 53% of white women. Trump was no respectable sexist, he was outwardly chauvinist demonstrating characteristics I would only expect to see in the worst pub. Yet 53% of white women voted for him. How can ANY woman be voting for him? Whether a woman is right-wing fascist or whatever, surely what Trump says should prevent any woman from voting for him? His sexism ought to preclude him from candidacy but 53% of white women don’t care.
I immediately feel like attacking the women’s movement. Some of the more aggressive women do not hesitate to attack men over chauvinism yet 53% of white women voted for Trump. In much the same way that I feel shame over the way white people are LINK, I feel every liberal white woman should be ashamed at this state of affairs.
You 53%, I do not understand you.
I feel like shouting at liberal women to get out there and do something, but I have no right. I have the right to point this out and ask questions of the movement. This man, Trump, would never have been elected in the 60s – at the start of feminism, now 50 years later he is elected. Black people note his racism and he gets no votes, 53% of white women do not care about his blatant sexism. Serious work needs doing, there has to be a level of complacency amongst liberal women.
I note the difference between the two feminisms – reformism and revolutionary – that I I discussed earlier this year . No revolutionary could vote for Trump, does reform allow you to vote for Trump if you get more salary?
I want to compare two women – Hillary and Thatcher. To me Thatcher stood for all that is wrong, I see 1979 (with Reagan) as the end of possible change gained from the hippies and the beginning of an age of right wing oppression where people just worked for money – wage-slaves. Yet many feminists lauded Maggie because of her “power in a man’s world”. Compare Hillary to Maggie, she has competence, established herself in a man’s world, whilst I disagree with what she represents – neoliberal exploitation – as a woman she is a political icon. Yet 53 % of white women did not vote for her.
You 53%, I do not understand you.
White people should be ashamed, white women – 53% – should be more ashamed.
I supported feminism in the 60s because of violence towards women – and how for some women were perceived as little more than a kitchen chattel. The Beyonce image of feminism means little to me, her succesful image is reformist rather than revolutionary, but my studies convinced me that if body image is such a prison that Karen Carpenter can die from anorexia and Jane Fonda felt she had body issues this was enough to say despite my personal interactions the struggle needs to continue. 53% white women voting for Trump shows me that the struggle of the women’s movement has hardly begun.
53% white women need to feel shame.