“Rightwing” Populism: An Infantile Disorder

Commenter: First of all, you are lumping all conservatives into the dinosaur Republican bucket.

Trump, for all his many flaws, is not a card-carrying PMC promoter or neocon. His support base isn’t oil tycoons and CEOs, it is the the rural population, the small business owner, etc etc.

He is not the Republican party but he definitely has an outsize role in it; similarly the dinosaur Republicans still dominate some of the RNCC structures but don’t dominate the electoral outcomes any more. The presence of a growing number of populist Republican senators and house reps is proof of that.

So while I agree that the Republicans overall are not clearly pro-worker – it is far from clear that they could not be given that there are people in it who are not dinosaur cons and/or neocons. This doesn’t mean the Republican party will change; I said the opportunity was there but the elephant still has to drink.

And another:

It is not clear that this is “social engineering” so much as typical “winner take all” dynamics.

“Winner Take All” dynamics are why you always end up with 2 sides in such scenarios because the population winds up splitting into the 2 most powerful messages. The idiocy of the Democrat party today is shifting from Working Class Champions as its previous generation core message to “Diversity” – thus alienating its original power base in favor of its new PMC supplemented by the African Americans.

These morons fail to understand that Bill Clinton doing this was fine because the Democrats were still. more or less, able to count on the working class for support due to historical reasons but that ongoing betrayal of working class interests in favor of their new PMC/bankster/MIC donors was going to lead to erosion of its base. Note this affected the dinosaur Republicans as well: a significant number of PMC/bankster/MIC types switched over; the idiocy of the dinosaur Republicans is that they fail to understand that the role of Working Class Champion is there for the taking.

RFK Jr is trying to bring the Democrats back to their roots, but he is going to fail just as Sanders and Gabbard failed, and for exactly the same reasons (DNCC fuckery).

My response: Here we have the classic problem that so many regular Americans think that Trump is a different king of Republican – he’s not for the corporations and the  very rich but instead for the average guy and the workers. I think Trump has worked very hard to consolidate this image.

On the other hand, all Republicans say they are for the workers in various ways: the opposition to illegal immigration and mass immigration in general is sold to the public on a pro-worker basis. The Republicans have had to go against their donors in the rich and corporations who are wildly pro-immigrant in order to take this stance. I agree that this part of their project is indeed pro-worker, but the whole rest of their project is not. Their endless efforts to cut Social Security and Medicare testify to that.

“Rightwing” Populism: An Infantile Disorder*

Trump is a rightwing populist. The thing about rightwing populism is it isn’t really pro-worker. It’s a sort of “fake populism” in that sense. The Mussolini and Hitler regimes were populists of this sort. In fact, rightwing populism has a very strong tendency to become fascist.

Nevertheless, it appeals to the petit bourgeois (middle class) by telling them that their enemies are both the idle rich above them and the similarly idle, listless, criminal, and parasitical poor below them. A lot of middle class people feel they are being squeezed from both sides like this. Nevertheless, I’m not aware of a successful “middle class state” in the world today or ever that attacked both the rich and the poor. Someone can enlighten me if I’m wrong here.

Rich Boys North of Richmond”: A Rightwing Populist Song

A good example of this sort of rightwing populism in a redneck sense is the recent country music hit, “Rich Boys North of Richmond,” in which the singer attacks the rich, who he wrongly claims are the federal government (rich boys north of Richmond) and the poor (lines talk about 300 pound welfare leeches).

All of the Republican hopefuls have rallied around this song. De Satanist (De Santis) agreed that the “rich elites” are in fact the federal government itself, not him and his uber-wealthy buddies. Vivek Ramaswami, another rightwing populist, has chimed in.

Their solution is not only a war on the poor – a perennial task of the Republican Party – but an additional war on the “rich” (the federal government), which would entail gutting it. He also complains about taxes, a continuous middle class complaint that the Republicans have always championed as pro-worker. The truth is that most workers get a lot more in government services than the pay in taxes. The upper middle class and wealthy do not, of course, so they rightly see taxes a ripoff.

Typically, rightwing populism is the politics of the confused. The elites pushing it are not confused at all and tend to know what they are doing, which is selling the workers a shitburger and claiming it’s a filet mignon steak. The ruling class is typically very smart and it’s nothing if not devious.

The workers who go along with it are just politically confused and spouting an incoherent politics because they are promoting something that not only does not benefit them but actively harms them. Unless you want to argue that workers of this sort are masochists (some US workers are actually like this), their politics is simply convoluted and insensible.

Good luck ever getting the Republican Party to be a pro-working class party. It is written in the very genes of the party that they are pro-rich, pro-business, and anti-working class. Class struggle is a thing. Class consciousness is a think. Class interests are a thing. Have you guys even read one page of Marx? He used to be mandatory reading in Economics classes.

Sure, the Republican Party could change if being a party of the rich and the corporations was no longer enough to win elections, but that day seems far off.

And then the rich and the corporations would have no party to advocate for them, although in Europe, these groups have gone along with a variety of social democracy via a lack of other options. There may come a time when the Republican Party will have to go this route if they ever expect to win an election again.

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One thought on ““Rightwing” Populism: An Infantile Disorder”

  1. Watched a 6-part series on the Opioid (OxyContin) crisis. One of the villains was given a lesson on legacy. Legacy is how you’re remembered.

    Alfred Nobel invented dynamite and a newspaper gave him a premature obituary calling him a “merchant of death” but it was his brother who died. Alfred then set up the Nobel Peace Prize that he is more known for today.

    Carnegie and Frick sent children to the mines.

    Rockefeller poisoning half the planet was also mentioned.

    My take is neocons only have the image of respectability. Neolibs are just a bunch of snowflakes with their own unique issues, a total mess.

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