There was Donald Trump standing on the platform center stage at the Quicken Loans Arena basking in the moment the highest paid minds in media and politics told us over and over he would never have.
What accounts for his improbable rise and what does it say about where our nation is really headed?
Just how did our corporate news media miss the amassing of the millions of mostly angry white voters with their pitchforks and torches that helped Trump stage a hostile takeover of the GOP?
Could it be that the elites of both parties and their media stenographers ignored the plight of poor whites for so long that they missed the explosion in their numbers – even as they marched on the town square?
Certainly people of such poor education and such low social circumstance could not impact the politics of a nation so wordily and wealthy as America.
Perhaps the oversight is understandable.
After all with no disposable income worth targeting there was no reason to run any detailed analytics on poor whites unless you were selling beer – guns and bibles.
The reality is that under the current Democratic occupant of the White House and a Republican-controlled Congress poverty has exploded and expanded from its traditional urban and rural concentrations into America’s white suburbs.
This precipitous deterioration happened as beltway leaders of both parties put their partisan gamesmanship and personal enrichment ahead of attending to the increasing ranks of the nation’s poor and struggling working class of all colors.
(ed: of course this has also happened here in new zealand..
both of the major parties – the tories (from whom you expect such behaviour) and the labour (in name only) party – from whom you expect better..
(but such expectations having been dashed for three + decades – since the neoliberal/rightwing revolution that was rogernomics..)
both of these parties have steadfastedly turned their backs on the poorest in new zealand..
…for the really really poor – until the recent pittance-$20 increase for (some) families – with more clawback-hooks than a sealords-long-line – income-support for the poorest had not risen in 42 years..(!)
helen clark sat there for nine long years – crying crocodile tears for ‘the struggling middle class’ – and doling out welfare payments to people earning over $100,000 a yr.
but for the poorest/those doing it hardest..?
not a fucken red-cent..eh..?
(and i am not even going near how she also stigmatised/ostracised/persecuted those poorest families/people..
(who can forget her ‘deserving’ and ‘undeserving’ families wedge/sermons/screeds.?..)
..in fact given her record with the poorest of/in new zealand – when it was announced clark was going to the united nations to care for the worlds’ poor..?
..i actually was felled by an irony-overdose – had to be taken to a&e..
so these dysfunctional (except for themselves) political-class-elites from both main parties have brung us to this:
world-beating rates of inequality/child-poverty..
..and the neoliberals’-dream – a low-wage/high-cost economy (capitalisms’ sweet-spot)..
and as in america – this out of control neoliberal nightmare foisted on new zealand has also now seeped through to the working-poor..
people slaving their guts out in those shit low-wage jobs – and yet still not being able to feed/house themselves/their families – and being reduced to living in cars..
young people facing futures of shit-jobs/student-debt/ inability to buy million dollar/wooden-shack ‘homes’..
and for those people who think i am being too harsh on labour – consider that their policies towards the poorest were/are little different from those of key/the tories..
..labour in 2014 election-campaign bowed their knee to their neoliberal-consensus – and confirmed they would – like the tories – only raise benefits for the poorest by the rate of inflation..
in essence – they promised to do nothing..
so..this brings us to where we are now..
..and if both of those parties think they will be immune from the howls of outrage/rebellion seen in britain/united states (and many countries in europe..) ..come the election in 2017..
..they are dreaming/deluding themselves/in denial..
and the only question being who will ride that whirlwind here..?
..will winston peters be able to do a nigel farage..?..(as he must dream/hope)..and be able to churn that resentment with/by his racism/xenophobia etc..?..and turn it into votes..?
..or will those long-neglected voters turn to the left..?
..will the greens and/or a revitalised mana party be finally seen as the parties of change they both undoubtedly are…and will they reap those rewards..?
this we will find out in 2017..
but of those two major parties it is labour who faces the most damage from this/any repayment for their decades of neglect…
and they ignore this fact at their peril…