So, we don’t have to take note of this idiot then, do we?

The neoliberal era in the United States ended with a neofascist bang. The political triumph of Donald Trump shattered the establishments in the Democratic and Republican parties – both wedded to the rule of Big Money and to the reign of meretricious politicians.

The Bush and Clinton dynasties were destroyed by the media-saturated lure of the pseudo-populist billionaire with narcissist sensibilities and ugly, fascist proclivities. The monumental election of Trump was a desperate and xenophobic cry of human hearts for a way out from under the devastation of a disintegrating neoliberal order – a nostalgic return to an imaginary past of greatness.

White working- and middle-class fellow citizens – out of anger and anguish – rejected the economic neglect of neoliberal policies and the self-righteous arrogance of elites. Yet these same citizens also supported a candidate who appeared to blame their social misery on minorities, and who alienated Mexican immigrants, Muslims, black people, Jews, gay people, women and China in the process.

Super, three paragraphs of buzzword bingo and not a thing to say.

Guess we can all ignore Cornel West then, eh?

52 thoughts on “So, we don’t have to take note of this idiot then, do we?”

  1. “Cornel West is an American philosopher, author, critic, actor, civil rights activist and leading member of Democratic Socialists of America. Professor of the Practice of Public Philosophy at Harvard University.”

    “The bulk of West’s work focuses on the role of race, gender, and class in American society and the means by which people act and react to their “radical conditionedness.” West draws intellectual contributions from multiple traditions, including Christianity, the black church, Marxism, neopragmatism, and transcendentalism”

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cornel_West

  2. So Much For Subtlety

    Yet these same citizens also supported a candidate who appeared to blame their social misery on minorities, and who alienated Mexican immigrants, Muslims, black people, Jews, gay people, women and China in the process.

    So he is not all bad then. You know, when we are finished being polite, when we are talking confidentially among friends, the spokescreatures for pretty much all those groups have gone out of their way to insult, bully and demean people like me and mine. We could argue about whether we deserve it or not. Frankly I don’t care. Nor do I care if these precious little dears have had their feelings hurt. They don’t give a f**k about me and I don’t see why I should give a f**k about them.

    I feel mildly sorry about the Mexicans. At least I like their food and being illegal they tend to shut up. Maybe the Chinese. On a good day.

    Guess we can all ignore Cornel West then, eh?

    Did anyone ever take Cornel West seriously? The man is a buffoon.

  3. Ah! He doesn’t like Trump. But he’s profoundly in love with himself which sort of makes up for it.

    It would be fun to get Him and Murphy stuck in a lift together.

  4. This guy does understand that the US has had maybe *one* (maaaaaybe to – Reagan/Carter) President who could be considered ‘neoliberal’ in the last oh . . . 85 years, at least.

    W Bush was certainly not a neoliberal – he was a ‘neocon’. People like fucking *Cornel West* labeled him as such.

    Neither Clinton was a neoliberal. Obama was not a neoliberal.

  5. The Inimitable Steve

    Kek.

    a candidate who appeared to blame their social misery on minorities, and who alienated Mexican immigrants, Muslims, black people, Jews, gay people, women

    A candidate who won more black and Hispanic votes than Mitt Romney and John McCain (and very likely more gay votes too, based on his enthusiastic gay fan club), won the American Israeli vote, got nearly half the woman vote and over half the white woman vote, and even had his own Muslims For Trump followers.

    This neofascism business is brilliant!

  6. Also – Trump didn’t ‘blame their social misery on minorities’. He pointed out some legitimate (even if, IMO, way overblown) problems with heavy Mexican illegal immigration and some definitely overblown problems with such.

    And even I, a fairly strong supporter of open borders, recognize that the Muslim issue complicates the hell out of that stance.

    And I don’t understand why he would particularly have alienated Blacks, Jews, Gays (hell, he’s the most openly pro-gay GOP President we’ll have had in my lifetime).

  7. Bloke in North Dorset

    Via Nick Drew at [email protected] this is an excellent read:

    Trump made gains among blacks. He made gains among Latinos. He made gains among Asians. The only major racial group where he didn’t get a gain of greater than 5% was white people. I want to repeat that: the group where Trump’s message resonated least over what we would predict from a generic Republican was the white population.

    Nor was there some surge in white turnout. I don’t think we have official numbers yet, but by eyeballing what data we have it looks very much like whites turned out in equal or lesser numbers this year than in 2012, 2008, and so on.

    ..

    Stop crying wolf. God forbid, one day we might have somebody who doesn’t give speeches about how diversity makes this country great and how he wants to fight for minorities, who doesn’t pose holding a rainbow flag and state that he proudly supports transgender people, who doesn’t outperform his party among minority voters, who wasn’t the leader of the Salute to Israel Parade, and who doesn’t offer minorities major cabinet positions. And we won’t be able to call that guy an “openly white supremacist Nazi homophobe”, because we already wasted all those terms this year.

  8. I don’t know him well enough to be certain but I suspect that Trump doesn’t give a rat’s arse what colour, religion, nationality or sexual orientation you are provided you are prepared to obey the law and work hard, particularly if you are prepared to work hard for him.

    If you are weighed down by bias to the point it affects your decision making it’s not easy to be a successful businessman.

  9. Flatcap Army

    Having read that Wikipedia entry about Cornel West, it’s hard to see what academic qualifications he has to be a professor of philosophy. He attended classes by Nozick, studied Near Eastern languages and focussed on African American studies. He sounds like a race hustler.

    And this is revealing:

    “In 2000, economist and former U.S. Treasury Secretary Lawrence Summers became president of Harvard. Soon after, Summers held a private meeting with West, where he reportedly rebuked West for missing too many classes, contributing to grade inflation, neglecting serious scholarship, and spending too much time on his economically profitable projects.”

  10. Andrew C

    He’s not a particularly successful businessman to be fair. (Yes, he’s a billionaire, but he would have been better off putting his money in the index).

    OTOH, Trump’s basic message is “I am going to do what is good for America and for Americans”. Not White Americans, just Americans. So if you’re a foreigner, tough. But, Trump is there for LGBTQ, female, Hispanic, Jewish, Black Americans. This crap about fascism is just a weird elite falsehood about Trump.

  11. The Inimitable Steve

    And I don’t understand why he would particularly have alienated Blacks, Jews, Gays (hell, he’s the most openly pro-gay GOP President we’ll have had in my lifetime).

    It’s just rote denunciation, bullshit boilerplate.

    Trump went out of his way to get blacks, gays, latinos and women to vote for him.

    His one weird trick was the novel idea of asking for their votes, as if they were real people, or something! And astonishingly, it worked out better than his Republican predecessors’ strategy of awkwardly half-grovelling, half-patronising “outreach” which always gave the impression they were talking to strange alien creatures from the planet Offendatron.

    And despite (or because of) Trump’s wise stance against importing more kiddy-fiddling gay-bashing bomb-tossing clit-snippers from the unwashed anus of the Third World, a lot of Mo fans voted for him too. I guess because they don’t want more of That Sort Of Thing either.

    If you’re not sexistracisthomophobicliterallyHitler these days, you’re doing it wrong.

  12. Bloke in North Dorset

    “And I don’t understand why he would particularly have alienated Blacks, Jews, Gays (hell, he’s the most openly pro-gay GOP President we’ll have had in my lifetime).”

    Having read that link I gave above I’m starting to think that the reason the left hate him so much is that he is stealing their clothes. I missed this from the NYT and apparently it wasn’t scripted:

    Trump walked on stage in Greeley, Colorado to a large cheering crowd when he spotted a rainbow flag in the audience. As the music blasted through the speakers, Mr. Trump pointed to a supporter as if to ask if he could see his flag and then motioned for a campaign worker to help retrieve the LGBT symbol of equality from the attendee.
    Within seconds, Mr. Trump was walking around the platform with the rainbow flag in his hands and moments later unfurled it in full display. You could see a huge smile on Mr. Trump’s face as he walked to both sides of the stage to proudly hold up the rainbow flag announcing support from the gay and lesbian community.

    Trump campaign spokesman Jason Miller told me, “Mr. Trump is campaigning to be President for ALL Americans and was proud to carry the ‘LGBT for Trump‘ rainbow flag on stage in Greeley, CO yesterday.

    and just a bit more:

    I work in mental health. So far I have had two patients express Trump-related suicidal ideation. One of them ended up in the emergency room, although luckily both of them are now safe and well. I have heard secondhand of several more.

    Like Snopes, I am not sure if the reports of eight transgender people committing suicide due to the election results are true or false. But if they’re true, it seems really relevant that Trump denounced North Carolina’s anti-transgender bathroom law, and proudly proclaimed he would let Caitlyn Jenner use whatever bathroom she wanted in Trump Tower, making him by far the most pro-transgender Republican president in history.

    Reading that link if they replaced Trump with AN Other (Dem) the left would be falling over themselves to offer support.

  13. The Inimitable Steve

    He’s not a particularly successful businessman to be fair. (Yes, he’s a billionaire, but he would have been better off putting his money in the index).

    We’d be so much better off if businessmen never built anything and just invested in each others’ companies instead.

    Doing each others’ washing will make us rich, I tell you. Rich as Nazis!

  14. Cathy Newman having a spat with Milo Yiannopoulos is a fun five minutes.

    I can’t quite get my head around Steve Bannon and Breitbart being accusied of anti-semitism by the hysteriati since every breitbartist being pilloried by right-on interviewers seems to be jewish.

    Odd. But fun.

  15. North Dorset linked to the Slate Star Codex piece before I could. I honestly think it’s one of the most important things written on this election.

    The trouble with the way the Left have been bandying the words “FASCIST!” and “NAZI!” around for decades is that we finally need to distinguish between the two, and we can’t. Trump is borderline Fascist: he believes that the country’s problems can be solved by having the right Strong Man at the top directing and controlling everything: central planning embodied in one alpha male. He’s a capitalist Mussolini. But he is not remotely Nazi.

    And, you know, those of us of a libertarian bent know what the problems with Mussolini were. But the Left don’t. Take away the alliance with Hitler, and they’ve got nothing.

    With luck, Trump’s business background and love of capitalism will stop him trying to centrally micromanage the economy. Which would mean no road to serfdom, leaving just principled liberty-based objections to the Strong Man. Not ideal, but it’s hardly distopian, is it?

  16. He lost me at the first “neoliberal”; instant red card.

    “reportedly rebuked West for missing too many classes, contributing to grade inflation, neglecting serious scholarship, and spending too much time on his economically profitable projects.”

    NEOLIBERAL!!!

  17. > every breitbartist being pilloried by right-on interviewers seems to be jewish.

    Is there no Jew the Left won’t call a Nazi?

    I know, I’ve said that before. I’ve said it dozens of times lately. Sadly, it keeps being apposite.

    A colleague sent me this link. He was making the point that the hysterical screaming about the Klan is nonsense, because people like Bannon are actually intellectuals, which is true. But he still thinks it’s “sinister”. Why? Where’s the sinister bit? I read it, and it all seems pretty reasonable. I disagree with lots of it, but not because it’s moonbat stuff. And, other than their Pavlovian reaction to any mention of Christianity being a good thing, where’s the bit the Left might object to?

  18. The issue is that West is pouring –or pissing, your choice—his poison into the ears of the young and dumb. Who will (and already are) be about creating a Marxist timebomb to blast the future flat.

    We should not just ignore him.

    Purge,purge,purge and purge again.

  19. TIS

    If Trump put his money in the stock market, someone who was a better businessman could have invested in higher return projects*. Possibly lower than the realised return (demand and supply), but higher than Trump himself managed.

    * So they would build stuff, just not what Trump built.

  20. ken said:
    “He’s not a particularly successful businessman to be fair. (Yes, he’s a billionaire, but he would have been better off putting his money in the index).”

    I thought we looked at that claim here months ago, and it didn’t hold up. From memory it only works if you:
    – ignore all the money he’s taken out of his businesses to spend (and pay his ex wives),
    – ignore the tax he’d have to pay if he’d invested in the index, and
    – assume that he managed to invest into the index and sell out at the perfectly optimal moments.

  21. The political triumph of [X] shattered the establishments in the Democratic and Republican parties – both wedded to the rule of Big Money and to the reign of meretricious politicians.

    That’s a bad thing how exactly?

  22. hell, he’s the most openly pro-gay GOP President we’ll have had in my lifetime

    Indeed, but the gay rights lobby has doubled-down on calling him homophobic, largely based on what his running mate *might* do. These idiots haven’t learned a fucking thing.

  23. jgh,

    That’s what Michael Moore is getting so bent out of shape about. He has been banging on for years about the stitch-up at the top of American politics and the abandonment of the rust-belt. And now the guy who has come along to fix it is Donald Trump. It would take a heart of stone not to laugh. Oh how the left wanted Sanders to be their saviour!

  24. When you have been able to get away with shouting abuse at your opponents for decades instead of arguing with them, you forget how to argue and your accusations become meaningless.

  25. “three paragraphs of buzzword bingo and not a thing to say.”

    I think you’re implying that he dindu nuffin. Very naughty of you, Tim.

  26. ‘This crap about fascism is just a weird elite falsehood about Trump.’

    10-4. They don’t even know what it means. It’s a cheap pejorative that they like the sound of.

    ‘He’s a capitalist Mussolini. But he is not remotely Nazi.’

    Rightly or wrongly, I have believed for a long time that Nazis are fascists who demonize their opposition. Even though I’ve seen films of Mussolini on a balcony demonizing the opposition.

    I completely disagree with Trump being a fascist; I see him as anti-fascist, wanting to clamp down on the Federal government’s autocratic intrusion on American life.

    The Federal government has 800,000 more employees than it should.

    ‘alienated Mexican immigrants, Muslims, black people, Jews, gay people, women and China in the process.’

    I’m an old time Republican – perhaps republican is more correct. Freedom and liberty are for everyone. Group politics is evil. The Trump message is he is going to get government out of the way of prosperity. Note no group in that message. The Left is so wed to group politics, they find that message offensive.

  27. ken,

    You remind me of the old joke about two economists walking down the street: one says “Look, someone’s dropped a £50 note – I’m going to have that.”

    To which his companion replies “Don’t be daft: if there was a £50 note, someone would’ve already picked it up.”

    I didn’t say it was a good joke.

  28. The voting numbers just don’t support what West and others like him are saying.

    Trump won about 60 million votes. McCain won about 60 million in 2008; Romney won about 60 million in 2012. That is consistency.

    Clinton also won about 60 million votes. Compare Obama won almost 70 million in 2008 and about 66 million in 2012. Looks to me that Clinton lost between SIX MILLION and TEN MILLION Democrat votes in 2016.

    Clinton lost the election because her own party deserted her. Millions of Democrats stayed home rather than vote for Clinton.

    West is not just mistaken . . . he’s boring.

  29. John Fembup

    The so-called racists who voted in Trump were the people who gave Obama the presidency in 2008. Obama was the first “change” president. He was a liar and an incompetent, but he was elected on the basis that he promised the poor whites hope and change. They didn’t vote for Obama in the same numbers in 2012, but Hillary lost them outright since her idea of “change” was a female president – to which the poor people said “WTF?”

    This is why I find the monstering of Trump supporters truly vile.

  30. Tim, I’m surprised you’d give Cornell West more than a moment’s thought. Nobody over here bothers with even that.

    West is the Far Left’s favored House Negro, and as such, is ignored as much by Progressives and Liberals as he is by Conservatives and Moderates. He runs his mouth in interviews nobody watches and pops out books that nobody reads.

    In short, he’s a more flamboyant Noam Chomsky, but without Chomsky’s over-arching paranoia…

  31. Bloke in Costa Rica

    West writes like he’s typing with one hand while the other is flicking through a thesaurus. What a lot of overwrought rubbish.

    Trump is doing some scarily smart things right now. The lobbyist ban, while almost certainly meaningless in reality, is very good optics. If Mike Flynn becomes NSA then that’s excellent. His list of SCOTUS nominees is top-notch. I have great faith in Mitch McConnell’s ability to fuck it up, but so far, very well done.

  32. In a long line of American logorrhea.
    Think Walt Whitman, Allen Ginsberg, Bob Dylan…
    Don’t expect it to mean anything.

  33. @ken
    “If Trump put his money in the stock market, someone who was a better businessman could have invested in higher return projects*.”

    If you do actually mean the stock market, here, sorry but no. If he buys stocks, the money’s already been invested. He’d be buying from those already made the investment – if at x number sales/purchases remove. In the sense you imply, the stock market is actually a zero sum game.
    One, of course, could say that by buying stocks he was increasing the value of those stocks. (demand pushing up price in a finite market) Thus enabling companies coming to the market to benefit from an enhanced placing price. But all of Trump’s billions would be trivial compared with the total value of stocks issued. So a minute percentage of a cent on each dollar raised.

  34. And, to add, for Trump to be buying shares, someone must be selling them. So Trump’s money just gets distributed amongst a large number of sellers. (What they do with the money is up to them. But there’s no reason to believe they’d use it to create businesses. Or they’d already be creating businesses, not investing on the stock market)
    For it is a zero sum game.

  35. “Hillary lost them outright since her idea of “change” was a female president – to which the poor people said “WTF?””

    A perfect example of modern feminism. Clinton and her allies really believed that replacing a 0.1% man (in the sense of being part of the ‘One Percent’) with a 0.001% woman WOULD MAKE ALL THE DIFFERENCE. That was all that was needed.

    Several million people, of which about half were women, disagreed.

  36. Tim Newman said:
    “That’s what Michael Moore is getting so bent out of shape about. He has been banging on for years about the stitch-up at the top of American politics and the abandonment of the rust-belt. And now the guy who has come along to fix it is Donald Trump. It would take a heart of stone not to laugh. Oh how the left wanted Sanders to be their saviour!”

    And even better, it was Clinton who stopped Sanders!

  37. Bloke in North DorsetS,

    BiS,

    There are second order affects. If a company’s stock price goes up it may lower interest rates on existing Bonds and bank loans, or equally going down can raise them.

  38. Rob: Clinton and her allies really believed that replacing a 0.1% man (in the sense of being part of the ‘One Percent’)

    I’m glad you clarified that. Although given the photos of the president on his bicycle the alternative reading doesn’t seem too far-fetched.

  39. I thought that the only colour Trump cares about is the colour of the money and why wouldn’t he support gays as the pink dollar has been seen as worth chasing as a market sector, had some friends who worked cruise ships that said they even do all gay cruises and that even the regular cruises have LGBT events

  40. “Trump went out of his way to get blacks, gays, latinos and women to vote for him.”

    Yeah, course he was. Just like I’m always going out of my to get SMFS to like me.

  41. BiND & BiS,

    Most corporate bonds have a fixed coupon rate; the yield to the purchaser is a function of price variation.

  42. Bloke in North Dorset,

    When doing some technical due diligence work for banks and other investors in the telecoms sector I cam across a couple of cases where the proposed loans that would have a covenant that said that if the share price dropped below a certain price the interest rate would rise. Maybe those were exceptions, I just assumed it was a general case.

  43. So Much For Subtlety

    Ironman – “Yeah, course he was. Just like I’m always going out of my to get SMFS to like me.”

    Your sexual preferences are your own business Rusty. We will still love you anyway.

  44. So Much For Subtlety

    In between Trump and Flopsy’s sexual fantasies about me, I think we are missing the real point.

    Cornell West has been courted by two of the most important universities in the Western world. This facile buffoon walked from one Ivy League bastion to another. Despite no academic credentials of note. They could have employed *any* Black person in the world. Literally any. In the whole world. But they settled for this asinine blow hard.

    Tell me again how it is persistent discrimination that is holding Black people back. Tell me again how there is a wealth of human talent just hidden, waiting to be discovered once we overcome the painful legacies of the past.

  45. BiND,

    Sounds a bit more like loan covenants rather than regular bonds. One can, of course, issue whatever debt someone’s willing to buy, but traded corporates tend to be fixed income on par, with secondary price determining yield – not unlike gilts, IIRC.

  46. @BiND Nemo
    With any investment, the price discounts the likelihood of it performing as per the writing on the tin. So with fixed interest, it’s discounting the likelihood the coupon will actually be paid. In the vast majority of cases the discount rate is marginal, because there’s no reason to believe the commitment won’t be met. But it’s still there.

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