Sunday, June 26, 2016

#MakeAmericaGreatAgain! Don't vote for Trump

We, citizens of the United States of America, stand at a unique point in history. A point which none of the political pundits would have predicted, least of all David Cameron.

We should pay attention to the cautionary tale of the Brexit referendum because it offers obvious insights for our own election.

Brexit was driven by the reactivity of the mostly rural, too often neglected, British citizenry to years of austerity. It's not really their fault. Many politicians, pundits, and media directed attention away from years of deprivation by manipulating emotions towards anger and blame of a largely innocent and struggling population when the government's and economic establishment's own credibility and failure to listen and see to its citizenry is the issue.

Several insightful articles, worth reading, have been written in recent days.

All of them speak to the similarity of the Brexit and Trump campaigns.

I particularly appreciate Will Davies' Thoughts on the Sociology of Brexit for its echo of The Politics of Resentment by Katherine Cramer. Both describe how an urban-centric corporate political establishment has alienated a substantial portion of citizenry.

Other insightful commentary:

Brexit is only the Latest Proof of the Insularity and Failure of Western Establishment Institutions by Glenn Greenwald

Brexit will reconfigure the UK economy by Martin Wolf

For a complete disaster report at The Financial Times:

What part of the message are the Democratic National Committee, Hiliary Clinton and even Bernie Sanders missing? In what way can our government and the corporations behind it put people before the interests of competitive capitalism for accelerating profit?

People around the world are feeling the stresses of globalization and interdependence. These changes happened gradually under our noses as a function of industrialization. Corporations sought cheaper labor and financial perks. Crucially, closing national borders will fall far short of extricating nations from the complex web of interdependence that has been built over the years. It's only an excuse for further spending via increased militarization (think robots!). Most corporations and governments are more focused on protecting information and assets than people. The attempt to fortify national borders only serves to distract from the largest long term threat to human kind — the climate crisis.

We are all on the same lifeboat — the planet Earth. As the Brexit vote demonstrates, in every country, there are people that have been treading water for years.

People across the country need real alternatives. It's difficult for voters to believe in and invest their efforts in long term changes when their short term livelihoods have been under threat for such a long time.

The time to speak to and provide alternatives on both sides of the political party divide is now.

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