Wow. In a shock to the world, Donald Trump has upset expectations and become the next president of the United States.
Millions of Americans took the presidential election as an opportunity to express their desire for change. This result was about much more than Donald Trump. Most of his voters believe he is unqualified and lacks the temperament for the role. The people used him as a vehicle to send a message to the American elite. The masses may not know exactly what they want, but they are clear that they want the old establishment to get out of their way.
The vote for Trump was a vote against Washington and other institutions. But this revolt against the elite is not limited to politics. The vote for Trump represents a broadside against the cultural elite as well as the political elite. For more than a decade, the people in the ‘flyover’ country, the working class, have been made the butt of jokes. This patronising attitude carried over into the election campaign, and the turning point came when Hillary Clinton wrote off millions of Trump backers as ‘deplorables’. In response, people embraced the term, and proudly wore t-shirts bearing the words ‘I’m a deplorable’. This vote was their payback.
As the results were coming in, Democrats started to blame Clinton’s loss on hordes of racists, sexists and assorted stupid people across the country. Economist and New York Times columnist Paul Krugman tweeted: ‘I truly thought I knew my country better than it turns out I did. I have warned that we could become a failed state, but didn’t realise that it wasn’t just the radicalism of the GOP, but deep hatred in a large segment of the population.’ Writer Jill Filipovic tweeted: ‘Eight years of a black president followed by a female president was too much of a threat to white male authority.’ Such condescending views of Middle Americans are exactly what’s driving support for Trump; liberals doubling-down on their prejudices in the aftermath of the election will only make divisions worse.
We at spiked didn’t want Trump to become president. He is an illiberal demagogue, and now a disaster waiting to happen in the White House. It is deeply sobering to think that someone so incompetent could lead the world’s superpower.