Despite the apparent change in administrations, with the first of the baby-boomer presidents denied a repeat for a second consecutive term, it is important to define just what Trumpism is, for this political perversion may have a shelf life beyond its namesake.
Trumpism is an antithesis to the founding principles of the American Republic; or, what Noah Webster once characterized during the period of the Constitutional Convention as an Empire of Reason.
It is lending reality to Benjamin Franklin’s prognostication offered in Philadelphia in 1787:
I agree to this Constitution with all its faults, if they are such: because I think a General Government necessary for us, and there is no form of Government but what may be a blessing to the People if well-administered; and I believe farther it is likely to be well-administered for a Course of Years and can only end in despotism as other forms have done before it, when the People shall become so corrupted as to need Despotic Government, being incapable of any other.
The Mobocracy that is Trumpism is that of a magistracy of illiberalism –Boss Rule instead of Rule of Law. The ascension to the nation’s highest office of a base-born knave was hardly possible without that collective intellectual dystrophy that is deeply ingrained in a base of ignorance to which the Gauleiter from Queens owes his existence.
It is a movement oblivious to the notion that the hallmark of true liberty is a functioning system of representative government, which is the true despotism against tyranny. The preservation of legitimate elective politics solicits no compromise to the founding political principle of this Nation, Consent of the Governed, to the extent that all those who value same are wedded to its preservation; obligated to not only profess same, but exercise that Revolutionary Right afforded to them by the Founders, and as put forth in this Nation’s Article of Faith, The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America: But when the long train of Abuses and Usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object, evince a Design to reduce them [that is, the people] under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government and provide new guardians for their security.
Trumpism, then, is the reflection of a nation, once regarded as that gold standard of representative government, but which over the decades, has lost its luster. Same is the result of a poverty of regard for representative government –by the people, enough of whom saw to the ascension to power of a smaller than life Chancellor from Gotham, as opposed to the alternative, a poisonous defective made available from the competing faction known as Democrats, another grouping –who like Republicans –seem ready, willing and able to sell out the Constitution for the benefit of their corrupted donors, rendering both complicit to the demise of the Republic. For political, economic and social freedom is not possible when rapacious monopolies control the money and government in an effort to . . . Make Society Work for the Few.
The reckless optimism borne of Trumpism is the result of the brilliant use of fear and ignorance, weaponized as they are to mold the collective mind for the obedience of an easily channeled dutiful base.
Trumpism, then, is not the constable of public opinion, nor is it the servant of the people –as opposed to having an unquenchable desire to be their master. The result is L’etats c’est moi, I am the State! “I know more than the generals,” “I know the problems and only I can fix them.” And in the wake of Ji Jinping’s success in achieving an unlimited term of office as president of China, the observation by America’s Duce of the Dumb was, “Gee that’s great; we ought to try that here.”
Such is the essence of the Fuhrerprinzip; which is a facet of that political disease which has gripped this nation . . . the lack of a functioning system of representative government.
Mark Albertson is a writer, history teacher and member of the Greater New Haven Peace Council.