Friday, 29 June 2018

Popular Nationalism and the Threat of Trump.

Many people are rightly alarmed and worried by the rise of nationalism across the planet, especially with the antics of President Trump who appears to be on the road into turning the world's military superpower into a fascist regime. Honestly, I’m not depressed. In my youth I took it upon myself to study Nazism. In the 1990s I discovered and challenged The National Alliance on the prototype of the Internet, the same organisation that influenced and inspired the murderer of Jo Cox MP. The madness of Brexit and the refusal of any fact-based evidence to be taken on board is the English manifestation of this nationalism. Even the nationalism of our own dear SNP here in Scotland, who is very much on the fluffy end of the scale, appear on the same spectrum because ultimately all nationalism is defined by claims of oppression: both by those who claim to seek escape from it and by those who, in claiming to be oppressed by foreigners, seek to impose their will upon others. 

I’m ready for this fight. Since the end of the Second World War, the prevailing wisdom has been for advised democracy. Why is democracy advised? Because most people just want to get on with living. People think about politics in the most case on principle rather than the facts. 

Popular movements appeal directly to emotion and seek to undermine any fact that does not fit in with their narrative. With his constant tweeting, Trump wishes to avoid any debate at all, instead slamming together a narrative that the USA is being manipulated and overrun by foreigners, whose sole purpose for existence is, apparently, the undermining of America. Only this morning Trump claims that the European Union was created to undermine the USA. Obviously it was that and nothing to do with the propensity for European nations to wage murderous wars against each other and destroy the continent twice within forty years. No, it was obviously an anti-American plot from the beginning. 

The trouble is, starved of facts, a sizeable majority of people are buying into the nationalist message. With the experiment of the separation and interment of immigrant children that occurred during June, Trump has now confirmed that federal agencies will follow brutal and inhumane orders without question. Everything is now in place for the ending of democracy in the USA. 

The danger is now that people will vote away four hundred years of struggle by which any citizen can stand up and pursue their rights as an individual human, able to face up to the power of government. We are losing our democracy and our human rights to those who would deny the rule of law or any objectivity. Power is the only good to such people. This means that, to people who back this drive, you too will be the victim of the power you now support. There will be no recourse because facts will be denied and laws ignored.

It is time for all to put aside nationalism because it is a pathway towards hell. All who would oppose fascism must stand up for evidence-led, fact-based advised democracy.