Wednesday, February 28, 2018
我每逢星期六就只能抓緊下課時間去買杯咖啡喝或許只 有三個人在排隊吧兩個奧巴桑加一個男人那兩個奧巴桑跟 櫃檯小姐說拿鐵會比卡布奇諾大杯嗎?對了刷什麼什麼卡是 不是可以打折?哦等等哦我有帶什麼什麼卡阿娘喂 2% 的折 扣溜我來找一下卡什麼星巴克又出全新系列的隨行卡了哦那 我先前那張隨行卡裡面的點數還能用嗎裡面還有一些點數咦 有折扣嗎朵拉你看星巴克新推出的隨行卡溜(開始討論新舊 隨行卡哪張比較美老天饒了我吧)要不要買張新的你覺得咧 你覺得這張顏色好看嗎小姐你們有別的顏色可以挑嗎好了朵 拉你要喝拿鐵還是卡布奇諾哎喲他們有聖誕節限定的噁心巴 拉摩卡溜這下好了已經有七個人被她們堵在後面了既然肢體 暴力在這個城市屬於犯法行為我就撤了我就兩步做一步直奔 Cama Café 去了我去你們的奧巴桑
我在 7-11 正打算買點薄荷糖就發現結帳隊伍裡連續排 了三個奧巴桑而且最前面的奧巴桑已經跟櫃檯小姐吵了起來 說便當不是要比結帳金額便宜個三塊錢嗎那奧巴桑邊指著發 票邊說啊櫥窗上的海報不是寫便當只要多少錢喂喂我難道得 在這邊聽她高談闊論不成何況她後面還有兩個奧巴桑在等我 沒吃薄荷糖又不會少塊肉閃人了閃人了
隔天,我們一行七人緊緊挨在擁擠的捷運車廂裡面對車 門站著。我們這群人稍後就會一片黑壓壓地蜂湧而出,準 備下車轉乘綠線。我身後有個奧巴桑,穿著花俏橘襯衫。奧 巴桑這邊推那邊擠,試圖從我們之中開出一條路— 就因為 她已經,呃,五十七歲了?她好像迫不及待要下車,好像等 不及要奔向某個地方的收銀機,隨便什麼地方的收銀機。她 拚了命想擠過去,那可惡至極的超大 LV 包的金色搭扣也開 始勾住我樸素包包上的黑色帶子。我也下車— 我嘟噥著中 文。她沒抬頭看,也沒搭腔,倒是露出若有似無的淺笑。她瞇起了眼在計算,過分嫣紅的嘴角嵌著一小滴晶瑩剔透的口水。我知道她腦子裡正轉著會員卡、折價券、禮券、贈品的畫面。八秒之後,她又試圖從我們之中穿過去,即使用膝蓋想也知道我們會在這站下車。我也下車!我又說了一遍。我也下車,奧巴桑!
Tuesday, February 27, 2018
A reader at Open Book 閱讀誌 writes:
As Nick says, 以下神秘連結點開有驚喜:
Rod Dreher's recent post "Are We Declining? Are We Falling?" raised in my mind the spectrum of possible Christian responses to our cultural meltdown. Dreher quotes his friend Rusty Reno and then, as often, begs to differ. I beg to differ even further.
In fact I don't have much patience with Reno. I read his pieces now and then, waiting for one to impress me as more than just fluff. It hasn’t happened yet. Reno is like the David Brooks of First Things--so middle of the road he’s not on any road at all. But the column inches keep piling up, don’t they?
Sorry if that doesn't seem very Christian. I've grown exasperated with pundits who can’t see the cliff we’re heading toward.
Rod’s paragraphs in answer to Reno raise the real questions. (I won't summarize Rod's piece here. Go read it and some of the comments if you want to follow.)
And then just in time to answer Rod comes dear "Kara", whose comment posted first, and who is just so confident in the findings of a decade of postmodern identity masturbation. Kara arrived to show the Maoists at the gates! One can hear her eagerness to get the ideological rehabilitation camps built ASAP for all those who don’t check her little boxes. And she may succeed too. These Maoists, this time, have all the assets of Silicon Valley and the trendy corporations ready to flatter and virtue-signal their Miley-level dogmas to the Win. Gulags in Nebraska! After which, Rusty Reno (and maybe David Brooks too) will be led away muttering: “But can’t we talk about this?”
Which is why, though I subscribe to Rod’s general thinking on the Benedict Option, on the cultural front, when I encounter these SJW hordes online or in public, I’m in favor of a more Milo Yiannopoulos brand of In Your Face Offend All Their Sensibilities Glee.
Yes, you heard that right. We need to offend their sensibilities (calmly, collectedly, and with glee) because 1) we need to remind them as often as possible that their sensibilities do not have the authority over us they imagine, and 2) their sensibilities are offensive to us.
Debate is dead with these people, and we really have nothing to lose. Except this war.
Check out my Idiocy, Ltd. and begin the long, hard reckoning.
Saturday, February 17, 2018
at Stoneman Douglas high school in Florida.
Yes, we need much more serious thinking and much more serious praying.
Our nation has had guns all along, but massacres committed by mentally disturbed nihilists--this is a phenomenon of the past couple decades. Why? Because we have lost thinking and praying. We have replaced them with radical individualism and a media-driven culture of chic fads. But we are social beings by nature, not loners; and we are spiritual beings that will not be satisfied by mere fads.
Sow anomie and reap death. This cycle will continue until we recognize our collective delusion for what it is. The freedom to make yourself into whatever thing you choose is not freedom, but a slavery to despair. It sets us into a frantic grasping after fevered dreams.
Our media now refer to us as "consumers" even more frequently than as "citizens". Which is telling. For us the act of choosing, and thus self-understanding, is now modeled on our nonstop consumption. It is sick. Because being is not something for which you shop, but rather a gift given by our Maker.
Until we return to the task of thinking through the shape of that gift, and reverencing the One by whom it is given, the cycle we're in will continue and deepen.
Check out my Idiocy, Ltd., and begin the long, hard reckoning.
Tuesday, February 13, 2018
Whether Rod Dreher’s reading of the alt-right in his recent piece is correct or not, he does a great job underlining why both alt-right and SJW left (mirror images in my mind) must be taken seriously. Dreher writes in response to a First Things piece by Matthew Rose. Rose:
The alt-right’s understanding of human identity is reductive, and its rejection of Christian solidarity premature. “Christianity provides an identity that is above or before racial and ethnic identity,” Richard Spencer complains. “It’s not like other religions that come out of a folk spirit.” Spencer is right that the baptismal covenant transcends our local loyalties and identities. It does not, however, eradicate them.
The alt-right seeks an account of what we are meant to be and serve as a people, invoking race as an emergency replacement for our fraying civic bonds. It is not alone; identity politics on the left is a response to the same erosion of belonging. But race is a modern category, and lacks theological roots. Nation, however, is biblical.
Dreher’s blog also drew my attention to Andrew Sullivan’s recent New York magazine editorial on the seriousness of the threat posed by the new left-liberal identity politics. Sullivan writes:
If elites believe that the core truth of our society is a system of interlocking and oppressive power structures based around immutable characteristics like race or sex or sexual orientation, then sooner rather than later, this will be reflected in our culture at large. What matters most of all in these colleges--your membership in a group that is embedded in a hierarchy of oppression--will soon enough be what matters in the society as a whole.
And, sure enough, the whole concept of an individual who exists apart from group identity is slipping from the discourse. The idea of individual merit--as opposed to various forms of unearned “privilege”--is increasingly suspect. The Enlightenment principles that formed the bedrock of the American experiment--untrammeled free speech, due process, individual (rather than group) rights--are now routinely understood as mere masks for “white male” power, code words for the oppression of women and nonwhites. Any differences in outcome for various groups must always be a function of “hate,” rather than a function of nature or choice or freedom or individual agency. And anyone who questions these assertions is obviously a white supremacist himself.
Sullivan begins his piece by remarking that he’s often told to calm down when he reports on the aggressive and patently insane SJW culture now dominating American campuses. According to Sullivan, readers often react with: “Why does it matter? These are students, after all. They’ll grow up once they leave their cloistered, neo-Marxist safe spaces. The real world isn’t like that.”
But Sullivan is having none of it. And he’s obviously correct in his assessment that the intellectual poison killing our campuses has also now begun infecting the corporate world. In short, it's not a matter of "kids who will eventually grow up and face the real world", but rather of a deeply entrenched identity politics that is disconnecting us from what is real and vibrant in our classical liberal tradition.
Most Americans have for many decades now taken higher education seriously mainly as a matter of job training. Doing so, they’ve let the whole humanities side of our universities fall to the extreme left. The results are what we have now. Universities churn out generations of young people primed to look at both our Constitution and American and Western culture generally only as embodiments of an oppressive system to be overthrown. They don’t see that these traditions are what have given them the freedoms they enjoy.
To treat job training as the ultimate meaning of higher education is thus to betray liberal education as a whole. It is to hand the reins of the culture to another. In this case, a dangerous intellectual clique.
Sullivan’s piece is good at underlining the issues, but I don't agree with his implied claim that the rising SJW insanity is somehow a "response" to Trumpian nastiness. No, it has been long in the making, and if anything the power of Trump's persona, his ability to garner millions of votes, is rather a belated response to 1) the Democratic Party's abandonment of average working folks, and 2) the outrageously shrill claims made by this new, pseudo-left identity politics.
And mark my words, in case you haven't already noticed. This 21st-century left has been raised up deeply suspicious of open debate and free inquiry. It is increasingly hostile, even proudly hostile, to both. The upshot? We are in the midst of an intellectual civil war, a war which pits a warmed-over, repurposed Marxism against our Constitution.
The parentage of this new pseudo-left is easily traced. I myself was more or less schooled in it in the late '80s and '90s, and saw then the potential threat. What I never guessed was that the Foucault/Frankfurt-School tradition would eventually be completely uncoupled from critiques of capitalism and imperialism and morph into a mere domestic politics of identity tribalism. Which is what it now is across the whole of our left-liberal press, from Slate and Salon all the way to the "paper of record" and WaPo.
If indeed the rise of the Alt-Right and the SJW left are just the first stage of a more general unraveling (and there's good reason to believe this may be the case) I see two possible outcomes. Either cultural Marxism continues to overplay its cards and brings about an aggressive counter-movement that crushes it at the ballot box and re-establishes something like more classical liberal norms. Or it keeps gaining force along with those opposed to it, and we end in something more like actual civil war.
A third outcome I don't even want to contemplate. Namely, that the hate-driven clowns of the pseudo-left finally control all the levers of power. That would be the end of the American republic as we've known it. Because, again, this movement doesn't give a damn about real individual rights or quaint things like the First Amendment. It is concerned only with a perverse kind of "group rights". But group rights don't work in our system of government. You'd have to look to Stalin's Russia to find a thoroughgoing implementation of "group rights".
Most white Christian conservatives like myself don’t want to see America fall into civil war or end up ruled by an alt-rightish nationalist authoritarianism. But at the same time, we’re not going to sit idly by while we’re first shut up, then marginalized, and finally hanged like Kulaks in our own country. And it of course is our country just as much as it is that of any group of left-leaning citizens however defined.
Our leftist extremists should be sure of one thing: to the extent they support racial profiling, censorship, violence, demonization of those who dissent from their utopian diktats--to that same extent they’re going to be raising up an equally violent and intolerant opposition. This is, in fact, already starting to happen.
Read Rod Dreher's piece on Christianity vs. the Alt-Right.
Read Andrew Sullivan's piece on the SJW left.
Check out my Idiocy, Ltd. and begin the long, hard reckoning.
Sunday, February 11, 2018
I was very glad to join Sharky Chen of commaBOOKS (逗點文創) at the Taipei International Book Exhibition to talk to readers about the new Chinese translation of Idiocy, Ltd. Here were my comments:
That’s quite brief. Initially I’d planned to spend more time giving some rough ideas of what I’m trying to accomplish with the book. But I didn’t have time to get my comments rendered in Chinese. And anyhow, I’m not sure people sitting there wanted to listen to my painfully accented Mandarin for that long. (!)
Still, I’ll post my draft comments here because, for readers new to the prose poem, they might be helpful.
Eric Mader 枚徳林
On Idiocy, Ltd. and the Jacobian Prose Poem
Thank you all for coming to listen. I’ve been writing seriously for many years now, I’ve published a novel, a collection of essays, and other things, all in English. But since the 1990s I’ve been living here in Taipei, my life is here, I love Taiwan, and so I’m very happy finally to publish one of my books here in Chinese. Because many of my best friends are here, and now they can read some of what I’ve been working on. What’s more, I’m especially happy it’s my weirdest book that’s been translated first: Idiocy, Ltd. I’m thankful to 逗點文創 for taking on the project.
This book is a collection of short texts, including a few short stories, but mostly it contains what we in the West call prose poems. The prose poem has a very odd history, beginning in French in the 19th century with Baudelaire and Rimbaud and eventually being practiced by writers elsewhere in Europe and the US. What started me writing in this genre was my discovery many years ago of one 20th century French prose poet: Max Jacob.
With Max Jacob and a few other European writers, the prose poem took on a very different character from what it was earlier, and became very different from lyric poetry in general. Jacob turned it into a space of play. For one, he used the genre to play with narrative conventions. Jacob mastered a certain tone, both intimate and detached at the same time, a very ironic tone connected, I think, to his Jewishness, and arising from his being something of an outsider to European culture.
What do I mean by Jacob’s “playfulness”?
This will be difficult for me to express in Chinese, so I’ll try to make it very simple.
Whenever you sit down to read a story or newspaper article or novel, you immediately, in the very first sentence, are infected by a rhythm, by a certain style, that determines how the genre works and tells you what kind of thing you are reading. What Jacob did brilliantly was set off in the style of one genre--his first sentences leading the reader to anticipate automatically what kind of writing would follow--but then suddenly he would switch in some other direction, the initial style would stop making sense, or the logic of the writing would break down. In other words, Jacob was constantly tricking the reader, making the reader expect one thing, then surprising him with an entirely different thing. He would begin stories that would go nowhere, that would end up in a joke on the main character, and he’d do it all in a handful of sentences. His writing is intentionally confusing in a way that makes you think not so much about the content of the story, but about the rules according to which stories are told. Or sometimes the rules by which newspaper articles are written. Because Jacob played this kind of game with all kinds of different genres of writing: newspaper articles, love letters, family histories, fairy tales.
I don’t know if you follow what I mean. In a few brilliant sentences, Jacob would mock the way we use language, and the way he would do it would make us notice how stiff our genres are. He would show this stiffness by breaking the rules in funny ways.
I give an example from everyday life: If you’re used to using a knife to cut vegetables in your kitchen, you don’t think about it, you just reach for it and start cutting. But if one day you pick it up and it’s broken, if the blade cracks and falls off of the handle, suddenly you have this odd feeling: “This is my knife that I’ve been using for years. And now?” You look at it as a suddenly alien thing; you notice it. You realize how long you’ve been taking it for granted only because, suddenly, it is something completely different: it can no longer cut your vegetables.
This is what Max Jacob and a lot of modern prose poets after him do with language. They break language in order to wake us up. They show us what we took for granted by misleading us in unpredictable ways. Of course as a writer Jacob does more than this, he does much else as well, but this is for me his most essential accomplishment.
In a lot of the texts in Idiocy, Ltd., I’m working in this way too. In many of them I use the language of persuasion and argument to make claims that aren’t persuasive at all. Or I state facts about things that aren’t actually facts, but absurdities. But I state them in a tone as if everyone already accepted the claims as true. Or I start out in a certain style, say adventure narrative, and shift into something very different, putting the whole notion of adventure in doubt.
Reading this kind of thing, some readers just say “Huh? It doesn’t make sense,” but other readers, they laugh. They’re led to laugh because the effect has worked.
Another thing I want to say about this kind of writing--I mean the kind of prose poem writing that a lot of writers have been working on during the recent decades: it is a method that can take up almost any genre of text and deform it in humorous or revealing ways. So, for example, here are some kinds of texts that could be taken up by a prose poet:
message in a bottle;
public service announcement;
I make fun of some of these in my book by infecting and bending them.
Now this kind of writing is hard to translate into another language, and I’m very lucky that for this book I had Pansy Chen as translator, because she worked very hard to make the odd changes in tone work in Chinese. From people who’ve read the book so far, people here in Taiwan, I can tell that she often succeeded brilliantly. She and I met regularly for awhile, discussing most of the texts in the book line by line, so she always knew just what I was trying to do.
I want to thank Pansy for that careful work. I think any of you here, though you’re likely to find some of these texts just strange or opaque, other texts will make you laugh or make you look at things in a different way. So it’s a book about breaking perceptions, or at bending them in unexpected directions. I’d love to hear from you if you have any comments.
You can look at the handout I’ve given you. I invite you to follow my author page on Facebook and post comments there. In the coming weeks I’ll post any reviews that come out about the book. So you can see what other readers think of it.
Again, thanks for coming.
Thursday, February 8, 2018
THANK YOU all for coming to the book launch for 白痴有限公司! I was so glad to see you--many people I haven't seen in a long time. I only wish I'd had more time to talk to you during the party. I was busy signing books for the three hours.
Thanks to Toasteria Cafe 永康 Yong Kang staff for coming, some of you, and for doing such a great job. Hope you guys who weren't working had a good time. Special thanks to 林小虎 and Vivian Ruan. Great job!
對於這本書感興趣的其他人: 白痴有限公司 is in Taiwan's book stores: http://www.eslite.com/product.aspx?pgid=1001254072653973
[The book launch party for 白痴有限公司, the Chinese translation of Idiocy, Ltd. published by 逗點文創結社, was on January 31, 2018, at Toasteria Cafe Yong-Kang. The English original is available through Amazon. Above photo with the great people at Toasteria!]
Yumin writes: 我和孩子的英文老師枚德林Eric Mader, 是個風趣但是教學卻嚴謹的美國人；他學的是英法比較文學，卻因為娶了台灣人而在台灣停留了二十年；這本以富有童趣的文筆寫成的諷喻小品集，除了令人莞爾，其實也隱含了不少對當今社會現象的洞察與規勸，有點像東方朔的風格。它原本是英文的，如今有了譯筆精湛的中文版，在這懶得出門的濕冷天，閲讀Eric老師的冷笑話再適合不過了，也推薦給大家！
Annie writes: 我從小學三年級就認識的英文老師 Eric Mader, 將他的書翻譯成中文付梓了。
以前Eric帶我念青年版的 The Odyssey, 希臘神話、希臘悲劇Oedipus Tyrannus、舊約創世紀，可以說是引領我學習西方文化的入門，雖然很多生澀的單字我可能離開課堂就忘了（也太快），但 Eric教學的時候常常有很生動的比喻跟演出，還有很多發人大笑的白板畫，一直都讓我難以忘懷。在閱讀這本書的時候，那些插畫還有跟Eric敘事的風格一模一樣的畫面就躍然眼前，讓我欲罷不能，一口氣就讀完接近三分之一。
Eric: Thank you so much, Annie. I'm so happy to have run into you in that Starbucks, because I remembered very well teaching you as a little girl--and who wouldn't remember? You've always had such clear vision and so much personality, the only kid who'd come into the classroom early, then sit down RIGHT IN FRONT OF ME and start talking, almost like one adult to another: complaints about life, questions about this and that, and then you'd be doing it all while drawing doodles. So I knew this girl was something special.
I'm really moved by your reaction to the book and will certainly save it. I've been lucky to have such a classy friend. Hope you and that witty guy you married keep getting the most of out of life.
Jessica writes: 兩年了 大家還是很鬧 他還是很搞笑
看過他好多文章 這次他出書了 認真覺得好開心
To me, you are the best (funny) teacher.
Thanks for every one of your crazy classes!!!
Eric: Great photo with you guys! Thanks for coming and thanks for posting it. Because I want to remember you all when I'm . . . old. It has been great fun for me teaching you, and, for you in the Friday class, reading your writing! Because it's always sharp, and often hilarious. Even that Allen MF 2 guy, when he's not falling asleep, writes some really funny stuff!
加油 Howard, Jessica, AMF2, Hank, Ylang, Andy and Charlie.
Nick writes: 我之前是Eric的學生，而我讀這本書的原則是： 「幹你娘看爆」
喜歡The Simpsons或South Park美式笑點的你不能不去一趟納普勒斯的恐怖再教育中心；身為台灣人的你不能不為台灣奧巴桑的迷人行徑瘋狂；身為基督徒的你不能不知道為什麼文生會在創世紀裡被罰站兩次；身為地球人的你不能不了解貓貓的來由及Hello Kitty的陰謀。
Eric: Hah! Many thanks for the good word, Nick. I'm glad you're getting some laughs from the book. Of course your commentary made me laugh too.
BTW, for others who see this post, those two in the photo, Nick and Julia, were part of the longest-running class I ever taught. Some of the students in that class, like Nick, I began to teach when they were about 11. And continued teaching them for ten years! We started with basic verbs, and ended with George Saunders and Shakespeare. It was great fun.
Lisa writes: Love my crazy teacher Eric Mader and all his wonderful thoughts.
Serina writes: 大概是八年前，有一天我突然想說，來跟住在我家對面的鄰居～Eric老師上英文課。這樣以後出國的時候不用依賴別人，已經會寫、會看，就是不太能說的我，於是展開了社會人士學習之旅。
Congratulations to my dear English teacher.￼
Eric: You're too good to me, Serina. And me too, I'm very glad I finally got to know you: a sharp woman with a brilliant attitude toward life. Also I've met some great people through you, so I'm lucky there too. Of course I'll always be very willing to work on any English with you, though you don't much need it anymore, given you've learned so quickly.
Much appreciate you guys coming. Hope you enjoy the book!
「無論是抽著菸的長頸鹿，佛羅里達州式的思想改造營，或是台北市裡一整群難得一見的怪胎，枚德林純熟老練的筆法，穩健適切地表現了以下技藝：譏嘲針砭；善意嘲諷；矇哄幽眛詭奇—近似波赫士，卡夫卡以及其他大師筆力，卻全然發輝屬己精神。荒謬感冷不防蹦出，上窮碧落無法無天；上下文的語境指涉瞬變，看似傾軋，精彩得令讀者難以招架。潛在的批判貫穿《白痴有限公司》全書，展現深度人文關懷。這是一本會讓你吃驚大笑的書，但，最重要的是，腦力激盪之餘，促人認真思考。」——Duncan Chesney, 美國學者，現當代文學評論家，國立臺灣大學外國語文學系暨研究所教授。
「在《白痴有限公司》為我們打開的世界，藝術的遊玩與嚴謹感動了讀者，眼界及耳域都因此更加開濶，覺察字句的音樂與興味。」——John Poch, 美國詩人，著有《Dolls》以及《Two Men Fighting with a Knife》等數本詩集。
At Eslite (誠品), Kingstone, and online.
For more reviews, new books, follow my author page on Facebook: Eric Mader 枚德林
Friday, February 2, 2018
I’m late to the show. I finally had time to watch the whole of the president’s 2018 State of the Union Address. Until today, I’d only read recaps and watched snippets.
Yeah, I’ll admit right here that I was as interested to hear the content of the address as I was in verifying whether the Democratic side of the aisle really was as lock-step sour as reports claimed.
They were. It really was amazing to watch. Unprecedented.
I don’t think it’s much of an exaggeration to say that in the halls of Congress, on the evening of January 31st, 2018, our Democratic Party committed suicide. A certain critical mass of pissiness has been reached, and Americans watched it unfold live. Our Democrats finally proved once and for all that they are no longer a party of working Americans, but rather just a party of bitter identity politics. Worse. They can’t even anymore be called a party of victims. No, they’re a party of the mere ideology of victimhood as it’s weaponized through political correctness. They’re a party of the act of posing as a victim.
When the president announced that black unemployment had reached its lowest point in history, the Democrats on the Congressional Black Caucus showed themselves entirely uninterested. They didn’t budge. They scowled and smirked. One almost got the impression that employment was something that didn’t interest them.
When the president spoke of his moderate plans for immigration reform (a goal both parties have supported for years) they booed. Likewise when he spoke of the need to limit the number of MS-13 gang members coming in over the border. Our Democrats actually booed American parents, present in the hall, of children killed by these gangs.
When the Republican side of the aisle began chanting “USA USA USA”, Democratic congressman Luis Gutierrez stood up and walked out. Apparently love for America is repugnant to this congressman.
Millions of Americans watched Gutierrez walk out. And illegal aliens and America-haters watched too. These latter of course will appreciate the congressman’s gesture. As would Iranians, ISIS recruits, Venezuelan socialists, and Kim Jong Un.
Many are putting the Democrats’ hissy fit down to TDS--Trump Derangement Syndrome. And sure, that’s what’s at the root of it. They hate Trump far more than they love anything about America.
But note: This means that Trump has become the rope by which they hang themselves. Because, to judge by polls, American citizens who watched the president’s address were impressed. According to a YouGov poll, 75% overall had a positive reaction, while 80% had the impression the president was trying to unite rather than divide the country.
So why do our Democrats hate this president so much? Is it because he's on the right, and they’re against his right-leaning policies?
Not at all. The Democrats themselves, since Bill Clinton, have been moving ever rightward. In terms of bread and butter issues (i.e. whether policy initiatives help the working class or corporate CEOs) one finds both party mainstreams are virtually identical. Obama was nearly as pro-1% as George W. Bush before him.
So why do they hate Trump so much?
What they hate about him is that he unmasks them. He doesn’t take their political correctness game seriously, he doesn’t bow to it; instead he regularly offends against all the PC rules, almost with glee. And they hate him for it because, quite simply, political correctness has become their entire strategy. Having abandoned working Americans to the corporations who fund their campaigns, political correctness is all the Democrats have left to distinguish them from mainstream Republicans.
Look at the Democrats on virtually any issue and you will see this clearly.
They are not interested in employment for women (which is also up after Trump’s first year) but rather in the minutiae of feminist social grievance. They’re not interested in protecting American workers from the estimated 12-20 million illegals that compete for their jobs under the radar, but rather in leveraging claims of “Racism racism racism!” whenever anyone wants to talk about illegals. They’re not interested in addressing the insane murder rates in majority black urban neighborhoods, but rather in politicizing the occasional instances of unwarranted police violence against blacks.
Oh, and if we’re talking about higher education (an area that especially concerns me) they’re not interested in keeping it vibrant and open, but rather in demanding “safe spaces”, whining about “microaggressions” and debating whether a white person who decides to have dreadlocks is committing “cultural appropriation”.
Yeah, the important stuff.
And so the Democratic Party can’t stomach a president who has work to do on the big issues and who repeatedly trolls them on the only issues they get traction from. They hate him because he reveals them for what they are: fakes.
What this State of the Union Address showed more than anything else is that the Democratic Party hates Trump so much, they’re willing to let the whole country see just how shallow their priorities are. They’re so committed to their political correctness that in order to signal their PC cred they’re actually willing to throw America itself under the bus.
They’re not even an American party anymore. At the State of the Union Address, they showed they don’t want America to succeed, but only want to find ways to depict America’s strengths as somehow oppressing their favored victim groups. And the sick irony is that the members of these victim groups, those who are actual citizens at least, are doing demonstrably better under Trump than they’ve ever done before.
But the Democrats, rather than greet this news with any positive reaction, showed the nation that they’re not interested in marginalized groups actually doing better, but only in maintaining and leveraging the marginalization. Most Americans, however, don’t admire whining and special pleading; what they admire is grit and self-reliance.
Which is why I think the Democratic Party, through the sheer perversity their hollow ideology imposes on them, has basically committed political suicide.
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