Man and Movement | FREE WHITEWATER
FREE WHITEWATER

Man and Movement

There’s Trump and then there’s Trumpism. The first (an ignorant, bigoted autocrat) has been defeated, the second (a nativism in the tradition of Know Nothings, Confederates, Klan, and Bund) will carry on. See Trump’s GOP Is Increasingly Racist and Authoritarian—and Here to Stay (‘Having already forsaken Republican principles and policies, his supporters are now willing to forsake reality, too’).

Trump did not, obviously, originate continental nativism (as the enumerated movements listed above long preceded him). He simply revivified the worst before him, and re-fashioned it as making America great again.

That Trump became president was a calamity for the American constitutional order, made less destructive only by his defeat this fall.

He will, like other autocratic leaders, struggle without the cloak of state power to insulate himself from the consequences of his transgressions, misdeeds, and crimes. See As Soon as Trump Leaves Office, He Faces Greater Risk of Prosecution (‘The president is more vulnerable than ever to an investigation into his business practices and taxes’).

His movement will outlast him, however, slithering on to torment others as Trump tormented the vulnerable these last four years.

About one thing the Trumpists have been accurate: Trump has been a consequential leader, understanding that consequences may be notable as detrimental.

The objects of concern during these years have been, sensibly, Trump, His Inner Circle, Principal Surrogates, and Media Defenders including officials advocating Trumpism Down to the Local Level.

Trumpism won’t fade with Trump; vigilance will be an ongoing obligation.

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