Tag: trumpism

Background Briefing: December 29, 2019


A Portrait of the Underclass in Trump’s America

Today we continue our look back at the defining stories of 2019, reflecting back on the dominant story that is both depressing and unavoidable, and that is the ascendance of Donald Trump, Trumpism, how he got here and what his ruinous regime is doing to our country and our world. We begin with a book that is both beautifully written and powerfully illustrated by heart-wrenching photographs, the national best-seller “Dignity: Seeking Respect in Back Row America”. In an interview from July 28th of 2019 we looked into one of the most incisive explorations of America’s vast and growing underclass, many of whom support Donald Trump in spite of how damaging his policies are towards them. Chris Arnade joined us to discuss his journey from wealthy Wall Street banker to photojournalist chronicling our impoverished and drug-addicted fellow citizens across the country who live and die in the shadows and congregate in McDonald’s where they spoke openly to Chris Arnade about their lives, hopes and politics.  


How the Super Rich Use Racism in the Class War They Are Winning;

Then we go to an interview with Ian Haney Lopez, a Professor of Law at the University of California, Berkeley and author of, “Merge Left: Fusing Race and Class, Winning Elections, and Saving America”. He joined us on August 15th of 2019 to discuss his op-ed at The Los Angeles Times, ”Why do Trump’s supporters deny the racism that seems so evident to Democrats?” and how America’s super-rich who got 87% of Trump’s tax cuts have been using racism as their principal weapon to divide the races in the class war they are winning. 


The Deteriorating State of Our Weak Strongman

Then finally we go to an interview from October the 3rd of 2019 examining the unsettling display of the leader of the free world addressing the press and the nation from the White House in a disjointed, freewheeling, fact-free display of alternative reality in a 50 minute verbal, political and psychological train wreck. Dr. Allen Frances, Professor Emeritus and former Chair of Psychiatry and Behavioral Science at Duke University and author of “Twilight of American Sanity: A Psychiatrist Analyzes the Age of Trump”, joined us to discuss the sad display of our leader as a weak strongman clearly out of his depth and desperately in need of an intervention. We also looked into the broader question of how could the citizens of our country have elected someone so manifestly unqualified and unsuited for the job.