Henry Giroux, a Marxist professor of cultural studies, told the CBC that “pseudo-candidate” Donald Trump has used celebrity culture and racism to catapult himself to the top in the race for the presidency.

Giroux dismissed Trump’s followers as uniformly racist and says the candidate has tapped into amorphous anti-establishment sentiment prevalent on what he described as an isolated political fringe.

“The Republican party has been telling these people—the fringe element of the right wing—to be angry, but they really haven’t told them what problems they need to be angry over,” Giroux told the CBC News Network, a television and radio broadcaster owned by the royal crown.

“I feel that people are feeling relatively isolated, don’t have a language to identify the problems that are in many ways crushing their lives, and so they find themselves speaking to issues in ways—or following Donald Trump—that gives voice to the kind of bigotry, racism and anger that they feel.”

Giroux is correct when he says millions of Americans are politically isolated and their opposition to the state and the political class is primarily visceral.

The failure of many to fully grasp issues and problems, however, is largely the result of establishment control of the mass media, although this is now beginning to change.

Trump Not an Ideological Candidate

“Trump is confusing the Powers That Be and the commentariate because he does not neatly fall into one of the two tidy dichotomous ideological boxes that ‘serious’ partisan candidates are supposed to conform to,” writes Dan E. Phillips. “Trump is not primarily an ideological candidate.”

Phillips describes Trump’s political stance as economic nationalism, a political movement opposed to globalism and neoliberal free trade (which is not free trade but rather crony capitalism and monopolization of markets established and enforced by the state).

Reaction to the domination and control of the economy by and for the benefit of international banking cartels and corporations—enforced by a privately held Federal Reserve posing as a government agency—more or less created the Trump political movement, whether its supporters realize it or not.

A growing and tangible threat to plutocratic control lies behind the hysterical reaction to Donald Trump. The corporate media proclaimed threat of incipient fascism, racism and Islamophobia function as a smokescreen to veil the real objection to Trump and his supporters.

It is natural for an ideologically bankrupt left—epitomized by a Marxist professor—to fall back on well-tread bugaboos such as racism, bigotry and nativist ignorance to explain the phenomenon of Donald Trump.

Trump is not the ideal candidate for a number of reasons, primarily his tendency to flip-flop on issues in order to gain support and garner the attention of a corporatist media. His narcissism and authoritarian character are also troublesome.

The ideal candidate would be a libertarian along the lines of Ron Paul. The political class, however, has successfully marginalized libertarians and more or less kept them out of the national political arena (as evidenced by the almost complete absence of libertarians in Congress).

The lesson of Ron Paul’s failed presidential campaign is that the establishment will sabotage any effort by a liberty candidate to seek the White House.

The so-called tea party serves as a primary example of the establishment’s successful effort to destroy and render harmless the liberty movement (a movement that has its origins, subsequently betrayed by Republicans and their operatives, in Ron Paul’s 2009 populist Boston Tea Party that rallied against the establishment).

The example of Ted Cruz is instrumental. Cruz came to prominence by exploiting a sanitized tea party movement. He declared himself an outsider despite the fact his wife is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and an investment manager at Goldman Sachs.

My CBC Interview on Donald Trump. This could never be aired in the US.

Posted by Henry Giroux on Monday, March 7, 2016

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