A big reason people enjoy Trump is because he seems to "have no filter." He appears to be saying what he actually thinks, based on what he thinks he knows, regardless of the consequences. He's kind of like a guy who tells the truth. We certainly can't be sure, it's unexpected in a modern President, but it's definitely delightful.
For this, he is demonized as a liar, a fraud, an incompetent, the ultimate inappropriate man by the left progressive state media. On the right, strange code talkers like Q-Anon emerged early on to interpret this new method of communicating. Four-D chess, the mystics explain. Trump is a master, driving his opponents to derangement, and his supporters to delirium.
For all of this Trump focus, as the election looms closer, an anti-government crowd is expanding. A fundamental tear in the fabric of faith-in-government has been ripped open by Trump himself, and by pressures that go far beyond anything Trump as person or President can imagine or control. This growing crowd, around the world and in the United States, is made up of those who are leaning into an understanding of class analysis – not the Marxist kind, but a more humanitarian and honest approach, explaining where the state actually fits into our shared modern misery.
The first eight months of 2020 shined a light on Karl Marx's 19th century prejudices, which were actually against labor, in the sense of hard work and productive enterprise for the betterment of oneself and one's family. Marx was a perennially unemployed narcissist, dependent upon and simultaneously resentful of the charity of relatives and friends. Better to create a system of a living wage delinked from actual labor value, a universal basic income by disconnected from productivity or merit, capital disassociated from market forces, and money and social status all directed by central planning intellectuals. Never worry that contempt for your benefactor might someday extend to the central state itself.
Marx's dreamworld is shared by many, including central banks that, for over a century, created more and more "government money" from thin air. This fascinating alchemy is no longer mysterious; we read about it in the paper, online, watch talking heads on TV discuss it at length, we have it explained to us by Hollywood.
Americans see this truth, and a closed door is now opened wide. What else might be true? What else about Washington, that distant and dismal swamp filled with criminal swamp dwelling parasites, might be true? What is Trump saying today?
Anyone following coronavirus "news" recognizes that, to be kind, governments are very "confused" right now. A virus that kills massively and travels relentlessly may actually not. Combating COVID may include masking, distancing and destruction the lifestyle and livelihoods of millions of people around the world, or not. Tests may work accurately, be counted and compiled scientifically, autopsy reports may or may not reflect cause of death, vaccinations may or may not be tested, mandated, or effective – or not. Traditions like public education inside large prison-like school buildings and football may be delivered in 2020, or not. Politicians may be held accountable for their misstatements, outright lies, or crimes, or not.
State control over a population rests not on mask enforcement, or jackbooted thugs, but on the shared narrative. The Marxist "looting is reparation" crowd gets this brilliantly, but so do the rest of us.
Trump, as politician and personality, intuitively and often randomly speaks his mind, and those who worship the central state accuse him of dog-whistling to his radicalized followers. But a closer look may show something else.
Underneath a thin, thin veneer of civilization, community and nation, we find people are actually creative, capable, and observant. They are also raw, reckless and exuberant. A localized expression of this in all of its glory is the self-destruction and implosion of city centers. But far more interesting than urban riots is the broader reactionary response – a nationwide nannyism to enforce "how we should be."
By definition, the nanny-state and its handmaidens are attempting to restore a previous order, a previous veneer of respect for the state and its functionaries. They are the reactionaries. Coronavirus fever revealed state weakness and lies to an expanded swathe of the US population in a very short amount of time – something our pointless but profitable wars abroad and at home had already done for smaller groups of citizen-observers. The war state, the funny money Fed state, the state's pseudo wars on drugs and poverty – each of these permanent projects of Washington destroyed trust. But the capstone completing the destruction of the pro-state narrative has been COVID-19.
Pro-state reactionaries in politics, media, and in your neighborhood all wish you would just start believing again, trusting the state again, being obedient again. It's not enough to wear a mask, they now question your seriousness about it – are you wearing the mask because you believe, or because you are just following orders? The dilemmas of the modern totalitarian state is upon us!
To expand on a feminist motto, well-behaved citizens seldom make history. Your reckless exuberance – shared by a president who says what he thinks, and shrugs when the state "corrects" him – is the revolutionary future!
I tend to give Trump a pass because I find his style wildly entertaining and hilarious; there is no doubt a nasty strain of authoritarianism has been evolving in the presidency for many decades, culminating in the modern American kingdom and its godhead.