The Trump Phenomenon – Is it Really Only About Trump?

Regarding the Donald Trump phenomenon of ascendency to would-be Republican presidential nominee, many mainstream columnists, bloggers, and other political pundits simply don’t get it. They fret at length about what Trump will say next and about what it will take to stop him. They are stumped as to why Trump’s poll numbers don’t plummet after each of his “absurdities,” but instead grow. What they don’t get is that Trump is not the essence, not the soul, not the phenomenon.

Trump’s political rise is not about Trump per se. Trump is the projection of, and the conduit for, the politically-induced exasperations of millions of Americans. For them, 2016 is not the typical election between establishment politicians duking it out through a spray of false platitudes (likewise for the elections of 2010 and 2014). Much is at stake, and through a Trump presidency they hope to reverse what they see as an assault on their liberty and way of life.

Just as various columnists don’t “get” the Tea Party movement, they miss the same, genuine soul of the Trump movement: the American free individual. “Fundamental transformation” is destroying the American free individual. The replacement is progressive statism – control by big-government elites – a trend set in motion in the 1930’s.

Millions recognize that trend and have had enough of the progressive elites in big-government. They thoroughly disdain what they see from the elite, progressive politicians: deception, cronyism, self-profiteering, political correctness, the denial of American exceptionalism, border breakdown and illegal immigration, income redistribution, increased welfare, a floundering economy, military weakness, a feckless foreign policy, and the destruction of individual liberty. And, no matter how disheartened in Trump the columnists think everyone should be each time he remarks in some bombastic way, the people’s deep-down-gut-gnarling disdain is not going away. Trump, right now, is a primary beneficiary of that disdain.

Look at one such disdained hot-button pushed by Trump: illegal immigration. Millions of people view the current immigration policies as having nothing to do with true immigration, but, instead, allow a virtual invasion of our sovereign homeland. Trump seems to agree. To all those persons once here on temporary visa-contracts who then broke those contracts and continued to stay, and to all those who crossed the border without a visa, Trump is in effect emphatically saying, “You’re fired! Now scram!”

A little more logically and less viscerally, however, Trump says a pathway will be provided for those foreign persons wanting to be here in some legal capacity and can be vetted positively (but not as citizens with voting rights or as welfare recipients). That in no way disparages those persons and is perhaps a reasonable part of the solution. It doesn’t matter presently that the wholesale physical deportation Trump mentions is probably not reality.

The other rallying part of Trump’s immigration position is a border-fence. That is a straightforward, easily visualized solution that strikes a resonant chord with those deeply frustrated by current immigration policies. For his supporters, the position itself is what is important just now – details can come later.

Trump supporters have long craved someone who will take aggressive stands on their issues and who they believe will actually follow-through. Trump, the non-politician winner-warrior, is the candidate who, at the moment, largely satisfies that craving and, consequently, becomes the primary beneficiary of their support.

What’s to “get” about the Trump phenomenon is that it and the Tea Party phenomenon, though of different patterns, are cuts from the same quilt: millions of grass-root citizens rising up because they sense the imperative to save the American liberty-concept. They are the phenomenon. Through the conduit of Trump, they are yelling to the progressive statists trying to fundamentally transform this country, “We’re not going to take this any longer!”

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