As the Russia connection probes intensify following the first hard evidence of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian disruptors, we can for the first time realistically envision the end of the hateful Trump presidency. But let’s not break out the champagne just yet. Three concerns suggest we keep the bubbly corked for the time being.
First, Trump is dangerous on a good day; under pressure of losing the biggest branding prize of his “winner” life, he’s likely to grow increasingly less rational. A master of creating and manipulating confusion and chaos, as commander in chief he has weapons (literally as well as figuratively) galore at his disposal with which to distract attention from his troubles.
Second, the shocking Trump electoral victory only seemed to come out of nowhere. In fact, this “insane clown president” (as per journalist Matt Talibbi) is the despicable product of a dysfunctional political system that has grown more detached from the majority of Americans’ interests with each electoral cycle. As John Ralston Saul has put it, we’ve undergone a “corporate coup d’etat in slow motion.” Trump’s departure from the White House would in itself do nothing to alter the vicious pro-corporate, pro-rich agenda of the right.
Third, progressives (by which I mean all who believe in and strive to expand democracy and economic/social justice, including social workers) have yet to articulate an alternative agenda capable of capturing the hearts and minds of a majority of citizens. To be sure there is energetic anti-Trump “resistance” all about, but to date there’s no unifying vision of the world we want to replace the current one with. We need resistance, yes, but resistance alone is not enough.