I was about to write a response to Simon's impassioned critique of my anidmaversions against Trump when up popped replies by Tom and S. Wallerstein, along with Simon's rejoinder. Let me add a few words to the thread [is that the right use of that term?] I share Simon's dismay both at the Clinton clique and at the broader wing of the party to which they belong, but I am very much more fearful than he seems to be of the destructive and dangerous sentiments Trump has aroused and given voice to in contemporary politics. I am old enough to recall Nazism in Germany and Fascism in Italy.
I think it is too easy, albeit understandable, to dismiss my fears and doubts as expressions of upper class disdain of the unwashed lower orders. To be sure, although I drink neither tea nor sherry, I am in all the ways that matter clearly a member of the privileged upper middle class educated elite in America. I have only once, and then merely for a summer, held a regular eight hour a day job at which I was required to punch in at a time clock, and that, after all, was as a Copy Boy on the old Herald Tribune!
I do not believe that Trump is tapping into sentiments that could serve as the motivation for a genuine socialist working class movement, but I do think there is just a chance that Sanders is. Perhaps I should say, more forthrightly, that I do not want to be a part of a movement, working class or not, that cheers to the echo the proposal to round up eleven million men, women, and children and run them out of the country, nor do I want to be part of a movement that celebrates torture. As for being unkind to TV journalists, be my guest!
What sort of president would Trump be? I find that genuinely unanswerable. He has no fixed beliefs about matters of public policy, so far as I can determine. Indeed, it is entirely unclear to me whether, or why, he actually wants to be president. I can imagine that in office he would be the passive figurehead of an administration whose major figures would shape policy for him. I can imagine that he would be extremely hesitant to order the use of the American military, but I can as easily imagine that he would be reckless in ordering violent and disastrous military engagements.
Would Trump actually serve out his term? Who knows? Clearly, from his point of view, his best moment would be his triumphant election night declaration of victory. He would have to put his holdings, such as they may be, in a blind trust -- an action that might be more painful for him than he now realizes.
A real working class movement will take time to develop, and at this point, I think Sanders is our best bet. If there were a way that I could speak with him, I would beg him to transform his campaign apparatus into a standing movement, funded by the commitment of millions of his supporters to make small regular donations. That is a movement I would embrace with joy.