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Trump, Brexit and the Collapse of the Liberal Order

 
 
 
 
 
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“First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win!” Mahatma Gandhi, India’s legendary activist. It is now time for a NEW New World Order! A patriotic and conservative world order because we had enough of what we already experienced for years!

One of the most confounding aspects of Donald Trump’s election as 45th President of the United States is that in the space of a year – indeed less than a year – a man with zero political experience has destroyed two of the most entrenched political dynasties: Bush and Clinton.

Just pause on this for a moment, and place it in the context of someone who in response to his appearance on the political stage as a candidate for the Republican nomination was met with ridicule and scorn. Consequently, a mainstream media and liberal commentators for whom politics is an exclusive club, the preserve of a select group of blessed people who belong to the club as if by divine right, have just been delivered one almighty slap-down The sense of entitlement that emanated from the Clinton campaign during this election was astonishing to behold. Hillary Clinton emitted the demeanour of a woman approaching a coronation rather than an election, disdaining not only on Donald Trump but also his supporters, whom she infamously described as “deplorables”. This was her undoing.

One of the most salient consequences of the 2008 global economic crash, which ushered in the worst crisis within capitalism since the 1930s, has been the collapse of the political center ground and with it the dominance of the liberal order.

In this respect, it is just as Karl Marx opined in his Communist Manifesto:

“All that is solid melts into air, all that is holy is profaned, and man is at last compelled to face with sober senses his real conditions of life…”

The analogy that best describes this process is a battlefield after the smoke has cleared to reveal the ideological right on one side and its left wing counterpart on the other, ready to go to war over the right to shape the future. And as Brexit in the UK and now Trump’s electoral victory in the US leaves no doubt, this is a struggle currently being won by the right.

This is not to suggest the struggle is completely over however. On the contrary, the political, social, economic and constitutional crisis ushered in by Brexit proves that there remains some distance to travel before the matter is settled in Britain, while Trump’s election will inevitably give rise to strong opposition in the streets, perhaps even sparking a much needed revival of the left across the US, which based on the success of the Sanders campaign is far from dead.

Focusing in on Donald Trump and based on statements he made in the course of his campaign, it is interesting to observe that among the many places where you will find the most grievously disappointed people in response to his victory, are NATO headquarters in Brussels and Daesh (also known as ISIL/ISIS) and Nusra headquarters in Syria. It is evidence of the hitherto insurmountable contradiction that has lain at the heart of Washington’s geopolitical priorities and strategy these past few years. Trump, in contrast, laid it out very simply when he said, “Russia is killing ISIS. Assad is killing ISIS. I think it would be a good idea to get along with Russia.”

This being said, the acid test is what he does rather than what he has said, which is why it remains far too soon to be complacent in welcoming a new dawn in Washington’s relations with Russia or the rest of the world. Trump also said some harsh things about China and Iran during his election campaign, which taken in conjunction with the fact that as president he immediately becomes the CEO of an empire that is no longer sustainable, requires us to exercise caution rather than celebration at this stage.

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