The Donald versus the Devil
Leslie Jones reviews a timely and remarkable book
Ilana Mercer, The Trump Revolution: The Donald’s Creative Deconstruction Deconstructed, Politically Incorrect Press, Washington USA, 2016, $24.95, pp. 252
Donald J Trump has taken a “wrecking ball” to political correctness and to cultural Marxism, in Ilana Mercer’s estimation (The Trump Revolution).[i] This is why the left-liberal intelligentsia and most political commentators, both in Britain and the USA, despise both him and those who support him. He has addressed taboo subjects that have ethnic connotations, notably the undesirable consequences of illegal immigration from Mexico (the “deluge of Democrats crossing the southwest border…”[ii]) and the risks contingent on the entry of more Muslims into America via the K-I visa programme. These issues matter to ordinary people but not to the elitists and intellectual snobs in the Beltway. As for the media, they should only “report the news, not engage in activism”.[iii] But this time-honoured convention is currently observed in the breach.
According to the author, Trump is anathema not just to the “punditocracy” and the liberal-left but also to the many mainstream conservatives converging towards them. For what other presidential candidate would dare to point out that, “When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best…They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists”?[iv] Or that many Muslims hate America and wish to do it harm? Or that John McCain is “not a war hero” because he was captured[v] (and allegedly a sell out, to boot). The Donald does not do “langue de bois” (i.e. use the obligatory political cant employed by his critics). This in itself constitutes a long overdue political and linguistic revolution.
The Trump Revolution is hardly hagiography. The “deficiencies in Trump’s persona”[vi] are acknowledged. Mercer considers him “Flawed” and notes his “… moral and business failings…”.[vii] As a paleo-libertarian and an unapologetic admirer of John C Calhoun and the original US constitution, with its various checks and balances, she regards Trump as the least, worse option. She despises not just the Democrats, with their “war on whites, the wealthy and Wal-Mart”, but also most Republicans, with their “wars on the world”.[viii] The latter, in her estimation, are “faux conservatives”.[ix] As she remarks, many of the so-called neo-cons are former Communists. Concerning Hillary Clinton, she supported American intervention in Afghanistan and (unlike Trump) the illegal attack on Iraq. But Clinton opposed the surge (which was successful!) and she evidently needs reminding, “who broke Libya”.[x]
In contrast to the neo-cons with their utopian project to make the world over, the author is a realist. As she observes, removing dictators such as Saddam Hussein, Colonel Gaddafi and Bashar Hafez al Assad (currently on many Western leaders’ hit list, although “You’ll miss him when he’s gone”) usually ushers in something far worse; to wit, power vacuums, war-lords, failed states, internecine warfare and the oppression of religious minorities and women.
In her postscript to The Trump Revolution, entitled Biographical Note: On Patriotism, Ilana Mercer stands before us as a Sybil. She contends that because of the mass immigration of poor, third world immigrants, America is heading, á la South Africa, for an oppressive majority and a dominant party that votes along racial lines. Donald Trump, conversely, wants to put America First but an America conceived of as “a community bound by history, ethnicity, language… ”.[xi] Sensing that that “the nimbus of great power that surrounds the US is dissipating”[xii], he has seemingly awakened what Calhoun called the concurrent majority*. He may therefore represent one last chance to prevent “a shift in [America’s] … founding political dispensation”.[xiii]
LESLIE JONES is the editor of Quarterly Review
* a concept analogous to Rousseau’s General Will