March 25, 2016 by Thomas Hauber
Aside from a brokered convention, how does what’s left of the Republican party stop Donald Trump? Trumpism is less a political game and more like a business hostile takeover. In the marketplace, only troubled companies get targeted, companies that have lost their way, lost their focus and their core businesses. Successful corporate raiders know when a company has lost the goodwill of its customers and investors and is vulnerable.
Companies and political parties are taken over when a raider does not seek accommodation but simply dismisses a company’s ruling Executives and its Board of Directors and goes directly to the shareholders. In this case the shareholders are the voters and the voters are angry, they have been for a very long time. Hostility is the essence of the Trump maneuver.
And who or what IS the Republican Party? Who is/was on the ersatz Board of Directors of this failed Political Party?
Jeb Bush, whose crony capitalist friends elected his father and brother and who dumped 150 million on Him, in vain? John McCain, loser in 2008 who picked wacky Sarah Palin as VP running mate? Mitt Romney, white-rich-Mormon loser in 2012? Chris Christie, the loud-mouthed troll under the George Washington Bridge? Marco Rubio, absentee senator who couldn’t even win his home state? And finally the oddball collection of preachers and the doctors like Huckabee, Santorum, Carson and Paul?
It is no wonder the Republican Party is failing and nobody can stop the takeover. The traditional company defenses like the poison pill, shareholder rights plans and greenmail won’t work. They are all stock manipulations and Trump voters know Republican Party stock is worthless. The Party’s leaders, Graham, McConnell, Ryan, like a staggered Board of Directors, are all vulnerable to re-election and will ultimately have to close ranks to survive.
Finally there are no White Knights. The remaining candidates are ideologically bankrupt. Republicans reluctantly hope Ted Cruz, the Senator nobody but Texans like, will somehow spoil a first ballot Trump win. Then what, and who? John Kasich, the man nobody listens to? His desperate three-way race stubbornness will ultimately allow Trump to take the winner-take-all states and the nomination.
The establishment’s White Knights are effectively bankrupt. Despite the formidable financial resources donated to the various failed campaigns, the intentions of Wall Street, the Banks and Super Pacs have become unpredictably and suddenly transparent and their ads universally rejected.
Worthy of note is that this is also the message and take-away of Bernie Sanders’ campaign. Democrats and Hillary take note. It is not just working-class white males who have been squeezed, though they have been the most vocal. The disaffected are also Black, Latino, female, the very young and old. The Sanders takeover is in the infant stage, but unless the Democrats can be more effective in satisfying its constituent masses, their revolt will grow, or worse, they will defect to someone who promises real economic gain.
For Republicans the game is over, Trump has already ousted the established Board, many of whom will be soon out of a job. The rest of the party, 35-50%, have no idea where it wants its new company to go, so in desperation, it has chosen a dictator.
Some are beginning to sense a new age to American politics, the Age of authoritarianism. David Brooks is on to this and so are a group of political scientists who are beginning to explain why Authoritarianism is able to connect the disparate elements that seem to confound the thinking of traditional media. The appeal is to a style that is simple, powerful and punitive. Authoritarians want power and they want it now.
Authoritarian voices have always been with us making trouble with the two parties. Whether you agree or not, Ronald Reagan was not the first to enlist the disaffected working class in a simple, powerful and (in the end) punitive way. The renegade Dixiecrat movement of George Wallace buried Humphrey-Muskie in 1968, winning five states and polling 13.5% of the popular vote allowing Nixon to win with a scant 42% of the vote. Ross Perot undermined Bob Dole in 1996 by polling 8.5% of the vote. The more authoritarian, the more successful. The meek need not apply. So here comes Donald Trump, It should be no surprise.