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Jack is a graduate of Rutgers University where he majored in history. His career in the life and health insurance industry involved medical risk selection and brokerage management. Retired in Florida for over two decades after many years in NJ and NY, he occasionally writes, paints, plays poker, participates in play readings and is catching up on Shakespeare, Melville and Joyce, etc.

Monday, July 23, 2018

Trump's Supporters Dissected plus Three "Must Read" Columns

The Trump Voter

It should be clear to most informed Americans (except those who get their news exclusively from Fox News and right-wing internet sources such as Drudge, Newsmax or Breitbart) that the President is totally unqualified for and unprepared to carry out the duties of his office.  His equivocal and hyperbolic skills (a polite way of calling him a liar) may have been successful in the property development field, but they do not work in the White House.

Unfortunately, we are stuck with Donald Trump as our President until that time when he leaves office whether by resignation, impeachment, defeat at the polls, death or disability.  Similarly, unless the Democrats gain control of Congress in November, the Legislative Branch of our government will not seek to remedy this situation either.  It is pointless for me to continue to dwell upon Trump’s shortcomings as I have been doing, week after week.  Those who do not recognize them by now will never recognize them. 

Rather, our attention should be directed to the millions of American voters, at least 40% of the electorate, who voted for and support the President and put us in this situation. 


On occasion, I have called them gullible and stupid … which to an extent is true … but some of them do have their reasons, valid in their own minds, to vote for him and still support him.  These reasons make them highly vulnerable to his marketing skills.  Let’s look at these voters, broken down into groups, bearing in mind that the President’s supporters may simultaneously fall into several of these groups.  They are not mutually exclusive.   These are the people who put Donald Trump into the White House and gave the Republicans control of Congress and the Supreme Court.


Read on:

Tax-Driven Voters:  Republican tax programs, passed by the strengthened Republican Congress Trump brought into office with him, disproportionately reduce taxes on the wealthy.  If you are wealthy and your accountant says that under Republicans you will pay less money in taxes to the government, or if you own a business, or are a shareholder in one, and their taxes are being similarly reduced, you will vote for Republican candidates.  It is that simple.  

And Donald Trump was the Republican candidate in 2016.  This approach is also followed by those who are not exactly among the wealthy but believe voting Republican would save them a few thousand dollars (rather than the hundreds of thousands the very wealthy save) in taxes each year. Simply said, it’s better in their pocket than in the government’s and that’s all that concerns them.  End of story! Thus, tax-driven voters end up in Trump’s camp.  They may not belong there, but that’s what makes them comfortable.


Libertarians:  Historically, they believe in as little government as possible, allowing Americans to be free and have the “liberty” to do what they please to succeed, hopefully for the greater good of all.  

Their bible is Ayn Rand’s  “Atlas Shrugged.” Government regulations, regardless of their purpose, are their enemies. Trump’s elimination and reduction of regulations makes these people happy, and incidentally reduces their taxes.  They are the advocates of “cleaning the swamp” which is cluttered with government bureaucrats interfering with their personal and business goals.

Private Enterprise Voters:  They are against government doing anything which can be done by the private sector of our economy.  Greater public sector “efficiency” over the private sector, eliminating the profit incentive, they feel, is paid for by the tax payer and is unfair.  What regulations may be necessary, they feel, should only be at the state level.   This is manifested by their support of the privatization of schools, prisons and health care.  The President has appointed many officials who believe in this approach, worshipping at the shrine of capitalism as if it were a cult.

Anti-Safety-Netters:  They are against all but barebones, minimal programs, preferably on the State level, to provide tax-supported benefits for those who lack sufficient skills, income or incentives to share in the fruits of our economy by their own efforts.  They oppose welfare programs, food stamp programs, aid to dependent children, day care programs, unemployment benefits and expansion of Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid to better provide for the disadvantaged. 

Federal dollars fund programs like this
Usually, they recommend private alternatives such as charitable and religious organizations to remove the burden of paying for these things from the taxpayer.  While some are sincere in this feeling, believing such benefits perpetuate a class of non-productive “takers,” most simply object to someone getting something free for which they must pay.  Trump’s position in this area, the Republican position, is closer to their beliefs than that of the more humane Democrats, so they are in the President’s camp.

And here is where we cross the line from those Trump supporters described above who have some sort of legitimate (at least in their minds) reason for continuing to back him, voters who probably would vote for Republican candidates regardless of whomever they might be.  We are now entering the dark world of other, more sinister, groups, probably a majority of Trump's support base, where gullibility and stupidity govern their behavior.

Democrat Haters: There are those voters who associate the Democratic Party with socialism or even communism.  They see its liberal and progressive approach to issues as the first steps toward such “Marxist” left-wing economic systems. (See Frederick Hayek's attack on Keynsian economic theory as "The Road to Serfdom.") They cursed FDR’s government sponsored programs to battle the Great Depression of the 1930’s for this reason and basically despise programs like Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and even the Affordable Care Act, all introduced by Democrats, as “socialist.”  They also question the Democratic Party's concern with disadvantaged minority groups as pandering to them, willing to put their needs above those of other Americans in order to get their votes.  These misguided people will stick with Trump until the end.

This is the way they see Democrats

Isolationists:  When the President preaches “America First,” and weakens our ties with our traditional international friends in NATO and the European Union, opposes balanced international trade treaties and won’t participate in worldwide efforts to protect the planet’s environment, he pleases those who think the United States should selfishly ignore everything that goes on beyond the traditional barriers provided by the Atlantic and the Pacific Oceans.  

These voters believe America is rich and strong, and therefore should “go it alone,” considering the rest of the world as taking advantage of us.  This group also is against sharing our wealth with immigrants and opposes immigration. These economically-naive people will stick with Trump until the end.

Phony Patriots:  Wrapping themselves in the flag, glorifying in the cosmetic pageantry of the military, these folks truly love America, but know little about what it stands for historically, as is the case with the President.  

They like to place little American flags on almost everything from garbage trucks to football helmets. His chastising those NFL players who prefer to kneel during the National Anthem endears him to them. They are happy that he doesn’t object to their carrying guns either, protected by the gross misinterpretation of the Second Amendment the politicized Supreme Court has allowed.  They consider this a patriotic prerogative, somehow in defense of the country.  They will stick with Trump until the end.

Bigots:  Beside opposing immigration, many Americans who are ignorant of our nation’s history dislike anyone who falls outside of the White, Anglo-Saxon, Christian profile of the early settlers of the country.  In most areas, they do accept Catholics but would really prefer if we didn’t have a Jewish population, particularly one so active in the media, entertainment and finance.  They feel the same about other non-Christians.  Many have never gotten over the Civil War and still refuse to accept Blacks as full citizens.  This applies to Northerners as well as Southerners.  They have no love for Latinos either and resent the success many of Asian heritage have accomplished.  

They seem elated when the President gives the appearance of tolerating their violent side and is not repelled by the KKK as was the case in Charlottesville.  Many in this group, and this even includes descendants of immigrants, are there because they have lost their position in the economic hierarchy to technology and less expensive overseas labor.  They are bitter and want to blame someone and Trump, an expert on shifting blame to others, helps them to do so. He doesn’t come out in so many words and say so, but his actions often give aid and comfort to bigots.  They feel that he is with them.  They will stick with Trump until the end.

Charlotteville marchers included some "good people" according to Trump

But as I said earlier, 


Knowing what motivates them is important if honest, loyal Americans are to be able to work to develop strategies to return our country to the ideals of Washington, Jefferson, Jackson, Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt and Franklin Roosevelt.  That's what this posting is about.   Readers, your task is before you.  Election Day is November 6.
Jack Lippman                                                

Three Columns To Read Before You Leave This Site

Republican Parker and Democrat Friedman
Of course, no one in any of the groups discussed above would bother to read Tom Friedman’s New York Times column from last Monday or Kathleen Parker’s Washington Post column of that date.  BUT YOU MUST!

 If you missed them in those newspapers, or in any of the other papers that carry them, here they are from the Santa Cruz (CA) Sentinel. (easier to link to than the Post or the Times) They say a lot, but unfortunately, those in Congress who can do something about it lack the courage to do so because they are too afraid of losing the votes from the groups discussed above.  No guts.  No courage. 

Read Friedman’s column BY CLICKING RIGHT HERE and read Parker’s column BY CLICKING HERE

Finally, here is the much-talked-about Washington Post column by George Will, dean of conservative journalism, which he wraps up by referring to the President as a "sad, embarrassing wreck of a man."  Check it out BY CLICKING HERE.

(A few years ago, a respected journalist who follows this blog suggested that I provide links to full columns I wanted to pass on to followers rather than fully reproducing them.  Actually doing that would be a violation of copyright laws.  So wherever I suggest CLICKING, please do!)

Note:  Two blog postings ago (Sunday, July 8), we included a piece about Henry Clay.  Go back and read it.  (It may be right below what you are looking at now, depending on your device or server.) I have since passed it on directly to several Senators in the hope that they will latch on to it for use in putting our "runaway" President in his proper place.

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Jack Lippman 

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