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Willing Suspension of Disbelief

Jack Ohman
© Jack Ohman

Will Trump supporters ever realizing that they’ve been had? Even if they realize it, will they be able to admit it? And most of all, will they be able to do something about it? Or have they been so tribalized that they will rally around him no matter what he does?

As many of you know, I’m doing some extended traveling now. Have been in Spain for a while, and it is interesting to learn about Spain’s period of fascism. I know in the US we like to compare people we don’t like to Hitler, but I think with Trump, a closer look at the history of Francisco Franco might be apt. Franco came to power basically promising to make Spain great again. He initially had wide support, but quickly turned into a dictator and even instituted concentration camps to get rid of undesirables. And because he was a strong anti-communist, the US actually supported him.



  1. ebdoug wrote:

    you used the word “tribal”. Is that from watching the Jon Stewart interview? A very interesting concept.

    Friday, December 2, 2016 at 3:14 pm | Permalink
  2. Max wrote:

    Trump’s admin is shaping up to the most conservative since Reagan. So how are Trump voters not getting what they wanted?

    Friday, December 2, 2016 at 5:45 pm | Permalink
  3. JWHAT wrote:

    Generalisimo Francisco Franco is still dead but I understand that he may be feeling a bit better.

    Friday, December 2, 2016 at 6:11 pm | Permalink
  4. David Freeman wrote:

    Max, I’m not sure that Trump voters actually wanted a traditionally conservative administration, many appeared to hate the Republican establishment. In fact I don’t think most Trump voters know themselves what they wanted. It was more an unintelligible cry of frustration and fear than an endorsement of anything. Finally I take issue with saying Trumps Admin is shaping up to be the most conservative since Reagan. Trump is collecting as raucous and inconsistent a crowd as those that voted for him. Calling it conservative assigns some level of consistency and theoretical foundation that just is not there. As awful as Reagan was, I think he would refuse to sully himself associating with this gang just as The Bush family has.

    Friday, December 2, 2016 at 8:26 pm | Permalink
  5. Jonah wrote:

    Heres one who realizes shes been had

    Saturday, December 3, 2016 at 2:08 am | Permalink
  6. Iron Knee wrote:

    Eva, I’ve used “tribal” before. It is an important propaganda technique. It is also referred to as invoking the “other” (as the right and Trump did against Obama).

    I must have missed the Jon Stewart interview. Hard to keep up while on vacation. Does anyone have a link to it?

    I have no idea what “traditional conservative” means. The right stopped acting a long time ago like anyone I can think of who could be called a traditional conservative.

    Saturday, December 3, 2016 at 2:30 pm | Permalink
  7. paradoctor wrote:

    He’s neither conservative nor liberal; he’s chaotic.

    Saturday, December 3, 2016 at 3:24 pm | Permalink
  8. Max wrote:

    Dave, the people who actually LIKE Trump (as opposed to disliking Clinton or being mesmerized by a TV celebrity or whatever) are very conservative.

    Saturday, December 3, 2016 at 5:39 pm | Permalink
  9. Ralph wrote:

    IK – Charlie Rose interviewed him a week or so ago. Here’s the link:

    Stewart uses the word “tribal” here within the context of the human tendency for group formation as an evolutionary development that conferred a survival advantage, being one side of the balancing act between lone selfishness and altruism, which can be viewed as personal sacrifice within a society in the ultimate long term service of the self (strength in numbers within the tribe or like-minded). See the great professor emeritus of sociobiology, E.O. Wilson, on the topic of “eu-sociology”

    We all have a common ancestor on the evolutionary scale, of course, and while there is only one race, the human race or homo sapiens, we came to develop socially and culturally within geographically isolated and very tight cooperative enclaves (tribes), both large and small, naturally separated by land or sea for many millennia until more recent history when these tribes or societies of various cultures, colors and religions ultimately met and often clashed violently exactly because of these differences that were more often perceived as threats to survival or material success. Change is often met with rejection or violence. And isn’t that what a great deal of recorded history is all about?

    So that’s why American democracy is often referred to as an “experiment”, precisely because it is so rare throughout history for such diverse populations from all corners of the globe to co-exist and cooperate, let alone thrive, and that is why it is so hard. But I digress.

    Saturday, December 3, 2016 at 8:06 pm | Permalink