From the Guardian: Welcome to the Age of Anger

It seems that any article seeking to explain the recent capsizing of our politics will obligingly run through the explanations we have come to know by broken heart: it was rigged. Actually that is one explanation we unfortunately haven’t heard, since the one who would have made it most vociferously did not lose the election. But there is another explanation of this kindthat is not so conspiratorial, which posits that the Trump presidency represents a reaction to a global trend whose worst effects have only recently struck the United States. In this sense, it was inevitable that world leaders who pursue iniquitous policies will disturb the unfavored dregs that do not quietly settle below. But the disquieted may also react irrationally, of which, again, the United States is only the latest example. Pankaj Mishra at The Guardian explains

The insurgencies of our time, including Brexit and the rise of the European far right, have many local causes but it is not an accident that demagoguery appears to be rising around the world. Savage violence has erupted in recent years across a broad swath of territory: wars in Ukraine and the Middle East, insurgencies from Yemen to Thailand, terrorism and counter-terrorism, economic and cyberwar. The conflicts, not confined to fixed battlefields, feel endemic and uncontrollable. Hate-mongering against immigrants and minorities has gone mainstream; figures foaming at the mouth with loathing and malice are ubiquitous on old and new media alike.

There is much dispute about the causes of this global disorder. Many observers have characterised it as a backlash against an out-of-touch establishment, explaining Trumps victory in the words of Thomas Piketty as primarily due to the explosion in economic and geographic inequality in the United States. Liberals tend to blame the racial resentments of poor white Americans, which were apparently aggravated during Barack Obamas tenure. But many rich men and women and even a small number of African-Americans and Latinos also voted for a compulsive groper and white supremacist.

We are in turn at risk of regarding the causes of our political turmoil too parochially or reflexively. It is easy to denounce supporters of Donald Trump as racists or a bigots, and automatically gainsay rather than engage with anything that is said by them. This would be suffering from the same dogmatism that one is supposedly above.

Read his full post at The Guardian

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