First; dont understimate this guy
He will have success in reviving the economy or at least that his voters will believe he did. His economic views and announcements towards state and global economy make sense. Threaten companies which want to make anti-US investment or anti-US job-creating decisions, cancel international trade agreements or twitter to do so, keeping jobs inside the US. This will work, it will create jobs (though of course half of these jobs will be low-paid, but he can grind some of these people with dumb nationalism or hang-on paroles), it will encourage foreign investment or shifting production into the US, and combined with low taxes it will lead to entrepreneurship and people setting up their own businesses (and by the way, people setting up their own one-man businesses also means for example new bakeries, new bicycle shops, new small-scale interesting shit. One should not think bad about self-entrepreneurs.)
So, Trumps economical strategy of confrontation with other competitors can be valid. Of course some nations will oppose (e.g. Germany, South-Korea, China), some will play his game to make profits themselves (e.g. Britain, Japan, India) and many other have no choice but to subdue. It´s the US, the strongest economy on the planet and if they direct then there will be movement, tension, maybe strife. But there is also a chance, I mean look at what globalisation has brought us, companies getting richer, environment getting polluted etc. I´m not of the opinion that everything will change for the better now but at least there will be a disruption and maybe people will start not only questioning Trump but also the economy in general.
According to the economy textbooks Protectionism or Mercantilism is bad for international trade and relations, it also is inefficient when it comes to global wealth progress. But of course this is only the global view. From the viewpoint of a very strong economy and a country which basically can be self-sufficient, it makes sense. The US don´t need other countries to grow and as I said there will be enough countries which will still trade or do business with them, even if they are the inferior part in this one. And every country which tries to fight back with import taxes or restrictions on US products will have to explain to its people why the iPhone is more expensive than in the neighbour country and why Facebook or Google are restricted – good luck with that.
The US has a huge consumer market and globally operating companies would be foolish not to invest there any more, there is a profit to be made and that is all that matters from a company point of view. Trump thinks the same. Viewing his country as a company (with a very strong position in the market) it is logical to behave in a competetive manner towards other countries or companies. He is a business man, his style of doing politics is different than you´d expect from a leader of a country, but hey, who said that politics should ever be the same again?
Second; yeah I don´t like him too.
Of course he has to be criticized for his dumb racism, his chauvinism, his averseness to facts, his egocentrism and I´m completely opposed to almost all of his views on society. Also, that he is “authentic” isn´t really a criteria to give him points, authenticity is something I expect from every politician and he has shown that he is an outright liar, there is no authenticity in that. But I don´t want to go into details, you hear it all day.
I am trying to see things in a realistic way and this includes that although things look pretty bad and the pace with which Trump shakes things up is quite astonishing, he is still bound to a constitution and there are other countries in this world which will show him that this kind of solipsism doesn´t work in a globalized world.
I read a very interesting article on TheAtlantic about how the US is directed into an autocratic state like we have in Turkey, Hungary and soon Poland. The first steps in this scheme are opposing the established media (to have your version of truth become the sole opinion, see ´alternative facts´), demolish or at least weaken the judicial system, creating an atmosphere of fear towards foreigners and discrediting the liberals and intellectuals. The end goal is not world domination or creating a prison state, the end goal at least for Trump is to enrich himself and his buddies. The best sentence in the article goes something like: “Establishing an autocracy or cleptocracy is not about prosecuting the innocent, it is about legalizing the actions of the guilty.” The problem of course is that this guy is short-tempered and has a large military under his command. So if anyone messes to much with him, they´ll pay. Riots in the streets, he won´t care; environment going down the drain, he won´t care; using nuclear weapons against bad hombres, well maybe thats too much, but I won´t bet on it.
But I have confidence in the people on this planet. I may be naïve (in fact thats the question that bothers me most these days: Is it naïve to be optimistic?) but I´m asking you: Do lies become truth if they are yelled via Twitter? Do people which didn´t like Trump before the election now suddenly enjoy his daily rampaging? Does the world bow down before him? Do people which are expressing themselves louder than others have better arguments? And the most important question: Do you think that normal people, not the hardcore followers, which voted for Trump (or which voted for nationalist parties in other countries) and who realize after the election period that nothing has changed or things got even worse, that they will vote for him again? As I said, people are not stupid, people are like you and me, if they see the shit hit the fan they´ll switch it of or run to the other side.
To conclude: I think that the election of Trump bears a chance for the global society to turn things towards a better future, because people are asking questions now (How could this happen?), especially the generation of the 20-30 year old should wake up now, during the Brexit vote these guys were absent – I don´t think this will happen again. Also, all this talk about fake news will lead to people questioning dubious information sources – something that hasn´t happened since two or so years, when every fucking Facebook post has been taken for granted and true. Of course the established parties (especially the social-democrats) have to change their political style towards more social justice and I think that this will happen now, but this is a topic for another text.
Maybe in 10, 20 years we will look back at 2016 and say that this year with so much political turmoil caused the silent majority, the normal people to stand up and act against the loud minority of racists which brought demise upon this world.
I hope so.