Donald Trump: US Presidential nightmare is a reality

Is it a fevered nightmare or have we really woken up to the reality that Donald Trump has been elected president of America, the world superpower?

Brexit has been followed by Amexit – America’s withdrawal from the civilised world and endorsement of a political attack on the population of its poor neighbour Mexico.

US Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein told Al Jazeera the 2016 American election had "lifted the curtain on what an incredibly toxic and predatory political system the US has".

It saddens me to have correctly predicted last month Trump would win in my blog on The-Latest.

I guessed the opinion pollsters that said Hillary Clinton was ahead would call it wrongly, because voters ashamed of their guilty secret lied to them. All along they intended to back the misogynist, racist, bigot Trump

But what an awful choice they were presented with. On the one hand the warmonger (“we came, we saw, he died” about Gaddafi), millionaire friend of Wall Street who once called Black youth “superpredators” and on the other the uncouth billionaire Trump.

Stein said the Democrat Party had "sabotaged" the one candidate who could have beaten Trump hands down – the progressive and fellow underdog Bernie Sanders.

Trump’s triumph was a victory for anti-establishment angry white men who couldn’t care less that their leader boasted of grabbing women by their privates, insulted the parents of a Muslim American soldier killed in combat, said he would ban people of that war hero’s faith from coming to the US and called Mexicans rapists. As far as they were concerned, here was an uncompromising non-politician who spoke up for them when no one in power would listen.

But Trump is part of the very monied elite his fanatical supporters detest and will, as president in January, be joining that establishment on Capitol Hill in Washington.

Clinton failed because, as I argued before, she was the “continuity candidate”. Barack Obama’s business as usual Clinton dynasty replacement when America cried out for change. Her train crash sense of entitlement was there for all to see in her smug smiles and scoffing at Trump during the televised presidential debates. As the BBC's New York correspondent Nick Bryant wrote: "She had an authenticity problem. She was seen as the high priestess of an east coast elite that looked down, sneeringly, on working people."

He added: "The vast riches that the Clintons accumulated since leaving the White House did not help...their wealth exacerbated her problems with working class voters, even though they happily voted for a property tycoon."

Many women, the majority of American voters - especially young women - didn't like Clinton. And African-Americans, who turned out in record numbers for Obama, didn't do the same for the former Secretary of State who was an architect of the US-led invasion of Libya and other countries besides.

Barnstorming, progressive Bernie wasn’t like either Clinton or Trump. His fiery socialist rhetoric put fear in the hearts of the establishment.

Trump’s win is symptomatic of a populist revolt throughout the West where citizens, sickened by almost indistinguishable establishment political parties, have opted for radical alternatives on both the right and left.

Bernie Sanders in America, Jeremy Corbyn in Britain, Syriza in Greece, Podermos in Spain, the True Finns, France’s National Front, Austria’s Freedom Party and the Dutch Party for Freedom among them.

The far right parties have flourished because of the impact of the economic recession on white workers, some of whom have a fear of Islam and migrants, whipped up by unscrupulous politicians and their friends in sections of the media.

Idealistic young people particularly, but not solely, have been drawn into left politics. It provides a framework for their demands as students, young workers seeking a living wage, a greener world, no wars, good health and a home in which to live.

The US Green Party candidate set out her stall before the American presidential poll result by saying: "Coming out of this election, whether it's Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump in the White House, we need a politics of integrity going forward, a political party that is of, by, and for the people, one that can stand up for the future we need, combat climate change, help students by making higher education free, provide healthcare as a human right, and end these catastrophic wars for oil that are making us less safe and bankrupting our economy."

Stein called for “ranked choice voting” (proportional representation) “so that you're not confined to two toxic parties and two predatory candidates that the American public dislikes and distrusts”.

She added: "The moment we create ranked choice voting we will have a multi-party democracy...Otherwise we will continue to have a hijacked predatory system that serves the economic elite."

Trump is a maverick who has talked tough about bombing the shit out of ISIS, stealing their oil and using nuclear weapons. But his outrageous proposals, also including building a wall between the US and Mexico paid for by Mexico, closing down the US embassy in Cuba and banning Muslims from America, will be curtailed by his own Republicans who know they must reign in his right-wing extremism to save their party.

The Bushes, veteran senator John McCain and House Speaker Paul Ryan began to disown Trump before he was elected because no right-thinking Republican or Democrat wants America to become a pariah in the world.

Let’s see what Trump’s fondness for Russian leader Vladimir Putin will bring to the international stage, for example on Syria and the Palestinian question. How will he reward his white, male working class base? What he will do for woman and African Americans – quite understandably the two voting blocks most wary of him?

What’s for sure, Trump’s election is a political game-changer.

* Marc Wadsworth is editor of The-Latest and Co-Chair of the Jeremy Corbyn-supporting Black Momentum (aka Momentum Black ConneXions)