Back in the 80’s we heard liberals bleating on about trickle-down economics, where government policies favoring capital attraction would lift the economy such that the lowest rungs would also rise. There are a few assumptions inherent in this theory, one of which is the lowest rungs have a desire and propensity to rise–that they want upward mobility.
Pulling up the economy by means of capital attraction is actually the best way for government to encourage growth and stay out of the way at the same time. But only if there is no competing interest for individuals to remain statically poor. In this respect, Reagan’s implementation of his tax package was bound to fail, eventually, because liberals can’t stand to see anyone get what they deserve.
Hillary Clinton has never met a stigma she wouldn’t fight to eliminate; she’s never met a shame worth bearing. She has spent her entire life formulating a morality that rejects shame. Where Reagan’s economic policy was designed to attract capital and grow our economy, Clinton’s view of government is to attract a globalist view of morality in which nobody is objectively wrong, but everything is too complex for the everyman (and everywoman) to figure out.
In times of profound social change like the present, extreme views hold out the appeal of simplicity. By ignoring the complexity of the forces that shape our personal and collective circumstances, they offer us scapegoats. Yet they fail to provide a viable pathway from the cold war to the global village. (It Takes A Village, by Hillary Clinton, p.286 Sep 25, 1996)
Clinton’s world would attract globalist views of the Davos elites, George Soros’ Open Society Foundations, and all the rich shoulder-rubbing class the Clinton Foundation favors.
I call this form of 21st century progressive evangelism “trickle-down morality.”
To the average American, this is the credo of the trickle-down moralizer: The world is just too complex for you to understand. As long as you have a job, somewhere to go every day, and food on the table, why worry about such things as what your kids learn in school, or what regulations your company must follow? These things are simply too important to be left to you. Let us take care of it, and you will be happier.
This, of course, is just a retread of the call from socialists throughout history, looking to overthrow the oppressive Bourgeois, capitalists and landowners. Once in power, they consolidate control and rule as emperors. They do well for themselves while the proletariat suffers less choice (why do we need 16 major brands of diapers, or multi-color Renova “luxury” toilet paper in a dozen colors?), then shortages, then bread lines. Venezuela’s solution to bread lines? Ban them and blame the bakeries for failing to bake bread without ingredients.
Trickle-down moralists see economics as an extension of politics. Like true Godless communists, they really see everything as political–the never-ending struggle between various classes, whether economic, racial, or educational. They share with fascists and autocrats a belief that they have the answer–that they are the answer.
Trickle-down moralism is the essence of progressivism, and Clinton is nothing if not a progressive.
Americans will put up with a strongman who they feel represents them, which is why Trump’s message is resonating with middle America. They will put up with Trump’s immorality, or more properly, his amorality, because they have an instinctual revulsion to moralist busybodies. Such figures as Billy Sunday and Lyman Beecher were accepted when they preached the Gospel, but reviled when they opposed alcohol. One is faith, the other is meddling.
(By comparison, Trump claims to have never drunk a drop of alcohol, but wouldn’t dream of stopping you from imbibing; Michelle Obama would prevent your kids from eating a hamburger at school because she eats healthy.)
When placed side-by-side, many of Trump’s beliefs, once you get past his dog whistles, bluster, and implied xenophobia, are about the same as Clinton’s. The difference is that Trump claims a live-and-let-live moral pragmatism, as long as we get a better deal than countries not named The United States of America. Hillary claims a moral high ground that she does not occupy and can never occupy.
Even their slogans reflect this. Hillary went from “I’m with her” to “Stronger together.” Trump is “Make America Great Again™.” She’s relational, squishy utopian. He’s oppositional, functional.
In the coming 6 short weeks until election day, we may see a gravitational shift away from Hillary, especially after the first debate, as Americans reject her squishiness (and don’t think this has nothing to do with her being a woman), and her moral preachiness when she herself can’t find the truth with both hands, a flashlight, and a proctologist assisting.
Bi-coastal liberal Americans, university professors and their fragile disciples embrace the progressive trickle-down morality, but it induces nausea (like a badly made Christian evangelistic movie produced for wide release) for the rest of the country.
If America is about to enter a period of Godless immorality, Americans would rather choose the amoral sociopath strongman than the sincerely immoral moralizing squish. There is no other rational explanation for why the race is effectively tied.
Hence, Trump should flip the race soon and lead. Once ahead, he won’t look back.