Opinion

Populists must reclaim populism from the demagogues

Summary

Those hostile to populism have succeeded because the people who believe that popular ideas have a place in the public domain, have ceded the public domain to the haters. We have scurried to our own co-dependent echo chambers.

Since the election of Donald Trump, the cacophony of hysteria about the rise of populism from fake liberal gatekeepers have attempted to depict all forms of populism in poor light. In the narrow confines of their co-dependent echo chambers, the opponents of all that is populist have declared victory. They have reason to celebrate because their jaundiced definition of populism has taken root among the population.

These reactionary fake liberals have succeeded in their battle to suppress the rise of popular ideas through a combination of bullying, shaming and economic terrorism. Opponents of populism have been successful mainly because they have been able to define populism. Not only have the opponents of populism successfully depicted populism as inherently evil, they have implanted that fear on much of the media. Populists are vilified as racists, xenophobes and anti-knowledge dufuses. 

Those hostile to populism have succeeded because the people who believe that popular ideas have a place in the public domain, have ceded the public domain to the haters. We have scurried to our own co-dependent echo chambers.

Shame on us. Shame on us because we have given in to bullies.

Populism is meant to give a voice to the will of the people

Populism has been sullied by the ridiculously shallow words and deeds of an orange apparition. If Donald Trump is a populist then the Pope must be a secular humanist. Donald Trump is about Donald Trump and for Donald Trump. Trump’s ‘ism’ starts and ends with himself.

Other obnoxious exclusionists such as Jair Bolsanaro of Brazil and Andrzej Duda of Poland are often cited as populists and Donald Trump’s bridesmaids. These are the poster boys of modern populism? Bah humbug. If populists are not outraged by liberal reactionaries defining them by everything that is offensive about Trump, Bolsanaro and Duda, then the movement deserves to end up among the dust heaps of history.

 Populism is about the aspirations of the people. It is a call to the political leadership to improve the living conditions of the struggling masses irrespective of the color of a person’s skin, gender, sexuality or religious beliefs.

Hope is the core of populism.

Yes, populists hate certain facts of life. Populists hate corruption in the public domain and the oligarchs who are milking the wealth of countries dry and destroying the livelihoods of billions.

This fear mongering by the oligarchs through their loyal and mindless editorial class are waging a war on populism to save their place at the top of the social pecking order. Oligarchs of all hues fear the political power of the masses because masses espouse popular ideas that threaten their ability to aggrandize wealth without restraints. That is why they demean those who seek economic and social justice. Populists are not racists or anti knowledge xenophobes. They are people seeking a fairer political and economic order.

Opponents of populism, the oligarchs and their cohorts want us to believe that they and the professional classes are best positioned to decide what is in the interests of all.

Well, look around the world and you’ll see their expertise at work. Unchecked mercantilism is wreaking havoc on the environment; the gap between the wealthy and the poor is widening almost daily; billions don’t have access to adequate health care, education for their children or sustainable employment. Narcotic traffickers are controlling vast swatches of nations, economies and terrorizing locals.

Populism didn’t cause any of the above, neo liberal arrogance fueled by wanton greed and aided by the wealthy of the world did.

Populism must lead the fight against the continued desecration of human values and stifling of aspirations of the masses. In order to do that, populism must first unshackle itself from grotesque reactionaries such as Donald Trump and Jair Bolsanaro for they are destroying the credibility of the movement. Once that is achieved, populism will be free to take aim at oligarchs of the right and the left.  

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