Blogger Charles Pierce: Trump ‘One of the Purest Products’ of America’s ‘Loud…Stupid’ Reagan Era

There’s going to be a Top Gun sequel, Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous is coming back, and Bloom County has already returned. Still, suggests Esquire blogger Charles Pierce, when it comes to things that have the 1980s written all over them, these days Donald Trump is the king of the mountain.

In a Tuesday post, Pierce contended that Trump “was one of the purest products of the Age of Reagan, which was nothing if not a celebration of vulgar excess, whether that was illustrated by the excessive opulence of people like Trump or the excessive self-regard of the mindless nationalistic chest-beating that kept Reagan's administration aloft through scandal after scandal. In that time, the country was louder and more stupid than it had been for a very long time.”

“Money itself has vulgarized our politics, deeply and inexorably, for almost four decades now,” wrote Pierce. “How is anything Donald Trump said as purely vulgar as watching presidential candidates audition for the Koch Brothers or for international vice lord, Sheldon Adelson?...Donald Trump had a thirty year head start on most of these clowns.”

From Pierce’s post (bolding added):

Trump…was one of the purest products of the Age of Reagan, which was nothing if not a celebration of vulgar excess, whether that was illustrated by the excessive opulence of people like Trump or the excessive self-regard of the mindless nationalistic chest-beating that kept Reagan's administration aloft through scandal after scandal. In that time, the country was louder and more stupid than it had been for a very long time…

So it should come as no surprise that part of Trump's pitch for president of the United States is to…demonstrate to the country that the way it chooses its leaders is as noisy and vulgar as a Mardi Gras parade through Studio 54…

The soulless pursuit of profit has vulgarized American society…Money itself has vulgarized our politics, deeply and inexorably, for almost four decades now. How is anything Donald Trump said as purely vulgar as watching presidential candidates audition for the Koch Brothers or for international vice lord, Sheldon Adelson? How is anything he has said about the country more vulgar than the fact that we now judge the success or failure of a campaign by how much money it has raised from how many places?...Vulgar? Donald Trump had a thirty year head start on most of these clowns…

So he says it plainly. And he says, plainly, and most recently, that we are only in the Middle East because there's oil there that we have an obligation to steal.

…"Iran is taking over Iraq 100%, just like I predicted years ago," [Trump] said. "I say this, I didn't want to go there in the first place. Now we take the oil…We should have kept the oil. Now we go in, we knock the hell out of them, take the oil, we thereby take their wealth. They have so much money."

Since we never got to see the minutes of Dick Cheney's meetings in which various plutocrats set down their plans to carve up the oilfields, I'm going to assume that everybody in those meetings said pretty much the same thing that Trump said right there…He has looked at the American political landscape as it has evolved since 1980 and decided that it has become just the kind of place where Donald Trump could get himself elected. Unfortunately, he was correct in that assessment. He was a vulgarian in an unusually vulgarian time and he is now a vulgarian in an age in which vulgarianism has become so normalized that we hardly notice its most deleterious consequences any more, or we call them "freedom," which is the most vulgar thing I can think of.

Campaigns & Elections 2016 Presidential Campaign Financing Economy Conservatives & Republicans Esquire Charles Pierce Donald Trump


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