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The Fuel Behind Trump's Rise: Populism Rooted in Fear and Anger

The Huffington Post The Huffington Post 24/02/2016 Joseph Amodeo

Wake up, America!
The populism fueling Donald Trump's campaign is rooted in fear and anger - this isn't the first time in history that someone has run primarily on a nativist platform. Look beneath the surface of the rhetoric (e.g. "Make America great again" and "The latest poll says I'm in the lead by...") and you'll find little with regards to concrete plans for reviving the American economy, improving education, addressing the needs of urban areas, redefining failing rural communities, ending discrimination, strengthening public health in the face of new pandemics (read Sonia Shah's new book!), and a host of other issues.
I understand the allure of populism, however, fear and anger are powerful emotions, which when used as the "fuel" to drive the legislative process have never boded well for the American people or our standing in the world. Donald Trump has grabbed hold of the discontent in our country, but consider carefully whether his "plans" will serve to help working Americans - they will not.
Even The Economist, a publication noted for its support of the free market, has shed light on the absurdity of Trump's tax plan referring to it as a "fantasy" founded on "old political wheeze." On the immigration front, Trump's nativism is reminiscent of Korematsu - a case for which the Office of the U.S. Solicitor General has since admitted "error" in its earlier defense of the internment of Japanese-Americans during World War II.
Populism aside, Trump made his personal (not inherited) fortune as a "celebrity" not as a businessman (read Charles Gasparino's article or Susan Craig's recent article) and at the end of the day, showmanship is not a skill that has defined either successful business leaders or our nation's greatest presidents.
It's time to wake up before it's too late!
Donald Trump © Provided by The Huffington Post Donald Trump


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