While, as affirmed, Donald Trump is unpredictable, his inauguration was not. Absolutely not. His inaugural speech sums up, as a sort of very well-coordinated tablet, his hardcore political philosophy, if it can be called that: first, an explosive mixture of protectionism and nationalism. After – and correlatively – a renewed isolationism, consisting in focusing on domestic affairs, prosperity and the security of the United States.
His strategists call all this Make America Great Again, a mantra taken from Ronald Reagan during a famous 1980 Republican Convention. He again displayed an anti-establishment that is – to say it in Cuban – more talk than facts, denied, among other things, by the selection of a cabinet made up of conservative millionaires from institutions and octopuses like Wells Fargo, Exxon Mobil and other transnational companies; the real power behind the scene, be they Republicans or Democrats who install themselves in the White House.
He is also predictable for his Manichaeism, identical to the electoral tournament. The people against the elites. The country against foreigners, a specific concretion of that isolationism and one of the corsi e ricorsi of U.S. politics since the nation’s founders. And civilized versus uncivilized world, which presents the problem of his paradigms and parameters, evidently adhered to the West, the old colonial assumption insuperably studied by Edward Said in a classical book.
And predictable, as well, when speaking in the name of the forgotten, one of the foundations of his ascent to power basing himself on problems, anger and frustrations in the promised land of exceptionalism, where all dreams are possible if you work hard, behave and follow the law. With this he hit the target. The Democrats barely saw him and left on the wrong side.
The unprecedented president has sworn his post. Openly racist. Shamelessly misogynistic. Virulently anti-immigrant. Out-and-out anti-Muslim. A man who has designated as his chief strategist a conspicuous member of the alternative right, a euphemism that designates the white supremacy of The Birth of a Nation. And who has sat in the chair in collision with his own intelligence agencies, which in fact he has discredited. Put in this point perhaps it would be worthwhile stopping to examine him, even in the middle of his madness – one of them, for example, describing himself as “the biggest generator of jobs created by God” during a press conference, another of those shows where one almost misses a reguetón as background music.
One of the most recent wars was orchestrated in 2003 calling on weapons of mass destruction that never existed. Another in 1990, over there in the Gulf, with Iraqis killing children in incubators, one of the biggest exercises in manipulation in the history of the United States, in which a very efficient apparatus of public relations intervened to launch the product on the market wrapped in humanitarian cellophane paper. The Vietnam War was made with the incident of the Gulf of Tonkin (1964), refuted years later by a Pentagon activist, one of those now called whistleblowers, a sort of grandfather of Edward Snowden who contributed, in his way, to the resounding defeat of a modern and sophisticated army by the farmer troops of Southeast Asia.
And no diversity, no multiculturalism. Not a single Latino/Hispanic up there, which considerably contrasts with administrative practices, Republican or Democrat, of the last 30 years. Two additional data speak for themselves: 13 of the 15 members of his cabinet are white men. There are only four women. To justify this, Trump and his team have ordered one of their organics to come out with the message that the idea is to choose “the best and most brilliant,” one of the classical arguments that for some time now has been used in that country to demonstrate affirmative action, one of the conquests of the 1960s civil rights movement.
That same prism illuminates the production of the inauguration and its codes. The public in attendance were overwhelming those who once came on the Mayflower. Whites like snow. Those who applauded and cheered. The Mormon choir, so Christian. The blue-eyed blond girl singing the anthem. Even the music, where country dominated. They are called WASPs. That is, and don’t doubt it, Trump’s America; what is said to the contrary is just rhetoric and dead leaves
Another swing of the pendulum with respect to the first Afro-American president, as denoted as the executive actions he undertook when he had barely established himself in power and in the midst of an element of deep symbolic content: the grey curtains in the back of his desk in the Oval Office have been replaced with golden ones. Just like his Tower in New York.
The House has been taken over. Trump is in a hurry. He wants to demonstrate he is earnest. No more words. It’s time to act. He is entering with the smallest index of acceptance of a president in modern times. “This American carnage stops right here and stops right now,” he said in his first speech. Popular opposition believes the contrary. And starting with the first day the people are out in the street.