Other countries have lots of political parties.
Italy has more than 20, from the Animalist Movement to the Five Star environmentalists.
Even Holland, a nation with less than 18 million citizens, has more than 16 political parties, including Farmer Citizens and 50 Plus fighting for senior citizens. Not America.
Yes, we have had numerous political groupings since the Revolutionary War and establishing our independence from Britain, from the seminal Federalists to the Redeemers who backed the Jim Crow Democrats. But today, the choice is binary: Democrat or Republican—Red or Blue, and yes, in that order.
Until it was flipped in 2000 by NBC’s Time Russert, the color of the Democrats was red – as it is for ALL the major left-wing parties in the World, from Labour in the UK to the Communist Party in Cuba – and the Grand Old Party’s color was always blue. (We really need to return to Red for the Left and Blue for the Right).
Yes, there is Jill Stein’s “Green Party” and the Libertarians, but neither political camp has the national organizational clout or brute numbers to field serious threats to either the GOP or Democrats. (Sorry, CATO Institute).
So, it is all too easy for Americans to fall into the complacent belief that politics is simply about stuffy bow-tie and blazer-wearing “Conservatives” and pink-haired pro-Hamas “Liberals.” But they’d be wrong. Something fundamental has changed about global politics in the last twenty years, especially here in the United States.
Several writers have tried to explain the tectonic shift, which goes beyond dividing Americans into right or left. There was David Goodhart’s 2017 book The Road to Somewhere: The Populist Revolt and the Future of Politics, and then Henry Olsen’s Ins versus the Outs briefing of the same year. But the best way to understand how both parties became irrelevant and how a non-politician like Donald Trump could become President the first time he ever ran, it is essential to read JD Vance’s Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis which was published the year before the others.
It was the Friday before July 4th weekend, and I was working in the Trump White House. Whilst I was Deputy Assistant to the President for Strategy, there was one man between me and President Trump, my immediate boss, Chief Strategist Stephen K. Bannon. Today, he hosts the incredibly popular WarRoom podcast. Back then, he was in charge of the Strategic Initiatives Group, and I was his Deputy. Before we separated to celebrate the establishment of our Republic, he instructed that I must read Vance’s best-seller.
Now, as a rule, I do not read biographies, auto or otherwise. I just don’t have the patience to read about what Eisenhower or DeGaulle had for breakfast back in 1944. I’d much rather be reading the latest strategic analysis from giants like Victor Davis Hanson or Lord Conrad Black. But if Steve said it was important, so be it.
I found a paperback copy and took it with me on our weekend away, and I couldn’t put it down. I read the whole book over one weekend.
The story of Vance’s working-class family being destroyed over multiple generations by a political elite that saw no problem with outsourcing American jobs to Asia and Mexico or failing to secure our borders and thus preventing tons of drugs from being smuggled into the country, drugs like fentanyl that kill more Americans in one year than died in combat in Vietnam and Korea combined, was griping.
The story of successful families, including the author’s, torn apart by politically induced unemployment and addiction is hard to read but explains perfectly why Americans chose a real-estate mogul and reality TV star as their President in 2016.
I still find it amusing that as an immigrant to the US – a legal immigrant – I have to remind my fellow Americans who were born here what we all did that year. From George Washington to Obama, every President was connected. They were all members of the political-military elite, congressmen, senators, governors, and former generals. Then along comes a man who has never been part of the “uniparty” and never ever run for office before. And he wins. Why? Because more than 60 million Americans had had it with both parties.
It means that we have passed far beyond any division based on party affiliation, GOP or Democrat, right or left.
The division today is much more basic. The division is between those who are part of the elite or not.
The division is between those who think they know better and those who have been forgotten.
The division is simply between those who hate America and love America and those who want to Make it Great Again.
It is time to choose.
Read the original at Dr. G’s Substack