Despatches from Trump Country

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by vrDrew, Apr 2, 2017.

  1. vrDrew macrumors 65816

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    #1
    Nicholas Kristof of the New York Times has an article out today, telling the stories of a number of people who enthusiastically voted for Donald Trump, and are now wrestling with the consequences.

    Like the Oklahoma kindergarten teacher, who was saved a local non-profit group that helped her flee an abusive ex-spouse. And whose funding is eliminated in Trump's Budget proposal.

    Or the Tulsa men, enrolled in a job-training program - also headed for the Trump axe -

    Good question, Billy.

    Or Judy Banks, a 70-year-old, struggling to make ends meet, with a job through the Labor Department’s Senior Community Service Employment Program, also set for cutting.

    Emphasis mine.

    I honestly don't know what to say to these people. Contempt is not very helpful.

    But what do you say to people who are actively voting against their own best interests? "I'm sorry you've decided to believe what Donald Trump said?" "I don't understand how you can think it's more important to get tough on Mexicans and Muslims than it is for you to have a decent life?"

    But Trump is really just an extreme manifestation of the con-game Republicans have been running for the last thirty years or so. Get people all riled up on distractions (gun-control, gays in the military, prayer in public school, "welfare queens") - all the while rigging the system so that the rich walk away with billions, while ordinary Americans work harder and harder for a shrinking piece of the American pie.
     
  2. jpietrzak8 macrumors 65816

    jpietrzak8

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    #2
    Ok, I live in Trump country. I loathe the man, but I've gotta say, you're missing the point here. These people are not actively voting against their own best interests! Let me use your own statement to explain this:

    Here in Ohio, this has been the truth for decades. Democrat, Republican, doesn't matter. The rust belt is slowly rusting out and dying. Sure, new businesses are popping up here and there, but not enough to represent a true reversal of fortunes.

    That old saw about the frog allowing itself to be cooked if the temperature is raised slowly enough? It ain't true. People here are jumping for change, any change, before they have to just pack up and head somewhere else in search of a future...
     
  3. vrDrew thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Well, maybe they don't think they are doing so. But by continuing to send Republicans to Congress, that is what they are doing.

    Look, fixing the problems that bedevil the Rust Belt isn't necessarily going to be easy. But as long as voters keep sending people to Congress whose main concern is cutting the tax bills for multimillionaires - then things aren't going to get any better. And the Republicans dangle nonsense or trivialities - like guns, or Transgender Bathrooms, or what have you - in front of these people - and they ignore the big picture.

    If the US wants to start fixing things, then maybe it ought to take a look at Germany. German workers are very well paid. The typical German worker (as opposed to executive or investor) makes far more than a comparable American. They get a minimum eight weeks paid vacation a year. They work less hours per week. They have full health insurance. They have a very strong social safety net. They have private ownership of guns. They have a very low crime rate. And they are, per capita, by far the most export-intensive country in the world.

    How did Germany do that? One, Germany has a strong organized labor structure. Union representatives sit on the boards of most companies. Here in the US, Republicans have done everything possible to destroy unions.

    Two: Germany has a comprehensive health insurance scheme, comprised of private doctors and insurance companies, but paid for by a tax on employment. Sort of like ObamaCare on steroids. And we think we know how Republicans feel about healthcare.

    And a whole bunch more besides. Germany doesn't put up walls (in fact it's recently been pulling them down.) It doesn't skimp on environmental or worker or product safety. (Guess where Republicans lie on those matters?)

    So, this is what I'd say to the folks in Trump Country: We feel your pain. We'd like to change things. But if you keep on voting for the guy who promises you the road to salvation is the right to take your AR-15 to pre-school while cutting your boss', boss', boss' taxes another 20% (and maybe then he'll give you a job) - then I'm sorry. But you are going to keep on losing.

    While the Trumps and Koch Brothers of the world laugh all the way to the bank.
     
  4. Thomas Veil macrumors 68020

    Thomas Veil

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    You don't say anything to them -- the ones who'll support Trump no matter what. You write them off. These are the same people who think Earth is 6000 years old, the moon landing was faked, and the media are liberal.

    You walk away from them. They are hopeless. You will never convince that kind of person. Ever.

    The ones you want to concentrate on are the ones for whom there is hope. The ones who have Trump buyer's remorse. There are enough of those to swing an election, and as Trump continues to hurt the wallets and welfare of those folks, the more of them there will be who come around.
     
  5. 0007776 Suspended

    0007776

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    The problem is the Democrats have done very little to help the people in the rural parts of this country either and the only accomplishments that they successfully communicate about have to do with social issues that most people don't care about. The Republicans at least pay lip service to the economy.
     
  6. vrDrew thread starter macrumors 65816

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    What was the American Recovery & Reinvestment Act of 2009? It was the Democratic response to the cataclysm unleashed on the US economy in 2008. It spent the best part of a trillion dollars to prevent a second Great Depression. And, by and large, it worked.

    It also unleashed hundreds of billions of dollars in infrastructure investment spending in every state, city, and town in the nation. It helped keep construction and engineering jobs. It kept cops and firefighters and teachers on the payroll. It kept stores and restaurants open.

    And the thanks the Democrats got for that from these Trump Country people? None. Rather the opposite, in fact.
     
  7. Gutwrench macrumors 68000

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    #7
    I'm not unhappy with Trump's performance yet at all.

    Admittedly I'm still riding my high over voters showing Hilary and Billdo the door.
     
  8. forcesteeler macrumors 6502

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    But i still don't understand why do they vote Republician? In the last 30 Years can you name 1 piece of legislation law from the republicians ? That has help the common working man?

    I hate how the republicans hustle middle america talking about giving tax breaks to corporations and Rich People are going to create Jobs?

    Here is a simple fact, Most Rich People and Corporation Keep there money overseas and pay very little to no taxes!. Take a Company Like Apple. Apple pays about 3% taxes because there they keep most of there money in Ireland. For the past couple of years!

    They still make there products in China! Because at the end of the day. Its cheaper and they can generate more revenue and they have to please there wall street investors!.
     
  9. SusanK macrumors 68000

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    Ohio never fully recovered from the rustbelt recession of the early '80's. Most of the staunch Trump supporters I know are retired. They are seniors heavily dependent on Social Security and Medicare. There is an inexplicable disconnect between their political philosophy and their financial reality.

    Some are pensioned off union people. They are a little more secure financially. The irony there is they shop at Walmart then sit in McD's pontificating about fairness to employees. How can anyone do Walmart or McDonald's if they feel strongly about treating employees fairly?

    Many have very strong negative feelings about race, gender, sexual orientation or anyone who is not exactly like them. I call it a case of the *isms*. I think that plays a very large part in the voting.

    None of this makes sense to me. It's my observation. Personally I have no idea how anyone could have been fooled by Trump.
     
  10. jpietrzak8 macrumors 65816

    jpietrzak8

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    #10
    What is the difference? Like I said, Democrats, Republicans, no difference! Ohio is sliding slowly into oblivion, and nobody has done anything to change that.

    Easy, hard, doesn't matter. The Republicans here are at least admitting that Ohio has a problem, even if their solutions don't ever work. The Democrats don't even seem to see that the interior of this country is still hurting.

    Uh huh. Remember, every President elected since 1964 has won in Ohio -- that means Ohioans have voted for Carter and Clinton and Obama! It hasn't made a difference. You can say all you want about the Republicans being bad for Ohioans, but there's no point, when the Democrats haven't changed the status quo either.

    Turn the argument around, man. Until Democrats start actually doing something for middle America, they aren't going to get any traction. You can have all the think tanks you want considering foreign policy or macro-economics, but there's decades of failure here, and your vague promises are not going to be any better than the Right's vague promises.
     
  11. jkcerda macrumors 6502a

    jkcerda

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    By all means. Who will the DNC cheat to the top pretending it's the people's choice to challenge trump?
     
  12. vrDrew thread starter macrumors 65816

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    By all means explain to me how this would, in any way, affect the life of Judy Banks, or any of the other people referenced in this story. Even if it were true that the DNC "cheated" (on their own rules) - it doesn't mean diddlysquat to anybody outside the Democratic Party.

    Please feel free to contribute to this discussion. But kindly leave the irrelevant deflections elsewhere.

    Donald Trump's budget proposed to slash spending for vocational training for the unemployed and job openings for seniors. Often the same people that voted for him. That's the topic.
     
  13. jkcerda macrumors 6502a

    jkcerda

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    #13
    .
    My post was in context to another post here .
    Trump is an idiot blinded by his stupid wall. Will it cost him come 2020? Might depend on who his opponent is. God knows third party will. Not make any difference
     
  14. vrDrew thread starter macrumors 65816

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    I'll tell you one area where there is an undeniable difference between Democrats and Republicans: Support for Organized Labor.

    And if there is one thing that can make a difference in the fundamental inequality problem in American society, it would be for organized labor to regain something like the power it had just a couple of decades ago. Without a labor union, most ordinary workers are essentially powerless in their negotiations with management. They are presented with "take it or leave it" wage and benefit offers. While executives and shareholders get rich. And even if you don't belong to a Union, their presence in the economy and industry essentially raises wages for everybody.

    Unions aren't the answer to every problem in our economy or society. But they one very strong tool to address the problem of rising inequality.
     
  15. jkcerda macrumors 6502a

    jkcerda

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    TTP NAFTA. democrats simply pretend to be for unions
    https://lawcha.org/wordpress/2016/1...party-abandoning-unions-working-class-whites/
     
  16. vrDrew thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Another series of sad stories from Trump Country:

    I'll spare you all the photo.

    What was going through these people's minds when they voted for Trump? And don't start with the nonsense about NAFTA or TPP (and god save us from blather about Hillary's e-mails)

    I'm sure Amber's life will be so much better, now that Donald the Sh*tgibbon is busy keeping those naughty Muslim history professors out of America.
     
  17. jpietrzak8 macrumors 65816

    jpietrzak8

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    #17
    Cool! But, if you don't mind, can I ask a question? The problem here in Ohio isn't one that developed in the last three months, nor the last eight years, nor the previous eight. Ohio has been in a long, slow decline for decades.

    So, you're saying Organized Labor can help? Great! But is this some hot new concept? We've been through times when Democrats have been in power, and times when Republicans have. I suspect the power of unions has waxed and waned during all that time. Hasn't made a difference.

    Again, I'm on your side! I agree with you. Problem is, nothing anybody has done has stopped the decline. Ohioans have had years of proof now that neither Republican nor Democratic rule has helped to bring Ohio back. I honestly don't have a good argument to present to neighbors who have, at this point, just thrown their hands up and given up on any organized political party; nothing has made a difference so far...
     
  18. unlinked macrumors 6502a

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    Why are union members turning away from Democrats then?

    http://www.politico.com/story/2016/11/labor-unions-hillary-clinton-mobilization-231223
     
  19. vrDrew thread starter macrumors 65816

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    I think you will see that from a macroeconomic standpoint, Ohio hasn't really "declined" - so much as changed. In total, and on average, Ohioans of 2017 are generally quite a bit better off than they were in 1992, or 1980.

    The difference is that the number of well-paying manufacturing jobs, being performed by people with a high-school education or less, has declined. Both in total and as a percentage of the overall workforce.

    What is the solution to that? Several, but chief amongst them is a Federal tax and spending policy that puts the interests of ordinary working people as a higher priority than cutting the taxes of millionaires.

    That the Democrats do (or should do). And that the Republicans don't even pretend is a priority. Republicans main economic mantra is that tax cuts on the rich are supposed to "trickle down" to the rest of the economy. A fantasy that has been proven false since Ronald Reagan was in office.
     
  20. jpietrzak8 macrumors 65816

    jpietrzak8

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    Hmm. Honestly? I travel around Ohio a bit; small towns are getting smaller, you see buildings and homes getting boarded up or slowly dilapidating. Technically, the average Ohioan might actually be better off; but I would guess, there are fewer average Ohioans still around today than there were in the past.

    You don't sense as much of a hope for the future here as you might elsewhere in America.

    Cool. So, how many years before something like that is put into place and has an effect? How many decades? How many centuries?

    A generation has passed in this section of the country without serious hope for the future. Cycles of Democrat and Republican leadership, left and right concepts, have occurred, all without lasting effect.

    I think all you're going to get from Midwesterners nowadays if you continue to talk macroeconomic theory is a bunch of people thinking you're re-arranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. They've all seen it before, none of it makes a bit of difference.
     
  21. SusanK macrumors 68000

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    #21
    A day or so ago HRC gave a speech at GWU. Once again she looked like the cat that swallowed the canary. The speech was some nonsense about gender discrimination. Does she actually not realize that it's her, not her gender?

    I was terrified that she will run again in 2020. If she does and is the nominee Trumps is a two term president.
    --- Post Merged, Apr 2, 2017 ---
    vrDrew,

    People on this forum understand that. The folks sitting at McD's that I referenced don't actually understand the implication of that accomplishment. Many are racist to the bone so President Obama gets credit for nothing. Others are waiting for the heavy manufacturing to return so that third generation moves out of their basements.

    I appreciate your frustration. I doesn't seem to resonate in the wild with many people. I have no answers but I see people like this as often as I can deal with it. I take breaks because the stupidity gets to me. They speak of what they believe to be the political climate because they believe it. That belief is taken to the polling place. They are the Ohioans I know who couldn't wait to vote for Trump.

    On balance HRC is not liked here at all. Dems had a terrible candidate. People either believed or wanted to believe Trump. They don't like HRC. I don't like her either and did not and will not vote for her. I voted third party. Yes, I know the third party candidate didn't have a prayer but I could not bring myself to vote Clinton.

    Clinton lost the women's vote. Young women have economic issues. Women who were around during Bill Clinton's administration don't like Hillary Clinton. Many votes cast were against Clinton.

    Dems need to get over the anointed one or some weird version of an EEOC candidate. Run someone who can excite the voters and get elected.

    The Trump administration is in chaos. Don't underestimate Trump the candidate if the Dems run another dud. That old snake oil salesman still has tricks up his sleeve. I don't count him out until the last vote is tallied.

    I hope we don't have a rerun of 2016.
     
  22. MadeTheSwitch macrumors 6502a

    MadeTheSwitch

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    I get that. What I don't get is why..or why they like Trump. Just because he hadn't run for office before? Because he promised the sun and the moon like every con man and snake oil salesman in history has? That simply isn't good enough.
     
  23. SusanK macrumors 68000

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    #23
    I don't have an answer. Some are very racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic and just screwed up in that way. Trump said a lot of what they wanted to hear. The Trump thing is something I don't understand.

    If any of the Trump supporters I know ever offer a rational thought on this I'll let you know.
     
  24. jkcerda macrumors 6502a

    jkcerda

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    #24
    o_Oo_Oo_Oo_O
    Racist homophobic sexist & xenophobic....... trump won in part because many who simply did not support Hillary were. Called that . As shown third parties did not make ANY difference in this historic election. Got a feeling plenty did not vote for trump but voted AGAINST Hillary
     
  25. SusanK macrumors 68000

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    The people I referred to are people I know personally. Don't spend a lot of time with them as there is little in common. Some can be very pleasant one on one but in groups the hatred comes to the surface. A few are elderly and their attitudes about anyone who is different from them will go in the ground with them.
    --- Post Merged, Apr 2, 2017 ---

    Ohio economy is changed as you wrote. Manufacturing jobs are almost non-existant. I'm in N. E. Ohio. The health care sector is a big driver of steady jobs. An A.D. can get a person in the door. Hospitals have tuition reimbursement programs so employees can continue the education and advance. There are opportunities in the area but not in fields some want.

    The hospitals in this area are always hiring. People are needed for everything, valet parking, maintenance, housekeeping, dietary--all kinds of jobs that offer a path to betterment. We are fortunate in that regard. The jobs go wanting.

    There are still people who want that high paying blue collar job that does not exist. They work in fast foods and wait for something that will not return.
     

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