Monday, May 30, 2016

The Politics Of Anger

We have seen a rise in various forms of populism in the US and Europe.  Donald Trump has fueled his rise by appealing to identity politics.  He appeals to nationalism and  ethnic identity against establishment politicians who have failed to deal with immigration and the loss of national identity. They are similar to what see in Europe.  Bernie Sanders has focused on rising income inequality which is universally acknowledged but ignored by mainstream politicians.  Their inertia is based upon the idea that globalization and technological changes are inexorable forces that cannot by affected by government policies. Some even tell us that government is the problem. They fail to realize that policies were developed by governments to accelerate these forces, and that governments are not without the power to manage them better.  The inability of governments to manage the forces that they have enabled have led to a rise in the politics of anger and a distrust of government.  Its easy for politicians to build campaigns based upon anger without offering practical solutions to the problems that they have identified.  Its up to mainstream politicians to offer real solutions to a variety of problems that can no longer be ignored. Otherwise the politics of anger will lead us to new problems that undermine our system of governance.  Hopefully, we will have learned something from such failures in the past but the politics of anger cannot be ignored.

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