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Quora Answer : Is political correctness to blame for getting Trump elected?

Nov 25, 2016

There's an element of truth there. But the currently trendy backlash against political correctness that we're now seeing as a result of the election is also missing the big picture. We need to join the dots.

1 - America suffers from huge economic inequality.

2 - That inequality doesn't just mean wealth is unevenly distributed. It means that the processes of distributing new wealth are also biased to route it upwards to the top "1%" elites.

3 - Right now, since 2008, the US economy has been doing ... meh-ish ... actually better than an austerity obsessed Europe ... or even the trends in China ... but it's basically hanging in but not doing spectacularly.

4 - That's evidence that Obama (and therefore the Democrats) were doing an "OK" job economically. Not great. Not terrible.

5 - But the massively unequal distribution meant that most people didn't see any of the benefit.

6 - The elites felt the economy was on track. And everyone else felt it was going to hell in a hand-basket.

7 - And unfortunately, the Democrats are dominated by their elites. Their supporters in the media are elites.

8 - Because of this, it seems like they literally didn't see that most people were dissatisfied with how things were going. It's always "the economy, stupid!". And Dems lost sight of that.

9 - So they chose a really bad / inappropriate candidate. She was bad because she was entirely the candidate of continuity. Both with Obama. And with a very strong connection to the Bill Clinton presidency. The Democrat elite who thought things were going OK, thought that continuity with Obama and Bill Clinton were a good thing.

10 - Fact is, both those guys ARE still popular. You know what? If it were possible, not only would Obama have won this election if he stood again. Bill Clinton would have won it too. But they owe their popularity to some Steve Jobs level reality distortion field, Jedi mind tricks. Hillary doesn't have those, so everyone just sees through to the technocrat who's sold out to Wall Street and the military-industrial complex.

11 - Because Hillary had neither political charisma; nor plausibility as a "change" candidate, crusading to fix the problems ("what problems?") with America, she HAD to focus on identity politics : "I'll be the first woman president")

12 - I've said before. Hillary didn't lose because she was a woman and Trump was a sexist. She lost because she (and the campaign) acted like this was only thing that should to matter to people.

13 - So ... political correctness, identity politics is certainly part of why Trump won the election. But not because either a) the people are sexist, racist etc. Nor because b) "oh noes! the political correctness has gone too far". The reality is more boringly in the middle - The Hillary campaign - having few other virtues to campaign on - decided to make identity the be all and end all of their campaign strategy ... and the people rejected that.

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