Trump hates the media right now. He slates them at any given opportunity and oddly perhaps this is where the hypocrisy and a clear split in the left of politics is evident and it’s a clear simulation of what has happened with Brexit in the UK.
For many a year the left has seemingly been unified across the board with social justice, the fight against the elite and 1% and the campaign against mainstream media in favour or independent or alternative media being the order of the day.
Yet when push has come to shove the left has split in two causing perhaps untold and permanent damage to the foregoing unity.
When Brexit was on the menu many on the left decided to back remain in the EU for mainly two reasons. One reason was because Jeremy Corbyn said to and the second reason being that some genuinely felt that staying in the EU protected rights and jobs in the UK along with environmental protections.
On the other side the traditional working class, often seen as the traditional left, voted to leave the EU based in large part on concerns over jobs and this then manifested in concerns over immigration but backing these large numbers up was another large chunk of the left, known during the EU vote as Lexiters (Left Exit), they believed that immigration had little to do with the issues and instead focused their concerns on what the left had usually been united on, the fall of the 1% and the attack on the elite. They also believed that by leaving the EU it would stop foreign workers being paid below the national UK minimum wage and also in turn protect jobs in the UK. By leaving the EU it would help curtail at least the European super state forming and make it harder for the elite and 1% to operate. With the loss of pan European finance legislations it would indeed make life much harder for the banks and corporations.
The difference between Lexit voters and the pro-EU left was principal. Lexit voters would vote against what they had always campaigned against even if it meant harder times for those in the UK (and there has so far been little evidence of that) whereas Pro-EU left voters voted on the fear that a Tory government would slash and burn workers rights and become entirely anti-immigration even if it meant backing the elite and 1%…something they too had campaigned for over the years. What they perhaps failed to see was the long term solution that a Tory government would not always be in power and that even Jeremy Corbyn spoke of a different Europe based on Socialist values if the UK came out of the current EU and a Left government came to power.
Regardless of all that though, it meant the left had split and a new dividing line had formed.
What then is the link between this and Trump? Principle.
The left has for a long time campaigned against the mainstream media as corrupt and bias with around 6 corporations in control of much of the world’s mainstream media. The tycoon ‘Murdoch’ perhaps being the most hated figure within the media spectrum.
Now though the same split as Brexit is appearing around Trump’s dealing with the media. Much of the left is rounding on Trump for not taking questions from the media, shutting down the conversation and ultimately berating the media and sometimes even insulting it. This section of the left is demanding that he deal with the media properly, like Obama did and citing Trump’s attitude as evidence of his Incompetence and unprofessionalism.
Yet those on the other side of the left divide recognise that Trump’s behaviour toward the media is exactly what the left has in some ways been campaigning for. To put the media in its place, to reject it. To call it out for what they often are, hyperbolic liars incapable of true journalism.
Perhaps in some ways the stand off between Trump and the media will galvanise journalists to finally do some real investigative journalism but when it comes to principle, the left has split irrevocably on a number of issues including Brexit and Trump.
Some may argue that those on the left that support Trump’s stance with the media and support Brexit are also in turn supporting the right. However when it comes to principle you are not meant to change your views based on what others are doing or want. You stick to them, regardless. Only if something truly horrifying is happening should you consider altering your values and so far, with just a few days under his belt and just a few months after the Brexit vote, neither Trump nor Brexit have come close to be truly horrifying… yet. What it does show is that some on the left are so focused on their label as social justice protectors that anything else pails and such a one track mind can be as dangerous as a right wing supporter also with a one track mind. It takes little intelligence and little forethought to stand for something without having given it some long term analysis.
I can’t let the article finish without mentioning the violence and destruction that some on the left are committing. The only violence or destruction that ever need be committed is when it matters and only then against the actual target of the anger, that being, usually, government or corporate property or persons. Targeting your own communities or fellow citizens is most often cowardly and ineffectual and very stupid.