From an Angry Reader:
Do you mean educated people who worked hard to better themselves? Let’s all just stay in the old steel mill towns and coal mining towns gripping about how unfair the world is to us. You know, the good old days when blacks knew their place and we didn’t have no Mexicans around. You are right I guess they were ready for a Trump and the left was unprepared but it does not make them correct. Carol Hoyt, Big Lake Ak. And Las Vegas Nv.
Victor Davis Hanson’s Reply:
Dear Angry Reader Carol Hoyt,
How you managed to cram such a stream of confusion into just four sentences is in a way impressive.
Sentence one: I did not conflate elites with educated people, but rather with a subset of urban, powerful people in politics, academia, the media, and entertainment who exercise influence and power without any discernible display of competence. These are not neurosurgeons or engineers but the architects of $20 trillion in debt, stereotyped and dull Hollywood movies, and inaccurate and undependable news accounts of the Dan Rather/Brian Williams sort.
Sentence two: Those who voted for Trump were not just people “in the old steel mill towns and coal mining towns” but half the country that felt the progressive project under Obama had bankrupted the treasury, left the world in a terrible state abroad, divided the nation along racial lines, and stalled the economy (first in over 80 years not to achieve 3% economic growth) in a way not seen since the Hoover administration. Incidentally, I’ve been to Appalachia and steel mill towns and discovered that those who have been the losers of globalization complain a lot less about their tragedies than do the winners of globalization their psychodramas and neuroses.
Sentence three: On no evidence you equate the working classes with racism. Is the sarcastic “we didn’t have no Mexicans around” an attempt to mimic what you think is the patois of the poor white working classes? You are no more effective in envisioning how the supposed poor speak than was an equally condescending Hillary Clinton in all her myriad fake accents and mannerisms.
Sentence four: My column was a political observation of why Trump, against all odds and predictions, won, and why such a victory might have been anticipated had anyone turned off pundits and ignored conventional wisdom.
Whether “they” are correct (I take it you mean the white working classes who abandoned the Democratic Party for Trump), depends entirely on Trump, not what I or you say. If he achieves 3% economic growth, reforms the tax code and regulations, address the ACA, ups the labor non-participation rate, then, yes, his supporters were “correct”; if he doesn’t do any of that, then they were either misled or asked the impossible. We shall soon find out.
Victor Hanson, Huntington Lake, Ca. And Stanford, Ca.