The Rise and Rise of Populism
Last Week, Donald J Trump became the 45th President-Elect of the United States and it is the most controversial and unexpected electoral victory of the 21st century yet. But is it?
The fact that Hillary Clinton, the historical Democratic nominee polled more popular votes than The Donald in the election and still lost adds more twist to an already twisted and infamous election.
While I am inclined to tow the path of asking how a Trump, despite his record and his insult-ridden campaign could be the next President of the most powerful country on earth, what I think we should be discussing is how elections in the 21st century has come to be shaped by populism.
Of course, Trump’s populism is bereft of any poetic rhetoric like was witnessed with Barack Obama in 2008, but so was the Brexit referendum in Great Britain, the election in Myanmar, and of course, Nigeria.
Every epoch since Thales of the Milesians to Socrates to Fukuyama has been defined by particular ideas about government and the elected. Ours is not going to be different.
Democracy is a government of fools, by fools and for fools where majority of the people are fools, ditto for intellectuals.
What is crystal clear is that no society has majority of its people as even literate enough to understand the intricacies of the policies that shape their lives making way for a populist.
Democracy itself, since when it began to spread is yet to live 3 centuries and that populism now eats up at its weakest point by putting forward those good enough to ride on its wave irrespective of their agenda/values is at the least, not unexpected.
The Usual Argument:
“Democracy is the worst form of government, except for all other types.” – Winston Churchill
But I beg to differ.
Proponents of this notion have either resigned, are conservatives or are lazy.
To assume that there can be no other system better than Democracy is to me, the peak of INTELLECTUAL LAZINESS.
Trump’s victory is supposedly a message to the establishment that the people can win the establishment.
But there’s no better illusion than this for the American People.
All those he will be working with are members of the establishment. The formerly relegated Republican Establishment will now control both the Senate and the House. Add advisers and diplomats. Add the military. Same Old, Same Old!
What we cannot take our eyes off is this. It is just the beginning of this millenium – just 16 out of 1000 years. For a millenium that would be changed with the full force of Technology when it finally arrives, those ( >60 yrs ) who currently are leveraging on what populism can offer are at best Free Trial Users.
The ideas that would shape this epoch in the years to come would be those that can offer a better path to identifying the true leaders that society needs than Democracy currently does.
Until then, Nigerians who are passionate about their country and want a change can at least join us in KOWA Party and rally round the popular idea that those who have run this country to the ground since 1960 cannot be the same set of people to take it off where it currently is and use that as a leverage to elect people who will truly deliver the promise of the greatest black country on earth.
Whether this is a popular idea can be debated. You can drop your comments or we can continue this on Twitter (@JudeFeranmi).