Making a Profit from Inequality: Donald Trump, NAFTA, and the Future of the World
Global Neoliberalism since it’s establishment in Chile have been a way to insulate the power of a few under the guise of being helpful to all. In fact, it can be argued with many historical pieces of evidence that this has indeed always been the case in America. Human rights have been neglected, people have been displaced, and the earth has been destroyed in the hopes of generating as much capital as possible. This is still happening today and along with corporations, individuals have also been benefiting from the struggles of others and Donald Trump’s presidency reaffirms many of these systematic forms of corruption.
My first point includes the neglect of human rights in exchange for greater capital. Slavery and indentured servitude is a prime example of this; people were captured, exploited, and treated inhumanely in order to cultivate natural resources that were in high demand and other jobs that they were essentially not paid for. The displacement of indigenous and native peoples in turn for land and the prospect of riches found from harvesting natural resources also led to the decimation of people and further violence. However, plantation owners and land owners were heavily paid and kept a small elite of people in power; economically, politically, and socially. This can be seen today in the workforce as well, as I discussed earlier in my writings- there are so many developing countries in which people work high risk jobs in return for little to no compensation. However, as in the past only a few select people, specifically corporations have been reaping the benefits of the hard work of others.
In order for a few to keep power even the earth has been highly neglected. The place we all call home and absolutely need in order to sustain our own lives has been desecrated for industrialization and money. Under the presidency of Donald Trump, we are going to further ignore the very real and terrifying effects of climate change. As shown in the film Before the Flood (2016) animals are disappearing, glacier that have existed for generations are melting away at alarming rates, and the poorest people in developing areas of the world are directly experiencing the lack of resources and loss of their homes as a result of climate change. Also mentioned in the film is that in America, a small number of Republicans are profiting from this disturbing denial.
Even if they do actually believe in the mass amounts of evidence contributed by specialists, it is in their best interest to ignore everything in order to save money and have it placed into their personal areas of focus politically. This is dangerous because through the illusion of democracy while it seems like decisions are being made with the consensus of the majority, oftentimes it is the manipulation from established systems of power.
Speaking of consensus, the ways in which the election process operates has been a popular topic of discussion. While Hilary was able to win the popular vote, she did not receive the electoral college votes needed in order to succeed in becoming the next president. It can definitely be argued that the electoral college while created to make way for equality has actually led to the demise of America’s future.
His stance on NAFTA is that it needs to be restructured or America will take its leave completely. Not being a part of this system would lead to struggles specifically for Mexico. A great bulk of infrastructures in Mexico benefit from this agreement. Maquiladoras as we explored previously as a class have led to the creation of profits and many large, culturally intertwined areas such as Tijuana. The loss of jobs which is untrue and highly racist and xenophobic in itself is a major reason for Trump wanting to reconfigure the agreement. Mexico is such a large exporter of agricultural goods that the end to this agreement would have dire consequences. In America, many small businesses would also bear the brunt of a sudden lack of the ability to export. Again, in favor of a few, many would need to suffer.
Trump’s campaign is marked by racist, homophobic, trans phobic, xenophobic, and misogynistic ideologies and this is exactly why he was the perfect fit for president. Who else would actively work to maintain America’s legacy of the profit that comes from inequality? Intersectionality is an important factor to consider. The majority of Trump supporters were white; regardless of gender, economic status, sexuality, etc. This is because the majority in American and main source of power since the overall oppression of minority groups has been white.
Donald Trump’s presidency is tragic for many marginalized groups, but it sustains power for those who have historically always held it. Global neoliberalism gave this phenomenon of inequality for the majority as a way to sustain power for a few a name and an explanation as to how the decisions of one area can effect the rest of the world. Looking to the future, mobilization and solidarity in communities is needed more than ever in order to combat injustices that are sure to occur due to severe lack of vision, lack of an interest in equality, and an overall corrupt leader under an even more corrupt system.