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Fighting the Imaginary Demons

I wanted to write more comprehensively about the video I posted a bit ago where Zizek was claiming that Hillary is in fact more dangerous than trump. But like many other things I consider doing, I know I will never get to that, so thought I'd clarify some of the thought that went behind my agreeing with Zizek's argument -- to a certain extent, at least. So, this is just an outline of what I think, and in no way a proper argument, since, well, this is not an argument where I bring facts and examples. Though you are welcome to look more into the idea if you are interested. Also, keep in mind that this is exclusively coming from somewhat Marxist perspective. Hence the end goal is creating a classless society by building strong coalitions among the global working class

First, here's the (video)[]. My argument related to the video is that Hillary represents a real problem which perpetually creates the likes of Trump, and hence liberals' fight against Trump is somewhat of a fight against an imaginary demon while the real demon is safely inside the cave with their dark influence reaching every corner of the world. Yes! I called Hillary a demon, and now you can stop reading this.

Still here? Ok, I don't mean Hillary as a person to be a demon. I don't give a fuck about her personality, angel-ish or demon-ish. Hillary just represents the Current US political sphere, the American capitalist hegemony or in a sense neo-imperialism at a global level. Support for her throughout the established political sphere should be enough to understand that. They simply think she would be the candidate that best represents their interest. Yes, that doesn't mean their interests regarding Clinton presidency is disjoint from ours, until you consider that they also supported her over Bernie, which should be enough to make that distinction.

Ok, so she represent the millionaires.. big surprise, so fucking what? Well, more importantly, I would argue that this big millionaires -- or the global capital -- is what keeps countless armed conflicts and dictators alive today. Going further, I think it in fact perpetually create and benefit from these dictatorships and fundamentalists. The disparities in western inventions in the middle-east, Africa and also in Latin America should speak to that. And there's enough debate and literature around this point that I wouldn't try to argue more about it.

I think maybe a more controversial point would be that right-wing fundamentalism, and far-right anti-establishment rhetoric is also fueled by the forces of capitalism itself. If one argument were to represent Trump supporters, that would be that he is anti-establishment, put it another way, most Trump supporters (and most of the rest of us, I assume,) correctly articulate that modern political sphere do not represent their interests. Moreover, the nationalistic ideals like that of anti-immigration and anti-trade-deals prevalent among his supporters speak to the sentiment against the powers of globalization. On the other hand, one can argue, taking a more economic perspective, that the rise of the far-right is a result of the 2008 recession. Well, as Marx pointed out, recessions and the subsequent exploitation of the working class is an inherent trait in capitalism... So there's that!

None of this says Trump is better than Hillary, since he is NOT. What it means, though is that as long as we keep voting for the likes of Hillary, we would always have the likes of Trump. May it be Trump, Le pen, the ISIS, Erdogan (YES! erdogan), the AfD, and even Modi (BJP), the real problem is the alienated working class as a global force and lack of real alternatives to unify them. But there is less chance of real alternatives when we keep choosing to continue the oppressive system. So my choice (too) would have been to leave the vote blank, not even green party, just blank. To quote Zizek (only since he says it much better than I would have said it), 'the danger today is not passivity but pseudo-activity, the urge to “be active,” to “participate,” in order to mask the vacuity of what goes on'. It is easier, and probably more psychologically rewarding to fight against Trump, like it's easier to buy a Starbucks coffee or shop at Whole foods and feel good that you are conscious about fair trade, labor and environment. Though in reality those are only imaginary problems -- our consumption of slave-driven goods, or the use of pesticides or big pharma. The real problem is what drives those, the neo colonialism; we can all drink Starbucks till the next recession hit and some of us start struggling to make ends meet, at which point we would recourse to drinking 'shitty' 1.50$ coffee and eating Walmart food.

I want to add three more passing-by remarks. One, trump is not going to be radically different from Hillary! No, he is in fact fairly liberal compared to most of his republican counterparts. And he IS less of a war-hawk than Hillary. He is NOT going to build a wall (I don't think he even meant it, other than to energize his base, but that's besides the point, congress will not approve such a massive expenditure.. etc). He might pull out from green house gas initiatives, and he might restrict abortion and reproductive health initiatives, and those ARE big issues, though the differences in environmental protections between him and Hillary would be minimal (look at DAPL and TPP). Also, if you think he would launch nukes because he is an arrogant narcissist, just get off your high horses and understand that 1. He is not an idiot, 2. Unlike Hillary, he actually HAVE said he would be the last person to use Nukes. (for context, I don't trust just because Trump said so, but Hillary actually accused Obama for saying he won't use nukes on Osama), this is liberal fear-mongering at it's best!

The second, Supreme court is not a vehicle for social change. It can certainly be on the side lines and help. But it is NOT and should't be the driving force behind social change. Yes, there is Roe vs Wade and Little rock as a result of supreme court, but on average supreme court has been less on the side of the liberals. Plus I think supreme court can drive social change backwards by removing the need for real change in social consciousness by relying on few intellectual principals.

Lastly, given last two points, and adding that we are more likely to participate in creating global conflicts if it were Hillary than if it were Trump, I would argue that hardships Americans might go through due to Trump could be less relevant compared to millions of people whose lives could be much worse under a Hillary presidency. If you think Trump would be no different from Hillary in this regard (irrelevant of what he has said, ) well, then you at least agree with me on the first point!

Anyway, we all know Trump will loose, congress, likely both chambers, would go to GOP, and we would have a fun time. But if we want real change, let's get together and fight the hegemony of the neo liberalism, fighting which includes calling out the real demon as it is, the elite political sphere.

Cheers! here’s for wasting three hours of my life...


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