In a bizarre turn of events, White House Chief Strategist and former Breitbart editor Steve Bannon in one off phone interview with the American Prospect made a series of stark statements in regards to the recent hectic weeks within the Trump Presidency.
Trump began this specific issue with a large amount of rope from the American public, in fact as he increased rhetoric against North Korea poll numbers rose to some of the highest levels in his presidency. Almost as if the American people felt united behind a leader that had a plan to confront a dictator. The problem with this plan is explained perfectly by Steve Bannon, as he states
“There’s no military solution [to North Korea’s nuclear threats], forget it. Until somebody solves the part of the equation that shows me that ten million people in Seoul don’t die in the first 30 minutes from conventional weapons, I don’t know what you’re talking about, there’s no military solution here, they got us.”
Pointing out that the conventional weapons of North Korea act much in the same manner as WMD’s, assuring mutual destruction and drastically reducing the number of potential American responses to any North Korean move.
As people came to terms on what the North Korean situation could mean and are also faced with one of the ugliest White Nationalist rallies in recent history Mr Trump’s poll numbers began to fall again. Here Mr Bannon comments
“Ethno-nationalism—it’s losers. It’s a fringe element. I think the media plays it up too much, and we gotta help crush it, you know, uh, help crush it more.”
“These guys are a collection of clowns,”
Although its very interesting to see this as Mr. Bannon’s stance given his affiliation with Brietbart news, an area seen as the news hub for ethno-nationalist groups.
Bannon most interestingly pushes back from this point, to focus directly on the two things he believes will allow “him” to win. First he believes the United States must win abroad by beating China in the trade war as he states
“We’re at economic war with China,” he added. “It’s in all their literature. They’re not shy about saying what they’re doing. One of us is going to be a hegemon in 25 or 30 years and it’s gonna be them if we go down this path. On Korea, they’re just tapping us along. It’s just a sideshow.”
“To me,” Bannon said, “the economic war with China is everything. And we have to be maniacally focused on that. If we continue to lose it, we’re five years away, I think, ten years at the most, of hitting an inflection point from which we’ll never be able to recover.”
Secondly, he explains that he and the Republican party can continue to win at home by allowing the Democrats to simply continue their “identity politics” as he states
“The Democrats,” he said, “the longer they talk about identity politics, I got ’em. I want them to talk about racism every day. If the left is focused on race and identity, and we go with economic nationalism, we can crush the Democrats.”
It’s The Economy Stupid. Just With a Sprinkle of Nationalism.
In reality what Steve Bannon describes is a message that is very similar to that of Bill Clinton, even if the policies and scope are radically different. Bannon focuses on issues can be the root to your livelihood, or rather your perceived livelihood. As he discusses the jobs taken away from the American market by China he then connects those economic woes to almost every social woe and that story doesn’t just hit close to home in white homes, it hits close to home for most families.
When the Democrats discuss a message of racism sadly it only affects some and therefor only propels some to act.
In some sense by forcing the Democrats to take the side of social issues, especially those in relation to race politics they allow themselves to take control of economic issues that through nationalism become social.