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Monthly Archives: November 2016

A New Era

Here are comments I wrote after reading Bannon’s views as published by Buzzfeed. These are the comments I left on Bannon’s web site:

This is an important article. It shows how deeply humanitarian Bannon is, and reveals why the left will have problems with him. Basically, he unabashedly believes in Judeo Christian values and in traditional values such as marriage. The left will want a more “relative” take on values and morals.

He also believes in the working and middle class. Decent people who are willing to work hard and want to feel they are not falling farther and farther behind because of it.

Bannon has more understanding of crony capitalism than I ever will. He was an investment banker at Goldman Sachs.

But I see issues. Bannon+Trump is: the visionary of a movement to create a more humanitarian capitalism, and the billionaire who embodies crony capitalism in many ways, or used to (big donor to Hillary and Democrats, etc.). The question is whether Trump has embraced Bannon’s vision, because it’s not Trump’s history.

There is also a question of realism. Is a humanitarian capitalism really possible? It might be that Bannon believes that if capitalism is less “cronyistic”, it will be more humane. That’s not at all clear to me. Yes, our capitalism has crony aspects, but is the cronyism really central to the plight of the working class? Will a “pure capitalism” really help the working and middle classes?

This remains to be seen. It is a central tension in the Trump/Bannon era, a tension that is now being played out.

 

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Life is Hard

My thoughts after the US election, 2016, are: life is hard. Rich or poor, beautiful or plain, it’s hard to find a sense of fulfillment and purpose that makes you feel at peace with the world. We are constructed to survive in the wild. We are not built to be happy. It’s important to remember this message from science. It explains a lot.

Don’t expect to be happy, although you might well be. Happiness comes with hard work and a sense of humility. Happiness is not our “right”, but an accidental outcome that, if we are lucky, we will experience it. We are not here to be happy. We are here for entirely different reasons.