Monday, November 23, 2015

Jeremy Corbyn and Donald Trump: United in Grievance

The claim that Bernie Sanders is the left-wing equivalent of Donald Trump has always been absurd. The real parallel is newly-minted UK Labor chief Jeremy Corbyn. Like Trump, Corbyn appeals to a really nasty id deep inside their party's base, who are delighted that someone is finally saying aloud the extremist things they've thought for years but have not dared say until recently. And like Trump, Corbyn's base is driven by a sense of grievance and victimization, allowing him to defy predictions that he'd fade once the media took their more fringe-y (or outright vicious) positions and placed a spotlight on them. Indeed, such attention is an aid rather than a hindrancethe media pointing out Corbyn's extremism only fuels his supporters' sense that its them against the evil powers-that-be. Which pretty much has been the story of Trump's campaign, when you think about it: the media just assuming the fever would eventually break, and being ever-more dumbfounded when it doesn't.

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