Without Exceptionalism-Trump doesn’t know what makes America great—58h.,b58
Margaret Thatcher said. “No Other nation has been built upon an Hi idea—the idea of liberty.” This is the essence of American exceptionalism, The American identity and national bond are based not just on a common history or culture or language but, more important, on a set of common ideals and principles, as embodied in the Declaration of Independence: the equality of all individuals, the inviolability of human rights, and the dependence of government’s legitimacy on the consent of the governed.
The central idea at the heart of Trumpism is the idea of winning. And winning, by his definition, means beating a loser. Right now, he says, we’re losing to China and Mexico and Japan and all the rest. But he’ll change that He’ll reverse the flow of money from foreigners and illegal immigrants back into the pockets of hardworking Americans. Trump’s world is a zero-sum game, and Trump’s America will start winning again only when everyone else starts losing.
“We” as a collective need to rally around a strong leader who will make us once again richer and more powerful than everyone else. Why? Because we’re us and they’re them. This kind of nationalism, however, is completely unexceptional. The leaders of literally any other country on earth could—and often do—say the same thing to their people and appeal to the same nationalistic sentiments. There is nothing uniquely American about what Trump espouses. There is no American ideal or philosophy providing a moral reason for this national mission to win.
What has been unique in American political discourse for 240 years is that our ideals have given a higher purpose to our common mission to govern ourselves at home and champion our values abroad.
But America is different I explain, unique in that our national identity is based on ideas. Without a shared belief in liberty, democracy, and equal opportunity, we would cease to be Americans in any meaningful sense. Our patriotic displays express a shared displays express a shared pride and dedication to any brittle bond of race, any brittle bond of race, of nationality.
A core tenet of his foreign policy is to demand our allies give us more money in exchange for our protection. He seems to view the role of the United States and its military in the world not as FDR’s “arsenal of democracy,” but rather a mercenary force with little higher mission than to reclaim every penny of its cost from other nations.
“Nationalism is not to be confused with patriot-“- ” George Orwell advised, for “no nationalist ever thinks. talks, or writes about anything except the superiority of his own power unit.” Donald Trump, having lived devoted to his own enrichment and empowerment at the cost of everyone around him, seeks to become our president by extending that personal philosophy of selfishness to a national level. He has declared, “I’m very greedy. I’m a greedy person. … I’ve always been greedy.” I’ve always been greedy,” greedy for our country.
source-weekly standard (4/11/16), daniel krauthammer,