After Donald Trump’s inaugural speech on January 20, 2017, many of his critics went after Trump because his speech was supposedly not unifying. They say that we typically have these tough campaigns where harsh words may be said, and that the inauguration of the new president should be a time where he brings us together in a conciliatory tone.
Trump’s speech was certainly not conciliatory, but it was unifying in a sense. It depends on your perspective.
The reason Trump received the Republican nomination in the first place is because many Republicans are tired of electing politicians who don’t stand firm once they are elected. While some view Trump as a bully, his supporters saw his tone as coming from someone who is an advocate and who is willing to fight on their behalf. They are tired of politicians going to Washington D.C. only to appease all of the special interests.
Donald Trump is the first elected president in the U.S. in a very long time (maybe ever) who doesn’t really owe anything to anyone other than the general population.
If you didn’t see Trump’s speech, it is a good idea to read the text of it. In fact, I think reading the text is actually a better idea than watching it because it can take some of your biases out of it.
Trump said, “we are transferring power from Washington D.C., and giving it back to you, the people.”
He went on, “For too long, a small group in our nation’s capital has reaped the rewards of government while the people have borne the cost. Washington flourished, but the people did not share in its wealth. Politicians prospered, but the jobs left. And the factories closed.”
Trump continued, “The establishment protected itself but not the citizens of our country. Their victories have not been your victories. Their triumphs have not been your triumphs. And while they celebrated in our nation’s capital, there was little to celebrate for struggling families all across our land. That all changes starting right here and right now. Because this moment is your moment. It belongs to you.”
Trump also reiterated his “America First” message. He said, “We will seek friendship and goodwill with the nations of the world. But we do so with the understanding that it is the right of all nations to put their own interests first. We do not seek to impose our way of life on anyone but rather to let it shine as an example. We will shine for everyone to follow.”
There are certainly some aspects of Trump’s speech that libertarians should not like. His vow to eradicate radical Islam is in conflict with his message of a less interventionist foreign policy. He also repeats his protectionist lines about saving American jobs, but that is just bad economics.
Overall though, his speech is once again an anti-establishment speech. He was pointing out the truth to the American people that they have been ripped off. And many of the people ripping them off were sitting around Donald Trump while he was giving this speech.
So to the political establishment that has benefitted greatly at the expense of the average American, this was not a unifying speech. He was specifically calling them out.
It was unifying for the American people if only they would pay attention to his actual words. I am not saying that Trump is going to be able to fix everything, or even have any significant impact in the short term. But Trump is identifying the criminals who are starting wars based on lies and who are ripping off the American public.
If a slave goes along with his master and doesn’t question anything, then this is unifying according to the Trump critics. If someone points out to the slaves that they are being abused and can do better, then this is not a unifying message according to these people.
Trump actually had one of the most unifying speeches in presidential history. He was trying to unify the 325 million people who are getting ripped off. It was not unifying to those who have had the power in Washington D.C.
My conclusion, which is no great revelation, is that the non-libertarian Trump haters simply don’t understand that they are enslaving themselves. Of course, you could say the same about many Trump supporters too, but to a lesser degree.
The Trump haters don’t understand the evils of the state. They don’t understand, or don’t care to understand, the death and destruction that is brought to foreign lands at the hands of the U.S. government. They don’t understand that the federal government spends $4 trillion per year, which is about $32,000 per household. They don’t consider how much they could do with this money if left in their own hands.
Yet many of these Trump haters call for still bigger government. Would they be happy if the government spent $5 trillion per year?
There is an irrational hatred of Trump. Even though Trump won the election in the face of a hostile mainstream media, the media is not irrelevant. If it were, there would not be so much irrational hatred of Trump.
If you want to criticize Trump on libertarian grounds, that’s fine. But I don’t think most of these marchers and protesters and loud critics would have done the same thing if Hillary Clinton had been elected. They were nowhere to be found over the last 8 years with Obama starting and continuing wars and cracking down on whistleblowers.
The non-libertarian Trump haters worship the state. They do not understand that they are supporting evil. They don’t understand that they are enslaving themselves.