Trump Wields The Arsenal of Capitalism for Fun & Corporate Profiteering

 

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                                                                   What would Lincoln do?

The number of reasons why the altright failed completely at everything it attempted are many.

To a site such as this one which makes formulating correct definitions a top priority one reason for their failure stands out especially – its incompatibility with America as a political system.

A political system is defined as –

  • A structure of incentives that strongly encourages political actors to consistently, and for extended periods of time, act in ways agreeable to the political system regardless of which particular individuals are in power.

In post-New Deal America there have been two, very powerful, political systems running in parallel to each other while also being in direct conflict with each other –

  • On the Left, the Modern Structure of FDR’s Progressive New Deal from 1932 to present.
  • On the Right, the Old Structure of Lincoln’s Hamiltonian Capitalist Old Deal from 1865 to 1932.

The Progressive Structure is an entirely different, extensive, topic that is out of scope for this article.  For now, we remark only that the altright is, of course, not compatible with this structure.  Nor should it be.

Where the altright has failed inexcusably is in its fanatical rejection of Lincoln’s Structure.

Put simply, there is no room on the American rightwing for anything except Lincolnism because the Hamiltonian Nationalism saved by Lincoln and which then ran almost unopposed during America’s Golden Age retains – as a political system – dominance over all of the incentive structures influencing the American right wing:

Throughout the 19th century and the early 20th century Hamilton’s National System of fostering a business environment favorable to industrial expansion; infrastructure development; trade protectionism; solid credit conditions; the hefty Continental peace dividend enjoyed by America after the threat once feared by Hamilton of a European military presence in North America became negligible; mercantilistic domination of Latin America; the establishment of an Army and Navy capable of defending both American territory as well as America’s overseas economic interests; the settlement of the Western frontier up to the Pacific; testing the waters of the Pacific with gunboat diplomacy; large scale immigration of European migrants to staff booming factories; these led to the industrial might upholding America’s military industrial complex.

Aside from slavery which Hamilton addressed only in the most narrow of legal contexts, everything Lincoln politically stood for Hamilton stood for.  And what Hamilton stood for constitutes the most dominant type of Nationalism ever seen in the West.

Hamilton’s Nationalism has over two centuries integrated an enduring set of incentive structures that are almost impossible for anyone on the Right to oppose without sidelining oneself into irrelevance as the altright has done to itself.

As proof this Hamiltonian incentive structure is an inescapable reality for serious American Conservatives (not joke Conservatives be they mainstream or fringe) there is the example of the great systems learner: President Donald Trump.

Trump might well be considered an instinctive Lincolnist.  Trump is seemingly unaware his policies of infrastructure, Roaring ’20s Capitalism, white supremacy, hyper-militarism, and trade protectionism are all Hamiltonian policies.  The division between Trump and the rest of Lincoln’s Party is the result of Trump being more Lincolnist than the unworthy heirs of Lincoln on the American Right can bear.

Yet Trump is governing as the most Hamiltonian Republican in nearly a century, without understanding he is a Hamiltonian, because the incentives of the system established by Hamilton and Lincoln incentivize Trump, the systems learner, to govern in agreement with Hamilton and Lincoln.

Am I, as a partisan of Lincoln and Hamilton, bragging?

I am bragging by association.

I am also not bragging enough:  The Great Persuader won the Presidency against the entire world of Progressive elites on a Twitterized version of Hamilton and Lincoln’s policy platform, without knowing his policies are Hamiltonian.

No better testimony could be made in favor of the Hamiltonian tradition’s vitality than Trump’s victory.

That ancient political incentives can hold this much sway over a statesman like Trump without Trump realizing it is remarkable and will be discussed in the context of his foreign policy later on.

Perhaps more remarkable is how these incentives influence Hamilton and Lincoln’s modern opponents.

First among these is the modern South.  The South retains a deep fondness for its Confederate heritage, but this fondness is destined to exist only as a sentiment.

The South’s politics have not just become the new base of Lincoln and Hamilton’s Republican Party.  The South has also tied itself deeply to Hamilton and Lincoln’s friendliness to infrastructure, business, and industry.  Most importantly Dixie has unified itself to the military industrial complex that was established by Lincoln.  The South’s loyalty and co-dependency with the Union’s military industrial complex ensures that secession and the Confederacy will never rise again because the South has been reborn in Lincoln and Hamilton’s image.

The Southern dream of the Confederacy and secession will live on, but the South’s reality will be Hamilton and Lincoln’s incentive structure of militarized Unionism.

From the Old Confederacy, we look into the dregs of anti-Lincoln sentiment, the altright.

The altright’s hatred of Lincolnism primarily emerges from their neoConfederate partisanship and their advocacy for Hitler’s military industrial complex.  As already mentioned, the Confederate cause cannot be resurrected because the South is too embedded with Lincoln’s military industrial complex.

If White Nationalism is the altright’s game they should not be embracing Hitler’s failed cause (which has even less chance of being resurrected in America than the Confederacy) when Lincoln was both the most successful white nationalist of all time and whose cause is more likely to blossom on its native soil.

Any viable American White Nationalism must be like Donald Trump:  Centered around the legacy of Hamilton and Lincoln and geographically originate from Hamilton’s old stomping grounds of New York.  Anything else is doomed.

So far as anyone knows Adolf Hitler never said he should have been more like Abraham Lincoln.  But he should have.  He may well have even thought it now and then as the curtain fell.  Not just because an attitude towards Jews comparable to Lincoln’s would handed Adolf the bomb, nor just because cross-breeding Jewish males with busty Aryan shiksas in black leather uniforms is apparently racially synergistic, nor just because it would have swept Henry “Heinz” Kissinger into the upper echelons of the Nazi hierarchy where, even Kissinger’s countless enemies would admit, he would have made for a spectacular Nazi.

But he should have said so given how the military industrial complex FDR inherited from Lincoln was the only war machine powerful enough to crush Hitler’s formidable (though, not formidable enough) war machine.

Yet, Hitler didn’t.

What exactly is the point of the altright resurrecting Hitler’s cause in America when the Third Reich was doomed the day Lee surrendered to Grant?

The point of the altright committing the grave error of Hitlerism without Hitler is to give themselves an excuse for not being in the political game because they cannot consciously admit they suck at it and would fail at it, as they have at everything else, if they ever tried to play it for real.  So they glom on to Hitler precisely because Hitlerism has no viability in America.

The altright is the retarded, deformed spawn of that other bottom feeder enemy of Lincolnism, paleoconservatism.  Though paleoconservatives don’t embrace Hitler as directly as the altright, they end up wasting as much time on Hitler as the altright because they approach the history of Nazism with “Hitler was wrong, but…”.

But nothing.

It is a waste of time defending Hitler on anything and distracts from what should be other Nationalist priorities.

The likes of Buchanan, Taki, and the rest of their type are weak, failed men whose vanities and personal obsessions on topics such as Hitler revisionism and anti-Zionism led to hundreds of steps backwards for whatever step forward they might have made on immigration.  The net result of their incompetence was that American immigration restriction was left utterly lifeless compared to contemporary European Nationalism because Buchananites – who handed leadership off to the even more incompetent altright – drove American immigration restrictionism far off course with their own micro-issues.

In general both the altright and paleoconservatives have no idea what they’re talking about.

Both are always talking up the virtues of the Northern WASP elite (many of them stupidly confuse WASPs who are a small Northerly section of the Anglo American population with all the tens of millions of Anglo Americans who are not WASPs) and trade protectionism while in the same breath defending the Confederacy.  But the WASPs became an elite and Golden Age trade protectionism became our default trade policy only because Lincoln defeated the Cavalier Southern plantation aristocracy that supported free trade.  Prior to the Civil War the South, not the North, was the politically dominant region.  To be for the WASP elite and protectionism necessarily means supporting Lincoln’s handling of the Civil War.

What they didn’t have the talent to do, Abraham Lincoln, taking the form of Donald Trump, did.

Let there be no doubt that Trump’s victory was a victory for Hamiltonian Nationalism, not the altright.

The altright likes to posture that Trump ran on an altright platform.

In reality, where Trump’s platform agreed with the altright it was on issues where Trump had long ago staked out his position:  Trump has been on record for trade protectionism since the 1980s.

On other important areas, Trump diverged.  In addition to trade protectionism Trump has always been in favor of an aggressive defensive posture since the 1980s, and he was never an isolationist.  Where Trump broke with Bush 2’s policies was on nation building, but that just proves Trump’s Hamiltonian instincts since Hamilton was also willing to wage war if needed but was wary of spreading Democracy to nations unsuitable for freedom.

Trump was certainly never an isolationist – his problem was never American warmongering but that the warmongering was not being waged by Trump.

Trump’s embrace of Zionism, his wise hostility to Iran, is also deeply at odds with the altright and paleoconservatism.  Though in theory the altright could drop its anti-Zionism their commitment to it is wedded too much to their core identity for the altright to ever abandon anti-Zionism.

As for his immigration views, rather than basing his position on an anti-immigration arguments Trump adoption of immigration restriction seems to have been born during his conversion on the road to the White House:

 

Trump is Hamilton and Lincoln’s champion all the way.

In Trumpian foreign policy we see the incentives of Hamiltonian foreign policy – known as Regionalism – implemented in its most undiluted form because the Presidency holds immense power over diplomacy.

Hamiltonian Regionalism is defined as:

  • A Realist strategy where a great Capitalistic power uses regional alliances with other Capitalistic states to check any threat from a hostile power to either the physical security or commercial interests of the allied Capitalists. Minor powers have the option of being part of this alliance, neutral outside of it, or hostile. Regardless whether minor powers join or not, the great power is able to exercise this strategy so long as other advanced powers agreed to the system.

Make no mistake that our armed guarantee of commerce for the First World is what sustains our alliance system and makes our allies put up with our nonsense and mistakes, not Progressive posturing on human rights, global warming, etc.

The latter are mere luxuries bought for by Hamiltonian Capitalism and militarism:  When Progressives lecture at international forums about women’s rights the Saudi delegation is either dozing off or looking up what escort services are nearest to their international hotels.  Likewise, when its crunch time as it is now over the Korean Peninsula, the South Koreans and Japanese have no interest in gender neutral bathrooms; they want to know is if America’s missile defenses work (Answer:  We’re going to find out).

As an incentive structure, what does Regionalism have to do with Trump’s diplomacy?

As it turns out, everything.

Stripped of any concern for human rights American foreign policy incentives boil down to nothing more or less than “Take the oil!”

And that attitude is precisely why Trump views the business of the military industrial complex as business.

The incentive structure of Hamiltonian Regionalism predicts that a Hamiltonian President will act to favor concentrating American forces to fight only threats to international Capitalism, and avoid conflict over humanitarian matters, because international Capitalism and its needs attract the most American hard power assets.

Defending Regionalism is precisely how Trump has acted.

To see why this is true, let’s divide the major foreign policy issues before the Trump administration into ones where Capitalism is at stake (i.e. areas where Regionalism predicts Trump to reserve or use military options to “Take the oil!” or have an ally directly intervene to stabilize the theater) and issues where Regionalism predicts Trump is likely to avoid intervention because they involve humanitarian matters (some of these items overlap).

International Capitalism (Trump Diplomatic Priorities) –

  • North Korea – As dangerous as the confrontation now is, it has the virtue of being simple to understand and justify.  Northeast Asia is too economically important to First World commerce to allow an unstable North Korea to exercise leverage with an ICBM arsenal.  The economic and security stakes/incentives are too high for Hamiltonians to ignore the Peninsula as anything less than America’s number one foreign threat.
  • ISIS –  Because of the organization’s diffuse nature the Pentagon has been engaging in various small scale and large scale assaults on ISIS strongholds while minimizing conflict with other nation states.
  • Iran – The reasons for confronting Iran over its nuclear program are similar to North Korea.  The main difference is that Iran is not as dangerous to tackle because the Iranians cannot retaliate like the North Koreans can.  A tacit endorsement by Trump of a surgical strike by Israel to cripple the Iranian program is the most likely position for the administration.
  • Syria – In retrospect the limited airstrike against Assad earlier this year was a warning for Assad to stop using WMDs.  Now that Assad has stopped using them we’ve gone back to turning a blind eye to Assad’s human rights abuses.  Tolerance of a dictator who keeps his internal atrocities from conflicting with American business interests is in keeping with Regionalism.
  • Afghanistan – Trump seems to be conflicted between the security needs to Islamic terrorism but also the waning strategic importance of the country as well as the lack of economic benefit of staying.  Regionalism predicts Trump will take an indifferent attitude towards Afghanistan and that is how he has acted.
  • Russia – The main problem with American relations is Russia’s ongoing occupation of Crimea and parts of Eastern Ukraine along with saber rattling against some of Russia’s neighbors.  There are also humanitarian concerns.  Since Regionalism incentives deemphasize internal human rights violations but defends allies from territorial threats, Regionalism predicts Trump will prefer to deter Russia from more territorial advances by stationing troops on allied soil such as the Baltics and Poland but otherwise ignore internal Russian matters in favor of improving relations with a dictator.  This is what Trump has been doing.
  • Venezuela – Trump threatened military intervention.  This could be justified on Hamiltonian grounds that Venezuela has oil to take, but does it have enough oil to provoke Trump into invading?  Probably not, but we won’t exclude the possibility.

Humanitarian Interventions (Regionalism predicts Trump will avoid)

  • Myanmar – There is no economic benefit to intervening on behalf of the country’s Muslims.  Regionalism predicts Trump will avoid it.  So far Trump has not only avoided it, he did not even mention it at the United Nations.
  • Saudi Arabia & the Gulf Sheiks – A diplomatic quarrel broke out earlier this over Qatar.  Since then things have quieted down.  The Gulf Sheiks are good at letting the oil flow undisturbed.  So long as they keep doing that expect no change in our policy of looking the other way at their human rights abuses.
  • Sub-Saharan Africa – There has been no American military action except some surgical attacks against ISIS bandits camped out in Africa.  Aside from using drones against terrorists, we expect that to be the extent of American military operations in Sub-Saharan Africa.

For the sake of Hamilton, Lincoln, and Regionalism, Trump’s foreign policy has served Capitalism to a tee.

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12 thoughts on “Trump Wields The Arsenal of Capitalism for Fun & Corporate Profiteering”

  1. From what I have discerned following them the alt-right are white nationalists and little else. Their opinions on Lincoln, Hamilton, Southern Secession, Zionism, and the fecundity of National Socialism are all over the map. I think you’re giving them far too much credit. With respect to the current American political system: they are a non-entity, as are paleocons like Buchanan.

    A far more interesting case is one you buried early on. I think the New Deal has it in for both Israel and the budding White Nationalist movement. Neither are compatible with the Progressive view of continental geopolitical unions without any racial, ethnic, religious, or cultural basis. Ironically, Zionists and White Nationalists are both fighting the same Lost Cause.

    With respect to your predictions on where Trump might intervene militarily, I have my doubts. Iran and North Korea are firm holdings of Russia and China who enjoy mutual support. Bleeding the Russo-Chinese alliance at their edges in Syria and Afghanistan is likely to continue, but another macro-level incursion deeper is unlikely. ISIS and similar will continue to be Western/Israeli proxies as they are immensely efficient at destabilization and Russo-Chinese territories are flush with Sunni Muslims to radicalize.

  2. Their opinions on Lincoln, Hamilton, Southern Secession, Zionism, and the fecundity of National Socialism are all over the map. I think you’re giving them far too much credit.

    Their opinions are certainly incoherent. But they expect to be taken seriously when in reality they’re a basket case. If European Nationalists have had their act together for a long time now and Trump won with Nationalism then the altright needs to pipe down about their vision of non-viable Nationalism.

    The New Deal system clearly despises both White Nationalists and Israel, but these are two very different matters. Israel is an established state with nuclear weapons. They can live comfortably within the current geopolitical status quo as a partially Liberal nation state because their military strength gives them enough security to procrastinate from settling on more radical decisions about dealing with their Israeli Muslims and occupied Palestinians. Israel’s demographic situation is not really comparable to what White Nationalists want – France is more ethnically European (80-85%) than Israel is Jewish (75-80%). The various Jewish groups within Israel are also substantially different ethnic groups or ancestrally diluted Jewish immigrants such as primarily Slavic Eastern European Israeli Jews.

    White Nationalists are powerless yet want a much more radical change to the international system. So, on one hand, the Progressives are able to play up the non-existent threat of White Nationalists precisely because that threat doesn’t exist. Israel still has to be treated with some respect because it has real power.

    China is not going to fight for North Korea or else they would have deployed forces there to protect them.

    Likewise, Russia is in even less of a position to help Iran from a tactical strike against Iranian nuclear facilities. The bombing raid would be over in a few hours after which Russia could go on dealing with Iran as it always has. When Trump announced he was beginning to withdraw from the nuclear treaty Western Europeans complained more than Putin did.

  3. “Their opinions are certainly incoherent.”

    The class of people who would provide them a more coherent framework are Progressive. It should come as little surprise the prole remainder aren’t coherent.

    “Israel is an established state with nuclear weapons.”

    So were Rhodesia and South Africa.

  4. The class of people who would provide them a more coherent framework are Progressive.

    The same is true in Europe but the Europeans don’t have anything comparably as incompetent as the clowns over on this side of the Atlantic.

    So were Rhodesia and South Africa.

    Neither had white majorities close to the size of Israel’s Jewish majority. So they – justifiably – were forced to restrict the Democratic rights of their black citizens in a way Israel doesn’t have to with its Muslim citizens. If Rhodesia or South Africa were 75% white they would have been able to afford to loosen up on Apartheid to relax international pressure without giving up their states completely.

  5. “Neither had white majorities close to the size of Israel’s Jewish majority.”

    Given Progressive hostility toward first-world majorities, and their inexplicable fetish for Muslims, I don’t feel very assured by this.

  6. Welcome back.

    Trump could also be compared to Teddy Roosevelt and would perhaps be a better model as he was a President but we take your point.

    You article could benefit from quoting some actual Alt-righters – Vox Day for instance.

    One thing about the Alt-right and the Paleocons is that they have no interest in foreign policy. Their argument appears to be “we are a Republic, either smash em up and go home or just go home and stay home.”

    Ironically, it was not until reading the comments on UR that we discovered that modern “right” wing AS existed – we had assumed it was only from far left and Islamist quarters.

    We know you have written on this at the start of your blog but perhaps you could write an answer to Norman Podhoretz’s (revamped) question: Why are Jews Progressive?

  7. Given Progressive hostility toward first-world majorities, and their inexplicable fetish for Muslims, I don’t feel very assured by this.

    I don’t recommend Israel trust the Progressives. What I’m saying is that having a 75% majority population allows Israel to afford to humor Progressive notions enough to drag things out without making concessions that are suicidal.

  8. Trump could also be compared to Teddy Roosevelt and would perhaps be a better model as he was a President but we take your point.

    He appears to be doing all of this by pure instinct, not any ideological thinking on his part. That’s why he has a picture hanging in his office of Andrew Jackson when he’s actually been governing like a 1900s Hamiltonian Republican.

    You article could benefit from quoting some actual Alt-righters – Vox Day for instance.

    When you’ve read one you’ve read all of them. They haven’t changed when it comes to foreign policy at all.

    One thing about the Alt-right and the Paleocons is that they have no interest in foreign policy. Their argument appears to be “we are a Republic, either smash em up and go home or just go home and stay home.”

    And they aren’t historians.

    For centuries the Roman Republic slaughtered its neighbors left and right with as much enthusiasm as the Empire. So did the Republics of Athens, Sparta. Carthage apparently had a Monarchical Republican system of government and it was hardly the ancient equivalent of Swiss neutrality.

    We know you have written on this at the start of your blog but perhaps you could write an answer to Norman Podhoretz’s (revamped) question: Why are Jews Progressive?

    I haven’t seen the article. In fact, I didn’t know Podhoretz Sr. was still alive.

    I doubt he’s written anything that has changed my long-standing explanation which I’ve given at UR.

    Jewish American politics, as well as the politics of elite ethnic whites, tracks very nicely with WASP politics. When Northern WASPs were Hamiltonian Conservatives from 1865 to 1945, elite American Jews (mostly German until about the mid-1950s) were also Hamiltonian Conservatives.

    After FDR shifted Northern WASPs to the Left with the New Deal, WASPs transitioned to Liberal politics; even if they nominally remained Republicans, WASP Republicans were Liberal Republicans like New York’s mayor Lindsay.

    The politics of Jewish Americans also shifted to the Left with Progressive WASPs because the tendency of assimilated Jewry is to attach itself to the politics of the native elite.

    Intermarriage between WASPs and Jews has been extensive for almost a century. A number of prominent WASP-Jews includes John Kerry, former secretary of defense William Cohen, and Moldbug.

    My interpretation is similar to Moldbug’s except that he kept wrongly insisting WASPs were Progressive during the 1865-1932 Golden Age.

    Progressivism was a minority political faction within WASP politics that only after WWII became the predominant opinion in WASP politics.

  9. “What I’m saying is that having a 75% majority population allows Israel to afford to humor Progressive notions enough to drag things out without making concessions that are suicidal.”

    Well, I suppose I will await your exposition on The Progressive Structure before making further commentary on the subject.

  10. “revamped” meant your version of:

    Podhoretz still seems to be alive.

    The first generation of neocons – many of whom were Jewish – still had a “street” quality to them that their effete offspring don’t have.

    It was partly this “street” quality that allowed them to see the madness of the New Left in the 70’s.

    It was either Podhoretz or Kristol who started to change their views after seeing what had happened to New York.

  11. The first generation of neocons – many of whom were Jewish – still had a “street” quality to them that their effete offspring don’t have.

    So did other ethnic white Progressives like the late Ted Kennedy and Nancy Pelosi.

    What they have in common is that for all their talking up their ethnic background elite ethnic whites were fully assimilated into Progressive WASP politics.

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