This prediction will appear daring. Is Donald Trump not one of the most hated politicians of his generation? Doesn’t the American media itself–not to mention the European media–depict him as a sexist buffoon, a fascist clown, a man who is almost utterly incapable of governing or even behaving like an adult?
Did he not just “remove” his country from the Paris agreement on climate change, making the U.S. virtually alone against the entire world, against the advice of several American states and companies such as Goldman Sachs and even the oil company EXXON?!
Such is the dominant narrative. Yet I will dare to make this prediction: There will be Trumpmania in Europe.
In fact, it is easy to see.
First, you must not have a short memory. Most Republican U.S. presidents were initially described in Europe as simple-minded, right-wing extremists. Have we forgotten that Reagan was depicted as a monster? The same Reagan who is recognized today as having fixed the American economy and contributed to the fall of the appalling, brutal, communist USSR.
However, this isn’t the most important point–that belongs to the successes of Trump and the failures of his adversaries.
Trump wants to ban citizens from nations that are recognized breeding grounds for Islamist and terrorist recruits from entering American territory; the Supreme Court has just validated this “travel ban” for the most part. “Obamacare,” the European-style model of healthcare, is virtually bankrupt, its main economic proponents are deserting it, families are being bled dry through exorbitant premiums and there are 50 percent fewer Americans covered than expected. However it is defined and named, there will be a “Trumpcare” which will come to replace Obamacare.
Exiting the Paris agreement will help the American economy prosper by ceasing to inflict a disadvantage that is not justified when you compare the U.S. to the rest of the world: reducing emissions of carbon dioxide in the West, increasing emissions in the rest of the world. (It will be interesting to follow the economic trajectory of France which, under Macron, is making the exact opposite choice.)
Trump’s team is also currently eliminating many rules and regulations that are, equally, handicapping businesses and depriving citizens of liberties.
Over the last six months, the entire American “intelligence” system has sought to uncover the supposed collusion between the Republicans and Russia. Not only has this “deep state” failed to produce the least bit of tangible proof, but the media has committed itself to this conspiracy theory, and it has been found out. CNN has released a vast quantity of bogus information on Russia and Trump, which was cooked up by the Democrats without verification and in violation of its ethical duty. Consequently, it had to part with three of its journalists at the end of what the press considers to be the biggest scandal in the history of CNN. There is no doubt that other media organizations, which have vindictively pursued Trump for ideological reasons since he began to seek the Republican nomination for president in June 2015, will experience the same type of humiliation. It is never wise to be led by hate.
By establishing through social media a permanent channel of direct communication, without the media acting as an intermediary between himself and millions of citizens, Trump has revolutionized political communication.
In short, when the ashes of ideology have fallen, we will have to recognize that Trump is a man (with all the faults that that implies) who is a far cry from the absurd caricature that he has been portrayed as, who has overseen numerous successes which fulfill his campaign pledges and whose failures his adversaries have exaggerated. The Democrats have just suffered five successive electoral defeats, to the extent which some have come to admit that the Democrat brand is now less respected than “Trump,” and what interests Americans is not espionage novels, but the growth of their economy.
That is why, in the context of a European economy which is still in difficulty and in an age of burning issues–refugees, immigration, Islamic terrorism–without the hope of a European solution, I am daring to predict that a number of European leaders will soon be forced to take a lesson in humility.