Black Swans stand for the unpredictable. I thought Brexit had occupied that space for a while. Then, well, you know.
I did not dare to publish Daily Thoughts yesterday. The results of the US election took over all airtime. It was after all 9/11 (in our system, the 9th of November as opposed to the American 9/11).
I would not dare either to re-write the commentary. Many people much brighter than me have done it. Here is David Brooks, of the New York Times:
“If I had to sum up the election of 2016 in one clause, I would say it has been a sociological revolution, a moral warning and a political summons. Sociologically, this campaign has been an education in how societies come apart. The Trump campaign has been like a flash flood that sweeps away the topsoil and both reveals and widens the chasms, crevices and cracks below.”
Or here is Jonathan Freedland of The Guardian:
“We thought the United States would step back from the abyss. We believed, and the polls led us to feel sure, that Americans would not, in the end, hand the most powerful office on earth to an unstable bigot, sexual predator and compulsive liar.”
Not much room for niceties here.
Without being pedantic, all components of Viral Change™ continue to be the ones on the table, the ones to assess and understand:
Behaviours: what Trump did and said he did has not undermined him a bit. Macho behaviours, bigoted behaviours, have been forgiven by a majority. If populism is not a scare thing now, I don’t know when it would be.
Social influence: The democrats did not get it. Communities of unhappy (with the establishment ) people created growing critical mass, somehow invisible. Belonging to the anti-establishment was the glue. Many communities/groups/tribes were taken for granted.
Storytelling: It’s all about stories, and the Blonde Swan is a master of invention.
When things settles a bit, and they will, we need to look at the non-political aspects of this phenomena which is unique in history:
- Rhetoric won the day
- Macho models won the day. Respect, consideration, equality didn’t.
- Anti-something (more than pro-something) won the day
- Un-critical thinking won the day
- The guy in documentary that I downloaded (‘The Trump Tribe’) who said he wanted Trump to win because ‘he was a billionaire and had the most beautiful woman on earth’, whilst his wife looked at him on camera, won the day.
- Populism won the day
- The post-truth, un-truth, lies rhetoric won the day.
- Fear won the day (as in Brexit)
So, when everything is a bit more settled, let’s look at all these medal winners and reflect on the kind of world we are shaping.
How many more Blonde Swans I can stomach, I am not sure.
This is Day One of a Global Social Movement for decency, fairness, equality, respect and a human world. Who wants to lead?
Sorry Donald, for this, you are fired!