Donald Trump ran for president as a nationalist, in all of its most toxic forms. Trump’s extreme economic nationalism, cultural nationalism, and flirtation with white nationalism, expressed a chauvinist worldview that careened into conspiracy and paranoia, but always maintained a steady us-versus-them equilibrium. The code for the unknown dark, foreign forces and actors that made up the “them” was “globalists.” This distinction was perhaps the greatest propulsive force of the extraordinarily resentful Trump campaign for president. It also felt fraudulent as an anchor of a core belief system for a man that manipulated the shortcomings of those very global forces to amass great wealth. But Trump continued his nationalist calls not just for America first, but America only. How does Trump feel about his mortal political enemies—the globalists—now that he’s president?
Here’s what the president told the Wall Street Journal as part of a larger story about why he may not be undoing NAFTA after all:
Mr. Trump dismissed talk about a split inside his White House between aides with a nationalist or globalist orientation. “Hey, I’m a nationalist and a globalist,” he said. “I’m both. And I’m the only one who makes the decision, believe me.”
He’s a globalist too! He’s both? Interesting.
Here’s a quick smattering of what Trump had to say about the scourge of globalism before this week:
- Accepting the nomination at the RNC: “Americanism, not globalism, will be our credo.”
- “We will no longer surrender this country or its people to the false song of globalism,” Trump promised during a speech in Washington on April 26, 2016. (via the Hill)
Does Bannon know?