So I'm at work today and somehow the subject the Brexit vote came up. One of my co-workerssaid something about how he was amazed that Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland all voted against it but it still one. The woman he was talking to is Scottish, or American who lived in Scotland for a very long time, or something.
She moved to Portland from Scotland in any case.
Anyway, she responded that London had voted against Brexit too, and then followed up with something on the order of , "Only bigoted ignorant rubes voted for leaving the EU", a couple seconds passed and she followed up with, "The same bigoted ignorant rubes from places like the south that are voting for Donald Trump". Everyone laughed. (Those are paraphrases not actual direct quotes but they are pretty close).
I looked over at the guy who was sitting next to me and he was looking kind of quizzical too so I said "Do you think that constantly being referred to as bigoted ignorant rubes might be one of the reasons people are voting for Trump?"
I'm serious about this. I'm not a Trump supporter - in fact I am very vocally against him, but I do understand where a lot of his support is coming from and most of it is not from irrational fear. It's from very real economic realities.
1. I am a free-trader. Trade in general is good for both the U.S. and the people we trade with, but that is easy for me to say. I have weathered the economic changes fairly well. If you are a blue collar worker in your 40's or 50's who has seen your job be automated out of existence or go overseas that might be a little tougher sell.
2. The same thing on immigration. First off I am not anti-immigrant. I love immigrants. Historically they have been a bright vital part of building America. Again that's easy for me to say I haven't lost my job to an H1-B visa holder yet. At some point I will because Facebook, Google, et. al are being relentless in their drive to increase their numbers. They say it's for the best and brightest but when you look at where the visas are going it's to low level morons like me doing grunt work who are putting other low level morons out of work. Even if you don't get replaced, you don't get ahead because wages are driven down. Same thing with illegals. They replace natives and drive down wages (don't believe me visit a McDonalds).
There are other reasons too, people are afraid of violence crossing the border, people are still scared of terrorism etc. But what it all comes down too is people have concerns and instead of having those concerns listened too they are mocked and ridiculed. In Britain it led to Brexit, here it may lead to a Trump presidency.
If that happens I don't think people will be in a laughing mood anymore