The idea that the United States is a nation of faith can at last be given up as a lie. Trump represents neither faith nor works. He has disproven any attempts to depict him as faithful to the truth. There really can be only one non-ironic interpretation of Trump. A power-monger plain and simple, he is willing to sell the American presidency to Vladimir Putin for pennies on the dollar, so long as Trump receives the position.
Given that it has been scientifically demonstrated that democracy tends toward suboptimal decision making, we have been begging for an end-time reckoning for some time. American democratic politics have dragged us into a number of wars and military conflicts for which neither sound moral nor economic reasoning can be laid down. In fact, a vast number of Americans apparently think medieval mercantilism and free market capitalism are interchangeable. The medieval mercantilist strategy may prove beneficial for a businessman, but is clearly an inefficient, immoral and unscientific means of lifting the economy and distributing goods and services.
So how are we to confront democracy and mercantilist economics? Off the cuff, I would recommend saddling mercantilists with fines and punishments appropriate to the political system they are trying to undermine: where there is capital punishment, let them be executed; where there is leniency, let us be lenient. (Why adopt such a rule? Because where the politics grow more harsh and conservative, the more dangerous grows the military, economic, and political weight. The less dangerous the hold on power, the more likely power is to yield beneficial consequences.) But these things should not be decided off the cuff.
What is clearly needed is deep, intellectual reflection on the structures of power and economics. (Ann Coulter and Glenn Beck, if they recognized their inadequacy for such a task, would elect to sit out the debate. Given the Dunning-Kruger effect, we will always have them with us.) Despite a lot of crying, much of it from the more extreme left wing of literary theory and their ilk, there really is a great deal of factual knowledge on how to organize an economic system so as to benefit a great majority of the people. And it starts with a good intellectual grounding in free market economics. Nobel prize winners in economics such as Paul Krugman have shown us the way, to both reveal the obscene and pursue the praiseworthy.
The structures of power are more difficult to discern, as, in large part, political science is not altogether scientific. (Nor, for that matter, is Business anything more than bad psychology. The two disciplines go hand-in-hand.) There is good work being done on optimizing decision making in groups that can show us the way. And, of course, there is a solid foundation of material from economics. How to fuse the optimization of group decision making with our economic needs as a people (that is, as a race or a nation rather than a political caste or party) may be murky, but it is not beyond imagining.
To move forward, though, requires breaking the hold of powerbrokers, and that, I am afraid, means breaking some arms.
Throw over the tables of the money changers…
Or remain cowards in your corners.