Reason is a slave to the passions


If you are the kind of American who wants, as Pat Buchanan recently wrote, ‘an ever-more splendid diversity of colors, creeds, ethnicities, ideologies, beliefs and lifestyles’ for America, then by voting for Hillary Clinton you are doing the logical thing. And you’ll probably hate Donald Trump.

Conversely, for Americans who think their country is being taken away from them by a coalition of resentful leftists, SJWs,  race hustlers and supporters of La Raza then they will most likely vote for Trump. They will naturally dislike Clinton, as well as most of academia, the media and Hollywood. For these people, even if Trump does somehow end up destroying the historic American nation, it will be through ineptitude rather than design.

Trump voters don’t need to do much soul-searching since the things they want are pretty much what all people throughout history and in all places have wanted i.e not to be replaced. However, liberals should ask themselves why they want more immigration; why do they want the demographic balance of America to shift away from whites and towards Hispanics, blacks and Muslims; why are they happy to pay the price of a decline in social capital just to get the diversity they are so keen on; why are they happy to force force people who want to live among their own kind to live with people very different from them; why do they mind immigrants, both legal and illegal, flooding the job market and thus depressing the wages of Americans.

The bottom line is that Hillary’s supporters and Trump’s supporters have two very different temperaments and no end of dialogue or discussion will reconcile them. It’s a bit like arguing over which is best, vanilla or chocolate ice-cream. There is no ‘fact of the matter’, only a preference for one flavour over another, for one kind of life over another. On the one side are those who prefer demographic stability and to live in a super-majority of whites, an arrangement that has worked pretty well up till now. These people want a small government that protects the country’s borders and deports anyone who is there illegally. They don’t want lavish social programs that often end up rewarding fecklessness and ineptitude.

On the other side are those who want to live in a multicultural, multi-ethnic welfare state that welcomes everyone, especially the poor. They want a government that protects its citizens, especially the poor and ‘vulnerable’, from the hardships thrown up by life in a competitive world.

I suppose there may be a few odd people who don’t care who is President, Trump or Clinton, or whether they live in a country with many or few immigrants. However, such creatures are rare and most people do have a strong preference either way. Research seems to show that it is generally our innate temperament that nudges us to vote one way or the other rather than rational thought. As the Scottish philosopher David Hume said, ‘Reason is a slave to the passions’. Even so, this can’t be the whole story. If it were then no one would ever change their minds, Americans – assuming the nation’s DNA didn’t change much –  would always vote for the same party and trying to argue someone out of voting for Clinton would be like trying to persuade them that one flavour of ice-cream was objectively better than another. At least in Politics there is at least some ‘fact of the matter’, even if it plays second fiddle to our un-thought-through feelings.


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