I finally got around to reading Michael Loungo’s recent commentary about Bruce Springsteen–about how he appears to have moved away from his roots and joined the wealthy elites in America; about how the used to sing of the common man and now lives in luxury and supported Hillary. He has created a ‘bubble’ in which elites (including myself) live and presume the rest of the country agrees with us. By the numbers, most of it does since Hillary won the popular vote but our weird system of electoral college voting gave the victory to the ‘Other’. Now the talk is about how he won the ‘middle white vote’.
Last week, John Meachan (Pulitzer author) spoke here in the bubble of Newport Beach, CA. He also spoke about the elite bubbles of privilege and the struggles of the mid-country work force living near their former now-empty factories. Of the 500 or so people gathered to hear Meacham at the posh new Newport library, he asked how many had seen ‘The Apprentice’ anytime during the 14 years Trump was on TV.One person raised her hand. A very telling indictment of the elites in the audience who have gotten richer over the recent years as thousands have been laid off in small and large manufacturing companies. Yes, how ironic that Springsteen sang about NJ workers while getting very rich himself.
How ever can the middle be regained? Perhaps never. Perhaps the great fear looming will become like the great reality–messy and chaotic China and India with billions of indigent people. All great civilizations have risen to heights and fallen. I’m reading a book about one of most extensive and powerful political systems in the history of humankind–the Mongols who ruled from the Pacific to the Mediterranean starting with Genghis Khan, in the 14th century. Yet within less than 5 generations after him the empire fell apart and GK’s descendants were warring with each other giving eventual rise to Europeans kingdoms, resurgent Chinese and czarist Russian peoples…
We are again in the midst of more change. Sic transit gloria mundi!