by Drieu Godefridi (*)
25 February 2016
For a European philosopher, saying something nice about Donald Trump is a bit like announcing “I’m a paedophile and proud of it!” on national television: not the sort of thing that advances one’s career.
Nevertheless, I would vote for Trump. Here are my reasons:
The West is a mess. Our governments have never been so obese and impotent in their fundamental missions, and we are on the verge of war with Russia on behalf of al-Qaeda and ISIS-affiliated rebels in Syria. The US and the West evidently need a radical change of course.
Islam is a problem. Not so-called Political Islam nor the Muslims as individuals, but Islam as a doctrine. Communism was subjected to rational and implacable criticism, as were fascism, socialism, constitutionalism, Catholicism, so on and so forth. Why not Islam? Islam is not only a religion but a complete set of norms rooted in the words of Allah. Is the doctrine of Islam compatible with the ontology of Western civilisation, where every norm is open to review and revision? It is time to reflect on such.
We live in democracies. Even though Madame Christine Lagarde of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) keeps repeating that “migrants boost growth”, the public simply cannot put up with mass-migration any longer. It is time for a break and, meanwhile, time to realise just how much we do need borders.
Political correctness has reached a level of hysteria that is objectively hampering the democratic debate. We should be able to debate race, sex, gender, history, however offensive these subjects may be to some, without going to court. Since the ancient Athenians, we have known that there can be no democracy without freedom of speech.
Trump is a businessman and has made billions from his endeavours. For the vast majority of European politicians, who have never made a cent of private (real) money in their whole life, there is only a difference of degree, not of nature, between a businessman and a crook. However, to be a businessman does give you a sense of reality, a deeply-embedded pragmatism, more so than that gained from a life spent in libraries reflecting on the “concept” of reality. Would President Trump go to war for the sake of an ideology? Would President Trump do anything for the sake of ideology? I don’t think so. This ontological pragmatism is the best safeguard against what all those snooty European commentators — à la Edward Luce of the “Financial Times” — perceive as the potential danger of Donald Trump himself.
I have no advice to give to the great American public. But, as a European, and in our common interest as Westerners, I humbly ask you: please, vote for Trump.
(*) PhD (Sorbonne), jurist (universities of Louvain & Brussels).