Click amount to donate direct to CounterPunch
  • $25
  • $50
  • $100
  • $500
  • $other
  • use PayPal
Please Support CounterPunch’s Annual Fund Drive
We don’t run corporate ads. We don’t shake our readers down for money every month or every quarter like some other sites out there. We only ask you once a year, but when we ask we mean it. So, please, help as much as you can. We provide our site for free to all, but the bandwidth we pay to do so doesn’t come cheap. All contributions are tax-deductible.
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

On the Devil, Trump and Getting Schlonged

Donald Trump reminds me of ethnographer Jose E. Limon’s portrait of the Devil in South Texas. He — Satan is always a man –appears when sectors of the population feel threatened by the brutal machinations of the capitalist modernity gone wild. In his book, Dancing with the Devil: Society and Poetics in Mexican American South Texas, Limon collected stories from his Mexican/Tejan@ informants of the Devil appearing at cantinas throughout South Texas during weekend dances. This particular Tejano avatar of the Prince of Lies was inevitably described as handsome, nicely attired, a good dancer, well endowed, a favorite of the ladies, and a man’s man, a real Chingon.

Enter Donald Trump into the media-managed US presidential campaign stage replete with candidates: lifelong opportunists who are elite, white, right, and uptight. Cruz and Rubio are the anemic browning of that template and not much more than that. The Devil or Donald Trump vamps on white working and middle-income fear and insecurity and revels in displaying the shit-stained undergarments of the political and media elite who have been the principle cheerleaders of destroying the economics arrangements that after World War Two produced one of the largest middle-classes in the history of the world.

The Devil and Donald Trump delight in the putatively “lower” regions of human anatomy: fecal materials, menstrual blood, penises, vaginas, etc. In fact, the economic policies of the elites in this country are creating the naked conditions that bare these bottom matters. Reality TV is the pixelated comedic opera of these deadly arrangements: the winners, the losers, the wannabes, and the aides-de-camp populate this engrossing universe of tropes and half-truths.

Another name for the Devil is Lucifer — the one who carries the light. Trump’s evil genius is that he sheds light on the actual existing system of choosing presidents and how media elites consolidate their power. His vulgarity is key to scandalizing the media elites’ upper middle-class sensibilities which never seem to extend to the criminality of the corporate lobbyist-fed political oligarchy that runs this country. Their horror rings false in the ears of the many — the non-credentialed rabble. Trump’s assertion that he would be happy to kill some journalists massages the homicidal anger that is just under the skins of many who attend his rallies and sympathize with his revanchist, populist message.

Now, let’s talk about schlongs. There is nothing wrong with schlongs or getting schlonged. Well, it does depend on whose schlong it is and the sophistication of the schlonging, I would argue, but that is another story for another day. What Trump did in his probably off-the-cuff remark was to blow a very powerful dog whistle: the matronly moralist, Hilary Clinton, was scholnged by a Black man. Consider the racist, sexist, and misogynistic registers that are mobilized by such a throw away line.

The Devil has no boundaries since his desires are as capacious as the drunken erotics that make cantinas and populist rallies cathartic spaces for those who feel dispossessed and reeling from a dignity-robbing economic system. The horror that the media and political elites emote at Trump’s pyrotechnics only consolidate his base. The Devil is working overtime these days. Trump is riding his fiery wake as far as he can.

Hillary Clinton will probably win in 2016, but Trumpism may become a fixture in US political discourse and that will have damaging consequences. God, I miss Charlie Daniels. Well, we still have Jack Daniels to soothe our political nerves and to fend off the Devil that has no need for details, just the fire of hatred and the brimstone of popular despair. That’s a stiff drink to swallow. Stiff indeed.

More articles by:

Edgar Rivera Colón Ph.D., a cultural anthropologist, teaches at Columbia University’s Narrative Medicine Program.

October 17, 2018
John Steppling
Before the Law
James McEnteer
Larry Summers Trips Out
Frank Stricker
Wages Rising? 
Muhammad Othman
What You Can Do About the Saudi Atrocities in Yemen
Binoy Kampmark
Agents of Chaos: Trump, the Federal Reserve and Andrew Jackson
Karen J. Greenberg
Justice Derailed: From Gitmo to Kavanaugh
John Feffer
Why is the Radical Right Still Winning?
Dan Corjescu
Green Tsunami in Bavaria?
Rohullah Naderi
Why Afghan Girls Are Out of School?
George Ochenski
You Have to Give Respect to Get Any, Mr. Trump
Cesar Chelala
Is China Winning the War for Africa?
Mel Gurtov
Getting Away with Murder
W. T. Whitney
Colombian Lawyer Diego Martinez Needs Solidarity Now
Dean Baker
Nothing to Brag About: Scott Walker’s Economic Record in Wisconsin:
October 16, 2018
Gregory Elich
Diplomatic Deadlock: Can U.S.-North Korea Diplomacy Survive Maximum Pressure?
Rob Seimetz
Talking About Death While In Decadence
Kent Paterson
Fifty Years of Mexican October
Robert Fantina
Trump, Iran and Sanctions
Greg Macdougall
Indigenous Suicide in Canada
Kenneth Surin
On Reading the Diaries of Tony Benn, Britain’s Greatest Labour Politician
Andrew Bacevich
Unsolicited Advice for an Undeclared Presidential Candidate: a Letter to Elizabeth Warren
Thomas Knapp
Facebook Meddles in the 2018 Midterm Elections
Muhammad Othman
Khashoggi and Demetracopoulos
Gerry Brown
Lies, Damn Lies & Statistics: How the US Weaponizes Them to Accuse  China of Debt Trap Diplomacy
Christian Ingo Lenz Dunker – Peter Lehman
The Brazilian Presidential Elections and “The Rules of The Game”
Robert Fisk
What a Forgotten Shipwreck in the Irish Sea Can Tell Us About Brexit
Martin Billheimer
Here Cochise Everywhere
David Swanson
Humanitarian Bombs
Dean Baker
The Federal Reserve is Not a Church
October 15, 2018
Rob Urie
Climate Crisis is Upon Us
Conn Hallinan
Syria’s Chessboard
Patrick Cockburn
The Saudi Atrocities in Yemen are a Worse Story Than the Disappearance of Jamal Khashoggi
Sheldon Richman
Trump’s Middle East Delusions Persist
Justin T. McPhee
Uberrima Fides? Witness K, East Timor and the Economy of Espionage
Tom Gill
Spain’s Left Turn?
Jeff Cohen
Few Democrats Offer Alternatives to War-Weary Voters
Dean Baker
Corporate Debt Scares
Gary Leupp
The Khashoggi Affair and and the Anti-Iran Axis
Russell Mokhiber
Sarah Chayes Calls on West Virginians to Write In No More Manchins
Clark T. Scott
Acclimated Behaviorisms
Kary Love
Evolution of Religion
Colin Todhunter
From GM Potatoes to Glyphosate: Regulatory Delinquency and Toxic Agriculture
Binoy Kampmark
Evacuating Nauru: Médecins Sans Frontières and Australia’s Refugee Dilemma
Marvin Kitman
The Kitman Plan for Peace in the Middle East: Two Proposals
Weekend Edition
October 12, 2018
Friday - Sunday
Becky Grant
My History with Alexander Cockburn and The Financial Future of CounterPunch
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail