There have been many comments and opinions in the media lately that the Trump administration is fomenting nationalism with its Make America Great Again (MAGA) efforts.
Nationalism is truly an evil concept. Politically, it means that the nation is the sovereign, not the individual, not any group, minority or majority, not society or the public, but the nation. Not even the government is sovereign (of course the government is the protector and voice of the nation so the government becomes the sovereign).The individual is nothing more than the property and right-less subject of the nation. It can sacrifice him to any cause it deems to be in its interest.
But there is a real danger of the concept nationalism being substituted for a valid and morally good concept, patriotism, and being used by the Progressive class as a sledge hammer to destroy any and all expressions of patriotism.
This conceptual perversion can be used to attack anyone who voted for Trump, or to describe Trump's policies or anyone associated with Trump or even Republicans in general. The targets then are real patriots, those who believe in America's exceptionalism, goodness, greatness etc.
Anyone who supports Trump's policies and programs can now be attacked as evil nationalists. What does this accomplish? It presents an image of an America without patriots, so evil its own citizens won't support it, and that is the goal of the nationalist mongers.
In closing I"ll say that we have to be alert to efforts by the media, academic and political swamps to sabotage the meaning of valid and morally good concepts like patriotism by repackaging them 'nationalism' and damning them as evil.
Now I want to address the question could Trump really be a nationalist? I say no because of these facts:
1. Trump reduced taxes and
2. reduced government regulations (control over people), things a nationalist would never do.
3. He defied the regulatory agency FDA by signing the "Right to Try" bill that gave terminally ill people the freedom to try not yet approved medicines.
4. He sided with the majority of scientists that man made catastrophic climate change is a hoax putting a throttle on the EPA's runaway property rights violations.
5. Trump has properties around the world thus having experience dealing with many foreign governments. He shocked me when he said he wished there were no tariffs or taxes between world traders, an idea I have long championed.
Nope, Trump is not a nationalist. If anything he's an internationalist calling for free trade, that is, trade free from restrictions. Trump is however, making a mistake with his misguided concern over balance of trade deficits. He needs to read this Forbes article from 2013.