Trump, Promise and Betrayal


Trump’s programs push American blue collar voters and the mass of all Americans out of the frying pan, right into the fire.  Why did so many blue-collar family men and women vote for Trump in the first place?


Many blue-collar women, like their men, found that neo liberal capitalists like Obama and Hillary favored gay rights, transgender rights, minority rights, and women's rights over Americans’ right to make a decent living. Past establishment politicians like Bill Clinton and Bush promised prosperity. That prosperity did not happen for the mass of Americans. Loss happened instead. Voters tried something very different. They selected a young black president, a first in US history. Barack Obama, promised them “hope and change”. Their fortunes did not change for the better. They worked even harder and earned less. According to the Economic Policy Institute, between 1980 and 2015 white men produced more and more and still earned less. No one’s wages matched the increases in their productivity, the increased economic value they created.[1] White women, and black men and women earned slightly more than they had, but that is because their earnings were so much lower in the first place. Obama’s economic promises did not materialize. Shafted workers looked for someone outside of the establishment. The usual well behaved political candidates betrayed them. They also wanted a candidate who recognized their suffering. They saw Hillary as the same old politics with the same false promises and the same contempt for them. They were in Hillary’s “basket of deplorables.”

Two presidential candidates spoke passionately to American suffering. They were Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump. Bernie was the closest they came. He provided an alternative social democratic way to greater economic and social justice by taxing the rich, the bankers and Wall street to create jobs, help, and respect for the mass of Americans. Trump promised similar things. Bernie, even now, is America’s most popular politician according to polls from Mother Jones to Fox news. Hillary and the DNC knifed Bernie in the back. That is one strong reason why so many men and women, particularly blue collar men and women voted for Trump. They valued a decent living over ending sexism, racism and homophobia. They thought that the rights that women, and homosexuals and transsexuals won meant that they were getting more for themselves while the mass of whites got less.

Trump is a demagogue. His passionate descriptions of the injustice of feeding the rich at the expense of American workers implied that he himself would not do that. He would “drain the swamp” of corruption that put Goldman Sachs ahead of solid hard working American citizens. Trump described “a rigged system that rewards the wealthy and well-connected at the expense of the common man”.[2]  However, that is just what he is doing. Former Goldman Sachs banker Steve Bannon is a senior White House strategist, along with Goldman Sachs veteran Steve Minuchin as Treasury secretary, billionaire investor Wilbur Ross as Commerce secretary and billionaire activist Betsy DeVos as Education secretary. Another billionaire, Chicago Cubs co-owner Todd Ricketts, has been named deputy Commerce secretary. Trumps daughter Ivanka and her husband, Jared Kushner, are in the closest possible advisory position to Trump. Their wealth is estimated in billions. Gary Cohn resigned as president of Goldman Sachs in mid-December to become the director of President Trump’s National Economic Council. They are the swamp.

Trump posed his reversal of the rights of minorities and women, and his treatment of women as sex objects as the return to 1950s values that delivered, not political correctness, but prosperity for white and blue collar families.

Wrong again! Trump denies civil rights and also cultivates the “swamp”. Now, the mass of Americans will live with and suffer even more the effects of Trump on women, men, families and prosperity. Now, both white men and white women are in the kind of economic trouble from which minorities have always suffered. It will get worse as Trump strips away the government assistance they counted on for help. 

What does the Trump regime actually deliver for the about 80% of US families who are suffering? Let’s look at a few examples of Trump's effect on 3 crucial aspects of American’s lives: health, education, and well paid jobs.


By trying to gut the Affordable Care Act Trump strips from Americans’ the only national protection available, expensive, but available. Bernie advocated for the same health care that other developed nations like France and Canada enjoy, free universal healthcare. Trump does the opposite. If Trump succeeds the mortality rate in the US will be keep on falling. We already are a nation where the life expectancy is going down. Cuba has a lower infant death rate and a longer life expectancy rate than the US

People are dying earlier at both ends of the life spectrum. We have the highest infant mortality rates and maternal mortality rates in the wealthy industrialized world. With Trump’s agenda Americans without money can expect to die even sooner.

Trump’s cuts of WIC the infants and children’s nutrition program will cut the subsidies for healthy foods, fruits and vegetables for pregnant women, and women with young children. WIC has been credited with helping children have a healthier diet thereby cutting child obesity a huge health hazard. Pregnant women who are not properly nourished are at greater risk of birth defects. Their infants are more likely to be born with congenital heart disease, abdominal wall tears, and hernia, to name a few diseases and disabilities the WIC program can prevent. It is on the chopping block. It covers women and children up to 185% of the poverty level—i.e. many Trump supporters. This is the more painful because disabled and sick children suffer even more child abuse than other children. Their parents lose patience with the extra care, time and parental sacrifice they need (

Trump Cut Planned Parenthood which provides all kinds of reproductive care to millions of American women including cancer screenings. Planned Parenthood screenings stop a huge range of reproductive diseases. To provide just one example, routine STI’s like HPV if undetected and untreated end in cervical cancer,  anal cancer, cancers of the middle part of the throat, including the soft palate, the base of the tongue, and the tonsils, vaginal cancers, vulvar cancer, and penile cancers. Women cannot warn their partners of STDs or UTIs they don’t know about. Breast cancer undetected is a killer. About 1 in 8 women in the US will develop invasive breast cancer over the course of her lifetime. Women can expect more cancer from Trump.

Trump proposes cuts to domestic violence protection, and battered women’s shelters. More than 1,600 women a year are murdered by husbands and boyfriends. More Trump followers can expect to die, no less be injured by Trump’s cuts.


Education will be cut at all levels. The most damaging to families will be the cuts to preschool programs. Parents will have to scramble to get care. Even before the worsening cuts, the US failed to educate our children. Fully 90% of US infants and preschool children are now in low quality care while their parents work.[3] 42% of US kids are born to and live with single Moms who are America’s poorest people. They and their children will endure special suffering. Their child care choices are terribly constrained. The average cost for daycare is $16,000 a year. Headstart, one of America’s most successful preschool programs provides quality daycare. Headstart has a waiting list of many thousands. Trump is pushing severe cuts for Headstart. Studies combine to show that Headstart gives children a start in gaining the skills that will prepare them for school, skills the privileged already have from their expensive private preschools. Early Childcare investment is highly correlated with higher achievement and higher earnings for mothers and their children. It also reduces crime and imprisonment for future generations. Ivanka Trump has presented her father’s alternative child-care program. Ivanka’s program gives a slight break of tax rebates for incomes up to $250,000 for individuals and $500,000 for couples. It also gives breaks with deductions for those with even higher incomes. Trump aid comes nowhere near what is needed by the majority of parents. According to the Tax Policy Center, Trump’s program would give parents an average of $190.00 In tax credits, a small amount. Families with incomes at or below $40,000 would get an annual savings of $20.00 or less. Fully 40% of US families have incomes at or below $40,000. It is crucial to note that the average cost of decent daycare, not the highest quality, but decent, is $16,500 per year.[4] Most of Trump’s followers who are parents will suffer once again. Paying for quality universal childcare centers saves more than $7.00 for every dollar spent. The failure to provide universal child-care is an ideological commitment. Fortunately, no other Western developed nation shares that ideology.

Special education programs will be cut. Children’s special needs already keep women in poverty because special needs children need more care and attention. It is almost impossible to sustain a decently well-paying job with the distraction and job absences a special needs child requires. Parents and their children will suffer once again.

After school and summer programs will be cut from elementary to high schools. The greatest number of crimes perpetuated on children and also by children happen in the hours between school closing and parents returning from work. Parents who want some safety for their children require that the children stay home until their parents return. They remain home where their play is sedentary on their devices which contribute to obesity and ill health.

Those who need assistance to go to college which of course includes many Trump supporters, will be slashed as the Federal Supplemental Education Grant program is cut. The Federal Supplemental Education Grant program gives funds for low income college students and subsidizes the federal work study program that allows students to work their way through college. Here again is an active further denial of the needs of Trump’s base.

Only Charter schools and vouchers for private education will gain support. They provide an education inferior to public school education by all measures.[5]

One obvious way to help restore some of the millions cut would be to transfer funds from indulging the Trump family, to educating America’s children. We could restore $365 million in education cuts if Melania and her and Trump’s son, Barron, lived in the White House all year instead of Trump Tower. In an ironic twist, Melania is ostensibly staying in Trump Tower so that Barron’s private school year will not be interrupted while millions of children are denied after school programs and child care centers.

Another $600 million would be saved if we stopped paying for Trump’s security and travel costs to Mar a Lago. Many millions more would be saved for education if Trumps’ adult children were not protected on our dime as they fly to places like Uruguay and Dubai on their own private business ventures.[6]


Trump promises to bring industrial jobs back to the US.

The sole purpose of US corporations is profit. According to prominent economist, Rick Wolff, there are 3 dominant ways that manufacturers profit: they cut costs by outsourcing jobs, importing cheaper workers or mechanizing, computerizing and robotizing jobs. They will not return jobs. 50% of the factories importing goods from China are owned by Americans who will use their wealth and influence to keep it that way. Chinese workers earn an average of $656. a month. Indian workers earn an average of $295 a month while Mexicans get an average of $609. a month. Even with shipping costs, American corporations are making vast profits. That is why they are not returning. If by any miracle there were huge costs levied for outsourcing, the capitalists would mechanize computerize and robotize right here at home, eliminating jobs. Not because they are personally evil, but that is the inevitable logic of capitalism. Trump is not a socialist or even a social democrat. The jobs will not return.

Trump will not deliver on his promises. He cannot within deliver within corporate capitalism. The American people will suffer even more as their few extra supports are slashed. Trump priorities will increase the shame of majority of Americans whose children will be shamed by not having the “right” sneakers, who will have to scrimp, save and do without while our capitalist culture abounds with equations of wealth with worthiness, “What are you worth?’ “If you’re so smart, why aren’t you rich?”, “Money talks”, a “poor performance” is an inadequate one, etc. Our nation equates self-worth with net worth. Those who lose their financial security will be dubbed “losers to others, and still more painfully, to themselves.

What will happen if and when Trump’s voters realize they have been betrayed?

The words of Langston Hughes ask that same question.

“What happens to a dream deferred?

Does it dry up like a raisin in the sun,

or fester like a sore, and then run,

maybe it just sags, like a heavy load,

or, does it explode?”

The US is exploding with political activity. The good news is that people are beginning to realize that it was not the gains for minorities gays and women who denied them their livelihoods, it was corporate capitalism. That realization began to happen in the brief three-month life of Occupy which brought us the 1% versus the 99% before they were crushed nationally. We, the majority are beginning to connect to change this. That connection is the crucial commencement. It provides hope in the midst of personal social political and economic pain for the majority of Americans. The dream of an anti-capitalist means of organizing our lives from personal life, to political life to economic life is being born. We are the midwives.


[1] Economic Policy Institute (EPI) “All workers’ Wages-regardless of gender or race- have failed to rise in tandem with productivity. Alyssa Davis, Elise Gould. November 18, 2005. 

[2] Hughes, Trevor. Oct. 18, 2016 “Trump calls to ‘drain the swamp’ of Washington” USA TODAY 

[3] National institute of child Health and Human Development (NICHD). 2006-2007. “The NICHD Study of Early Child Care and Youth Development.” Department of Health and Human Services, National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Child Health and Human Development. 

Although this study is from ten years ago the situation remains unchanged. Fully 90% of US children are in lower quality health care.

[4] The Hamilton Project. Income Distributions for Working-Age Families with Children. 

Miller, Claire Cain. April 22. “The Power of Daycare.”  The New York Times. P. B1.

[5] Lubienski, Christopher and Sarah. 2017. The Public-School Advantage: Why Public Schools Outperform Private Schools, University of Chicago Press. The authors are, a husband-and-wife team of education professors at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

[6] There are too many articles on Trump and his wife, young son and adult children worldwide trips which we pay for. A few are,,,,,

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