People think this philosopher 'predicted' Donald Trump - and what will happen once he's US President
Picture: John Moore/Getty

Donald Trump’s victory marked a shift in global politics.

His campaign was rife with accusations of racism and sexism, and the spectre of scandal continues to follow the President-elect with the appointment of his advisers.

Why did so many Americans vote for Donald Trump?

The question has been haunting political historians, experts and Democrats alike for many weeks.

Explanations range from a lack of Hillary Clinton voter turnout, a middle class angry with the status quo and the general rise of right-wing sentiment in the US.

Director Michael Moore predicted the Republican win on the basis that ‘disenfranchised’ Americans seeking radical change would vote for Trump.

His theory echoes an idea birthed by the late American philosopher Richard Rorty, almost 20 years ago.

Rorty’s seminal work on the political Left, ‘Achieving Our Country’ written in 1998 prophesied a time in the near future in which the political Left will not only lose touch with the masses, but will fracture from within.

He wrote:

The nonsuburban electorate will decide that the system has failed and start looking around for a strongman to vote for – someone willing to assure them that, once he is elected, the smug bureaucratics, the tricky lawyers, overpaid bond salesmen, and postmodernist professors will no longer be calling the shots.

Donald Trump's explosive criticism of the 'elite' and his insistence to "make America great again" whipped up an us-against-them frenzy that pitted him against The Establishment.

This kind of rhetoric empowered his newly formed electorate.

Rorty also detailed what would happen in such a society. And it's grim.

One thing that is very likely to happen is that the gains made in the past forty years by black and brown Americans, and by homosexuals, will be wiped out. Jocular contempt for women will come back into fashion. The words “n----r” and “kike” will once again be heard in the workplace. All the resentment which badly educated Americans feel about having their manners dictated to them by college graduates will find an outlet.

The theory has since gone viral and is being shared by people who think Rorty 'predicted' Trump.

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