It’s no secret that one of the “keys” to success for populism anno 2017 is the marshaling of support from the uneducated masses.
That goes for politicians and for the alt-Right blogosphere.
No one with an education takes Breitbart or its progeny seriously. At least not when those outlets are talking public/foreign policy. Those sites are supermarket tabloids designed solely to profit from the patronage of people who don’t know any better. Plain and simple. They know it. And so does everyone except for the people who consume their “work product.”
For populist politicians, the anti-globalist, xenophobic, “us versus them,” nationalist message plays well with the un- and under-educated. It’s easy to prey on people’s fears when they don’t know any better. Yes, that sounds paternalistic, but it’s true.
You can’t tell someone with a Master’s degree that all Muslims are out to kill them or that all Mexicans are trying to rape them or that George Soros is conspiring with Chobani yogurt to spread tuberculosis in Idaho.
I mean sure, there are educated people who are bigoted and crazy and there are smart people who are racists, but generally speaking, the bullshit being peddled by the Marine Le Pens and the Donald Trumps of the world doesn’t resonate well with people who aren’t gullible.
Given all of that, it’s entirely possible that for Trump, the worst part of the latest Quinnipiac University National Poll isn’t that his approval rating has dropped to a laughable 36%…
… but rather that among white voters with no college degree, his approval rating has dropped to 47% versus 57% a month ago and his disapproval rating among that same constituency has risen to 46% versus 38% over the same period:
“There is no way to spin or sugarcoat these sagging numbers,” said Tim Malloy, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll.
“The erosion of white men, white voters without college degrees and independent voters, the declaration by voters that President Donald Trump’s first 100 days were mainly a failure and deepening concerns about Trump’s honesty, intelligence and level headedness are red flags that the administration simply can’t brush away,” Malloy added.
So I guess the only question is: “what do you call a populist uprising against a populist president?”