After the convention, many Republicans are worried that Trumpism does not respect the prudent, cautious, free-market conservatism they value. Trump is turning his back on decades of Republican Party doctrine and, for millennials especially, making the Republican Party a “toxic brand.”
The strategy and tone that lay behind this week’s Republican convention in Cleveland, and that have lain behind Donald Trump’s campaign from its outset, reflect a strain that has existed in the Republican Party for nearly fifty years. That is, to play on the politics of fear, hatred, and race.
Days after the Nice attacks, French politics has shifted toward militarism, xenophobia, and the all-powerful state. France is hurtling toward a presidential election that will bring more hostility, fear, and division, and be fought against the expectation of further attacks. In the meantime, the racial profiling and frisking of Arabs in the street, the police raids in the middle of the night will intensify, contributing to further alienation of French Muslims.
Danny Lyon has spent much of his career taking intimate photographs of marginal, working-class, and outlaw communities. Many of the most striking pictures in the Whitney Museum’s new survey, “Danny Lyon: Message to the Future,” come from these milieus. But more than the pictures themselves, it’s Lyon’s sixteen nonfiction films that show how his relationships with his subjects have developed haltingly and sometimes tensely over time.
Trump’s candidacy rests on his experience as a business leader, on the notion that he is the CEO ready to run America, Inc. What he has demonstrated so far at the Republican convention in Cleveland is not deviation from an ideological norm, but simple ineptitude. And for a would-be chief executive to the nation, that’s not a good look.
Rather than reflecting a movement in decline, the Nice attack may be best understood as a recalibration of long-endorsed tactics in the service of an overriding strategy of world revolution. Even if ISIS loses all of its territory in Syria and Iraq, the global jihadi archipelago could continue to expand if the social and political conditions that have led to its emergence continue to persist.
Bruce Conner’s enormously influential follow-up to A Movie, Cosmic Ray (1962) was the original underground blockbuster—a frantic found-footage-plus-gyrating-naked-woman montage set to Ray Charles’s ecstatic What’d I Say. Establishing Conner as the poet of sexual frenzy, the film anticipated the MTV aesthetic and, since it was first shown as a multi-screen projection piece installation at San Francisco’s Batman Gallery, also anticipated the cinema installations that are now commonplace if not ubiquitous. Douglas Gordon’s 24 Hour Psycho (1993) and Christian Marclay’s The Clock (2010) are exemplary instances of Cosmic Ray’s descendants.
Without preaching or making obvious points, Sebastián Silva’s excellent film Nasty Baby, about a gentrifying neighborhood of Brooklyn, reminds us: how many of our daily interactions are shaped by race and class, how well we understand or intuit this fact, and how much about these issues remains unspoken. We feel that a bad thing is happening, as bad things will, and people are doing entirely the wrong things, as people so frequently do.
In symbolic terms, the completion of the brilliant architectural transformation of Governors Island could not have come at a more opportune moment. During a season when mindless hatred against immigrants runs rampant in our land, the vista from Outlook Hill offers an instructive panorama. With the view comes an implication of how the lives of the twelve million women, men, and children who passed through Ellis Island were immeasurably improved by American citizenship, to say nothing of those of their hundreds of millions of descendants.
The week that began with our annual national celebration ended in a cacophony of charges and misdirected attacks and the prospect of more ugliness as the two most disliked candidates in our history seek an acceptance that keeps eluding them. Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump both came face to face with their deepest and possibly fatal flaws.