Sunday 11 December 2016

The way to fight Trump in a 'post-truth' world is to make facts central to debate again

Jared Bernstein

Published 23/11/2016 | 02:30

Donald Trump kisses his daughter Ivanka Trump (right) as his wife Melania Trump (left) looks on during election night. GETTY
Donald Trump kisses his daughter Ivanka Trump (right) as his wife Melania Trump (left) looks on during election night. GETTY

Since Donald Trump's election upset, I've had a unique and odd experience, one peculiar to Washington DC. I've participated in a number of events - conferences, dinners, panels - that were planned before the election and predicated on a different outcome. To say the mood is sombre at these events is an understatement.

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What has been particularly discordant is to hear policy types, myself included, discuss what we need to do going forward. These include ideas to prolong the economic recovery and help ensure that it reaches more people. Also, there's a recession out there somewhere, and we're not ready for it, so good ideas abound regarding preparations that congress should undertake while the sun's shining.

Other ideas include some of the best parts of Hillary Clinton's agenda, including ways to help people balance work and family, pay for college, improve the Affordable Care Act, and to push back on economic discrimination by race and gender. When I hear myself and my colleagues make these arguments, I feel as if we're leading a parade but have neglected to turn around and see the thin crowd that's following us.

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