Posted by Jay Livingston
Here’s the word cloud from Trump’s inaugural speech.
America and American are no surprise. They appear frequently in many inaugurals. But they occupy a more prominent place in Trump’s speech. Compare Trump’s with the first inaugurals of Obama and George W. Bush.
From this day forward, it’s going to be only
America first, America first.
Putin probably loved this speech. Estonians, not so much.
“America First” was revived in recent years. It was similarly isolationist and similarly anti-Semitic – the most prominent member of the 1940 committee was Charles Lindbergh – and, no surprise, pro-Trump.
We will bring back our jobs. We will bring back our borders. We will bring back our wealth. And we will bring back our dreams.This economic nostalgia often combines with a social and moral nostalgia – a longing for a time when norms, society, and identities were stable and predictable. As Archie Bunker sang each week at the “All in the Family” theme song “Those Were the Days,”
And you knew who you were then.Back also echoes the “Take our country back” meme so popular among conservatives for these last eight years. (See “Repo Men.”)
Goils were goils, and men were men.
In sum, the word cloud shows, as many observers said, that the inaugural speech sounds very much like Trump’s campaign speeches. It has the same combative tone, and it runs on the same assumptions about American history: America used to be great, with abundant industrial jobs for men, few imported goods, and few documented immigrants, all of them documented. The world is a zero-sum game, and we were winning. Then They (liberals, globalists) took over the country. All aspects of American life became disasters. Foreign countries were beating us. But now, I (Trump) will restore that glorious world.
Does this describe reality? Or is it, to use another term prominent in the word cloud, a dream?