Study finds that segment of white Americans willing to abandon democracy in order to retain power.

By | 2018-05-29T16:06:09+00:00 May 29th, 2018|Categories: Front Page, News|Tags: , , , |7 Comments

Trump voters in a nutshell.

Courtesy of NBC News:

Since the founding of the United States, politicians and pundits have warned that partisanship is a danger to democracy. George Washington, in his Farewell Address, worried that political parties, or factions, could “allow cunning, ambitious and unprincipled men” to rise to power and subvert democracy. More recently, many political observers are concerned that increasing political polarization on left and right makes compromise impossible, and leads to the destruction of democratic norms and institutions.

A new study, however, suggests that the main threat to our democracy may not be the hardening of political ideology, but rather the hardening of one particular political ideology. Political scientists Steven V. Miller of Clemson and Nicholas T. Davis of Texas A&M have released a working paper titled “White Outgroup Intolerance and Declining Support for American Democracy.” Their study finds a correlation between white American’s intolerance and support for authoritarian rule. In other words, when intolerant white people fear democracy may benefit marginalized people, they abandon their commitment to democracy.


Miller and Davis’ paper quotes alt-right, neo-fascist leader Richard Spencer, who in a 2013 speech declared: “We need an ethno-state so that our people can ‘come home again’… We must give up the false dreams of equality and democracy.” Ethnic cleansing is impossible as long as marginalized people have enough votes to stop it. But this roadblock disappears if you get rid of democracy. Spencer understands that white rule in the current era essentially requires totalitarianism. That’s the logic of fascism.

Trump’s rise is often presented as a major break with the past, and as a repudiation of American values and democratic commitments. But in an email, Miller pointed out that white intolerance has long served as an excuse for, and a spark for, authoritarian measures.

Black people, Asians, Native Americans, and women were prevented from voting for significant stretches of American history. America’s tradition of democracy (for some) exists alongside a tradition of authoritarianism (for some). The survey data doesn’t show people rejecting American traditions, then, Miller says, so much as it shows “a preference for the sort of white-ethnocentrism that imbued much of the functional form of democracy for the better part of two centuries.”

I have made this same assertion a number of times in the past here on IM, and now this study simply reinforces what we already know. 

Many white Americans are quite ready to trash the entire basis for the founding of this country if it means they do not have to share power with or surrender power to, ethnicities whom they deem inferior to themselves. 

THAT is what helped to bring Donald Trump to power and it explains why his shabby treatment of immigrants and minorities in this country only makes him that much more attractive to his base. 

And that is why he desperately needs to be removed from office and replaced with a leader who sees ALL Americans as equal, and all people as deserving of the benefits of being an American citizen. 

About the Author:

This blog is dedicated to finding the truth, exposing the lies, and holding our politicians and leaders accountable when they fall far short of the promises that they have made to both my fellow Alaskans and the American people.


  1. Anonymous May 29, 2018 at 7:58 am


    “If you want Starbucks this afternoon, you’re out of luck.”

    “The men were waiting for a business partner, but an employee called the police on them and they were arrested for trespassing.”
    “on May 19, the company announced that any person inside a location would be treated as if they were a customer and would be allowed to use the restroom, whether they purchase something or not.”

  2. Anonymous May 29, 2018 at 8:08 am


    “5,740 may have died as a result of Hurricane Maria, a new study has found. The official government tally stands at 64” 64! “the real death toll is more than 70 times the official government count. ” 70X
    “The botched recovery effort has had a devastating effect on the mental health of those living in Puerto Rico, tOO: reports of suicide attempts on the island more than tripled between November 2017 and January 2018.” 3X

    As recently as last month, some 30,000 people on the island still did not have power post-Maria.

    The Atlantic Hurricane season officially begins Friday.”

  3. Beaglemom May 29, 2018 at 12:18 pm

    Some of it comes from the fact that too many Americans know too little about history, the history of this country and of the rest of the world. And they’re not interested. A few years ago, while watching a convertible with several Battle of the Bulge veterans pass by during a local parade, I overheard a forty-something year-old father tell his son that WWII didn’t last very long. I thought he should try telling that to someone from Poland or from China. Those years from 1939 well into 1945 were long, hard years for Europeans and the years from the early 1930’s into August 1945 must have seemed mighty long to the Chinese and others in Asia who were under the thumb of the Japanese. The not-very-knowlegeable dad probably thought that WWII began in June 1944 and ended less than a year later. How stupid. I hope his son has more intellectual curiosity than his father.

    I am so tired of stupid, uneducated Americans. At this point in the 21st century, Americans know far less about our country’s past and the history and geography of the rest of the world than Americans in the early years of the 20th century, many of them immigrants themselves, who knew more about history and how government works even though they probably had very limited educations and left school at 16 to work. At least they learned history and civics and they cared.

    So Roseanne Barr is the embodiment of the Trump voter. Then I have no sympathy for her or for them. They created this monster and the rest of us have to work hard to undo the damage Trump and his supporters are causing.

    • anonymous May 29, 2018 at 7:09 pm

      60-80 MILLION DIED IN WW2
      “Over 60 million people were killed, which was about 3% of the 1940 world population (est. 2.3 billion).
      “World War II fatality statistics vary, with estimates of total deaths ranging from 50 million to more than 80 million.”

      “World War One was one of the deadliest conflicts in the history of the human race, in which over 16+MILLION people died. ” The war killed almost 7 million civilians and 10 million military personnel.”

  4. Anonymous May 29, 2018 at 9:15 pm

    Thoughtful comments Beaglemom, as always. I agree with all you posted. I am a progressive, college-educated female approaching the age of 70 and I used to have sympathy for those Americans who were uninformed, under educated, perhaps rural, perhaps conservative, perhaps hypocrites, frightened and easily conned. Once upon a time I cared about everyone and their well being. Not any more. I don’t give a damn about anyone that is a Trump voter or supporter. I have no desire to even interact with them…they are a waste of my time and energy.

    Like you, “I am so tired of stupid, uneducated Americans.” My parents, who were born in 1905 and 1917, grew up during the Depression. They had only eighth grade educations, but it was a good education and served them well in life. A love of reading and doing well in school was instilled in me. My mother went to church, taking my sister and me from a young age. What I learned in Sunday School and sermons had a tremendously good influence in molding my character and outlook on life.

    That said, for decades I have felt/observed a growing hypocrisy among so called “Christians” and wonder why the teachings of Jesus seem to be ignored. I have not lost my faith, but I don’t identify anymore with “Christians” or their churches.

    IMO it is plain there has been a major decrease in civility at all levels of American society since Putin swung the election in Trump’s favor. Trump is a traitor, his family and most of the GOP are an embarrassment. With the encouragement of Trump, his Cabinet members seek to destroy their own Departments. It is sickening and so disheartening.

    I wish the Trump Presidency could be canceled as easily as “Roseanne”.

  5. WA Skeptic May 30, 2018 at 7:01 am

    “Power corrupts…” That explains the last 154 years of racism and bigotry. Sad.

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