Rising expectations versus Trump

(written by lawrence krubner, however indented passages are often quotes). You can contact lawrence at: lawrence@krubner.com, or follow me on Twitter.

This is well said:

This year is not the worst ever. Steven Pinker has argued, in his 2011 book “The Better Angels of Our Nature” and elsewhere, that the world is actually growing less violent with time. What hurts so badly right now, I think, is this sense of unexpected retrenchment—the fear that decades of incremental progress will be rapidly eradicated by an empty-headed demagogue who appears to be doing everything on a whim. Perhaps 2016 feels so terrible partly because so many of us felt like we’d come so far. Two days after the election, Zadie Smith spoke to a crowd in Berlin. “If the clouds have rolled in over my fiction,” she said, “it is not because what was perfect has been proved empty, but because what was becoming possible—and is still experienced as possible by millions—is now denied as if it never did and never could exist.”

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