Handle points out that the emergence of Donald Trump has scrambled the model of the Three Languages of Politics. For example,
Even since Trump started his campaign, it seems to me that the progressives have been using “civilization vs. barbarism” rhetoric all the time. Not just the “breakdown in civility,” but also complaining about “chaos” and the potential collapse of the “international order” that was based on American strength guided by a progressive vision and set of values.
1. I do think that Trump created a new axis, of Bobo vs. anti-Bobo.
2. I think that progressives want to throw everything possible at Trump at see what sticks. But they have certainly not given up on the oppressor-oppressed frame. They still make the “white nationalist” charge.
3. As Jeffrey Friedman pointed out long ago, libertarians go back and forth between arguing for liberty as a value in itself and arguing for it as instrumental to social improvement, particularly economic prosperity and growth. I don’t think we are seeing anything new from libertarians. They argue differently depending on the issue, putting more emphasis on liberty as a value in discussing free speech and putting more emphasis on economic consequences when arguing for free trade.
4. Libertarians have got to be feeling pretty badly these days. I cannot imagine anyone talking about a “libertarian moment” without being laughed out of the room. In Europe, it looks more like a “fascist moment” nowadays. In the U.S., referring to Google, Facebook, et al, Joel Kotkin writes,
Whether one sits on the progressive left or the political right, this growing hegemony presents a clear and present danger. It is increasingly clear that the oligarchs have forgotten that Americans are more than a collection of data-bases to be exploited. People, whatever their ideology, generally want to maintain a modicum of privacy, and choose their way of life.
And of course, everyone’s idea of fighting the corporate hegemony involves enhancing the hegemony of bureaucrats in Washington.