The cabinet and staff being assembled by the new chief executive is unique in American history for a great many reasons, none of which are good. Who among the lot will turn out to be the very worst is a question only posterity will be able to fully answer- but for now, the monstrously unqualified, White supremacist, Klan supporting, denier of the Holocaust, Steven Bannon, stands atop the heap. The ideology he represents, and the causes he believes in, run contrary to American values in every way. We must reaffirm our commitments and our values by opposing the President’s appointees in every way we can.
Unlike Steven Mnuchin and Betsy DeVos, Steven Bannon does not come from old money. The roots of this deeply divisive and polarizing figure are shrouded in obscurity. Exactly how he came to develop his persona is basically a mystery.
Born in 1953 in Norfolk, VA, Bannon came from a working-class, pro-union, pro-Kennedy, Democratic family. Bannon graduated from Virginia Tech University in 1976 with a degree in Urban Affairs, then enlisted in the Navy immediately thereafter. Upon leaving the Navy, he enrolled at Harvard at the age of 29, got a job with Goldman-Sachs that he kept for a number of years, before finally ending up in Hollywood towards the end of the 90’s. Bannon continues to collect Seinfeld royalties to this day. It is clear that at one time, Steven Bannon was a promising and industrious young American, who to all appearances had a bright and promising future in front of him, and that he continued to do reasonably well into his adulthood.
So the question begs asking- How did this bright-eyed young naval officer turn into the rheumy-eyed old disaster we see before us now?
“The bulbous nose, scruffy beard, droopy eyes, and generally unkempt demeanor” that he exhibits today give the impression of a man who is either very tired or hungover, although there is no proof of alcoholism. It’s always sad when someone with promise loses their way. The key to Bannon’s downhill slide into the realm of sloven and irresponsibility might lay within the pages of a book he became obsessed with in the 2000’s called The Fourth Turning.
The authors of The Fourth Turning, William Strauss and Neil Howe, theorize that the history of a nation moves in 80 year cycles, each culminating in disastrous eras of change. This era of change is known as the Fourth Turning, and Bannon, like Strauss and Howe, believes we are in the midst of an era of change right now. According to the book, the last two Fourth Turnings that America experienced were the Civil War, and World War II. The first era of change occurred during the Revolutionary War.
All of these eras of change were marked by periods of dread and decay, dark ages like the one the new President and his team like to tell us that we live in now from which only they can save us. The unifying common factor of these previous eras of change is that the American people were forced to unite to rebuild a new future, but only after titanic conflicts, with an enormous cost in lives. A spark sets off a chain reaction, causing the old order to disappear so that a new order could rise and replace.
This is why Bannon’s obsession with this book should cause concern. He believes that for the new world order to rise, there must be a massive reckoning, and his own crackpot brand of racist fascism has given his vision a very nasty flavor. In the White House, he has shown that he is trying to convince his President to enact policies designed to disrupt our current order, thereby intended to bring about what he believes to be a necessary new order. He is actively encouraging the break down of our political and economic alliances, and the abandonment of traditional American principles, to cause the chaos required to bring about the new order. This is his the way that he will bring about the Fourth Turning.
Bannon has been open and outspoken about his desire to partner with Neo Nazi’s, such as Richard Spencer, who are looking to use the new President as a big orange golem, to do his wicked bidding and bring about his vision for America. He told Vanity Fair last summer that Trump was a,
“Blunt instrument for us … I don’t know whether he really gets it.”
The 45th President is a titanically stupid man, who seems more interested in his daughter’s line of shoes than he does in any aspect of the governance of the nation, This has given an unprecedented opportunity to the blatantly racist, sexist, white supremacist ideals of the apocalyptic wannabe, Steve Bannon.
When President Franklin Roosevelt described a country laid waste by the Great Depression in his inaugural address in 1933, he was describing a picture that all Americans were seeing. Many Americans did not understand what the 45th President was referring to when he spoke in his inaugural address about a dark “American carnage“. That lack of recognition marked our deep division as a country. The forces of reaction have been hijacked by a truly terrifying, dystopian despot, with visions of post- Apocalyptic grandeur. It is no exaggeration to say that Steve Bannon wants the worst for every human being on this planet. And it is our duty to remain loyal to our country and to our core values by opposing Bannon, and all he stands for, on every front.