Trump trumped


Authored on :
08/11/2020by :
Bob Hinshelwood

Containing Groups

Now and the future


So, Trump has been trumped.  Let’s all join in the jubilation of the moment – forget viruses and the cranky old climate.  But…  in the long run...  I think we should fairly soon get it clear that a fading super-power is going to be unstable, unpredictable and dangerous. 

It really is likely that Trump was not an aberration but an overture.  The hope is that Biden is perhaps a final moment of steady diplomacy when he can make friends with Russia and China, and maybe form a threesome, a supra-United Nations.  But I don’t think Biden will consider it, or could get it through even if he could consider it. 

What a pity that 50 years ago the US did not form a federation with Canada, Mexico and all the Latin American and Caribbean countries.  Then it could truly call itself the united states of America.  Represent a really force for federal colleagueship amongst nations, a downgrading of hyper-nationalism.

Those committed to the idea of psychodynamic thinking will know that the human unconscious is not a democracy.  At worst it is an internal mafia gang, and at its least worst it is full of Oedipal conflicts, exclusion and murder.  And it exerts great influence over the world of consciousness and reasoning.  This is the crisis of democracy, and we need to rethink the whole conception which has become a meaningless cypher, used mostly in the ‘I’m-good-they’re-guilty’ game.

But also, at its best, the unconscious is a hotbed of generative creativity.  How can we mobilise that against all the Trump-trends?


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Jenny Sprince


Thanks for this, Bob. 

I do agree that the human unconscious is not a democracy.  But at its best it can perhaps maintain a fragile state of dyarchy:  benign parental introjects who can work together to contain envy and jealousy, and to prevent the forces of murder and mayhem from wrecking the world of consciousness and reasoning.  

Biden does seem to be someone who values partnerships.  That’s a start.  And even if he won’t go as far as considering making friends with Russia and China,  he might collaborate with other nations and face up to the necessity to do something about climate change.  

I was interested in your phrase ‘Steady Diplomacy’.  It got me googling for the etymology of the word, wondering whether the ‘diplo’ root, which clearly has something to do with two rather than one, is connected to the idea of linking.  Well, sadly, it isn’t:  it’s derived apparently from the fact that certificated messages were folded in two before they were sealed.  

So let’s just hope that Joe Biden hasn’t got a mind that’s folded and sealed.  And that the traumatic times we’re living through can result in enough generative creativity, somewhere in the world, to keep humanity going.

Susan Maciver


to both of you for your wisdom.Lets hope that Biden and Harris form a creative couple relationship. That would be a good start.