Adams Explains Trumpism

John Adams explains the rise of Donald Trump.

From the third volume of The Defence of the Constitutions, which I am currently working on for an edition with Liberty Fund:

This whole story is a demonstration of the oppression of the people under the aristocracy; of the extreme jealousy of that aristocracy of kings, of an oligarchy, and of popular power; of the constant secret wishes of the people to set up a king to defend them against the nobles, and of their readiness to fall in with the views of any rich man who flattered them, and set him up as a monarch.

Several pages later:

What is horrible to think of, that candidate, or that agent, who has fewest scruples; who will propagate lies and slanders with most confidence and secrecy; who will wheedle, flatter, and cajole; who will debauch the people by treats, feasts, and diversions, with the least hesitation; and bribe with the most impudent front, which can consist with hypocritical concealment, will draw in tools and worm out enemies the fastest. Unsullied honor, sterling integrity, real virtue, will stand a very unequal chance. When vice, folly, impudence, and knavery have carried an election one year, they will acquire, in the course of it, fresh influence and power to succeed the next.

More proof, as if any were necessary, that certain patterns will hold so long as human beings inhabit the earth.