How Donald Trump Rattled American Liberals and Chinese Nationalists | Opinion

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez; Democratic left
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is part of the Squad of left-wing Democrats in Congress Spencer Platt/Getty

Question: What do American liberals and Chinese nationalists (yes, they are nationalists) have in common?

Answer: Patience—at least up until now.

Whether it has been the deployment of Saul Alinsky's tactics for changing accepted paradigms and the meaning of language, or the strategy developed by Richard Cloward and Frances Piven to overload the American welfare system over time so that it could collapse and be replaced by a comprehensive socialist model, or any other incremental approach to moving America towards collectivism, liberals have shown an extraordinary capability to play the long game.

The Chinese are practically the inventors of the long game. They move slowly and methodically and allow their opposition the time and space needed to lose their attention, their will, or both. That approach has allowed China to move steadily forward with their plans for world domination over a very long time period, while the West seems to conduct policy in the manner of a dog distracted by a squirrel.

Both American liberals and the Chinese have known for a long time that a sustained effort against a distracted and non-confrontational opponent will eventually allow them to capture so much ground that it will be too late for reversal once that opponent finally recognizes what's been taking place.

So, the follow-up riddle has to be: Besides patience, what else do American liberals and Chinese nationalists (they are still nationalists) have in common?

Answer: Donald Trump is making them lose their patience.

There have been two big news stories over the last 30 days or so that tie this riddle together. One has been the president's social media rebuke of "the Squad" (Reps. Ocasio-Cortez, Tlaib, Omar, and Pressley), the four freshmen, or "fresh people," openly hostile to the foundational structure of the United States.

The other has been the ratcheting-up of the tariff and trade war with the Chinese. Allow me to tie the two story lines together.

The Squad is part of a movement within the Democratic Party that has arisen in direct response to the Trump Presidency. They are militant and they are demanding an acceleration of America's move toward socialism. While their behavior and their demands may seem radical to some, they are not that different in their ideas from conventional Democrats. Rep. Ocasio-Cortez provides the perfect example.

AOC defeated long-serving incumbent Democrat Joseph Crowley in New York's 14th Congressional District (Bronx & Queens) in 2018. Her election shocked Beltway insiders because a) incumbents don't lose very often, and b) she was an openly declared socialist. They saw this as a radical development within the Democratic party.

However, a review of the two candidates' websites at the time showed that it was not a movement in ideology so much as it was a change of pace and presentation. AOC and Crowley actually agreed on most of their policy ideas, the difference being the softer language in which Crowley couched those ideas on his site. AOC and others like her are no longer willing to play the slow and steady game of policy advancement that Democrats have been pursuing since Woodrow Wilson. The first two years of President Donald Trump have thrown them off balance.

In short, President Trump has transformed the Democrats from a party that mimicked traditional "calm" Chinese patience and resolve into something more akin to the angry, frothing mob of the French Revolution.

In China it has taken nearly 50 years since Nixon's opening in 1972 to attain the global power status they enjoy today. For China, which tells time in geological terms, 50 years is the equivalent to 50 Western seconds. During this time, America and the rest of the West have allowed the Chinese to advance both economically and militarily with complete impunity. China has managed to expand its military in size and footprint, insert itself into the financial system of nearly every Western nation and across the developing world, and made hundreds of millions of people dependent upon the country's products and technology.

Our citizens are now staring at the fact that Democrats don't want simply to help them, they want to control them and their votes. Our allies must now see that China is not just some benign trading partner that is willing to exploit its domestic workers for the benefit of our consumers. It is an expansionist nation, brandishing the weaponry of economic fascism, and one that is determined to become the preeminent world power.

Our Constitution gives the president a maximum of eight years in office. That is a short period of time when placed in the context of national or international movements. Typically, liberals and China have been content to simply sit back and wait out any president who has paid lip service to taking them on. President Trump's bold action and unapologetic approach have made both of them lose their cool.

There is evidence that the president's tactics are producing results on multiple fronts. In the U.S., some Democrats from the "be-patient school" are now lashing out at the radicals, telling them to sit back down. They know radicalism will expose their plans. We are witnessing a civil war of sorts inside the Democratic Party.

Meanwhile, in Hong Kong, protesters sporting American flags and singing our songs are standing up to the Chinese government in an unprecedented manner. Like our president, they are saying enough!

It is my belief that President Trump will be in office until January 2025. His great legacy will have been exposing to the world the true character of both our ideological enemies and geopolitical foes. President Trump's eight years in office may not be enough to fully defeat these two existential threats to America, but he will have bought us precious more time.

What we do with it is up to us.

Charlie Kirk is the founder and executive director of Turning Point USA, the nation's largest and fastest growing conservative youth organization with a presence on over 1,500 college and high school campuses; he is also host of "The Charlie Kirk Show."

The opinions expressed in this essay are the author's own.