Donald Trump (Reuters/Mike Carlson)

"Come with me if you want to live": Morning Joe panel gets weird, claims white men trust Trump to protect them from robots

CNBC's Brian Sullivan said it's not women and minorities aggrieved white male voters fear


Scott Eric Kaufman
May 25, 2016 5:46PM (UTC)

On Morning Joe Wednesday, co-hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski welcomed New York Times columnist Anand Giridharadas on to discuss his latest piece, "Trump Taps Into The Anxiety of American White Males," in which he argued that white males feel a "sense that society is growing more feminine, increasing numbers of people speak a different language, immigrants are pouring in unchecked, and the government is more concerned about other demographic groups."

After a brief discussion of how this played out demographically in 2012 and how Trump's campaign is failing to take advantage of the lessons learned in that election cycle, Scarborough turned to CNBC's Brian Sullivan and asked him what he thought the driving force between white males supporting Trump is.

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The source of their resentment, Sullivan argued, is the loss of the manufacturing jobs that once provided steady incomes for uneducated white males -- which, fair enough. "The number of men in the American workforce has been declining since 1972, the peak year of American manufacturing was 1979, so we go back to the nostalgia issue," he said.

"What happened after the financial crisis was that companies laid off millions of workers, then realized they didn't need them anymore," Sullivan continued, before taking an odd turn.

"There is a professor at the University of Southern California who's experimenting building homes with a giant 3D printer," he said. "Construction has long been the initiation job for the American male who's not well-educated, but now what about these machines and robots?"

"You talk about being replaced by women and minorities," Sullivan said. "I think American men are also terrified they're going to be replaced by a robot down the road."

Watch the entire segment below via MSNBC.


Scott Eric Kaufman

Scott Eric Kaufman is an assistant editor at Salon. He taught at a university, but then thought better of it. Follow him at @scottekaufman or email him at skaufman@salon.com.

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