Well, one at least: Slavoj Zizek.
In an interview with Britain’s Channel 4 News on Friday, the Slovenian philosopher essentially endorsed Donald Trump — even though he is “horrified at” the prospect of his presidency — as a means of disrupting the American center-left consensus in favor of the global market economy.
Slovenian philosopher Slavoj Žižek? says he would opt for Donald Trump as the apparently less dangerous choice in the US election. pic.twitter.com/3kuC1Ytf2j
— Channel 4 News (@Channel4News) November 3, 2016
“If Trump wins,” Zizek argued, “both big parties, Republicans and Democrats, would have to return to basics, rethink themselves and maybe some things can happen there.”
Zizek explained his perhaps overly optimistic dream of a Trump presidency inspiring a radical leftist takeover of the Democratic party in more detail in August, writing:
The leftist call for justice tends to be combined with struggles for women’s and gay rights, for multiculturalism and against racism. The strategic aim of the Clinton consensus is clearly to dissociate all these struggles from the leftist call for justice, which is why the living symbol of this consensus is Tim Cook. Cook, the CEO of Apple, proudly signed a pro-LGBT letter to North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory and can now easily forget about hundreds of thousands of Foxconn workers in China assembling Apple products in slave conditions. He made his big gesture of solidarity with the underprivileged by demanding the abolition of gender-segregated bathrooms….
Trump is not the dirty water one should throw out to keep safe the healthy baby of U.S. democracy. He is the dirty baby who needs to be thrown out to make us believe that we got rid of the dirt, i.e., in order to make us forget the dirt that remains, the dirt that lurks beneath the Hillary consensus. The message of this consensus to the Left is: You can get everything, we just want to keep the essentials, the unencumbered functioning of the global capital. With this frame, President Barack Obama’s “Yes, we can!” acquires a new meaning: Yes, we can concede to all your cultural demands, without endangering the global market economy—so there is no need for radical economic measures.
“This is why WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is right in his crusade against Clinton, and the liberals who criticize him for attacking her, the only person who can save us from Trump, are wrong,” Zizek added. “The thing to attack and undermine now is precisely this democratic consensus against the villain.”
Of course, as one of the many Slovenians not married to Donald Trump, Zizek does not have a vote in Tuesday’s election. Another hero of the left, and a fellow Bernie Sanders supporter, Noam Chomsky, does have a vote, and he has taken the opposite view. In an essay published in June, Chomsky and John Halle called on voters in closely contested swing states to cast their ballots — in “a corrupt system designed to limit choices to those acceptable to corporate elites” — for Hillary Clinton, arguing that her presidency would clearly be “the lesser evil.”
In a defense of “lesser evil voting,” Chomsky and Hall wrote:
1) Voting should not be viewed as a form of personal self-expression or moral judgement directed in retaliation towards major party candidates who fail to reflect our values, or of a corrupt system designed to limit choices to those acceptable to corporate elites.
2) The exclusive consequence of the act of voting in 2016 will be (if in a contested “swing state”) to marginally increase or decrease the chance of one of the major party candidates winning.
3) One of these candidates, Trump, denies the existence of global warming, calls for increasing use of fossil fuels, dismantling of environmental regulations and refuses assistance to India and other developing nations as called for in the Paris agreement, the combination of which could, in four years, take us to a catastrophic tipping point. Trump has also pledged to deport 11 million Mexican immigrants, offered to provide for the defense of supporters who have assaulted African American protestors at his rallies, stated his “openness to using nuclear weapons”, supports a ban on Muslims entering the U.S. and regards “the police in this country as absolutely mistreated and misunderstood” while having “done an unbelievable job of keeping law and order.” Trump has also pledged to increase military spending while cutting taxes on the rich, hence shredding what remains of the social welfare “safety net” despite pretenses.
4) The suffering which these and other similarly extremist policies and attitudes will impose on marginalized and already oppressed populations has a high probability of being significantly greater than that which will result from a Clinton presidency.
5) 4) should constitute sufficient basis to voting for Clinton where a vote is potentially consequential-namely, in a contested, “swing” state.