Should-Read: Patti Waldmeir: The gritty truth of life in America’s heartland: "It is hard to see a solution to America’s political crisis until Trump-haters accept that most Trump-lovers are human too... https://www.ft.com/content/b3ec55b0-7dd4-11e7-9108-edda0bcbc928
...Amy Goldstein’s book Janesville: An American Story humanises the suffering of the white working class in America at a time when the country critically needs to understand the angst that helped elect the president. It’s especially important to hear those voices when the White House is in crisis because the president chose not to distance himself from racist-inspired violence in Charlottesville.... Hers is not intended as a book about Donald Trump nor even about those who elected him president (much of the white working class still voted for the Democrats last year). But it is exactly the kind of gritty portrait of job loss, sudden poverty, humiliation and despair that illustrates the cultural revolution that helped land Mr Trump in the White House.
Ms Goldstein’s book is about the ordinary people of Janesville in southern Wisconsin, hometown to House Speaker Paul Ryan, and how they lost their jobs, their pride and their future when General Motors closed its oldest assembly plant there in 2008. Small wonder that Mr Trump has made Wisconsin, which went Republican in 2016 for the first time since Ronald Reagan, a focus of his campaign to shore up grassroots support in the face of the chaos and controversy surrounding his White House. Last month, he claimed the credit when Foxconn, the Taiwanese electronics company, said it would open a $10bn plant and create as many as 13,000 jobs in Wisconsin....
Bridging the gap between the coasts and the middle, the elites and the working class—between the affluent classes and Rust Belt Wisconsin whites—is crucial to how America will emerge from the Trump presidency. Ms Goldstein has done her bit to close the chasm: simply by letting the people of Janesville tell their story.