Activist and journalist Klein argues that Trump is not an aberration but a logical extension of the worst, most dangerous trends of the past half-century—the very conditions that have unleashed a rising tide of white nationalism the world over. It is not enough, she tells us, to merely resist, to say "no." Our historical moment demands more: a credible and inspiring “yes."
If you spend your days glued to your phone and have 30 political tabs open on your browser, much of the material in No Is Not Enough will be familiar. The book’s chief value lies in synthesis. Klein’s particular background and expertise allow her to pull together the disparate threads of what it would be misleading to call 'Trumpism,' if only because of the unwarranted suggestion of system and control. How you view her political proposals will depend on your politics, particularly on the value one ascribes to what used to be called 'the extraparliamentary left' ... Klein’s book is ultimately optimistic, because she believes the power to make change lies in the popular will. She calls on us to recognise that this will has enemies, and they are making havoc.
For those who fall between the two poles, Klein’s polemical, activist tone can sometimes alienate. However, I hope that Klein’s book is read by more than just her (mostly) leftwing fan base. For whatever you think about her economic arguments, she makes a powerful and an important point: that you cannot understand Trump without looking at how he reflects bigger cultural and social dynamics. And what is perhaps refreshing about No Is Not Enough is that Klein tries to move beyond mere outrage and hand-wringing to offer a practical manifesto for opposition ... If nothing else, then, No Is Not Enough should make us all look at both Corbyn and Trump — as well as France’s Emmanuel Macron or Canada’s Justin Trudeau — in a new light. It might even spur more liberal observers to visit a WWE event; having recently done this for the first time myself, I can report that the experience does indeed help you make sense of Trump.
Whatever agenda Trump is pushing at any given moment, however, Klein argues convincingly that it is entirely self-serving — because 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. is but the latest set for the Trump show ... Klein’s prose feels overwritten at times; actions are not just unjust or corrupt, for instance, but 'defiantly' unjust or 'manifestly' corrupt. The hyperbole is unnecessary, and she is more persuasive when she simply outlines what the president does or proposes ... Klein understands that liberals can be their own worst enemies — she regards the Obama years as a massive missed opportunity and worries that the left is too inclined to compete rather than collaborate, and shame rather than sympathize — but she still feels that the time to strike alliances may never be more propitious, paradoxically because conditions are so grim.