Kicking some ideas around as to what the future of US politics looks like, filling in more detail of my previous prediction
The justification for doing this is to test my understanding, not to drive any kind of short-term action
Note I'm not American, so while I know quite a lot, there's a lot I don't know, and I don't know what a lot of it is. (Unknown unknowns).
I'm not predicting the election result. Lets take the possibilities
Let's say Hillary wins.
Prediction 1. Trump isn't going anywhere. He's gone from well-known figure to one of the most famous men in the world, and he isn't going to mind that at all. He is going to be prominent on US media for the foreseeable future. The media might want to keep him off, but they don't have that kind of veto power--he could literally set up his own TV station and make money off it. More likely someone will give him a platform. He's going to be on the news every week for the next decade.
Prediction 2. Hillary is going to be very unpopular. She's a hopeless politician and isn't going to be able to evade blame like Obama did. She cannot be reelected in 2020.
Non-Prediction 3. Can the Democrats replace her in 2020 primaries? I understand that generally doesn't happen with incumbents. Pressure to not stand due to ill-health or something is possible
Non-Prediction 4. Can Trump run again in 2020? Nixon lost & was nominated again, right? Trump on a "I fucking told you, you fucking fools" platform could be in with a good chance. OTOH, the party will blame him for losing, and has a good chance to make that stick over the next 4 years. Also, they will be better-prepared with the machinery to keep him out, having been caught out this time.
Prediction 5. The Republican mainstream will loudly reject Trumpism and all his works and all his empty promises. Maybe for as long as six months. Then they will gradually begin to compete for his supporters. By 2019, border enforcement, some restriction on Islam, and much more hostility to free trade will be much more common in talking points. And of course that is on top of the fact that Ted Cruz is now symbolic of the moderate Republican mainstream, which would be shocking to anyone who had been in a coma since 2014.
Prediction 6. The real world has little to do with all this. There will not be a major collapse in the next 5 years. Details will change, but the big picture will be recognisable. That's not because the current situation can go on forever, but because forever is a long time, and collapses are rare. Hillary's policies will look bad, because she's such an incompetent politician, but things won't get worse noticeably quicker than they have been doing.
Prediction 7. The president elected in 2020 will be elected on a moderate immigration-restrictionist platform, and will act on it with limited cooperation from the establishment, having some marginal effect but not a revolutionary realignment of politics.
And if Trump wins...?
Prediction 8. President Trump will not be revolutionary. He will not take communists for helicopter rides, gas the Jews, appoint @Nero as press secretary, or pull out of NATO or the UN.
Prediction 9. He will attempt to make significant restrictions on legal immigration by Muslims and illegal immigration across the Mexico border. He will need to fight against the permanent government to do this. The character of that fight is the big open question.
Prediction 10. President Trump will win over the Republican Party. There will be many holdouts but as president he will have enough new allies to defeat them. There may for a time be a "Trump Party" but over time the Anti-Trumpers will be marginalised.
Labels: modern history