2018 has brought the chaos and instability that Trump couldn’t quite get started in 2017 (aside from the turmoil within his White House and the white nationalist invasion of Charlottesville VA). But now Trump is entrenched, strongly supported, and about to get away with the biggest political conspiracy in world history.
Think about it: Russia, Israel and the UAE (and probably also Saudi Arabia and Turkey) assisted in whatever way they could to get their preferred candidate into the White House. Aside from Russia, all of those nations didn’t stand to lose anything with Clinton. But with Trump, they stood to get more than Clinton was willing to give (such as an embassy in Jerusalem). They got greedy and preferred Trump because they correctly thought that Trump likes oppressive regimes, and hates the European Union.
Mueller will release a report that will detail how Trump is the head of a criminal enterprise, involved with money laundering, using his office to raise much-needed cash, selling access to the Oval Office, and partnering with foreign agents during the 2016 campaign without anyone reporting it. But he won’t be removed. He won’t be indicted (although his children might). No, Trump will survive. Considering that his approval rating with Republicans and Mormons is on the increase, there’s an excellent chance he will be re-elected in 2020. He will run a nasty campaign and motivate 60 Million people to vote fro him. The Democrats will have a tough time getting 60 Million votes, especially if they run a conservative candidate like Mark Warner or Eric Holder.
It finally dawned on smart journalists and scholars in June 2018. Trump is keeping the Republican minority rule alive. Led by Mitch McConnell, the Republicans have stolen two Supreme Court seats and a presidential election. 2016 should have been a definitive defeat for the GOP at the national level. Instead, they are going to remain in power for at least another generation (30 years). And locally, they have an iron grip on power thanks to dirty politics, voter suppression and gerrymandering. The Republicans are a ruling minority. And only a few of us noticed that this ruling minority began in 1994, with Newt Gingrich and the GOP's "Contract With America." The impeachment of Bill Clinton in 1998 was cynical, but it sent a message. The GOP was never going to play nice again. It was always going to remind the coastal Democrats that they, the corporations, the millionaires and the billionaires are in charge.
From what I can tell, hundreds of millions of US citizens don’t care about this destructive minority rule. They don't think about it, just as they didn't think about the temporary DHS policy to separate migrant children from their parents, creating up to hundreds of orphans. If they thought about it, they thought, “That won’t be me. I’m not a migrant.” That mural of Trump in one of the boys detention centers is somehow not surprising. Federal departments reflect the president at the time. And the sitting president is a fascist dictator, who looks to other dictators -friends and foes alike - as role models on how to appear strong. He likes them all. From Egypt and Saudi Arabia to China and Russia. In his first week in office, he lashed out at the Prime Minister of Australia. What did we think he was going to do in the 8 years to follow?
During Trump's time in office, Republicans have gone from distancing themselves from his conduct, to fully embracing him. Again, he is doing a fine job maintaining the GOP's minority rule. His Gallup approval rating among Republicans is now at an all-time high of 90%. Trump knows he’s going to get away with the illegal campaign assistance he received from Israel, Russia and the UAE in 2016. Trump is about to set up the Supreme Court to protect him and the party that put 5 Justices in their seats. Trump knows that his dirty tactics and white nationalist dog whistles will win him re-election in 2020. And I wonder if he thinks he can make himself a president for life. At the very least, he won’t move out of the White House on the day he’s supposed to move out. He’ll be in his bathrobe tweeting away while the next president is being inaugurated.
But now, we must acknowledge that Trump has already destroyed what's left of this republic for the lower 90%. No future administration can repair the damage that he has caused in just 18 months. And with a Supreme Court repeal of Roe v. Wade looming sometime in the 2020s, I'd say the USA is over. It's finished. And we liberals let it happen. We underestimated the anti-abortion movement to remain strong for over 40 years. We underestimated Newt Gingrich's platform. We let partisan politics infect the Supreme Court and steal an election for Bush 43. And we underestimated Trump and let him turn the presidency into a authoritarian platform. We didn't challenge him while he weakened our republic, or legal protections, the WTO, NAFTA, NATO, and our positive relationships with our allies. All we did was march on his first day on the job. And now it is all over.
When Rage Against The Machine debuted their first album in 1992, on the eve of Bill Clinton's election, I thought why all the anger and warnings about the government? Why all the calls for a revolution just as awareness of white privilege, the value of diversity, and the evils of sexual harassment were just being adopted by college-educated Americans? Now I know why. When citizens miss their chance to revolt, the next chance can be decades away, or never. I am leaning towards never in the case of the USA after Trump.