The Inevitable Trump Column

OK, fine after hearing about Trump repeatedly, I figured I should weigh in because everyone else has and I’m bad and shutting up.

Besides, I have a few observations I figure are worth sharing.

THIS IS HIS NEXT THING: Trump has pretty much committed to politics; he’s defined his brand and burnt many bridges. I may not be sure how wise he is, but I can’t see these decisions being made without some idea of implications.

HE WANTS HIS OWN PARTY: Trump owns things, he puts his name on them, and it’s clear by his occasional flirting with independence he wants to own a political party. If somehow he is pushed out of canidacy you can bet he can take his ball and go elsewhere.

HES GOT ENOUGH SUPPORT TO BUILD ONE: Sure The Party Of Trump may not be big, but he’s got enough support that I think he could easily get a good 10+% vote in a general election. In local elections, a Party of Trump could take some smaller offices. This may not be presidential power, but Trump owning his own party would give him an ego trip for the rest of his life.

THIS IS THE RESULT OF PAST MEDIA INFRASTRUCTURE: The Republicans built their shows and their own network and the like – they built a system meant for epistemic closure. The thing is that anyone who can work the system can walk off with it – and Trump has.

THIS IS THE RESULT OF PAST CHOICES: Trump is exploiting just about every right-wing dog-whistle from the Southern Strategy to fear of Muslims. A lot of past political choices paved the way for this.  This is similar to the media infrastructure being exploited.

THIS IS IN THE OPEN: Now a lot of people are comfortable being openly racist and bigoted. Some politicians and such will continue to exploit this. It has, to some been made acceptable. We’ll probably be putting up with the fallout from this for one to two decades – in the form of crazy policies, open bigotry, and the fight against it.

THIS CAN LEAD TO A DEMOCRATIC SUCCESS: If The Republicans can’t shake Trump and others try to be trump-lite, the Democrats are going to exploit this. They are already, if subtly, but mostly they don’t have to interfere with the brand destruction. If Trump continues to be out there, you can bet he’ll be a successful campaign issue and many Republicans will be Trump Tarred.

THIS CAN LEAD TO REPUBLICAN OPPORTUNITY: At the same time, if the Republican party wants to purge themselves of the rather bigoted baggage that was cultivated, this would be a chance. Tossing Trump away and letting his followers go with him, as painful as it is, would draw a distinction. Though it would take time to re-align and recovery, it would be better than a meltdown -and I’m betting some of the old-school politicians and lobbyists would see this as a way to reassert power by jettisoning extremists and having an issue to bring big-money donors┬áto heel (“don’t be a Trump”).

(I doubt the above will happen, but I consider i theoretically possible)
THERE ARE TOO MANY VARIABLES: I give Trump’s chance to get the Republican nomination to be low, under 30% (requiring a kind of interparty meltdown and opportunism). That’s about the ONLY thing I feel comfortable guessing at however – there’s things I can think MAY happen, but the above is about all I can say with any confidence. Trump’s shaken things up.

A BROKERED CONVENTION WILL MEAN A TRUMP THIRD PARTY: If the Republican convention ends up Brokered and Trump doesn’t get the nod? You can bet he will storm out, the publicity that follows will let him easily form his own party, and he’ll go after Republicans first.

Any thoughts?

  • Steve