Well, its official. Trump will be impeached. Not that it means he will be removed from office; its highly unlikely the Senate GOP super majority will find their brains, or their balls, and convict. But at least the Democrats have done their duty and their honor is intact. They did not bow to political expediency and make the tactically safe but strategically impotent maneuver of waiting for an election to remove the president. We know now that is not likely to remove Trump either, in fact, it may even solidify his base and his fund-raising efforts and guarantee victory. But at least, the opposition tried, and that is essential for the national conscience. If Trump is still our president a year from now, then we will deserve him.
Of course, there is always the possibility some smoking gun gotcha will emerge during the trial, that the Trumpster will have some ball-bearing Captain Queeg strawberry meltdown, or that a surprise witness or event will intervene. But even that seems unlikely. What the conservative movement and their pro-business and knuckle-dragger allies have so far tolerated from this grotesque buffoon gives little hope anything could occur which might cause them to give up their thirty pieces of silver.
So what can we expect in a worst-case scenario? No, I don’t see death camps or an invasion of Poland, that’s not the American style. Neither do I expect the next election to be canceled, or its results ignored if Trump loses, or if he prepares to run for a third term in 2024. Still, I must admit that for the first time in my life I can foresee all those as distinct possibilities. I see instead a future where America starts to resemble the Gilded Age economically, and the 1950s Deep South culturally.
To sum up…
1) the corporate sector gets pretty much anything it wants, and
2) the Deplorables will have their way culturally–providing it does not conflict with 1).
The New Deal will be slowly but systematically dismantled and America will start to look more and more like it did in the Hoover administration. The poor, the consumer, the environment, the worker and the press will pretty much get everything they need, providing it does not interfere with 1) or 2). The middle class will do all right, although there won’t be so damn many of them, and they’ll be even more unlikely to do anything that might threaten their diminishing numbers, power and influence.
Racism? Will black and brown people be systematically oppressed and exploited? Only if they have no money. Of course, the same will be the case for white people, the new order will be scrupulously color-blind. Hitler was an anomaly, fascism isn’t inherently racist. If you accept the program, the government will leave you alone. If you need a historical example, don’t think Nazi Germany, visualize Mussolini’s Italy or Franco’s Spain. Unlike Communism, Fascists don’t care what you believe, they only care what you do. As long as you don’t threaten them, they’ll let you travel abroad, keep your property and educate your kids in private schools.
Sooner or later I suppose the real world will eventually intervene, economically or militarily. Now that is a possibility in any scenario, but I submit the Trump Presidency will make those outcomes not only more likely to occur but more corrosive if they do.
I suspect America will start to look a lot like Russia before too long.