I Predicted Trump's Rise Nearly Five Years Ago

Sort of…in this post from October of 2011.

The Trump candidacy in many ways was exactly what I had in mind when I predicted the consequences of a dumber electorate manipulated by ever more ruthless and unprincipled campaigners. Trump breaks the old rules that said a Presidential campaign should be constrained by respect for both the voters’ intelligence and the office of the Presidency. Those rules made sense back when voters were smarter and Presidents carried more gravitas, but these are new times.

But here is where I went wrong: I thought the first Celebrity Candidate would be totally manufactured by the establishment. The Republican donors must have looked at how the Democrats turned Obama from unknown to President in five years and I figured they would try to do it themselves by finding a good-looking, even blanker slate to build into a candidate between 2011 and 2016. (Well, Rubio is a pretty blank freaking slate. But he was never their guy until Jeb Bush imploded.)

So we did end up with a Celebrity Candidate, but it’s happened in a way that leaves me more optimistic than I’ve been in years. Here is a guy who came from outside the party establishment to absolutely horse-f**k Jeb Bush. Bush got something like $150 million from his plutocrat backers, and all they have to show for it is a warehouse full of guac bowls. That’s the biggest win for government by the people in forever. If you mourned the “Citizens United” decision, Trump just proved it doesn’t matter. That is something even a Sanders supporter ought to take heart by.

Trump is rich, but he’s hardly spent any of his own money. Plus, there are thousands of people rich enough to self-finance a campaign, but only Trump did it. So it is not a matter of outside dollars beating insider dollars. It’s a real outsider laying a whooping on the powers that be.

I don’t understand the unhinged pants-loading fear of Trump by Democrats. He is by all measures the most moderate GOP candidate if you judge by the totality of his public activities. He has no strongly held positions on anything, other than wanting to be a great President of a great country, and you can’t do that as an extremist. He will feel like a failure if his approval numbers as President are less than 80%, and he’ll be extremely pragmatic in keeping his popularity up. You’ll see a very different Trump after he piles up a bunch more primary wins. He won’t flip-flop on previous statements, he’ll just switch to talking about other things that are of more appeal in the general election. You got a taste of this when he came out in favor of Planned Parenthood in the last debate.

One thing that ought to be a clue to Democrats is that nobody hates Trump more than the GOP. I read these threads where the usual crowd of progressives has a meltdown when contemplating a Trump presidency, but they sound exactly like the GOP establishment. I suggest that progressives stop and think about why the GOP hates Trump so much and whether that’s a clue he might not be such a bad guy after all. It’s an interesting twist on guilt by association. Lots of progressives try to discredit Trump by saying he has the support of David Duke or whoever, but if guilt by association is valid, then you guys are all in bed with Karl Rove.

Anyway, if you really think the courts and Congress won’t be able to stop Trump from wrecking the country, then what you need is not an election but a constitutional convention. Because there are going to be more Trumps next time.

So you want to give the keys to the CDC to an anti-vaccine guy, the keys to NOAA to a climate change denier, and to give him presidential powers to organize operation wetback 2?

No, not an extremist. :rolleyes:

You are only ignoring many more flipflops, and one should realize that most of the extreme opinions he has are what he is relying now, and we should have to take it into account, not the wishful thinking that he will “evolve” again.

You don’t keep up with the news huh? The latest is that many in the Republican establishment consider Cruz to be the biggest threat, so many in the establishment (like Bob Dole and others) are telling other republicans to take the less bad poison, and that is Trump. It is still a poison.

There are many others like Bill Gates or Ellon Musk that I would like to see, not one that decided to divide the nation more in order to gain more power. Also, I do not think many of the Trumps will not seek to be joined at the hip to people like Joe Arpaio (Racist profiler) and (I’m with stupid, quitinator at the sight of trouble in her administration) Sarah Palin.

Incidentally, many Republicans in congress and even the courts do want to get rid of inheritance taxes and corporation ones. Something that the Donald is in favor and on the record to make it a priority if he gets the presidency.

My first thought was that a net change in voter smartness is implausible.

But then I remembered that newspaper circulation has collapsed while flashy punditry soars. So maybe there is partial validity here.

I admit that I didn’t think Trump could ever get this close to the GOP nomination. But it still is likely that a misogynist bully, who is at least as much of an opposition research dream candidate as Hillary, will lose soundly. On-the-fence middle aged voters, in November, will recall the good Clinton economy, contrast it with Trump’s four bankruptcies, and that’s the end to Donald dreams, as well as the idea of a shock-style presidential candidate.

NOTE TO DEMOCRATS: While Trump is a weak GOP candidate, he still could, IMHO, handily beat someone who calls himself a socialist revolutionary, and as late as age 39 was an elector for the Trotskyite Socialist Workers Party.

Good job, OP.

This phenomenon + the right wing back lash in general has been predicted by various leftists for years.

A snippet of Chris Hedges.

A lot his criticisms of reality TV and corporate culture (now American culture) would apply to the Trump movement too. Here is Hedges again, Empire of Illusions:

The wall just got 10 feet higher.

Long ago, the PR industry wanted to package and sell presidential campaigns like toothpaste. Oh, if only they could see the modern era. The advertising and branding s so much more sophisticated.

No, no and yes, but the president has less power over these things than you imagine. 90% of what the federal government does is determined by bureaucrats and judges who are accountable to nobody.

This Trump-as-monster stuff is being handed around by the GOP like cherry popsicles, and you saps are licking up every last drop.

How nice, you should know that I came to the USA fleeing the civil war in El Salvador and I resided for a few years as an undocumented immigrant, thanks to Saint Reagan (although forced by the courts) I got residency and then citizenship.

The popsicles you are taking are indeed poisoned.

That is for your sorry yes. As for your No’s they should be enough to say no to Trump, but the popsicle must have a very tasty poison.

If by “accountable to nobody” you mean “chosen by the President or his designees and serve at his pleasure”. It would be almost impossible for the President to replace all of them, of course, just by their sheer numbers, but he can and does ask for the resignation of heads of departments, or ask them to restructure their departments in the ways that he likes.

The OP is spot-on.

I’d have sooner expected it’d be Rush Limbaugh as the first cult-of-personality rejectionist candidate.

But Trump it is.

People who are genuinely fleeing civil wars are refugees, not immigrants. My wife came here by a very similar route. If that is indeed your story, I hope the US has been good to you.

The single biggest obstacle to the US accepting refugees is that the government has been beating people over the head with illegal immigration, tolerating sanctuary cities, etc. for 30 years, so now they don’t want anyone coming into the country no matter how dire their situation is. They’re too angry to distinguish between different kinds of migrants.

I don’t want him to be president, really, but I am grateful to him for proving that someone can use the clickbait media to run on “earned media.” Brilliant play. Makes Sheldon Adelson look much less important, which is to the good.

The voters are not dumber, just angrier. Wages have been stagnant for the middle class since the 1980s. They’ve been electing politicians for four decades who have accomplished nothing. They have a valid right to be angry, and sometimes anger can lead smart people to do stupid things.

And your contribution is to support someone that will make the situation worse…

No, quite the opposite. Once we have voluntary immigration under control, it’ll be a lot more politically feasible to do right by actual refugees.

I was not born yesterday, that translates to the Republican leadership telling us that “We will never do anything about refugees” because it is clear that no control of immigrants will be ever good enough for their liking.

“The Simpsons” beat you to it.

It’s time for another prediction. I predict that if Trump continues to win primaries, you are going to start hearing economic-apocalypse talk. They’ll say that if Trump is elected, the stock market will crash, other countries will refuse our exports, big companies will flee the country, and you will lose your job, because reasons. They’ve used this one several times before; it’s how they got the 2008 bailout and the debt ceiling raised. WMD!! Y2K bug!! Killer bees!!

It’s not that the electorate has gotten any dumber, it’s that the dumb elements have gotten louder and angrier.

It is not his politics, it is that he is politically (as distinct from electorally) ignorant, he is utterly unqualified to be POTUS, he would be a blundering incompetent in the job, he is too arrogant to listen much to better-informed advisers, and he is too dangerously hot-tempered to be trusted with power over the United States armed forces.

Shit, that sounds like a good read. I know Hedges has been writing about a return of proto-fascism in the US for a while, but I didn’t know he had a book that seems to describe what is happening in 2016.

:mad: So what? Fuck the Stalinists! Vote Fourth International!