Friday, May 06, 2016

How Trump Wins in November

I desperately want to believe that Hillary will trounce Trump in a landslide of biblical proportions. But I am a natural pessimist who is always looking for the dark cloud behind every silver lining. I'll leave it to the professionals to analyze the polls (Clinton leads by 13 points in the latest poll) and the bookies to press the odds (Paddypower gives Trump odds of 2-1, a 33% chance). I want to look at two bizarre alternatives that will make a Trump victory likely.

The Reichstag Fire Scenario
A major terror attack causes a spike in American's fear and Donald Trump is a master at manipulating fear. In 1933, Nazis (probably) set fire to the German parliament building, blamed the Communists, and used the resulting furor to take total control of the country. A civilian drone destroying the Lincoln Memorial or the successful assassination of Trump's Vice-President would dissolve any Clinton lead as the nation turns to the strongman candidate. Importantly, Trump wouldn't have to wait for an outsider attack, his own supporters could pull off either event and Trump merely has to blame Muslims or Hispanics.

The Double Reverse Scenario
When people are ripe for a mass movement, they are usually ripe for any effective movement, and not solely for one with a particular doctrine or program. In pre-Hitlerian Germany it was often a toss up whether a restless youth would join the Communists or the Nazis. ~ Eric Hoffer, The True Believer
Trump starts running to Clinton's left. As long as he sticks to his wall, mass deportations, and banning Muslims Trump's supporters don't care what else he advocates. He has already come out with anti-Republican positions like a $15 minimum wage, LGBT rights, and wanting to appeal to Bernie Sanders supporters. None of this has affected Trump worship among his followers. If he can attract enough Sanders loyalists to split the Democratic Party then we could see a Trump takeover of the entire nation.

I won't relax until Trump's political career is dead and buried with a stake through his heart and salt in his mouth. 

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