The Silver Lining Liberal Playbook: The Long View

Despair among liberals surrounds me. Let us all take a deep breath for a moment and think. Contemplate the long game.

Now imagine, Hillary Clinton won the Electoral College by the slimmest of margins and moves back into the White House. Republicans retain control the House and Senate. Unabashed angry and bitter obstructionism prevails, again, for her entire term. Her infrastructure investments are dead on arrival. All her thoughtful policies suffer similar fate. The Supreme Court shrinks as an institution, moving America towards a Constitutional crisis. Petty partisan House investigations against Clinton continue to the point of Impeachment proceedings. Just more of the same; dysfunctional Congressional gridlock and finger pointing. America's decline furthers. The inevitable coming economic downturn--after 86 months of expansion since 2009--occurs by mid-June 2017 as Fed interest rates rise. Rome begins to burn.

This is a hard and bitter pill to swallow for liberals. Yet probably an accurate prognosis. But please hear me out; again, the long view here.

Now reality. President Trump takes office by winning the antiquated Electoral College, not the popular vote, and attempts to begin checking off the items on his To Do in the First 100 Days list. The Republicans are in complete control. No kneejerk partisan obstructionism; just realpolitik folks. Yes, it will be emotionally gut-wrenching and repugnant for the left. Yes, Trump will stack the Supreme Court. Painful. Yes, Trump will alter Obamacare (the mandate, Medicaid expansion, income subsidies); but remember that the Affordable Health Care Act was essentially insurance reform, and health care providers, doctors, pharmaceuticals and insurance companies like it, a lot--they have 20 million more customers. It will not just go away.

The "biggest, best wall" boondoggle will not happen because: a) Mexico will not pay for it, and b) Congress will not pay for it either. Trump's massive infrastructure plans (one of the few things the two nominees agreed on) will not be funded by the House either--unless they find the money to pay for it. And taxes on the wealthy are not going up, I can assure you. The congressional Freedom Caucus will confront their own hypocrisy if they do. The sanity of the Courts will inevitably block mass deportations of US-born citizens; and if Trump attempts to create an army of police to tear families apart and deport their parents (Who will pay for this?), it will create a significant backlash. As for redoing trade deals? We will see how Corporate America's Chamber of Commerce feels about that. If we go into a shell, we will be alone in that shell and the world around us will move forward; America even further behind. The factories and steel mill jobs of the Rust Belt will remain rusty in the face of technology and market forces. They are not coming back. The country will sadly fall further into an abyss of dissension.

Now for the long view.

Who will be blamed for America's continued decline and inaction? Not Crooked Hillary. Not the minority Democrats in Congress. Not the liberals who are powerless. Not the elusive media elite. Only the Republicans and Trump will be held accountable; in the truest of conservative values. The whole of the country will be watching too. The same ones who finally got their dreamboat leader: an occasionally successful businessman at that. Finally, a businessman to show those career politicians a thing or two about how to run the country. He will drain the swamp. Right. Does anyone think for a minute that Trump can fulfill almost any of his vacuous policy position pronouncements? For the sake of my country, and as a proud American, I do wish him the best, but I think not.

While all this is going on, assuming he doesn't start the Big One and get us all vaporized or climate change sink us; liberals get madder and savvier. They get wiser and stronger. They get organized and mobilize. Trump loses some support of his marginalized "forgotten American" voters--many of whom were really just Hillary haters to begin with. The 2018 mid-term elections come around. Voters on the left, and right, are both left wanting by the lack of change. Pissed off because Trump and the GOP didn't deliver, again, as promised; and may have torn the fragile social fabric of America even more so. The historic off-year midterm swing of the House takes place with Democrats regaining control of the House. The slight two-vote Republican Majority Senate maybe returns to Democratic control too. A counter-balance is achieved.

The foundation of the long-term movement begins.

The inevitable urban-based, multicultural, educated, youthful liberal tide begins to rise in America--demographics are destiny. The GOP have only Trump, or Pence, his out of tune evangelical lap dog to run in 2020. The GOP have failed utterly, probably made the lives of their base worse in the process, and they have no one to blame. Honest Americans know this. The Democrats offer a clear realistic message coming from a bolder generation of young smart messengers: Cory Booker, Kamala Harris, Pete Buttigieg, Catherine Cortez Masto, Mike Johnston, Julian Castro.

America is hurting right now. The true will of the people--the candidate that receives the most votes leads--has not been expressed. Those bitter angry forgotten Americans, who voted so predominately en masse for Trump, four years from now, will still be forgotten and angry. They will not have Hillary Clinton to hate or blame. They will only have themselves and their GOP legislators to blame. The liberal working class movement expands.

The arrow of history is clear. It may suffer through short-term setbacks, but it aims up. Martin Luther King Jr said it best, "The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends towards justice."

Be brave America. Speak up and stand up when you see a wrong. But organize and mobilize. Bide your time, real change is coming. As the late great Leonard Cohen told us: Democracy is coming to the U.S.A.