Sunday, 14 October 2018

Why Donald Trump will probably win a second term

The Guardian in England and The New York Times and The Atlantic in the USA all recently published articles saying that Trump will probably win a second term. It was not something the writers wanted to write or most of the readers wanted to read.

Katty Kay of the BBC said during the 2016 campaign that Donald Trump is a Democrat. I can't find the link and I wonder if she has had it taken down. I agreed with her then - but now I see him as a throwback to the old Republicans of the pre-war era: protectionist and if not an isolationist, at least in favour of pursuing American interests and not an internationalist. So I think he is a Republican, even though at the same time he is clearly a third party candidate who took over one of the parties.

But he did not cast a spell on the GOP or fool them with Russian collusion. There were very good reasons why the Republicans chose him and people who dislike him, which is most people, should try hard to understand those reasons.

He has done much damage to US standing in the world and has undermined American institutions, most recently the Supreme Court. Still, ghastly and demagoguic though he is, the old Republican Party of Nixon or Reagan was a hollow oak that needed to be cut down. It was outdated once the Cold War ended and much more so by the time they chose Mitt Romney for President. There is no going back.

The old Democratic Party also needs to be remade and it will be, also thanks to Mr. Trump. As the Republicans become the party of the working and middle classes the Democrats become the party of minorities, feminists and the intellectual elite, split between socialists and identity politicians.

Donald Trump is right about many things. Nato is obsolete. Identity politics, a globalised political elite, illegal immigration and mass immigration by unskilled workers are problems. So is taking in what will become a large minority of American Muslims. American defence requires tight borders, not wars in distant places. 

The wars of George Bush 2 meant working class boys dying for no good reason. It is impossible to imagine Trump doing damage comparable to the damage to the world done by Bush 2 or Angela Merkel, both of whom are conservatives in theory.

Donald Trump is not a mountebank - he has very distinctive ideas and they won support. He is a remarkable historical figure. As Dr Kissinger said recently, sometimes a historical figure arrives to signal the end of an era. I hope the era of post 1989 liberalism is ending.

The Democrats, who were decent enough in their way in Jimmy Carter's day, have moved a long way to the left, as the Republicans under President Trump have moved an equal distance to the sort-of right.

For Mr. Trump to be defeated in 2020 someone has to defeat him.  I can’t see a strong Democrat emerging but no-one predicted Obama in 2008.

There is lots of room for a good third party candidate but they haven’t won since Lincoln did in 1860. I therefore don't expect to see a third party candidate winning next time, but one might throw the election to the Democrats, as Ross Perot threw the 1992 election to Bill Clinton and George Wallace helped Nixon win. 

I was absolutely neutral on election night, after Pussygate. I asked Rod Liddle which I should back and he told me 'I don't have a f-king clue, mate', but he was for Trump by the thinnest possible whisker. 

I wasn't by even one whisker for either candidate. But soon after the count started I sensed that Donald Trump would win and that he was the right choice. 

Had Hillary won she said her top priority was regime change in Syria. She dreamt, she told Goldman Sachs, of a borderless Western hemisphere powered by green energy. And she stood for more identity politics, more feminism, more transgender lavatories, etc.

Add in abortion and I do see why American Protestant conservatives voted for this bad man. The moral majority want conservative judges, above all else. 

Behind it all is a sense that mostly white, mostly Christian America is endangered. The same thing is propelling a very odd character to power in Brazil, though Brazil has already ceased to be mostly white. And has brought Mateo Salvini to close to the top in Italy - he is certainly a conservative though [or for which reason] the Pope hates him. 

The kaleidoscope is being shaken - by the electors.

I hope an intelligent and patriotic professional Republican politician, with high morals and good manners, comes along to build on the good things Trump represents, without the lies and nonsense and cavalier disregard for conflicts of interest and good governance. 

I cannot see one yet, but there is time. Nor can I see a Democrat who can attract the working class. Unfortunately, a Democrat will win the White House at some point.

It is interesting that 41% of Hispanics say Trump is doing a good job. He appeals to people of all skin colours, though only to one in ten blacks, who understandably see the Democrats as representing their interests, even though illegal and legal immigrants take their jobs.

Someone said that Trump 'is not a great man but he is a great troll and a great troll is what the world needs now'. I think this is right.

As a great troll he knows how to trigger liberals so that they walk into traps he has set.  This is the single main reason I expect him to win in 2020, if the economy continues to do well, though there are quite a lot of other reasons.


  1. The Democrats, who were decent enough in their way in Jimmy Carter's day, have moved a long way to the left, as the Republicans under President Trump have moved an equal distance to the sort-of right.

    Now that's interesting because to me it looks like the Democrats have moved a long way to the right, while Trump represents an attempt to move the Republicans slightly leftwards.

    1. I can see that Trump the candidate, though not the president, had left wing aspects but I do not know what you mean about the Democrats. I suppose you are thinking about economics not culture.

    2. but I do not know what you mean about the Democrats. I suppose you are thinking about economics not culture.

      Yes. When I think of left and right I think in terms of economic policy.

      Even when it comes to culture left and right can be confusing terms. Mass immigration for example is essentially a right-wing policy. And identity politics and multiculturalism are policies that serve the interests of the corporate sector. In modern politics there really is no left.

    3. You are a general fighting the last war or last war but one. Socialism is a 20th century answer to 19th century problems. As the late Peter Risdon said, though I plagiarised him once on this blog. (I have been in Romania too long.)