Should You Care About the Trump-pocalypse?

2016-05-04 09_51_12-The Indiana Primaries - Donald J

Unless you are one of a handful of undecided voters the short answer to this post is: no. Why? Because it’s highly unlikely you’re going to do anything about it aside from voting this November. There are a lot of worried people out there who are concerned about what could happen if Trump were President, but think about how far off the election is for a minute. We’re six months removed from the general election. Two weeks ago, pundits were saying after Ted Cruz won Wisconsin that there would be a contested convention, now Trump is the presumptive nominee.Since those comments Trump hasn’t lost a state and has won more than fifty percent of the vote in every single contest.

silver-postin-1

Now, this data may alarm you, but consider how divisive a candidate Trump actually is. There’s really no precedent for it.

2016-05-04 09_15_59-Republican Voters Kind Of Hate All Their Choices _ FiveThirtyEight

I mean, I guess you could say that independents might turn out for Trump, but there’s no precedent for that either. Trump’s base is rural, white voters with little education. One blogger summed up his support for Trump this way: “It’s hard to pay attention to what Hillary’s saying for more than a minute. She’s not a star. Trump is. All attention will be on him in the general election.” Howard Fineman, a normally reasonable reporter, wrote a piece for the Huffington Post suggesting that we should be concerned about Trump because: hey, stuff happens. Then, mysteriously, at the end of his column is this little gem:

Editor’s note: Donald Trump regularly incites political violence and is a serial liar, rampant xenophobe, racist, misogynist and birther who has repeatedly pledged to ban all Muslims — 1.6 billion members of an entire religion — from entering the U.S.

Journalists should simply preface everything that they write with a: hey, we’ve been really wrong so far. That’s something that Nate Silver did saying: “other than being early skeptics of Jeb Bush, we basically got the Republican race wrong.” And he’s correct of course because hey, he’s Nate Silver. But, I’m going to piggy-back off of his explanation for how we arrived at this moment in American politics. Silver noted that there are three reasons that Trump happened to America saying on Twitter that:”1. Voters are more tribal than I thought. 2. GOP is weaker than I thought. 3. Media is worse than I thought.” I couldn’t agree more with that assessment. Consider that Donald Trump got the equivalent of $2 billion in free advertising thanks to the media being really bad at their jobs.

To put it bluntly: narratives in politics are horribly inaccurate and people really can make things seem more dire than they are. I could say that Donald Trump is the most formidable Republican candidate for President since 2000 and if you were to look at the percentage of delegates won compared to the percentage tallied by other candidates that would appear to be a no-brainer. Trump will have won the most votes for a Republican nominee going into a Republican convention since George W. Bush in 2000. Given everything I’ve just said he’s going to trounce Hillary in November, right? No. Basically, what we have here is a case of Stockman Syndrome. David Stockman, for those of you who have somehow forgotten about the horror that was the Reagan administration, was Ronald Reagan’s Treasury Secretary.

“None of us really understands what’s going on with all these numbers.”

—David Stockman

That’s what you want in a Treasury Secretary: a man who doesn’t do well with numbers…

Anyway, I do want to point you to the one man who got everything right this cycle because on August 21, 2015 a man by the name of Norm Ornstein totally called the Republican Primary.

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