Posted by: seanmalstrom | November 9, 2016

The Shattering of the Rust Belt

I went to sleep at around 5-6 PM last night and woke up early this morning. (The last thing I did before I went to sleep was google ’45th president’ and google’s images all came up Trump. Intriguing.) Having gone through prior election cycles in the past, I just hate all the rhetoric, drama, and nonsense. I’d rather just wake up and see all the data at once and not be too sleepy to absorb it. And when you wake up the morning after, you know there is a new President. You do not know who. So for a while, you are Schrodinger’s Cat existing in a universe where both candidates are president… until you look at the news. I found this approach much more healthy, and I suggest others try it next time instead of going through the emotional rollercoasters.

Some people are asking me why I am not putting up kermit pictures, gloating, or shouting. The truth is that I do not feel much joy. I believe the majority of those on the right, not the young ones who haven’t been through many election cycles, can be summed up with this video:

In the movie Gladiator, there was much cheering and fandom from the mob as Maximus defies the ruling class. As the movie goes on, the emperor keeps trying to rig the fights so Maximus would lose. Tigers would leap out but be restrained if they neared the preferred Ruling Class’s gladiator. Maximus’s victories over these rigged arenas kept winning him the crowds. This is the appeal of Donald Trump.

But this is not how the story ends, of course. In the ending of Gladiator, the emperor stabs Maximus before the fight while he is still chained (rigging the fight). Against all odds, the emperor falls. As the video shows above, there is no cheering, no Kermit pictures, no gloating. There is a solemn silence. The political machine should never have been there in the first place. The big question that goes on in the ending scene is: “What happens now?”

The way how the right viewed the 2016 election was like how passengers of Flight 93 viewed their flight (this is the airplane on 9/11 that crashed into a Pennsylvania field). They viewed the political machines as literally crashing the country (in order to create a globalist paradise or something). This ‘solemn silence’ is that feeling when you stop a missile from hitting your home. There is silence because this is the beginning. They see more globalist missiles incoming and want them shot down.

There is one really important difference with the 2016 election than I have seen in any election in my entire life. Trump ran on an anti-machine platform. In other words, there was no real political machine carrying Trump to victory. This is what makes 2016 different than 1980. Reagan had his talents and campaign skills, but he still rode a Republican political machine. A Bush was always on the Reagan ticket. The other Republican candidates were machine candidates. Bush. Dole. Bush Junior. McCain. Romney. This was supposed to be followed up by the next machine candidate of Jeb Bush. Jeb Bush’s strategy was to flood the primary with candidates (there were 16 not including Trump), and this would split the anti-Bush vote. The anti-Bush vote in Florida would go to Rubio. In Texas, the anti-Bush vote would go to Cruz. In South Carolina, the anti-Bush vote would go to Graham. Trump smashed the Republican machine, and he was under threat of not gaining the delegates needed up until he was nominated. The Republican machine was counting on Trump to flame out. They were ready to ‘discipline’ Trump voters after the inevitable Trump loss. When the Trump tapes came out, Trump decided to completely abandon the Republican machine. “We won the primaries without them. We will win the general without them too,” the Trump team said.

On the Democratic side of candidates, they used the political machine as a vehicle. Dukakis, Gore, Kerry, Obama, and Clinton all had a powerful political machine behind them. In the primary of 2016, Sanders didn’t stand a chance against the machine with its super-delegates. Many of those Sanders voters likely cross voted for Trump in states like Michigan. (Did you know that 2012 Republican primary had Romney rigging it? It took forever for the RNC to admit that Sanctorum had actually won Iowa.)

My point is that winning political candidates have IOUs. They have IOUs to other politicians, to big corporations for their donations, and so on. Trump has no such IOUs… except to the people who voted for him. Who has leverage over Donald Trump? The blue collar workers of Michigan, that is who. Those Michigan, Pennslyvania, and Wisconsin blue collar workers are the most powerful people in America today for they are the only ones who have control over future President Trump’s actions. Some people find this scary. I find it amusing. If Trump wishes to win re-election in 2020, those people must be satisfied.


As far as 2016 outcome, I think you can safely say everyone was wrong including myself. I knew the Rust Belt would likely shatter (and it did). I figured a 300+ electoral vote win would mean about +4 % popular vote margin. But what is astonishing is how lopsided some of the states are. The EV winning states Trump won were very slim, far slimmer than Trump Team thought they would be (such as Florida or North Carolina). Trump Team knew they were tied in Pennsylvania or Michigan, but they thought those were more long shots compared to Nevada or Colorado (where pot wasn’t on the ballot this time). It is astonishing seeing California have a 30 point difference.

Imagine a pool with an uneven bottom. The water level is the popular vote. When the water level rises or lowers, different surfaces are submerged or appear above water. This is how I used to think the electoral vote always worked and has worked in the past. The only way to have a popular vote / electoral vote split would be for a very, very narrow popular vote (i.e. Gore and Bush in 2000). But with 2016, it seems like there are multiple pools. In many ways, Trump did well in the Rust Belt because Hillary Clinton did so badly. In some states, Trump did not do better than Romney’s vote total. States like Washington, California, and New York (which I thought Trump would perform better) are so lopsided, it is almost impossible to do a region analysis.

In 2020, the battleground states will be the Rust Belt states which will be interesting plus Florida, North Carolina, Arizona, and Nevada. Ohio looks like it will not be a battleground state anymore which is a change.

2020 will be a referendum on Trump. Historically, when a president wins re-election, they gain more votes. Obama is the exception to this. I suspect this is because of high Republican crossover votes during 2008.

2018 should be huge Democratic gains in Congress as the midterm winner goes to those who lost the presidency.

But these are the historical patterns. Things change. I have no idea what will happen now. Trump supporters may vote out Republicans if they become an obstacle to him leading to larger Democrat wins in 2018.

There is too much data out there now to absorb and say anything. Let us wait and see.

———————————

So what will a President Trump do? I will tell you what I know.

Trump already has his cabinet selected out. They will be sworn in very fast, and I suspect Trump will rapidly be putting some legislation in quick order. Scalia’s replacement will quickly be sworn in.

Under Obama, the presidency has grown in considerable power. Now, that power is Trump’s. Nearly immediately, he will crack down on illegal immigration. The violent ones with records will be gone extremely fast. Trump will put in place Eisenhower’s Operation Wetback. A swarm of lawsuits will be filed against the government, but I see legal precedent being on Trump’s side from Eisenhower doing this to every other country on this Earth. No country allows citizenship just being born in it, and it may not even be part of American law. I expect Trump to establish definitions of what is and what is not a citizen.

Unlike prior Republican politicians, including Reagan, he will remain hardline on the immigration issue. The electoral college is *warped* due to all these illegal immigrants. What that means is that the Census counts them and electoral votes are re-assigned based on population numbers. Congressional districts are also re-assigned based on populations. Another ‘operation wetback’ will greatly alter the 2020 Census. Trump owes his entire political life to being a hardline on the immigration issue.

The wall will be ‘paid by Mexico’ by using presidential power to impound remittances that cross the border.

I expect Trump to put something in place of Obamacare and several trade deals.

Paul Ryan will probably be ‘gone’ as Speaker of the House. This may be why Paul Ryan is kissing Trump’s ass today.

Anyway, I am tired. There is too much data to absorb, and there is still much to be shaken out in the coming days.

Know this.

The biggest change Trump will do is to the Federal Reserve.

Folks.

Anytime, a politician mentions something about the Fed, they oddly ‘go away’ due to some scandal (it is always a sexual scandal too). Many of these politicians are there today because they have a sex scandal on them as leverage. Meaning, these politicians can be controlled. When they go out of line, scandal comes out, and they are gone. The reason why Gingrich is no longer Speaker of the House was due to an affair. His successor was David Livingstone. He wanted to separate the Social Security money from the General Fund of government. His affair was suddenly discovered, and he was gone. Then they put in Hastert as speaker because he was so ugly they know no woman would have an affair with him. But his sex scandals with boys was kept in wrap and kept him under control.

I suspect there might be something behind Paul Ryan to keep him in check.

“What does it matter with the Federal Reserve?” If you ask me what determines the price of oil, supply and demand is factor but that is not the determining factor. It is actually the Federal Reserve. The price of the dollar, how it inflates, etc. has more influence than anything else. Trump, a businessman, is salivating going after that. What is his intentions with it? I suspect it is to move the lever so it goes into Main Street’s hands instead of Wall Street’s. I know he wants Wall Street to have less influence and power (which is why Wall Street is going nuts right now).

Can Trump get his legislation passed? Well, both houses of Congress are Republican controlled. This reminds me of 2000 when George W. Bush had both houses of Congress. Many Republicans thought their type of legislation would be passed. Instead, they had Ted Kennedy write the education bill, and Bush never utilized his advantage in Congress.

Trump is not Bush. My prediction, and it will be shocking to people (what Trump does, not my prediction), is that Trump does things SO FAST. Businessmen are not the type to sit around. He’s going to go, go, go. Trump is a very effective CEO. While I won’t say that makes an effective president, it will shock people with how much energy is going out. Obama, Bush, Clinton, even Reagan were fairly lethargic.

Oh, and one more thing. Trump will put forth legislation so public officials cannot be willingly slandered. In other words, you cannot print damaging outright falsehoods about a public figure. If such legislation passes, even I may be inclined to be a public figure. The reason why I cloak myself is because of lack of legal protection once you become known as ‘public figure’.

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