thoughtsA prediction for 2016.

Alright, y'know what? Everyone can't seem to not talk about it, which means I can't not think about it, and, because I'm a writer, that means I can't not write about it.

I'm about to write about Donald J Goddamn Trump. Specifically, I'm going to predict the remainder of 2016.

I have no political education. I have no special insider insight. Hell, I'm not even American. But I have a clear picture in my head of how the rest of this election is going to turn out, and I want it on record, and we can see whether I'm right or I'm wrong.

And yes, I'm putting a twenty in the "Talk about Donald Trump" jar for this.

First prediction: Trump isn't going to let up on the violent talk. Regardless of what he might say (now there's a phrase I'm going to use more than once) he's stirring up conflict on purpose. Like everything else Trump does, it's all about getting attention - positive or negative, he doesn't care - and nothing gets free news coverage quite like riots in the streets. And, as a direct result of this, at least one person going to die.

That's prediction number one. I don't know if it'll be a pro-Trump supporter or an anti-Trump protestor, and it'll be something like falling onto concrete just right, or a shoving match with someone who just happens to have a heart condition... y'know, one of those semi-accidental deaths with plausible deniability. Whoever it is, however it happens, you mark my words - before Trump secures that nomination, a human being will cease to exist as a direct result of something that came out of his mouth.

And there will be no meaningful consequences for him whatsoever.

Y'see, Trump draws his strength from how extreme he is. He gets coverage from wacky stunts, and attention translates to votes. That's why he's doing all this Naziesque stuff - that's not an accident. When other people compare you to Hitler, it's memorable, and - at this stage of the game, anyway - there's no such thing as bad publicity.

Some part of people's subconscious minds is saying "Nazi... like those guys in all those history documentaries and movies with the awesome explosions! I like explosions!".

Trump is not a Republican, he doesn't believe what they believe, he doesn't identify with their party. That's obvious enough if you read anything about him from before this election. All he had to do, though, was turn himself into an exaggerated caricature of a Republican - racist, belligerent, reactionary - and the right-leaning populace voted as they'd been trained to vote. It's like showing up at the Miss Universe pageant with a cardboard cutout of Jessica Rabbit - it's quite obviously not real, it can't be real, but that's precisely why the real candidates can't compete.

(Am I saying racism is a conservative value? No, of course not. But if you are a white supremacist, I know how you voted last election.)

And yes, he's going to get the nomination. That's prediction number two, and it's an easy one to make right now. Trump will be the Republican party nominee, and all those handwringing milquetoast conservatives are going to "voice their concerns" about him, but those concerns aren't going to matter. They'll all vote for him because their jobs depend on party loyalty.

(Or, at least, they're all going to state in public that they'll vote for him. Whether they have a moment of conscience in the privacy of the voting booth is another matter. Cowards, all of them.)

So prediction number one - someone's gonna die. Prediction number two - Trump gets the Republican nod. And that leads directly into prediction number three - Sanders is going to be the Democratic nominee.

Republicans aren't the only side that can be motivated by fear and extremism. We've all, by now, seen the polls that show that Sanders beats Trump by a wider margin than Clinton does. Trump's antics are going to drive Democrats to vote for the candidate most likely to beat him. Trump is making people vote Sanders.

And the Democratic party is going to drag its heels the whole way. Hillary Clinton is supposed to win, you see. She's due. But that too only helps Sanders - his image thrives on being the anti-establishment underdog. The more the Democratic party dumps on him, the more their actual Democrat constituents are going to vote David over Goliath.

The so-called superdelegates won't vote for him. But, in the end, he's going to get the popular vote by such a wide margin - and, again, Trump is going to be so scary - that the Democrats are going to have to accept it.

So that's the matchup - an obviously fake Republican in the Republican side and a man who's had an I beside his name for longer than I've been alive on the Democrat side.

And I definitely do hope prediction number three comes true, because they'll need Sanders to beat Trump because of prediction number four.

Prediction number four: as soon as Trump gets the Republican nomination, we are gonna see him turn HARD HARD HARD left.

See, he's only pretending to be extremist right to get the Republicans locked in. That's why he's making them all pledge to vote for him no matter what - he knows they won't like the person he'll be, come November.

He's going to talk about how, of course, he's always supported gay marriage. He's going to talk about how, of course, he's always supported legal marijuana. He's going to talk about how, of course, he's always supported an easy path for immigrants to get legitimate citizenship. He's going to talk about how, of course he's always supported universal health care and higher minimum wage and a woman's right to choose. He's even going to pick a Democrat as his running mate.

And the media's going to fight it at first, but they have to report what Trump says regardless - especially if he continues being as loud and obnoxious and classless as he is. (Make no mistake, it's more than possible to spout progressive values and still be a boorish asshole about it.)

And over the months from June to November, it'll slowly overwrite people's memories. It'll change history. I predict that, before Halloween, you're going to hear at least one pundit say the words "Well, really, it's a race between two Democrats".

At some point between now and November, Donald J Trump is going to say at least one thing that you agree with.

But my fifth prediction... it's not going to work.

And y'know what, I'm not basing that prediction on anything at all. I'm not basing it on statistics. I'm not basing it on projections. I'm not basing it on anything from the neck up. This is a heart prediction. At the end of the day, I love America, I love Americans, I have faith in the American spirit, and I believe that they're going to come together and cast their votes against the big mean cartoon villain on the TV screen. Lex Luthor, Biff Tannen, Ratigan, Pete... Americans might love to see villains in the movies, but, when push comes to shove, they love to see those villains lose.

Bernard Sanders is going to be the 45th President of the United States.

And my sixth prediction is that immediately - IMMEDIATELY - Trump is going to claim that this was his plan all along.

Now, please do not misunderstand - like everything else the man says, this will be a lie. I believe, right now, he absolutely does want to be POTUS. But when you build your brand on "winning", that's what you have to do - deny the reality of your losses.

So Trump is going to say that what he really wanted to do was shake up the established two-party system (which he has unquestionably done) and get people excited about and engaged with politics (which he has unquestionably done) and draw attention to his personal brand (which he has unquestionably done) and put a non-establishment politician in office (which he has unquestionably done - Bernie couldn't have won without him). Thus, he will claim, he has accomplished all of his goals, and accomplished them spectacularly. (What kind of loser moron would actually want to be President, anyway?)

And he's going to go back to being a goofy celebrity, and he's going to make stupid amounts of money from his stupid amounts of fame until the day he dies.

And Bernie Sanders, with all his plans, with all his dedication, with all his idealism, is going to be President, and the first thing he's going to do is...



Barack Obama, with his pre-emptive Nobel Prize, hasn't been able to close Guantanamo Bay in eight years. Think about that - the President of the United States has admitted that this is a facility where torture has occurred, and it is a federal facility entirely owned and operated by the federal government... and he hasn't been able to close it down.

Bernie Sanders isn't going to be able to pick his own nose, let alone pick a Supreme Court justice to replace Scalia. He's not going to hurt Wall Street. He's not going to raise the minimum wage to fifteen dollars an hour. He's not going to get you free college. He's not going to replace the pipes in Flint. He's not going to hand down consequences to police that kill black people. He's not going to pull troops out of Afghanistan or Syria or Libya.

He's going to make a lot of impassioned speeches. He's going to be quite popular with the populus. But he will have fought his way to the driver's seat of a machine that hates him and will work against him at every turn.

In other words... the world will go on. The sun will rise and set. Flowers will bloom, babies will be born, the ocean will erode the stones, computer processors will double in power every eighteen months.

And, some day, we will all be able to stop talking about Donald J Goddamn Trump.

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