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October 4, 2018

Bread and Circuses

Bread and circuses.

Americans are too comfortable with the status quo to force change. As the ‘bread and circuses’ idiom suggests, if the population is well fed and entertained they’ll remain submissive. So while half of Americans feel like they’re watching the fall of the Empire occur in real time via Twitter, they continue to do nothing.

Can you blame them? After all, we all have responsibilities that don’t allow us to spend a week protesting in DC and writing letters to Congress. It’ll take a lot more pain to get people to act with passion, but by that time it’ll be too late.

What does this mean for the future? Given the current climate, here are some probabilities:

- Despite the debate over his temperament, truthfulness and history, there’s a 70% chance Kavanaugh is confirmed as a judge on SCOTUS, locking Republican influence on the American way of life for a generation.  For whatever reason, Republicans are all-in on Kavanaugh and are determined to confirm him. His appointment will reduce the culpability of a sitting President, given Kavanaugh’s view of the executive office.

- Inaction, bungled voter registration and exogenous tampering by foreign actors means there’s a 50% chance Democrats don’t take control of the House of Representatives after the November mid-term elections*

- There’s an 85% chance the Mueller investigation concludes by implicating the President in criminal activity in one way or another.

- There’s an 50% probability that the Trump family is also implicated in some form of tax scheme.

- There’s an 90% chance these implications create nothing but noise, with Trump neither impeached nor indicted because of unconditional support from Congress, Senate and SCOTUS.

- Finally, there’s an 85% chance Trump is re-elected in 2020, partly because the Democrats nominate a poor candidate and continue to play ‘fair’.

- There’s a 60% chance that regardless of who wins the mid-terms and 2020 election, American politics remains highly divisive, forcing whatever party is in control to consolidate power and curtail individual freedoms.

*Note: If there is a Democratic sweep, enabling the party to take control of Congress, there’s a 100% chance that the GOP claims the mid-terms were rigged and attempt to nullify the results. Pointing the finger at outside infiltration, a national emergency is declared and voting rights suspended. Executive power is consolidated even further and the chance at another free election is significantly reduced.

Of course, these are just guesses based on existing knowledge. The outside, unexpected forces that flip the world upside down in the future and alter these probabilities are unknown.

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