2020 US Election prediction – not quite a landslide

I have been predicting a Biden-DEM landslide – 330-359 electoral college votes, with $3k skin in this game. The longer Trump has mishandled the Covid / recession, the longer I have gone on Biden.

After a rethink, and another look at the polling data, I predict he race will be closer, 300-329 votes. I will have to hedge the landslide bet.

Trump was toast as far back as 2018. The Blue Wave that swept the DEMs into HoR dominance was “Demography is Destiny” with a vengeance. That wave swells by the day. It will eventually crash on the shores of the US polity in the form of the Emerging Democratic Majority – a DEM one-party dominant state ie Californication of US government.

But Trump has made the REPs bad situation worse. Using an updated version of my “Five P model” (TM) – in May 2015 it predicted a REP victory in 2016 – let me count the ways the electorate loves Trump not. Hereunder a ten point check-list spelling out how the 2020 REPs are objectively worse off than the 2016 REPs.

  • Demography is Destiny: The legacy nation (Caucasian race, Christian religion and Constitutional rule) continues to evolve (by immigration and conversion) into a novelty nation (non-Caucasian race, non-Christian religion and non-Constitutional rule). Trumps voting catchment area (white working class Christians) dwindles and ages, going from 45% to 41% of those eligible to vote.
  • Pandemic poisons politics: Trumps mishandling of the covid pandemic hit his supporter base hard, killing many white geezers in “flyover country”. This did not enhance his appeal as a strong man who protects his people from “American Carnage”.
  • It’s the Economy, stupid: The economy keeps getting swamped by successive Covid waves. And Trump bungled his stimulus. The Ray Fair macroeconomic model predicts a landslide for Biden.
  • Personnel is Policy: Trumps cabinet administration has been a shambolic farce. The turnover of officials from Secretaries down has been the worst in the post Cold War era. The comparison with the Obama admins cool competence is striking.
  • Show business for ugly people: Trumps narcissistic personality is repellent to all except his followers. Biden’s essential decency is a blessed relief by comparison
  • The Empire Strikes Back: The US Establishment is utterly united in its hatred and contempt for Trump – the MSM (duh!), Pentagon, Silicon Valley, Hollywood, the Ivy League even Wall Street. The Deep State promoted two movements to impeach Trump. It will not be blind sided by Russian interference this time around.
  • Failure to Launch: Trump is a fake populist. He has largely abandoned his populist program in favour of Republican establishment priorities. There has been little or no nationalist movement on immigration, trade and foreign policy. The Wall is unbuilt, the trade war with China has flopped and the Pentagon continues its endless wars in the Middle East. The only policies he has got through have benefited the donor class. His base has little reason to get out and vote.
  • Always playing Catch up: Trumps political machinations look amateurish compared to Pelosi and Schumers Machiavellian maneuvers. Replacing Bannon with Kushner was a fatal error.
  • Follow the Money: The DEMs have crushed the REPs in campaign finance. Trump has not received the free “smash mouth” publicity he got in 2016.
  • Eat your Greens: The DEM machine has pushed the Greens off presidential ballot in numerous states Thus preventing vote siphoning to their Left.

In psephological theory these factors must make a difference. And in polling practice they do, with Biden enjoying a landslide lead of 6%+.

There is strong early voting suggesting that “the baseball bats are out” and that Trump is going down hard. Undecideds will go against incumbent, as per usual, just to stop all the argy bargy.

I could be wrong – I reckon a 10% chance of that. There is some chance that the “shy Trump voters” theory is true, masking the extent of nationalist support for Trump ie “my candidate, right or wrong”. I don’t think this theory is true based on the fact that the polling support for generic Congressional REPs pretty much tracks support for Trump. Why be shy about a generic REP? More on that later.

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An apology, a quote and an allusion

I’ve finally bitten the bullet and set up my own blog.

But before I go on about it I have an apology to make about my persistent cyber vice. Those long-winded comments I’ve been posting on other peoples blogs for more than a decade are a thing of the past. From now on I resolve to make short-winded posts on my blog.

Should have happened years ago, but they always said I was a late developer. My apologies to all those long-suffering bloggers who put up with my vice, especially Pr Quiggin and Steve Sailer.

A word about the blog’s title and header image. The title refers to Michael Oakeshott’s famous lecture on Political Education (1951) where he constructs a nautical metaphor for navigating the ship of state:

“In political activity, then, men sail a boundless and bottomless sea; there is neither harbour for shelter nor floor for anchorage, neitherstarting-place nor appointed destination. The enterprise is to keep afloat on an even keel; the sea is both friend and enemy; and the seamanship consists in using the resources of a traditional manner of behaviour in order to make a friend of every hostile occasion.”

I have no idea how to sail a ship, let alone ship of state. But I have always admired Oakeshott’s political philosophy, which is a warning to those who would naively use philosophy as a guide to politics. A precautionary tale to the stowaway who presumes to offer unsolicited advice to the helmsman.

The image is Wanderer above the Sea of Fog (1818), by Caspar David Friedrich, which one critic suggested offered an ambiguous message: “at once mastery over a landscape and the insignificance of the individual within it.” That pretty much sums up the frustrated will-to-power of most bloggers.

Despite these caveats about my ignorance and impotence [sic!] I am vain enough to think I have something worthwhile to contribute. If for no more reason than to claim bragging rights when I am right and cop a flogging when I am wrong.

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