What is the worst damage that Trump could do to U.S. democracy and its Constitution in 4 years?

It is much easier to destroy than rebuild - both in resources, costs and amount of time required. So whatever damage is done may be very difficult to reverse. In this sense I would vehemently disagree with Thomas Friedman and others who have tried to minimize potentially negative consequences. That said, what specific damage (to U.S. democracy and the Constitution) could Trump do?

1. Provide resources and support to Republicans to hold (or possibly increase) the state-level obscene gerrymandering that won them the House via the last census. It should be noted that the resulting makeup of the House does not, by any stretch of the imagination, reflect the actual demographics of the country.

2. Both indirectly and openly expanding funding, support and coordination for ALEC and the State Policy Network (SPN) for a deepening corporate takeover of state and federal legislatures.

3. After far-right appointments to SCOTUS, a continuing rollback of voting protections and access, and supporting efforts to disenfranchise or obstruct progressive-leaning voters (i.e voter roll purges, ID requirements, other responses to voting fraud conspiracy theories, etc.) in cases that come before the Court.

4. Starting a trade war that impoverishes the U.S to such a degree that unemployment, and lack of support from now defunded social safety nets, creates catastrophic economic hardships across the country - all of which could contribute a the breakdown of civil society (inclusive of democratic functions and Constitutional protections) in the hardest-hit areas of the U.S.

5. Tacit endorsement of hate speech, xenophobic bullying, racial violence and violations of civil rights can thoroughly undermine democratic institutions - for example, people becoming too afraid to vote, or to run for office, or to speak truth to power, or to hold elected officials accountable. There is evidence that this has been occurring already.

6. Untempered, open support and praise for brutal, megalomaniacal dictators who are actively trying to undermine democracy in the U.S. and Europe. And yes, of course I mean Putin.

7. Thanks to Edward Snowden, we know just how wantonly the U.S. security agencies were disregarding the U.S. Constitution under Obama. Can you imagine the abuses a pompous, insecure, impulsive and spiteful man-child will initiate with those tools at his disposal…?

8. Advancing neoliberal and socially conservative agendas that a) encourage a widening wealth disparity; b) amplify disparities in quality of education (and other public services) according to income; and c) increase populations of poor, unwanted, circumstantially challenged children (if Roe V. Wade is overturned, Planned Parenthood defunded, health insurers and facilities are allowed to deny abortions, etc.). Even if reversed in future administrations, this agenda will likely result in at least one generation of young people being dumbed down, stressed out, and impoverished…even as that generation creates another population boom. And this surge in unhealthy, poorly educated, poorly adjusted, financially stressed citizens will have a hugely negative impact on the quality of U.S. democracy over time.

9. Along similar lines, the reshaping of the Internet to appease corporate priorities (i.e. reversing Net Neutrality) will - absolutely and incontrovertibly - undermine free speech and unfettered access to high quality information and diverse perspectives. And as Internet traffic, searches and access become more commercialized, the ability for citizens to become well-informed in a carefully considered way will be obliterated. We witnessed what the lack of quality information - and abundance of highly distorted propaganda - did to the 2016 election. A fully corporatized Internet will be a final nail in that coffin. (To a lesser degree, defunding PBS and NPR will likely also actively frustrate and dilute capacities for voter self-education and exposure to diverse perspectives.)

10. The relaxing or reversing of other government regulations in favor of corporate interests - or effectual decommissioning of entire regulatory agencies, as the case may be - will multiply, amplify and irreversibly calcify untold negative externalities. And moving SCOTUS farther to the right will just exacerbate and accelerate this spiral. Climate change is only the tip of the iceberg. If what happened under the Cheney-Wolfowitz administration is a foreshadowing, we’re looking at devastating consequences to the environment, wildlife, worker protections, consumer protections, natural resources, and civil liberties. Indirectly, all of this will have a dampening effect on democratic institutions and function.

11. And yes, it is not inconceivable that a POTUS with Trump’s demonstrated poor character, erratic temperament, questionable judgment and nonexistent grasp of the facts could ignite an escalation of military conflict ending in the nuclear obliteration of huge portions of the globe, including the U.S. This would also likely have an impact on U.S. democracy and the vitality of our Constitution.

My 2 cents.

From Quora: https://www.quora.com/What-is-the-worst-damage-that-Trump-could-do-to-U-S-democracy-and-its-Constitution-in-4-years/answer/T-Collins-Logan


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