Monday, February 13, 2017

Re-Evaluating the Political Apocalypse

Another quality post brought to you by Steve!

Note:  Due to an unforeseen emergency, Abby was unable to post today.  Instead, we'll be flip-flopping with Steve's already planned post for next Monday, President's Day.  Tune back in then to see what Abby has to say this month.

Happy President's Day, everybody!

In case you haven't heard we here in America, um, got a new one recently.  He wasn't really elected democratically, and he doesn't really do anything presidential, and he's not even really a good figurehead, so I'm not sure if he strictly counts, but, uh...we've all got to put up with him.  For now.

One of the more interesting things about this election to me on a personal level is how it rather instantaneously changes the entire course of my novel EVERY KINGDOM DIVIDED.  If you haven't read it yet, EKD is a near-future sci-fi story where the USA, after being devastated by internecine nuclear war, now looks like this:

But things aren't going to happen that way now.  It's not that I no longer think civil war is possible (unfortunately) it's just that the route I outlined in my novel has been bypassed.  (Yay us, I guess?)

I actually wrote EKD in 2009, just as the Tea Party was beginning to take to the streets in protest against President Obama, a years-long movement which seems to have been conveniently forgotten by a vast swathe of folks who are rather jarringly and suddenly anti-protest today.  Well, I suppose they have their own alternative facts to hew to.  Anyway, considering their wildly irresponsible and often violent rhetoric, it was my expectation back then that the Tea Party would balloon and deepen from simple protests into ever-more-dangerous levels of resistance, with the only real steam valve being a right-wing president being elected in 2016.

But the intelligentsia has been promising us for years that America is demographically no longer capable of electing a right-winger president.  Which basically stood as a dogmatic matter of faith for the entire news media and anyone with vaguely leftward leanings until November 8 when it shockingly (sort of) happened.

My guess in 2009 was that when President Obama was replaced by yet another Democrat out-and-out war would start.  In case you couldn't intuit the origins of the post-national flags on the map above, in my universe a scuffle started on the floor of congress, resulting in two opposing congressmen ripping a flag in half.  That would lead to declarations of secession from the South, spurred on especially by Texas, which already has a simmering undercurrent of secessionist sympathy.  From then on the left-leaning (or Blue) states would be in a border struggle with the right-leaning (or Red) states.

(Side note: for our international readers, this is probably intensely counterintuitive, as in most countries red = left and blue = right.  In the U.S., the reversal was a complete quirk of fate.  Since our flag is red, white, and blue, historically during elections the country started out white in electoral maps and then was filled in state-by-state as results came in with either blue or red representing Democrats or Republicans.  From the dawn of color TV, the choice varied year-to-year and station-to-station.  During the historic 2000 election, however, the outcome was disputed for over a month and networks gradually began to use the same, reversed from European-style, color scheme, as they continued to show the electoral map on a daily basis for weeks after Election Day.)

Presumably the federal government would have remained in Blue hands, being located in the solid Blue stronghold of Washington D.C., on the border of solid-Blue Maryland and disputed Virginia.  But with most military bases being in Red areas, the nuclear and conventional arsenal of the United States ended up divided - and used against one another.

But...with the outcome of the 2016 election going the other way, that won't happen now.  At least not the way I predicted.  

The political apocalypse I envisioned seems to draw nearer every day.  And yet things are in a constant state of flux.  Yesterday's impossibilities are today's realities.  Today's third rail issues are tomorrow's inherited wisdom.

What about you?  What do you think the future holds?  Let me know in the comments below!

1 comment:

Kimberly G. Giarratano said...

I feel like we're living in a circus, except circuses are predictably routine. I have no idea what tomorrow's news will look like.

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