Ok, ok, we were all surprised by Britain’s decision to leave the EU. Well, when I say we, I mean people like me who were surprised. The people who weren’t surprised probably weren’t at all shocked by Britain voting the way it did. But I’m trying to sound like an intelligent media person in order to be taken seriously and the way to sound like an intelligent media person is to write as though everyone thinks the way you do and that if – from time to time – elections don’t go the way you and all your friends expect them to, then it’s not because you don’t get out enough, it’s a major shock…
As Felicity Kennett suggested, when her husband was surprisingly beaten in 1999, the result was a complete surprise because she didn’t know anybody who’d voted Labor… Which may partly explain why people felt that Jeff was out of touch.
But it’s Donald Trump that I wish to talk about. As some of you are aware, my prognostications have been quite accurate. Not all of them, mind you. However, the ones I’ve got right have been almost 100% accurate. So with this in mind, remember that you heard it here first. Just like my assurance about Malcolm taking over as PM before the 2016 election.
So let’s put a few facts on the table and – unlike our current PM who seems to think that anything on the table needs to be cleared away faster than they do at restaurants with two sittings – leave them there, so that people can put them all together.
1. Donald Trump praised Putin and hoped for closer ties with Russia. This, in past years, would have been political suicide for any presidential candidate.
2. In response to the Ukraine crisis, the USA imposed sanctions on Russia which resulted in ExxonMobil losing almost a billion dollars. Exxon have more exploration licences in Russia than in the United States, so these sanctions were rather costly for them.
3. Russia has been accused of trying to influence the US presedential election with hacking and false news.
4. There is report in the NY Times that the CIA believes point 3 to be likely.
5. Donald Trump suggests that there’s no need for any investigation into such things because, well, weren’t the CIA wrong on the WMD thingies, so what’s the point of investigating things now that he’s won. Mm, when he said that the election was rigged and that there were lots of illegal votes, we all presumed that it was to harm him, but perhaps he meant in his favour.
6. There is a suggestion that there is a number of FBI agents helping Russia. Don’t mention the leaked emails and the announcement that Hillary was being investigated.
7. Trump’s likely appointment as Secretary of State is not someone with extensive diplomatic experience. No, it’s Rex Tillerson. What’s his qualification for such a post? Well, he’s the president of ExxonMobil
Ok, these are readily searchable facts. And from this, I’m prepared to suggest the following will happen:
Trump will remove the sanctions, and in response to criticism, he’ll point to all the business that this has generated for Exxon. When somebody suggests that there may be a conflict of interest when his Secretary of State was once head of the very company benefitting, Trump will suggest that it’s thinking like that which stifles success and he’s determined to make America great again and people are just being too politically correct because Putin is the sort of man that doesn’t take any crap and he’s a really good guy and it’s about time that we stopped letting our prejudice against macho men stop us from being friends with Russia…
While that may not actually address the issue, it seems that saying something irrelevant in a very emphatic manner doesn’t seem to be doing politicians much harm lately.
Mm, maybe it won’t happen exactly like that, but it’ll be interesting to check back on this in six months time!
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