Walt, whenever I hear the possibility being discussed of a Clinton being indicted or otherwise held accountable by anyone, I remember this line:
"Forget it, Jake. It's Chinatown."
With Trump, I find it very similar to some of what is going on in Europe. People who have been ignored, put down and even attacked by an establishment looking to whoever says they recognize the problems and will fight them. In Europe, alternative parties are the way. In a two-party system, it has to be done within at least one of the two. Perot showed about the limit of what a third party could do and I have no doubt that Donald Trump studied that example very closely before deciding to jump in the GOP race. Being the one willing to use the toughest language early on matters that have been ignored in the U.S. political establishment built him a base and that base, as in many cases when people who feel ignored find a political champion, is very loyal. As a result he has carpet bombed his opposition for months, creating the remarkable possibility that a party that had about ten viable candidates going into the process may have none at the end of it. I have a feeling that if he was turning all the fire on the Democrats he wouldn't have as much opposition within the G.O.P.
That said, a couple of his proposals don't seem to be doable under conditions of objective reality. Of course, that never put off a very dedicated political base; which feels they have found a champion after years of oppression, either.
I credit the current situation to the G.O.P. brass in large part, as well as Donald Trump. The months spent backing Jeb Bush with millions of dollars while he languished in single digits boggled me. Plus the use of that money to attack Rubio, instead of Trump, directly out of line with Jeb's interests if he wanted to make a comeback. Not to mention Jeb's saying for years that he did not want to run. I am convinced that Karl Rove or some other stalwarts talked him into it, against his instinct and his better judgment. Why they decided to leave him in for months to serve as a punching bag and burn money is something only they and Jeb Bush himself could explain. Had he bowed out early he might have run for the Senate in Florida (Replacing Rubio?) or for Vice-President. Now, I not sure he will return to public life again.
On top of this, the people who savaged Rubio before now want to back him, over Ted Cruz who is the only other candidate to win a Primary. This election will be studied for some time.
Until this brewed up in the last couple months, I really thought that the Democrats would be the ones weakened by internal fighting, as Bernie Sanders gives Hillary Clinton a strong challenge. That is also a base driven by feelings that they are ignored, in the spiral of the socialist mindset. Increasing Socialism always makes things worse economically. As a result, the more hard line socialists will appeal to the people saying that the problem is that not enough socialism has been done, and the spiral feeds on itself until one either gets a Thatcher or Reagan type to break the cycle or it all collapses like the USSR did.
The situation in this country, politically, is interesting as the Chinese say indeed.