A Thought Experiment Based on Today’s Attack on the Capitol

I am attempting a thought experiment based on whether today’s inevitable and tragic events could have happened in a world where all of the past four years were inverted and the left had the lion’s share of the political power in this country.

There are a lot of theoreticals and moving parts here, so bear with me. The first and most obvious factor is Trump.

Let’s say the LEFT elected a president who, before even getting elected:

  • Was known to tout disproven conspiracy theories
  • Was known, or at least suspected, to be a bigot. Maybe not a racist or a sexist necessarily. Perhaps an antisemite would be the most likely in this scenario.
  • Attempted to incite violence against protesters at his own campaign events
  • Held extreme views that even most members of the party felt were out of line
  • Clearly had no idea how the government works

Already seems far-fetched, but let’s keep going.

After being elected, this president:

  • Immediately began sowing doubt about the election process, even though he won
  • Immediately began conspiring with foreign leaders to steal the next election
  • Encouraged absurd conspiracy theories among his followers about right wing politicians being ring leaders in a child pornagraphy scheme
  • Encouraged conspiracy theories about a “deep state” that was working against him
  • Lashed out forcefully against all criticism
  • Lashed out constantly at the legitimate press and sowed doubt among followers about the very nature of “truth.”
  • Used every opportunity, including a global virus pandemic to further political division in the country

Leading up to the next election and after losing this election, this president:

  • Continued sowing doubt about the legitimacy of the election process
  • Tried to convince election officials to reverse the legitimate results of state elections
  • Tried to convince the Vice President and Congress to overturn the election results on the thinnest of premises, despite protests from politicians that had previously been his closest allies.
  • Oversaw a protest rally in Washington DC on the day that election results were set to be certified by Congress.
  • Encouraged these protesters to go to the Capitol building

Okay, so that’s still just one variable. The others are probably less important here, but let’s look at them anyway. The second factor is the zeitgeist. So let’s assume that:

  • #BLM and #metoo still happened
  • The backlash to #BLM and #metoo still happened

Under a leftist regime, even one that was drifting into an unlikely sort of despotism, it’s hard to say how those protest movements would have gone differently. The police are still the police. But it seems like the whole energy of it would have changed in some way. Let’s just say that factor hasn’t really changed. Tell me if you think I’m wrong about this part. I’m non-commital about it.

The final factor is the protesters themselves, the followers of the despot:

  • Believe his word against the word of literally anybody else
  • Throughout the past four years have been emboldened to voice their most unsavory prejudices
  • Come to protests and counter-protests armed to the teeth
  • Have literally killed right-wing protesters in cold blood only to become heroes to the left

Is this scenario even fathomable to anybody?

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