Long before Donald Trump emerged, in 2013 I asked if the original Republican brand would survive where the GOP seemed to be going. That question has been answered. Happily at this juncture it no longer matters if the “corporate” Grand Old Party survives or not, for the Republican brand, and the people who cling to it, are going to here for a very long time. Out of deference to George William Curtis, one of the original Republican Party founders in the 1850s, and who hung “the Doctrine of Liberty” around its neck, which has stuck pretty close to the ribs of the American people, if not the Party, I’d kind of like the Republican name kept around.

But we can make do without it as long as we own “the brand”.

What’s in a name? If Donald Trump were to form a new party named “Muskrat Ramblers” 60 million American would sign on. And it still would be the eastern seaboard clique who will be stumbling around in the dark.

The Democrats are in far direr straits (also a thing I didn’t clearly see in 2013.

I think we’ve always sort of suspected their end game, Total Control, as well as the price they’d likely be willing to pay in order to get it, Total War, if all else failed. But no one believed they’d be so outrageously naked and out front about it. Or that they would muck it up so badly.

I think we can all agree that a kind of psychopathy has snatched them all up and rendered them very unpredictable. So, I’m keeping Old Betsy up over the fireplace cleaned and oiled. I’m in a red part of a blue state, so you never can tell.

All the Democrats and a lesser number of Republicans need to know some things about natural law.

The Whig Party was the “other” party in American politics, that lined up in opposition to the Democratic Party of Andrew Jackson, who’d been running the show since 1829. When Abraham Lincoln, the first Republican president, took office in 1861, setting off the Civil War, the Whigs simply faded away, and by war’s end in 1865, had become a distant memory. Most found new homes with the Republicans.

Democrats, Republicans, and sycophantic media, including NeverTrumpers, need to understand how quickly that fade from memory can be. We are only in the third year of an 8-year maelstrom. They are only witnessing a small eddy so far, but it is growing into a whirlwind.

Consider the man who receives a diagnosis of a terminal disease. Could be a month, a year. “Just get your affairs in order.” And the prudent man will bring his family and best friends into his circle and they will prepare for the end together, easing his trek.

But as the old Billy Ed Wheeler song goes, he will have to “walk that lonesome valley all by himself”, which is the first law of dying. The second law is that his loved ones; wife, children, best friends, even loyal fans will walk with him part of the way, and after he passes, will eulogize him, pray over him, tote his casket, and throw dirt over it. But then, after the requisite period for wearing black…actually far less…other than noticing the photo over the bedroom bureau, they will carry on with a steadily diminishing memory that he was ever there. Life goes on.

In political party lingo, and there is history to back this up, every person who voted Democrat in 2016 will either vote for someone else in 2024, or stay home. A few may even take to their basements to build bombs. Many more will take to drink. No joy in Mudville. Even hating will seem less worthwhile. Finding psychological substitutes for hate are very difficult when your only real goal is to master people you look down on.

Only a very few will retreat to their closet to pause and reflect; Republicans more than Democrats, for that skill at self-examination is largely a result of having a moral core and I simply don’t believe most Democrats have one anymore.

This also means they have no excess baggage to throw overboard as their ship sinks.

A man who is about to die is granted the blessing (or curse) of being able to re-examine his life and in the time allotted make amends or at least make peace, often with himself…and his God…if he has one. People with a moral sense usually carry an invisible valise which only he/she knows. I recently wrote that I prayed at least 50 times a day and that many of those prayers were because a regret suddenly popped into my mind; a song, a sight, anything that inspires a memory, and I cross myself.

A curious habit, I know, but I’m aware of most every wrong I’ve ever done. So I know when the doc gives me the word that I too am about to begin that last march, that valise will be much lighter.

Although no one can ever know what’s in the hearts of others, still, in the most general way. I believe that many, many Democrats and not a few Republicans, will go down that last lonesome road kicking and cursing; against the upstairs maid because the toast was burnt, or the security escort for staring at her, the lying pollster for telling the truth, the rare reporter for refusing to be bought, and last but not least, that miserable son of bitch, Donald J Trump, for screwing up every plan they’d been making for twelve years, and exposing every heist they’d been pulling off the past twenty-five.

By 2022, very few will remember they ever existed, and out of embarrassment, no one will remind them.

By 2024, few will even remember the Democratic Party. Or most of its stars. This includes John McCain…(and fill in the other GOP names you’d like to include.) They will find newer outlets for their bitterness, other dogs to kick. Just probably not politics.

But bitterness and hatred creates its own hell on earth. Enjoy