Experiencing the consequences of diminished world trade:

All the fools who voted for Brexit and Trump may also have to live with the consequences of diminished world trade. It is one thing to claim that trade is bad; it is another to actually attempt to dramatically restrict or curtail it. We’ve been living with trade tailwinds for the last couple decades. Now we may get to experience the opposite.

In the meantime, the dollar and peso are both plunging, as are stocks. Trade is an incredible net good and yet both major political parties in the U.S. are rhetorically fleeing from it. So far it is rhetoric, anyway, but soon it may be policy.

Recession in 3…, 2…, 1…

Someone on Twitter observed that the best-case Trump scenario is that he’s too lazy, uninterested, or incompetent to do much in the next four years. Let us hope. Still, overall this is one of those scenarios in which we collectively deserve what we get.

The end of democracy?

It is scary to think that I may be watching the end of democracy in the United States, live.

At the very least this election demonstrates frightening weaknesses in the structure of the democracy itself. The Constitution may deserve less reverence than it is commonly accorded. And voters may be even less rational than even I thought. Brexit showed as much. Tonight may be worse, much worse, than that.

The education system—of which I am a small part—has also failed, at least in a mass sense. Maybe real education really isn’t plausible for the majority of people. A dark thought, but one that seems more plausible tonight than it was yesterday.

The number of people who really learn anything from history is small. We really art apt to repeat our past follies. We came through the darkness of the 1930s and 1940s only to flirt with a different form of it today.

Here is my maybe futile October 10 post, “Clinton or Johnson for president.”

EDIT: Here is Krugman asking, legitimately, whether we are a failed state.

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