What Does the Future Have in Store for America?

Six months have passed since Joe Biden’s inauguration and Democrats securing absolute control of Congress. Following the evaluation of the first 100 days of the presidency, this is the next milestone at which it is customary to assess the direction of the incumbent administration.

Republicans consider the outcomes of the Democrats’ policies to be devastating to the extent that some of them, including Russians living in the U.S., frame America’s future exclusively in apocalyptic terms, giving rise to desperate thoughts, culminating even in the intention of some to move to another country.

To me, maybe because I do not work in the U.S. now but only make short visits there, not all seems so tragic. Yes, the country is going through a difficult period, and I understand the alarmism of some Americans. Alternative political trends cause great concern. Nevertheless, in my opinion, the point of no return has not yet been reached, despite such assertions. The current wave of negativity may well be reversed. My cautious optimism rests on a simple construct: The more mistakes the current administration makes, the more likely a change for the better. And as I see it, there have been many wrong decisions during the six months of the Democrats’ rule.

There was a seemingly good idea to help people financially during the pandemic. But Biden’s COVID-19 relief bill, like money dropped from a helicopter, did more harm than good, at least from an economic point of view. Together with the rise in claims for unemployment benefits, those policies contributed to the slowdown in economic growth. The problem is that many businesses, especially small ones, are faced with a labor shortage. Low-paid workers are in no rush to get hired. Why, when benefits and helicopter money roughly account for what they typically earn? And small businesses create nearly half of all U.S. jobs.

The new administration did not ignore big businesses either, rushing to lift many of the early-day restrictions imposed by Donald Trump on bureaucratic state intervention in the economy. And such interference, which the Democrats have always been notorious for, is known to hinder economic development. But, as if to slow down the economic growth even more, they plan to increase the corporate income tax by one-third — from 21% to 28%. At the same time, the maximum capital gains tax on investments is approximately doubled (from about 20% to 40%). The world has not yet invented better ways to kill a business’s motivation to invest.

The administration also paid attention to ordinary people. Today, the country has the highest inflation rate since the 2008 financial crisis. How could it not? Inflation was exacerbated by helicopter money, becoming, if not the most important, then one of the main reasons for the significant rise in prices. The purchasing power of the population has exceeded the volume of available goods — classic! For example, timber alone saw a five-time surge in its price, immediately affecting the cost of building and renovating houses. However, increasing prices noticeably affected everything. In this light, Biden’s recent announcement that the price of potato chips decreased by 16 cents sounded like a mockery — and not just for Republicans, I think.

Experts are likely to name half a dozen more policies of the new administration undermining the country’s economy. Do the White House and Democratic politicians in Congress realize the consequences of such actions? I do not know, but I suspect that even if any of them have fears, the traditional ideological narrow-mindedness of the Democrats, multiplied by the pressure of the party’s left wing, will prevail. But something tells me that if the administration does not improve the situation in the next six months, the voters, for whom the economy has always been the main criterion for the success of a president, his administration and his party, will come back to haunt the Democrats in the 2022 midterm elections.

Moreover, the Democrats’ antics on the southern border have already reached epic proportions. Without going into too much detail, Biden’s populist statements, sustained in the spirit of his party’s left-leaning agenda, encouraged immigration from Latin America, fueled by American promises to ensure proper, fair consideration of all cases. This led to an unprecedented influx of people trying to cross the southern border. Border guards detain about 100,000 people every month for such illegal crossings. Biden reinstated the law stating that if a person is detained in the U.S., the court must consider their application for refugee status, previously revoked by Trump. And while awaiting trial, the migrant can now remain in the U.S. However, given the influx, the consideration of those applications may take a year, two or more. But, as has happened in the past, many refugees are not going to wait for the trial but become immigrants here illegally in the hope of someday getting amnesty and citizenship. Namely, this is what Biden promised to the 11-20 million undocumented immigrants already living in the country. This promise, in turn, also triggered a further unprecedented influx of refugees. Under Trump, applicants had to await a court decision outside the U.S.

This situation provoked a heated protest from Republicans. Such a policy creates a significant reserve for expanding the Democrats’ electorate, since undocumented immigrants who received citizenship from them, of course, will vote for the Democratic Party. But even some ordinary Democratic voters, not to mention many independent voters, have serious doubts in this regard: This policy may put an unfeasible burden on social security and health care, as well as create desperate competition for jobs, etc. Those concerns, undoubtedly, will haunt the Democrats in the 2022 midterm elections and the 2024 presidential election.

Most likely, the Democrats will also be let down by the new wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. Back in its early days, the disease derailed the economy, which had been growing at an unprecedented rate, bringing about the loss of the presidency for Trump and Congress for the Republicans. Now, the pandemic is taking political points away from the Democrats. Their dithering on mask-wearing, booster vaccines, new lockdowns and other restrictions points to a lack of confidence in the leadership, the absence of a comprehensible, firm strategy to the fight against the pandemic. However, there is no worse sin in the eyes of American voters than failure to conduct state affairs.

It seems that the Democrats are also failing regarding their policy of social justice based on critical race theory. This policy is especially warmly welcomed by the left — it is their brainchild — and many left-leaning liberals. But they do not represent every American. One can judge for oneself whether this theory has any merit. It teaches that:

(1) America began not with the victory in the struggle for independence from England and not even with the first colonial settlements a century and a half earlier, but with the arrival of the first slave ship in the New World.

(2) The entire history of America is a history of oppression of Black people, a history of racism. Racism is embedded in the DNA of American society, which, both previously and today, is made up of the oppressed and the oppressors. The former include Black Americans, other people of color and a few other groups. The oppressors, of course, are white.

(3) White Americans, both previously and today, enjoy undeserved privileges, which is unfair. Whites must admit this and give up their privileges. And accordingly, social benefits should be redistributed in favor of the oppressed.

This kind of redistribution is practiced regarding university admissions, job applications, government contracts, aid to businesses affected by the pandemic, etc. All this, of course, drives a huge wedge into societal unity and cannot but irritate white Americans — but not just Republican voters. When the teaching of critical race theory began to be introduced in many schools, some teachers started to force white 7- and 8-year-olds to describe their undeserved privileges. However, other teachers, who were not so sophisticated in their understanding of this racial debacle, naively began to explain to children that white is bad and Black is good. The anger of many parents has reached a boiling point — and again, not only those sympathetic to the Republicans.

I am not even touching on the atrocities of the Black Lives Matter movement, supported by the Democrats, or the atmosphere of fear of expressing public opinion that runs against critical race theory. Many fell silent but will probably have their say at the voting booth.

In general, the situation for the Democrats is not so good. But, who knows; maybe the administration, by some miracle, will be able to improve the economy, solve the problems at the border and defeat the pandemic before the future elections. But it may well be that Democrats will only commit further errors, adding to their current mistakes, and the whole political situation will favor the Republicans. The first signs already demonstrate this trend: A recent Ipsos poll showed that the unprecedented optimism with which the Americans looked to the future after the first 100 days of Biden’s presidency has now been reversed. After six months, confidence in the current administration fell by nearly 20 points. More than half of Americans, 55%, are now pessimistic about the nation’s direction. This figure includes Democrats, Republicans and independents, on whom the outcome of an election often depends the most. This data, of course, does not yet constitute the growing popularity of the Republicans, but still. In light of what has been said by the alarmists, it seems that one should not panic very much and react too rashly. On the contrary, it is better to weather the storm by waiting it out. Then, after the storm, there may well be a rainbow.

About this publication

About Nikita Gubankov 40 Articles
Originally from St. Petersburg, Russia, I am currently a student at University College London, UK, studying for an MSc in Translation Technology. My interests include history, current affairs and languages. I am a keen translator from Russian into English and vice-versa, and I also translate from Spanish into English.

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