People always say, "I hate to say I told you so" but I love to say I told you so.
Literally, part of my job is to share my opinions with people - even though every day someone on Twitter or Facebook will shriek about how shameful it is that a newspaper includes opinions. Where were their parents or high school teachers or anyone to explain to them how normal things in life work? Seriously, every newspaper has an opinion page. No one yells at the sports guy that he shouldn't write sports.
But when you share your opinion, the expectation is that some will agree with you and some won't - the ones who don't are a lot louder. So when people decide to take issue with a column I write, I have no problem revisiting the issue later and pointing out that the "horrible" column was actually pretty prescient.
One of the last things I did in 2018 was to make a ton of people mad. Honestly, I had no idea the column would be that hard to stomach in the week between Christmas and New Year's Day. Honestly, the column was probably as balanced an opinion column as you will read. It pointed out how fans of Donald Trump wouldn't love 2019 and how people who hate Donald Trump will also be frustrated in 2019. It was balanced.
But the headline was "2019 won't be a good year for anyone" and the social media bomb consisting of people who comment on headlines without ever reading even a paragraph of the column blew up in my face. A good headline gets a bad reaction. Commenters called the column"full of lies" and "one-sided" and of course I was accused of being a liberal or a Democrat. I know I'm not the latter. I don't think I am the former. In Oklahoma, I might be liberal compared to some, but many newspapers use my columns because I tend to be a pretty conservative voice.
I'm not a fan of our President. That's true. That doesn't make me a liberal.
It's been eight weeks. Let's look at some of the points in that column and see how well they aged.
About President Trump's fans, I said, "If you love Donald Trump as President, you will continue to be bombarded with stories about his inappropriate and probably illegal actions - from far too frequent golf trips to his own properties, to Russian collusion, and to campaign finance violations."
Is that true?
Trump has violated the constitution by declaring a national emergency and immediately flew to Florida at our expense and played golf for three days while making money for his own property. It was reported this week that multiple whistle blowers have testified that the Trump administration has tried to get nuclear technology to Saudi Arabia, the home of Osama Bin Laden, 15 of the 9-11 hijackers and a crown prince who recently oversaw a journalist from America being cut to pieces while still alive.
Why wouldn't we give them nukes?
Roger Stone has been indicted. The list of witches getting caught in the witch hunt keeps growing. Was I wrong? I think I deserve an "I told you so" for all the angry commenters, don't you?
What about the people who hate Donald Trump? You wouldn't know it from the comments, but I painted them a pretty clear picture of 2019 as well.
I told Trump haters, "The Democrats in the House will be more than happy to extract a few pounds of flesh from Trump and his family and advisors," but, "If you thought the Blue Wave would drown Trump, you were fooling yourself."
Was I wrong?
Nancy Pelosi clapped sarcastically during the delayed State of the Union speech. Rep. Ted Lieu points out problems with policies on Twitter. Morning Joe on MSNBC is full of demonstrative Democrats who are working hard doing something, although what that is hasn't become very clear.
They have had two months and the Democratic House Oversight Committee hasn't even asked for Trump's tax returns yet. Did you really think the Democrats were going to do something? The Democrats voted unanimously in 2017 to force Trump to join every President and presidential candidate since Richard Nixon and release his taxes. Of course, the Democrats knew that the GOP representatives would block that request in 2017.
It's kind of like when the Republicans had majorities in the House and Senate and Trump in the White House and the wall across the southern border wasn't funded. It could have been. It wasn't. They could have passed abortion laws. They didn't.
Suddenly the Democrats take over the House and the wall becomes a national emergency. Of course, the legal challenges will be ongoing when Barron Trump becomes President.
Are you not seeing the game? It's not about getting anything done beyond winning and holding office. It's a lucrative pursuit.
As Robert Deniro's character Conrad Brean said in his "Wag the Dog" movie, "You can't have a war without an enemy. Well, you could have one, but it would be a very dull war." Both sides need the other so they have an enemy to fight.
That was the point of my "2019 won't be a good year for anyone" column. The Democrats winning the House isn't really changing anything so far. It could. But somehow, I bet they find a way to drum up a lot more issues that look good on 2020 campaign posters than actually doing anything to or for anyone.
Trump will be the butt of more jokes on Saturday Night Live and investigations in Congress and elsewhere. Low-level people will take a fall and Trump will keep tweeting.
The 2020 Presidential campaign is already underway and about half of the Democrats in Congress are hoping for a promotion. They aren't focused on legislation or oversight.
The campaign is where the money is. Even if you lose, the book deals make great consolation prizes.
The problem isn't one side or the other. Both parties are equally disappointing.