In 30 Years, Will The U.S. Be More Liberal Or More Conservative? A Scholar Answers

via Quora site, user John Weiss

The question:

In 30 years, do you see a more liberal America or a more conservative America?

The best answer, via Quora site user John Weiss:

Neither. There’s about an 80% likelihood of a more Progressive future, and 20% chance for widespread violence and blood. Hear me out.


First, i believe you’re misusing the terms liberal and conservative. I think you use liberal to mean “gay rights, science, education, arts, government aid programs.” I think you use conservative to mean “militaristic, small government, pro-business.” Am i close?

Because that dichotomy never existed (it was partly propaganda), and to the extent it actually exists, it will fade away because it’s anachronistic.

Politicians in America today who call themselves “Liberal” are beholden to corporate and private interests, have supported far too many military campaigns for decades, have moved far to the Right compared with Liberals of a few decades ago, and have failed to stand up to the Right Wing. “Corporate hawks” doesn’t match the definition of “Liberal” that i think you mean. “Liberal” is a very unclear word to use.

“Conservative” is too variously-defined to know which one you mean. One definition is respect for tradition, authority, and religious values. Another is rejection of authority. Another is pro-personal freedoms. Another is pro-big-government. Another is pro-small-government. “Conservative” is a very unclear word to use.

Survival of the Government

Due to climate and political crisis, our current government may not survive. The only way our government can survive is if it addresses those fundamental crises: climate and political. If our government ultimately fails to protect our survival as a species, the government will go.

It’s all too apparent by now that a government bought and sold by the fossil fuel industry, palm oil, and all the other industries vested in carbon and methane emissions, isn’t going to take correction action against those industries. We CANNOT ensure our survival as a species unless we get private money out of government.

Addressing all our dire problems, from climate to jobs to health care to education to gun violence, requires:

  • getting private money out of government,
  • embracing science,
  • placing the Common Good at the center of government,
  • probably at least one Constitutional Amendment,
  • and making government of, by, and for The People.


That’s the Progressive agenda. Our government’s survival requires Progressivism, because our survival as a species requires Progressivism.

If the Government doesn’t go Progressive, it will die. Given the choice between keeping a particular government or surviving as a species, humans will choose surviving as a species over keeping a particular government. I don’t have any controlled studies to back that up. No doubt there’s plenty of research proving people will vote for their own destruction. But i believe, with eyes fully open, people will defend their fundamental survival.

So, we’ll only save our government if Progressivism goes mainstream. Consider:

  • Bernie Sanders in 2016 pulled record-breaking crowds, broke fundraising records, and nearly won the Democratic primary, all without getting corporate dollars or media coverage.
  • Sanders remains one of, if not the most popular politician in America today. That does not indicate Bernie Sanders has such an awesome personality. It indicates enthusiasm for his politics, and his integrity.
  • Both 2016 major-party candidates are utterly despised by vast numbers of Americans (often by the same people).

The Parties

Both parties are on-notice, and they know it. Notice the “Independents” curve in this chart:

Their days are numbered. Both parties have enemies from both directions, internally and externally. Nobody likes ‘em. Their ranks have been shrinking for years. So, if your question is about today’s major parties, the answer is neither.

Our government’s survival requires Progressivism. Will we do it? I predict both parties will move toward Progressivism in 2020 (in different ways, which is fine). Will we see party reform? We’ve seen some in the Democrat party. Will they reform enough? We’ll know when we see what kinds of candidates we get in 2020.

Guess what: our government can function just fine without these parties. They are not part of our government! So, if the parties dissolve, our government will go on.

Will we see politics open up to more parties? I don’t know.

I predict 75% chance that American politics will reform itself sufficiently, rather than go out of business.

Disintegration of the System

But what if our government does not survive? What if the Democrats and Republicans take down the whole gov’t with them?

Then there’s a 75% chance for rampant violence and blood, 25% chance for peaceful renewal. Here’s why. We have the following options:

  • violence and blood-drenched struggles for street power and political power.
  • violence and blood-drenched Rightist dictatorship.
  • violence and blood-drenched Leftist dictatorship.
  • peaceful co-existence, and people across the land joining hands and resources to build a new and better world. Again, that’s the Progressive vision.

So, if the gov goes down, which one will we get? I think it depends on why the gov goes down, but not I’m expert enough to say.

Consider: We’re going to have climate crisis no matter what. So, we can have climate crisis with violence and blood, or climate crisis without violence and blood.

Regular Americans

This can all have a comparatively happy ending, if Americans across the country become active, conscious citizens— in all their activities, far beyond just voting.

If Americans don’t become active, conscious citizens, then any of the bad scenarios are far more likely.

I believe most Americans would vote thumbs-down on widespread violence and blood if they have all the info. Most will step up and become active, conscious citizens, if they know what to do, and if they clearly understand the nightmare that can result from their inaction.

What will happen? It comes down to informing people, and creating solutions that people can adopt. We can all do our part to build momentum.


  • 75% chance to get a sufficiently Progressive government by 2020, 25% the system will come crashing down.
  • If it goes down, then 25% chance of relative peace and harmony, and 75% chance of widespread violence and blood.
  • Total: 80% likelihood of a more Progressive future, and 20% chance for widespread violence.

Anyone, feel free to check my math and assumptions.

via Quora site, user John Weiss