Briefly, and hopefully, solely for this year, my political predictions.
It's gonna suck.
In Illinois, Bruce Rauner will take the governorship. Bruce Rauner will suck as governor.
Illinois, known for a corrupt state government, is going to move down the path of a different kind of corruption. Rauner, a vulture capitalist like Romney, who thinks that term limits are a good idea (term limits are anti-democracy and basically mean that you, the voter, are too fucking stupid to know when to get rid of someone), has proven himself to be every bit the careerist politician that he denounces. He claims that, as a rich guy, he will incorruptible and can stand up to special interests. Funny how that claim never manages to pan out in real life. Why, even the Founding Fathers couldn't live up to that claim.
When Rauner is elected, you will see the same crowd enriching themselves off the public dole. True, new characters will be introduced as the state sells off much of its assets to Rauner's cronies. (And not just Rauner's cronies. In politics, everyone gets paid, especially the opposition). Payments will made for privatization of state services, which will entail shuttering public institutions in favor of services provided by Rauner cronies, to the tune of shoddier products, shittier services, and in smaller dollops. There is no reason to think that the neoliberal trend started under Reagan/Thatcher will reverse itself before another generation is wasted. My prediction is that Illinois will become a failed state like Somalia... or Kansas. Still, the .01% will do very well from this failure.
Likewise, at the federal level, the Senate will go Republican. This presents an interesting problem for the GOP. Formerly, their strategy was to obstruct, or at the least, sit on the sidelines and piss and moan. This strategy worked well enough so long as they were not in power. Well, with a gerrymandered forever lock on the House, and then a majority in the Senate, Republicans will be forced to govern.
They realize they have a problem. I know that they don't have a solution. As such, Obama will enjoy an easy two years of lame duck presidency, happily vetoing whatever dip-shittery the GOP Congress spastically squirts his way. The GOP seems quite determined to turn the 2012 presidential clown car into a 2014 congressional clown frat house.
Great for entertainment purposes, not so great for the average American citizen (especially those who fall below the predatory economic extraction borderline into the Harvest Zone - that area where, if you are the wrong color, or of the wrong birthplace, or don't earn enough, you will be harvested by the appropriate private and corporate-owned-public instruments).
So, if you thought life wasn't shitty enough, get ready to not be disappointed!