The Z Man@Takimag -- Way back in the before times, a regular feature of the media was the Kremlinologist, who would be brought in to explain something about the Soviet Union. [...] No doubt the roles are now reversed. The rest of the world is forced to develop experts at analyzing the American regime in order to understand what is going on in Washington and why it is happening. The administrations of Bush, Clinton, Bush, and Obama were like the Brezhnev period of the Soviet Union. The rhetoric changed from one administration to the next, but public policy, especially foreign policy, did not change. Then we get Donald Trump. The logic of the American political class said that a populist firebrand could never win a primary, much less a general election. The system made sure of that after the Perot and Buchanan scares. Trump wins and official Washington has a nervous breakdown trying to expel him from the capital. Eventually they replaced Trump with a dementia patient and the empire no longer makes any sense.