Ok, Republicans. You win.

The new leader and face of your party, noted locker-room-talker and owner of several bankrupt businesses Donald Trump, will take the oath of office 36 years to the day after your hero, Ronald Reagan, intoned the famous words, “Government is not the solution to our problem. Government is the problem.”

Well, guess what? It’s your problem now.

You’ve spent the past six years making Reagan’s view into an absurdist self-fulfilling prophecy by ensuring, with your cynical obstructionism, that the federal government could accomplish nothing. In so doing, you inspired many people to vote for your “outsider” candidate, and you also certainly inspired many others just to give up on the system altogether.

You’ve also spent the last four years making sure it’s difficult to vote, especially for poor people and people of color.

Well, congrats. It worked. Within a few months, you will run the show. Completely, top to bottom. You’ll have the presidency and both houses of the federal legislature, and shortly thereafter will have five seats on the Supreme Court. You will have 39 of the 50 governors, control of both houses in 30 of the 49 bicameral state legislatures, and you control the entire government – governor and legislature – in 23 states.

Wherever this country is headed in the next four years, you’re at the wheel.

And the new president could be the closest thing to a dictator we’ve ever had.

You can cut taxes and give “trickle down economics” another try, even though it’s never worked before.

You can make sure even fewer people who don’t look like you can vote next time around.

You can repeal Obamacare. You can effectively rescind Roe v Wade, forcing women to travel hundreds of miles for health care. You can deport as many undocumented immigrants as you want. (Actually, you probably can’t, just by sheer logistics … but you can sure try, and you can make their lives pretty miserable while they’re here.) You can build a physical wall around our country and you can build a metaphorical wall around our economy. You can teach creationism in schools, torture terror suspects, empower police to stop and frisk innocent people without probable cause, muffle the press, bomb whomever you want. You can force children to recite loyalty oaths and allow their teachers to carry guns. Your leader, the former USFL team owner and our new president, can violate, weaken, or dismantle at least six of the ten amendments that make up the Bill of Rights, as he has promised to do.

You can legislate from fear, and you’ll have very little resistance, because both the legislatures and executives at the federal and state levels can now turn their checks and balances into rubber stamps. And you can now make the federal judiciary and Supreme Court into a rubber stamp as well.

And, perhaps most important, in five years you can redraw enough electoral maps to ensure yourselves a permanent — or at least very long-term — majority.

In fact … you kind of have to do at least some of those things. You’ve ginned up a pretty rabid base of support over the last year and a half. Their attention span is short. They don’t trust government. But guess what? You’re the government now. Which means, really, deep down, they don’t trust you. Or, at least, they won’t for long. They’re not going to have a lot of patience if you don’t do what you promised to do.

In short, if you don’t oppress women, urge gays to get back into the closet, put black and brown people back in their place, keep Muslims marginalized, and cripple the federal and state budgets by slashings taxes, you won’t be in charge for very long.

Maybe that’ll all work out. Maybe the economy won’t crash this time, even though it has every time so-called “supply-side economics” and isolationism have been attempted. Maybe good guys with guns will keep us all safe from terrorists. Maybe people without health insurance just won’t get sick. Maybe the gaps in pay, achievement and incarceration will just close themselves.

Forgive me, but I’m skeptical.

It’s more likely that it’ll all work out fine … for affluent white men, and very few others.

Several smart and sincere people have voiced a desire to give Donald Trump a fair chance.

I agree. He named the perfectly capable and sane Reince Preibus as his new chief of staff, but then also named former Breitbart News chairman and current white nationalist Steve Bannon as a senior adviser. In his first major interview after winning the election, on 60 Minutes, Trump seemed willing to leave marriage equality alone and to leave some parts of Obamacare intact, but also pledged to deport an awful lot of people and continue to restrict women’s reproductive rights.

So the little bit we have to go on so far is inconsistent at best. Still, Trump should be given a chance. But I would go beyond that. The entire power structure of this great nation is now under the control of the GOP, and I am willing to give them a chance. I am at least partly sincere in this, though my willingness also comes at least partly from the fact that we have little choice but to accept the way things are. But even so, I can’t help but say the people have spoken.

Republicans, you broke the government, then convinced a large number of people that only you could fix it. Now you have to do it. You have to fix it. For everyone. You go ahead and get to work. Do what you’re going to do and see how it goes.

Just never forget, we’ll be watching.

Good luck and God bless.