Robert Lobell: Is Trump a fascist? The evidence is building
Hitler is the classic fascist, but what about Trump? When comparing Trump’s conduct to the conduct of historical dictators, evidence of Trump’s fascism comes into clearer focus (DailyKos):
Fascist regimes emphasize the values of “fatherland” patriotism, inferring that those who don’t put country first are disloyal traitors.
Trump: “Make America Great Again.”
Disdain for human rights: Fascists typically favor police state oppression, while sacrificing the civil rights and liberties of its citizens. Non-violent assemblies to petition for a redress of grievances are discouraged.
Trump: “I’m your law and order president;” “If I tell the generals to do it (commit crimes), they will do it.”
Extensive use of patriotic fervor (large rallies), political mottoes (“drain the swamp”) and scapegoating (“Chinese virus”) as a means to glorify itself and to deride its political opponents.
Trump: Muslim bans; slander of immigrants; “crooked Hilary; lock her up.”
Fascist governments are invariably misogynist (male dominated). Abortions and homosexuality are vilified, and the state serves as the ultimate guardian of patriarchial family values.
Trump: “Women who’ve had — and doctors who’ve performed — abortions should be punished.”
Fascists typically attempt to control the media: legitimate news is labelled as fake, and fake news portrayed as legit. Government censorship is routine, paricularly during war.
Trump: “The media is the enemy of the people.”
Fascists routinely use fear and religion in order to manipulate and motivate public opinion. Trump: “They (Mexicans) are bringing in drugs and crime; they’re rapists.” “Christianity is under siege.”
Big businesses (corporations) often bankroll fascists’ campaigns for political office, creating a mutually beneficial relationship. Trump: routinely appoints allies to head agencies who are hostile to the constitutional purpose of those agencies (Trump’s A.G. Bill Barr).
In fascist governments, labor unions are severely suppressed, if not entirely banned.
Trump: “Having a low minimum wage isn’t a bad thing.”
Fraudulent elections: Efforts to make voting more difficult are pervasive, especially for racial and ethnic minorities. Trump: appoints a crony in order to eviscerate the U.S. Postal Service. Voter rolls are selectively purged.
Rampant corruption: Fascists use government authority to protect their collaborators from accountability. Trump family members, and numerous cronies, occupy many positions in Trump’s administration (nepotism). Fascists do not see this as a conflict of interest. Fascists portray themselves as saviors.
Trump: “Only I can fix the system.”
Is Trump a fascist? If not, he clearly has the ambition to be one.
Robert Lobell lives in Nevada City.
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