Reprinted with permission from AlterNet.
President Donald Trump’s persistent attacks on the media and independent sources of information often seem like desperate efforts to fend off criticism or haphazardly cover up yet another of his administration’s countless scandals. But some observers see his attacks on the truth in a much more sinister light.
In his latest attacks on internet and social media companies, including Google, Facebook, and Twitter, historian Ruth Ben-Ghiat of New York University observed to the Washington Post that this new salvo builds upon his now routine insults of the press.
“When Donald Trump is starting to raise the specter of trying to fiddle with search engines and saying that they are rigged — this raises alarm bells in me as a scholar of authoritarianism,” she said.…