Tag: fascism
Donald Trump

Trump Camp Suddenly Realizes 'Dictator' Platform Is A Political Fail (VIDEO)

As mainstream reporters hone in on Donald Trump's fascist fantasies for a second term, his campaign and allies are discovering that a dictatorship platform might not be a winning message next year.

The Trump campaign itself is responsible for this message they are beginning to see as problematic. As Trump kicked off his 2024 bid, the signature line he pushed at every rally was, "I am your retribution," stoking the image of a mighty strongman who would mete out justice on his own terms

The journey from that to Trump's admission this week of being a dictator "on day one" of a second term has been filled with rhetoric plucked out of the playbook of the Nazis and other fascist regimes. But Trump's cheeky “dictator” dodge, implying that he wouldn't be a dictator "except for on day one" has drawn renewed scrutiny from reporters and opposing candidates alike.

The Biden campaign's rapid response X (formerly Twitter) account has been feasting on the topic, tweeting out clips like this one from Axios co-founder and CEO Jim VandeHei.

Trump's wife, Melania, VandeHei says, is pushing for former Fox News host Tucker Carlson to be Trump's vice president. Stephen Miller, architect of Trump's Muslim ban, could be attorney general and has talked about implementing "detainment camps" and "mass deportation[s]." And Kash Patel, who has talked about using the "machinery of government" to target Trump's political enemies, could end up as CIA director, for instance, says VandeHei.

The Trump campaign and some of its allies are starting to pick up on the fact that the broad and pervasive push toward an authoritarian-style government might not be the best campaign theme. While "Fascism for All" has a ring to it, it's likely not a winner in a country where people can still cast meaningful votes for their leadership. The Washington Post writes:

[I]n recent days, the former president and his allies have been pushing back more forcefully on comments from historians, policy experts and political opponents that a second Trump term would be more extreme and autocratic than his first. Two Trump advisers, who like others spoke on the condition of anonymity to talk more candidly, said recent stories about his plans for a second term are not viewed as helpful for the general election.

Fox News' media reporter Howard Kurtz, for instance, suggested the coverage was a smear campaign, saying, "It's not that [Trump] shouldn't be held accountable for his own rhetoric and social-media posts, but I have never seen anything like this in my professional lifetime."

Reprinted with permission from Daily Kos.

Ron DeSantis

DeSantis 'Reboot' Launches With A Sunburst Of Neo-Fascism

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’ presidential campaign reboot has started with a bang.

Team DeSantis plans to "let Ron be Ron," so they can "expose" voters to more DeSantis (their wording, not mine).

Great. Let the exposing begin—this time with double the fascism! First, The New York Times revealed Sunday that the weirdly homoerotic anti-LGBTQ+ video tweeted out earlier this month by the DeSantis campaign was actually made in-house by a DeSantis aide. The campaign then enlisted an outside supporter (who later deleted the original tweet) to send it out on Twitter.

Also Sunday, a DeSantis staffer retweeted an anti-Trump, pro-DeSantis video that literally morphed the Florida State flag into a Nazi emblem with DeSantis' head superimposed on it.

The new Nazi video is strangely reminiscent of the now infamous anti-LGBTQ+ ad.

Thematically, the video similarly features Trump's political failures on the right—even using some of the same images of Trump holding up a Pride flag. In terms of pacing, the video also utilizes quick cuts, interspersing images of DeSantis into a series of bizarre sequences, just like the anti-LGBTQ+ video did. Yet in the final eight seconds, the ad nearly grinds to a halt as the center seal of Florida's state flag transforms into a "sunwheel"—an ancient European symbol appropriated by the Nazis and now embraced by white supremacists—while troops march toward the Nazi symbol centered on the screen. DeSantis appears on the wheel for several seconds before fading away.

Drink that in for a second: Troops marching toward the sun, depicted as Nazi memorabilia with DeSantis' mug in the middle of it all. It's a lot to consider.

The final similarity is the video has now been pulled down from the original account after it was retweeted by a member of Team DeSantis.

In mid-July, I documented the GOP donor migration away from DeSantis, starting with a closing of wallets in the spring and escalating to sheer panic among the Republican donor class as they tried to locate a legitimate Trump alternative amid the DeSantis collapse. Originally, the donors began questioning his appeal in a general election; then they began questioning his ability to even get the job done in the primary.

Many of those donors started eyeing Sen. Tim Scott, who just made a $40 million ad buy in Iowa, New Hampshire, and his home state of South Carolina.

What is emerging is a worst-case scenario for both DeSantis and anti-Trump Republicans: DeSantis failed to consolidate the anti-Trump and alternative-curious conservatives into a formidable coalition, giving life to several other 2024 hopefuls who are all but ensuring Trump’s nomination.

And who can blame them? DeSantis has proven to be a spectacularly bad candidate. In Iowa, for instance, Scott has broken into double-digit support at 11%, trailing DeSantis by just a handful of points, according to the latest Fox Business poll. Trump led the survey at 46%.

In South Carolina, the same outfit put former U.N. Ambassador and Palmetto State Gov. Nikki Haley one point ahead of DeSantis, 14% to 13% with Scott breathing down his neck at 10%. Trump led the poll at 48%.

And in New Hampshire, DeSantis is maxing out at roughly 15% or below in three of the four July polls in the FiveThirtyEight aggregate, while Trump is either near or above 40% in each poll.

If the theoretical main challenger to Trump doesn’t win any one of the first several states in the GOP’s winner-takes-all primary, when exactly does he plan to start challenging the frontrunner?

Nationally, Civiqs tracking tells the same story of DeSantis' flailing campaign. Another week, another 1-point drop to 33% favorable, 56% unfavorable among registered voters. What's fascinating is that DeSantis isn't just sagging with independents (32% - 55%), he's also losing altitude with Republican voters. Since early July, DeSantis' favorability rate among Republicans has dropped from 74% to 70%. Solid.

The DeSantis campaign was correct in its assertion that without a shakeup, it was headed for disaster. But instead of recalibrating to address donor fears that DeSantis had tacked so far right he wouldn't be competitive in a general election, they doubled down and went full fascist.

In the two months since DeSantis announced his presidential bid, he's gone from being 'Trump without the baggage' to 'Not Trump, with the baggage' to 'Not Trump, double the baggage.' It's an impressive evolution from a 2024 candidacy full of hope to simply nope.

Only a campaign demonstrating that type of aptitude could devise a shakeup that landed on, "Ya know what the voters really need? More Ron."

Reprinted with permission from Daily Kos.

Hitler Or Trump? 55 Chances To Test Your Knowledge Of The Fuhrer And The Furor

Hitler Or Trump? 55 Chances To Test Your Knowledge Of The Fuhrer And The Furor

Each of these statements applies to Donald Trump or Adolf Hitler -- or both. The correct answers may be found at the end.

1.His father was a cruel authoritarian.

2.His father was arrested participating in a violent rally of a racist political organization.

3.His father was born illegitimate, had an illegitimate daughter, divorced, married the housemaid, who died, and married his impregnated teenaged cousin.

4.His grandfather ran a whorehouse.

5.His father told him, “Be a killer.”

6.Threw rocks at a baby in a playpen.

7.Adored his mother, sobbed when he learned she was ill and was devastated at her death.

8.He had to be reminded by his siblings to visit his dying mother in the hospital.

9.Sexually obsessed with his niece, he controlled every aspect of her life, forced her to end her affair with his chauffeur, until she committed suicide.

10.Stole the inheritance of his brother, cut off his disabled nephew’s medical insurance and sued by his niece for fraud.

11.Doted on his pet dog.

12.Never had a pet.

13.Separate bedroom from his wife.

14.His wife said, “I want to be a beautiful corpse.”

15.His wife said, “I’m not only a beauty, I’m smart.

16.A vegetarian, carefully watched his diet.

17.Burnt steak with ketchup his favorite dish.

18.Twice decorated for military bravery.

19.Received a medical deferment from military service for bone spurs in his feet as a result of a letter written by a doctor as a favor to his father.

20.Said about Jews, “The only kind of people I want counting my money are short guys that wear yarmulkes every day. Those are the kind of people I want counting my money. No one else.”

21.Described Nazis who chanted, “Jews will not replace us,” as “fine people.”

22.Wrote his own book.

23.Had a ghostwriter for his book.

24.Had a library of 16,000 books that included Shakespeare, Cervantes and Ibsen.

25.Had a copy of Hitler’s collected speeches by his bed and said, “He did a lot of good things.”

26.Woody Guthrie wrote a song about him entitled “Tear the Fascists Down.”

27.Woody Guthrie wrote a song about his father with lyrics that he “knows just how much racial hate/ He stirred up in that bloodpot of human hearts.”

28.Thought of himself as a builder and architect.

29.Thought of himself as a builder and destroyed historic architecture.

30.Claimed internal enemies stabbed the country in the back.

31.Never won a majority of the votes in an election

32.Betrayed by his generals.

33.Admired the Russian dictator’s ruthlessness and made a deal with him.

34.Exclaimed “What a guy!” after the Russian dictator purged his former allies.

35.Praised the Russian dictator as “a genius” after he invaded a neighboring country.

36.Called journalists “the lying press” and “the enemy of the people.”

37.Promoted the technique of “The Big Lie.”

38.Promised to make his country “great again.”

39.Promoted ethnic purity and warned against contamination.

40.His media adviser relied on the mass propaganda techniques of filmmaker Leni Riefenstahl.

41.Appeared in “The Triumph of the Will.”

42.Appeared in “Home Alone 2.”

43.Surrounded himself with an inner circle of misfits and criminals.

44.A germophobe.

45.Endorsed quack medicine.

46.Appointed a quack as his personal physician.

47.Sent a bodyguard to raid his doctor’s office to steal his medical files and ignored warnings about infection from a deadly disease.

48.His lawyer was known as “The Butcher of Poland.”

49.His lawyer boasted, “My scare value is high.”

50.One of his closest associates was gay and he had him murdered.

51.One of his closest associates was gay and he fired him when he was dying of AIDS.

52.Deployed private militias against a liberal democracy.

53.Staged a coup to overthrow an elected government.

54.Tried, convicted and imprisoned after a failed coup.

55.Admired by convicted Watergate burglar G. Gordon Liddy.

Answers: 1. Both; 2. Trump; 3. Hitler; 4. Trump; 5. Trump. 6. Trump; 7. Hitler; 8. Trump; 9. Hitler; 10. Trump; 11. Hitler; 12. Trump; 13. Both; 14. Hitler; 15. Trump; 16. Hitler; 17. Trump; 18. Hitler; 19. Trump; 20. Trump; 21. Trump; 22. Hitler; 23. Trump; 24. Hitler; 25. Hitler; 26. Trump; 28. Hitler; 29. Trump; 30. Both; 31. Both; 32. Both; 33. Both; 34. Hitler; 35. Trump; 36. Both; 37. Both; 38. Both; 39. Both; 40. Both; 41. Hitler; 42. Trump; 43. Both; 44. Both; 45. Both; 46. Both; 47. Trump; 48. Hitler; 49. Trump; 50. Hitler; 51. Trump; 52. Both; 53. Both; 54. Hitler; 55. Both

Politico  Puts Lipstick And Glitter On Trump’s ‘Consequential’ Post-Presidency

Politico Puts Lipstick And Glitter On Trump’s ‘Consequential’ Post-Presidency

Politico Magazine published an article Thursday that perfectly embodies the failures of tabloid-style political journalism to address the fundamental dangers facing the country: “145 Things Donald Trump Did in His First Year as the Most Consequential Former President Ever.”

“In ways both absurd and serious, the 45th president refused to let go of the spotlight or his party and redefined what it means to be a former leader of the free world,” the article sub-headline states, sitting above a colorful image containing a photo of a smiling Trump and images that have defined his post-presidency, including his second impeachment, golf clubs, and a vaccination needle.

The problem here is that Trump’s continued presence in American politics is not merely “both absurd and serious” — it is an ongoing threat to the American republic in the wake of both the former president’s attempt to overthrow the 2020 election and his continuing efforts to put his election-denier acolytes in place for 2024.

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“Donald Trump started his time as an utterly unprecedented former president before he was even technically a former president,” the article says, referring to Trump refusing to attend President Joe Biden’s inauguration and instead holding a small rally with his own supporters.

But, according to the article, even the events of January 2021 were part of Trump not following the usual rules, as it declares that a man who “instigated a deadly insurrection” had also “obliterated the long-agreed-upon parameters of the post-presidency just as he did with the presidency itself.”

This framing culminates in a paragraph that Trump himself (or his devoted fans at One America News Network) might have enjoyed, extolling his continued political appeal and possible comeback in 2024 — even elevating his importance on “the body politic and the national discourse” above the sitting President Biden:

Trump, so unabashedly unlike any other former president, simply has refused to let people not have to think about him, and what he’s doing, and what he’s saying, and what it might mean. To reengage with the reams of news coverage of Trump from the course of the last 12 months, to read and reread his statements in chronological order, is to get a visceral, dizzying reminder of the persistence, of the manic relentlessness with which he has done this and is doing it. Biden, the man who beat him, has ushered through Congress trillions of dollars of legislation, and might manage to persuade lawmakers to spend trillions more, no small record of accomplishment in spite of setbacks and stalemates in a historically challenging time. And yet there remains a sense that it is not the current but the former (and the next?) occupant of the Oval Office who is somehow the one who is imposing his will, still, on the body politic and the national discourse.

The article's greatest failure is its tone and the way it treats the 145 facts it has rounded up. For example, the author openly declares many times in the list that Trump has lied about the election, sought to purge any internal Republican opposition headed into 2024, and built up a network of political endorsements based on “his monomaniacal insistence that he won an election that he lost.”

But this is presented in a colorful spread of horse-race coverage, rather than a clarion call that America now faces a threat from a modern fascist movement. In addition, the pseudo-handwritten font used for blockquotes of actual Trump statements seems less than appropriate, making him appear almost friendly and casual.

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The problem with celebrity-style political journalism is that Trump is not just some celebrity, a Kardashian who is famous just for being famous. He is the leader of an authoritarian political movement against American democracy, and any article about his continued presence in public life should treat the issue with the seriousness it deserves.

Reprinted with permission from Media Matters