Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Trump, Fascism, and The Rise of Hate

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Last Week I quoted George Orwell from his classic essay "Politics and The English Language," decrying the general and sloppy way he word fascist is dished out to everyone we don't like with no regard to the true meaning of the word. I use the term with precision and say Bannon, and by his influence Trump, are fascists. Webster's defines the term:

  1. often capitalized :  a political philosophy, movement, or regime (as that of the Fascisti) that exalts nation and often race above the individual and that stands for a centralized autocratic government headed by a dictatorial leader, severe economic and social regimentation, and forcible suppression of opposition
  2. 2:  a tendency toward or actual exercise of strong autocratic or dictatorial control fascism and brutality — J. W. Aldridge (Websters on line
Blow I have several articles that back Bannons belief in autocratic elevates, He believes imn genetic  (therefore racial) superiority and that only property holders should vote. Clearly he meets the nationalistic criterion since he calls himself an economic nationalist and white nationalist.

If we look at the actual practice of real fascists we see than the same concerns that motivate them also  motivate Bannon,

Trump's Challenge to Democracy


an article on the risks of democratic erosion by Jeff Colgan, a political scientist at Brown University, who warned, “In light of Donald Trump’s illiberal tendencies, we have to take seriously the (unlikely) possibility that democracy and rule of law could weaken in the United States.” To help guard against this possibility, Colgan offered ten “warning signs of democratic breakdown.” They included attacks and restrictions on the press, vilification of foreigners and minorities, the intimidation of legislators, and the use of crises to justify emergency security measures. 
Colgan isn’t the only one worried. If my Twitter and Facebook feeds are anything to go by, many Americans and non-Americans are convinced that Trump’s victory heralds the imposition of Putinesque authoritarianism, and maybe even full-blown fascism. Such concerns are understandable. During the Presidential campaign, Trump casually incited violence; promised to “lock up” his Democratic opponent; refused to release his tax returns; gave a dystopian Convention speech in which he promised to restore “order”; proposed banning Muslims from entering the country and reinstituting the use of torture on terrorism suspects; and vilified his opponents and critics. And what of today? Trump is surrounding himself with sycophants, ranting on Twitter about how he really won the popular vote (he did not), and boasting that the federal conflict-of-interest laws don’t apply to him.
(read the whole article)

Bannon is the brains behind Trump Bannon is a fascistand believers only property holders should be allowed to vote.

Steve Bannon Once Suggested Only property owners should vote

When America was born, the right to vote largely extended only to white men who owned property. In the early 1800s, that expanded outward slightly to include white men regardless of property ownership. In the wake of the Civil War, it expanded outward again to include nonwhite men (though this didn’t mean they could immediately vote). About a century ago, another expansion: Women were given the right to vote and, setting aside efforts to artificially restrict voting, every American citizen had suffrage. Done and done.
In its Monday editions, the New York Times reported on a conversation in which Stephen K. Bannon, named as a senior strategist by President-elect Donald Trump, had allegedly floated the idea of reverting the right to vote back to the 18th century. The Times quotes Julia Jones, a former colleague of Bannon’s when he worked in the film industry.
Ms. Jones, the film colleague, said that in their years working together, Mr. Bannon occasionally talked about the genetic superiority of some people and once mused about the desirability of limiting the vote to property owners.
“I said, ‘That would exclude a lot of African-Americans,’ ” Ms. Jones recalled. “He said, ‘Maybe that’s not such a bad thing.’ I said, ‘But what about Wendy?’ ” referring to Mr. Bannon’s executive assistant. “He said, ‘She’s different. She’s family.’ ”
This is not something that should be considered a current policy proposal from Bannon (or, for that matter, from Trump). But it raises an interesting question: What would happen if the franchise were extended only to those who own property?

Combative Populist Steve Bannon Found His Man in Trump

In a radio interview last year with Mr. Trump, Mr. Bannon complained, inaccurately, that “two-thirds or three-quarters of the C.E.O.s in Silicon Valley are from South Asia or from Asia.” He has sometimes portrayed a grave threat to civilization not just from violent jihadists but from “Islam.” He once suggested to a colleague that perhaps only property owners should be allowed to vote. In an email to a Breitbart colleague in 2014, he dismissed Republican congressional leaders with an epithet and added, Let the grass roots turn on the hate.”
(read article in link above)

This call to unleash the hate of the grass roots has been headed by the rise of ate groups

Southern Poverty Law Center Says Hate Groups om the Rise

 Washington post

According to the SPLC*, the number of American hate groups has been climbing steadily for most of the past 30 years, but the new arrivals to the SPLC’s list in 2016 were predominantly characterized as white nationalist and anti-Muslim groups.
“By far, the most dramatic change was the enormous leap in anti-Muslim hate groups,” wrote the report’s author, Mark Potok, an SPLC senior fellow. The report says hate groups in the United States nearly tripled, from 34 in 2015 to 101 last year.
Nearly 50 of those new additions are local chapters of ACT for America, an anti-Muslim activist group that claims Michael Flynn, who this week resigned as Trump’s national security adviser, as a board member.
Potok argues that Trump’s rhetoric throughout the campaign — including calls for a ban on immigration from some Muslim-majority countries, proposals for ideological vetting of those seeking entry to the United States, and accusations that American Muslims harbor terrorists — stoked popular fears in the aftermath of terrorist attacks in Europe, California and Florida. Potok wrote that Trump’s rhetoric has helped fuel a spike in anti-Muslim sentiment, a view that is shared by several other civil rights advocacy groups, including the American Civil Liberties Union and the Council on American-Islamic Relations.

*Southern Poverty Law Center

Traditional fascism such as we found in Franco's Spain and the Argentine manifest themselves imn  groups such as "Tradition,Family,Property," Or even Hitler;s talk of blood and soil, show that populist grass roots man of the people image that Trump tried so hard to cultivate, we see the echos of the sacred nature of property in Bannon;'s ideal of only property owns have any real stock in the system, The man of the people is a lie and the real authoritarian strong man rule is based in the elate who can sucker the ignorant and the lynch mob into thinking it was their idea to lynch the enemities of the elite.

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