In 1945, America celebrated the end of World War II and what we believed was the death of fascism. In 2017, Donald Trump is showing the signs of becoming a dictator in the style of Mussolini, except he’s extremely insecure about his position and lack of popularity with the American public.
This was on full display when Sean Spicer tried to argue about the size of the inauguration crowd. Trump was obviously so upset about the size of President Obama’s 2009 inauguration and the crowd that showed up for his big day that he ordered staff to provide “alternative facts” – or as the rest of us call them, lies.
Via The Chicago Tribune:
“Photographs of the inaugural proceedings were intentionally framed in a way … to minimize the enormous support that had gathered on the National Mall,” Spicer initially said. False. The comparative photographs were taken from fixed cameras, framed identically, and they showed vastly larger crowds for Obama.
Spicer went on to claim that usage figures from D.C. public transit were greater for Trump’s inauguration than for Obama’s. False. And he claimed that protective grass covering on the mall distorted the effort to estimate the crowd size. Laughably false. (Source)
Trump lives in his own reality. After all these years of running his own country and getting whatever he wanted, whenever he wanted, he has to believe that the same thing will happen as president. He will provide the press with his version of the facts, and they will accept it without question, or lose press access to the White House. That was implied in Kelleyanne Conway’s veiled threat to Chuck Todd on Sunday when he dared to question her “alternative facts” statement.
Every president has had their issues with the press, but Trump’s all-out assault on the media since he first announced his campaign is like nothing we have seen before. He is leveraging the fervor of his supporters to attack anyone who questions his version of the truth, and refusing to give press time to organizations like BuzzFeed or CNN.
Via New Republic:
“Trump’s self-centered decision process is authoritarianism, and it’s anything but irrational. He campaigned in an authoritarian style, with rallies where he riled up large crowds to jeer at the press and protesters. One of the defining tactics of his campaign was disinformation, coupled with accusations of the same against the media. That hasn’t changed now that Trump is president. The administration’s unified anti-press and anti-fact message over the weekend is part of a deliberate, long-term strategy that was hatched many months ago, and is only likely to intensify. The president will wage a rhetorical war against the media, with the intent of delegitimizing one of the few institutions that can hold him accountable, and he will wage it with his most effective weapon: Lies, damned lies, and false statistics.” (Source)
If the media refuses to stand up to Trump, then they will have become enablers to his drive towards dictatorship. We can counter media outlets likes Breitbart by undermining their ad revenue sources, but mainstream sources like NPR, CNN and others have to hold him accountable.
Furthermore, not everyone in the Trump administration is willing to rubber stamp his every request. James Mattis has confirmed America’s commitment to NATO, which is certain to anger both Trump and Putin alike. Whether Mattis remains in this position or not remains to be seen since Trump only wants the most loyal people surrounding him.
Paul Ryan also isn’t willing to go along with Trump, as we see with him denying the claim that Herr Gropenfuhrer Von Thinskin would have won the popular vote if it hadn’t been for voter fraud.
— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) January 24, 2017
Let’s see if the GOP is willing to go along with Trump’s tin pot dictatorship, and if so, for how long? I have no doubt that Pence and Ryan would gladly throw him under the bus if given the chance.