Rising authoritarianism in the White House

BY:John Bachtell| March 9, 2020
Rising authoritarianism in the White House


Lying, corruption, nepotism, paranoia, and gangsterism characterize authoritarian regimes. They are inherently unstable, ridden with factionalism, and purges. Unchecked, they follow a pattern of step-by-step, often gradual consolidation of absolute power referred to as “authoritarianization.”

Jamelle Bouie at New York Times suggests U.S. history holds our own version of authoritarianism: the post-Reconstruction South, characterized by a single ruling party, Jim Crow segregation laws, and violent repression of racial minorities—all behind the veneer of democratic institutions.

Trump’s presidency bears these hallmarks, too. In the wake of his acquittal in the sham U.S. Senate impeachment trial on charges of extortion to rig the 2020 election and obstruction of Congress, Trump is now unbound and believes he is entitled “to do anything he wants.”

The president has already defeated all opposition in the Republican Party. GOP House and Senate members, voting in almost complete lockstep, put fealty to Trump above loyalty to the U.S. Constitution.

Read more here.

Image: Alisdare Hickson, Creative Commons (BY-SA 2.0).


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