For several weeks Donald Trump has toyed with the idea of extending his presidency beyond the constitutionally limited two terms. Along with all of the other insults to America’s most treasured principles, Trump is openly proposing to appoint himself President-for-Life, in the mold of his heroes Vladimir Putin, Xi Jinping, and Kim Jong Un.
More recently Trump has reinforced these aspirations of tyranny by refusing to commit to a peaceful transfer of power if he loses the election this November (which he knows is the most likely scenario). He is even freely discussing on his State TV network and Ministry of Disinformation (aka Fox News) his plans to arrange for the Supreme Court to effectively declare him President regardless of the outcome of the election.
Most Americans find this sort of authoritarian demagoguery repulsive, treasonous, and frightening. However, Trump himself thinks it is hysterical. The Daily Beast’s White House reporter, Asawin Suebsaeng, reveals that…
“According to two people familiar with the matter, hours after the president stepped away from the cameras, Trump continued following the fallout in the press, including on cable news, and began privately remarking how amusing it was that his answer was making media and liberal heads explode, and also predictably dominating TV coverage.”
“’He seemed to get a real kick out of it,’ one of the sources said, adding that the president seemed to relish making the press, in Trump’s words, ‘go crazy’ over his non-commitment to democratic norms and procedure. ‘[The president] wasn’t going to be playing by their rules on this just to make them feel comfortable.’”
So emulating Hitler and Mussolini is just a big joke to Trump. And fomenting chaos among the public and the press is just his way of playing by a different set rules that was employed by the fascists who preceded him. However, concern over this this isn’t just being raised by nervous liberals. Former assistant secretary at the Department of Homeland Security, Elizabeth Neumann (who has since endorsed Joe Biden), said that “I continue to be concerned that the president’s reckless rhetoric will incite violence from fringe extremists.” In fact, it already has.
Trump’s Republican confederates don’t appear to be worried about this traitorous talk. None have spoken out against it in any substantive manner. Many of them actually waive it off with the excuse that Trump should be taken – as proposed by billionaire Trump supporter Peter Thiel – seriously, but not literally. That’s difficult to do when Trump himself insists that he means what he’s saying. In a recent Trump rally and Coronavirus Super Spreader event, he said that…
“They say ‘He doesn’t wanna turn over [garbled] of course I do. But it’s gotta be a fair election. That’s another scam. They don’t mention anything about ballots […] We’re gonna win. We’re not gonna lose this, except if they cheat. That’s the way I look at it.”
Two clips in which the President says he would hand over power if he lost a free and fair election but later says the only way he would lose the election is because of cheating pic.twitter.com/DqDvXf7Sol
— Acyn Torabi (@Acyn) September 26, 2020
To be clear, Trump is only conceding that he will accept the result of the election if he wins. He is appointing himself the arbiter of whether or not it is fair. And by asserting that the only way he could lose is if Democrats cheat, he is declaring in advance that a win by Joe Biden is inherently illegitimate. Hence, it isn’t fair and he isn’t obliged to accept the outcome.
That’s a closed loop of illogic that is akin to a “heads I win, tails you lose” proposition. It is a tactic used by power mad autocrats. And it reveals Trump’s desperation, fear, and certainty of his fate as a loser who will have to face the consequences of his criminal activities.
How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.