Anyway you look at it, Michael Harris writes, Donald Trump is a fascist. You can't pussyfoot your way around that conclusion:
I use the word fascist advisedly. If we are to square up to the facts, what other way is there to describe Trump? Mussolini, whom Trump unabashedly quoted during the presidential election campaign, said that “fascism should rightly be called corporatism, as it is the merger of corporate and government power.”
Could there be a better description of the Trump cabinet than that? A collection of billionaires representing the corporate elite in the United States, who now also control the levers of political power – often without relinquishing their business conflicts?
Trump refuses to recognize the independence of the other branches of the American government:
Someone has apparently forgotten to tell the president that under the system of checks and balances in U.S. governance, the Senate is “co-equal” with the executive branch. But then fascists don’t lose much sleep violating the constitution.
Nor did Trump hesitate to violate the independence of the Department of Justice. The president lambasted his own attorney general for not undertaking criminal investigations into government leaks and the alleged crimes of Hillary Clinton. It is not the president’s job to direct criminal prosecutions.
And it is certainly not Trump’s job to tell Special Counsel Robert Mueller what he may or may not investigate when it comes to the Trump campaign/Russia connection. There is an old saying in law: you can’t be judge in your own cause, something fascists specialize in.
Trump's ignorance of the American Constitution -- which he is supposed to "protect and defend" -- is appalling. But his drive for absolute control makes him truly dangerous. And those who have enabled him, bear as much responsibility for the tragedy which has befallen the United States as he does:
Remember what Rick Perry said when he was running against Donald Trump for the Republican Party presidential nomination?
“Donald Trump’s candidacy is a cancer on conservatism, and it must be clearly diagnosed, excised and discarded.”
A year and a half later, Perry accepted the job as Trump’s energy secretary. Power corrupts.
Macaulay was right. Absolute power corrupts absolutely.