In late 2016, prior to the Trump presidency, Harvard University’s Robert and Renée Belfer professor of international relations Stephen M. Walt drafted a 10-point list for analyzing whether a president is a dictator.
We’re not at the halfway point yet in Trump’s first (hopefully only) term, and he has hit seven of the ten. Even in an inherently somewhat subjective test, that’s a pretty hard number, hard to swallow, harder to dispute.
I’ll warn you now, you will find this very difficult reading, because the realization that we’re talking here, our country, and not some tropical island halfway across the globe is difficult to accept, were it not so obvious. Raw Story does a great run-down of the checked boxes.
As for those Trump has yet to check, you’ll need to link to the original article above, and note that Trump still has 2.5 years left on his first term to loot the treasury (already doing in some ways).
Trump Systematically Attempts to Intimidate the Media
“Katy!” “Fake News!” “The Failing New York Times,” “the most dishonest people.” He even created dangerous situations by inciting hatred of the media who covered his campaign events, turning the crowd on a handful of people reporting the event.
Trump Politicizes Domestic Security Agencies
The FBI and Comey was all-in for Cooked Hillary. Look at his treatment of Jeff Sessions. Had Sessions told him he would recuse himself, he wouldn’t have picked him.
Trump Used State Power to Punish an Opponent
According to Rawstory, Trump has – on more than 20 occasions, gone after corporations that ran afoul of him, listing Amazon as just one, but he also continue to push for an investigation into Obama/Hillary and the FISA “issue” which doesn’t exist as an issue except as a diversion.
Trump Regularly Fearmongers
MS-13 is coming to kill you, and you know it, unless Trump stops them.
Trump Stacked the Supreme Court
Believe it or not, there once was a time where a candidate who had lost the popular vote by 3 million people would nominate the same centrist jurist who the prior president nominated, as a sign of lack of what they used to call “mandates.” (quaint term). Instead of centrist and qualified Merrick Garland, we got the opposite in Justice Gorsuch is further right than Alito or Scalia, in another environment would not have been confirmed. To get Gorsuch confirmed, Republicans had to waive the old rule of 60 votes for a SCOTUS judge. Yes, he’s doing his best to stack his court.
Trump Demonizes the Opposition
Trump called the press an “enemy of the people,” he regularly refers to his political rivals as his “enemies” and gives child-like nicknames to anything, of which, he doesn’t approve. This likely gets the second biggest checklist.
Trump Engages in Selective Law Enforcement
Joe Arpaio anyone? Ali? Dinesh D’Souza, and I would categorize anyone who fires the FBI director who won’t swear loyalty to him, and states that he possesses the unquestioned right to pardon himself as one who “selectively” enforces laws.
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This is a Creative Commons article. The original version of this article appeared here.