Мобильный 1 Add news
March 2010
April 2010
May 2010June 2010July 2010
August 2010
September 2010October 2010
November 2010
December 2010
January 2011
February 2011March 2011April 2011May 2011June 2011July 2011August 2011September 2011October 2011November 2011December 2011January 2012February 2012March 2012April 2012May 2012June 2012July 2012August 2012September 2012October 2012November 2012December 2012January 2013February 2013March 2013April 2013May 2013June 2013July 2013August 2013September 2013October 2013November 2013December 2013January 2014February 2014March 2014April 2014May 2014June 2014July 2014August 2014September 2014October 2014November 2014December 2014January 2015February 2015March 2015April 2015May 2015June 2015July 2015August 2015September 2015October 2015November 2015December 2015January 2016February 2016March 2016April 2016May 2016June 2016July 2016August 2016September 2016October 2016November 2016December 2016January 2017February 2017March 2017April 2017May 2017June 2017July 2017August 2017September 2017October 2017November 2017December 2017January 2018February 2018March 2018April 2018May 2018June 2018July 2018August 2018September 2018October 2018November 2018December 2018January 2019February 2019March 2019April 2019May 2019June 2019July 2019August 2019September 2019October 2019November 2019December 2019January 2020February 2020March 2020April 2020May 2020June 2020July 2020August 2020September 2020October 2020November 2020December 2020January 2021February 2021March 2021April 2021May 2021June 2021July 2021August 2021September 2021October 2021November 2021December 2021January 2022
News Every Day |

Many Americans are ignoring the dire warning signs of fascism's rise

In America (and around the world) the year 2021 was one of great sadness and frustration. By many indications, 2022 may be even worse.

America's democracy crisis continues to escalate. The alarm is blaring but the American people, for the most part, continue to ignore it. Last Jan. 6, Donald Trump and his regime attempted a coup with the goal of nullifying the results of the 2020 presidential election and, in effect, ending American democracy. In many respects, Trump's coup attempt was atypical, if not wholly unique.

It was publicly announced by Donald Trump and his agents months or even years in advance. Despite those warnings, law enforcement officials and national security leaders did little to prepare for it. Most of the mainstream news media and pundit class did not take the threat seriously, instead choosing to mock those truth-tellers who kept sounding the alarm.

Nearly a year after the attack, Donald Trump and the other high-level planners and conspirators have not been punished, and remain free to continue plotting the overthrow of American democracy. As has been widely observed, the Trump regime's coup attempt may be the least-punished such high crime in recent history.

Even Trump's foot soldiers have not been punished to the full extent of the law for their participation in the Capitol attack. While some have faced prosecution, the Justice Department has acted with great restraint.

Some "good news": Donald Trump's coup attempt was an example of what experts on authoritarianism and democracy describe as an attempt at an "autocratic breakthrough." Most democracies quickly fall before such assaults. This one was repelled, which is something of a unique accomplishment.

RELATED: Fascism in America: It's nowhere near as new as you might think

In other ways, the Trump regime's coup attempt was not so unusual. As in other places and times in history, Trump's loyalists are continuing with their efforts, both through more or less legal means and otherwise. When a coup fails the first time, the second attempt is usually successful. All of this is happening in real time and in plain sight, with minimal attempt at deception. For the American people and their responsible leaders to ignore such threats is a willful choice.

What warnings should we be heeding now? In a recent op-ed for the Washington Post, retired U.S. Army generals Paul D. Eaton, Antonio M. Taguba and Steven M. Anderson are sounding the alarm about the possibility of a second civil war in the aftermath of a future presidential election, if Donald Trump or another Republican refuses to accept the results:

We — all of us former senior military officials — are increasingly concerned about the aftermath of the 2024 presidential election and the potential for lethal chaos inside our military, which would put all Americans at severe risk….

Imagine competing commanders in chief — a newly reelected Biden giving orders, versus Trump (or another Trumpian figure) issuing orders as the head of a shadow government. Worse, imagine politicians at the state and federal levels illegally installing a losing candidate as president.

All service members take an oath to protect the U.S. Constitution. But in a contested election, with loyalties split, some might follow orders from the rightful commander in chief, while others might follow the Trumpian loser. Arms might not be secured depending on who was overseeing them. Under such a scenario, it is not outlandish to say a military breakdown could lead to civil war.

In this context, with our military hobbled and divided, U.S. security would be crippled. Any one of our enemies could take advantage by launching an all-out assault on our assets or our allies.

This is but the most recent in a series of public warnings by America's senior national security leadership, both before and after Jan. 6, about the spiraling danger of a new civil war, a right-wing insurgency and other forms of terrorism and political violence. Such warnings are without precedent in modern American history and highlight the extreme peril the country now faces from the Republican fascist movement.

It has also been reported that military leaders were seriously concerned that Trump might order the National Guard to intervene on his behalf on or around Jan. 6 by invoking the Insurrection Act. If he had given such an order, the country would have come dangerously closer to an authoritarian takeover and perhaps widespread violence, with elements of the military battling one another. Experts on civil war have warned that the U.S. is well along such a path.

Want a daily wrap-up of all the news and commentary Salon has to offer? Subscribe to our morning newsletter, Crash Course.

Domestic terrorism experts have also warned that right-wing extremists and paramilitary groups are organizing on the local and state level to intimidate, harass and target "liberals," Black and brown people, Muslims, Jews, immigrant communities and others deemed to be their enemies. This is part of a nationwide campaign by Republican fascists and the larger white right to attack American democracy on the local and state level in order to facilitate Trump's return to power (or the "election" of his designated successor).

It is reasonable to feel angry about the American people's apparent passivity in the face of these obvious threats against democracy. But the more important question is why they are responding that way, and what that tells us about the health of American democracy and political culture? In essence, why do so many people simply not care?

There are many explanations. Most Americans do not follow politics closely. They also do not understand it very well. As we approach the one-year anniversary of Jan. 6, opinion polls show that fewer people are paying attention to the investigation into those events.

This is not, in itself, surprising. A large percentage of Americans, if not a majority, do not closely follow the news. At least half the population cannot read at a sixth-grade level. The average American's understanding of politics also ebbs and flows, most obviously in response to shared crises or calamities, but also in response to those events that the news media and leading political figures focus on most intensely. In this case, if the Democrats and others who support democracy do not consistently highlight the existential threat posed by the Republican-fascist movement, then most Americans will not pay attention.

American voters are also strikingly poor at attributing responsibility to the correct political leaders or parties for their policy failures. Most people receive information about current events from a trusted network that may include friends, relatives, community leaders, clergy members, favored politicians and media voices and, increasingly, social media such as Facebook or Instagram. Such a network is likely to be insular and inaccurate, serving as a type of echo chamber — especially for Republicans and "conservatives."

In an era of extreme right-wing asymmetrical polarization and negative partisanship, disinformation and a coordinated assault on truth and reality, as well as an overall culture of spectacle, unrestrained consumerism, cruelty and endless distraction, many Americans lack the capacity to make informed and responsible political and social decisions.

RELATED: Democracy vs. fascism: What do those words mean — and do they describe this moment?

A large percentage of Americans believe (quite correctly) that the country's political elites and other leaders have failed in their responsibilities to society and are increasingly detached from the experiences of everyday Americans. This reflects a 60-year trend of declining faith and trust in the country's leaders and the legitimacy of "the system."

There is also a worrisome decline in the American people's faith in democracy itself, especially among younger people. A recent poll by Grinnell College offers additional context about the deep political and cultural divides that are driving the country's democracy crisis:

The poll shows incredibly few Americans (7%) have high trust in the federal government to offer good ideas to solve problems facing their communities. Even among Democrats, whose party currently holds the White House and the majority in both houses of Congress, only 14% say they have high trust in the federal government.

Americans were somewhat more likely to have high trust in state governors (25%) and city or county elected leaders (19%) to offer good ideas to solve problems in their communities. In both cases, only a minority of Americans had high trust in elected officials.

"Trust in political institutions is the glue that holds democracies together and allows them to weather crises over time," said Grinnell political scientist Danielle Lussier. "While there will always be some skepticism toward the government, when a majority of people express distrust in elected officials, the legitimacy of the constitutional order is called into question."

Further analysis reveals the depth of partisan division: While doctors, scientists and teachers are highly trusted by Democratic voters, "among Republicans, doctors are highly trusted by only 48%, scientists by 28%, and teachers by 31%. Republicans place high trust in police officers (65%) but only 22% of Democrats have that same level of trust."

"Americans lack a collective sense of whom to trust," Lussier said, which "helps to explain why it is so hard to build a consensus for solving the country's problems."

Perhaps most important of all, for at least the last 50 years right-wing libertarians and other extremists have advanced a strategy to undermine faith in American democracy and the idea of government itself. This has created a space for right-wing political entrepreneurs to expand their power and influence by convincing large portions of the white American public that democratic government is illegitimate if it does not secure continued white supremacy.

In total, Americans are collectively experiencing a moment of social and political alienation, in which many of their fellow citizens are willingly surrendering to the forces of demobilization and authoritarianism.

Philosopher and political theorist Sheldon Wolin described such a moment in his book "Democracy Incorporated: Managed Democracy and the Specter of Inverted Totalitarianism":

Antidemocracy does not take the form of overt attacks upon the idea of government by the people. Instead, politically it means encouraging what I have earlier dubbed "civic demobilization," conditioning an electorate to being aroused for a brief spell, controlling its attention span, and then encouraging distraction or apathy. The intense pace of work and the extended working day, combined with job insecurity, is a formula for political demobilization, for privatizing the citizenry. It works indirectly. Citizens are encouraged to distrust their government and politicians; to concentrate upon their own interests; to begrudge their taxes; and to exchange active involvement for symbolic gratifications of patriotism, collective self-righteousness, and military prowess. Above all, depoliticization is promoted through society's being enveloped in an atmosphere of collective fear and of individual powerlessness: fear of terrorists, loss of jobs, the uncertainties of pension plans, soaring health costs, and rising educational expenses.

Ultimately, who is to blame for the American public's passivity in the face of an escalating neofascist threat? Of course Republicans and other members of the "conservative" movement are the most clearly guilty. President Biden and the other leaders of the Democratic Party and the "liberal" or "centrist" leadership class are also responsible, to the degree they did not rapidly identify the threat and respond accordingly.

Right-wing libertarians and neoliberal gangster capitalists, who for years have longed who to destroy the commons and social democracy in order to create a society where profits rule over people in all areas of life, are also responsible. They weakened the social fabric to such an extent that it was much easier for neofascism to take root.

However this dark chapter in American history concludes, and whatever the next chapter may hold, there will be many Americans (largely white people in the privileged classes) who will exclaim in all sincerity: How could such a thing have happened? Are we not better than this?

The answer to such questions will stare back at them from the mirror every morning -- and even then they will deny responsibility.

Read also

What Covid restrictions are still in place in England?

Basketball roundup: Talented West Ranch is coming together at the right time

A wealth tax on America's billionaires could cover the child tax credit extension — and the entire defense budget

News, articles, comments, with a minute-by-minute update, now on Today24.pro

News Every Day

Biochar Market expected to register the significant growth over the forecast period 2020-2028

Today24.pro — latest news 24/7. You can add your news instantly now — here

News Every Day

UFC Vegas 46: Kattar vs. Chikadze live results, discussion, play by play

Sports today

Новости тенниса

Теннисист Аслан Карацев из Северной Осетии победил на турнире ATP в Сиднее

Спорт в России и мире

«Четыре золота из пяти»: Авербух назвал шансы российских фигуристов на Олимпиаде в Пекине


All sports news today


Sports in Russia today

"Пришло время": Боксёр Михаил Алоян завершает профессиональную карьеру

Новости России

Game News

Intel CEO says AMD is in the rearview mirror and "never again will they be in the windshield"


Правила поведения при снежном заносе и метели

Губернаторы России

Второй сезон комедийного хита ТНТ «Девушки с Макаровым» стартует 31 января

Парень, который сделал себя сам! Путь из воркаута в бодибилдинг

Бывший топ-менеджер ВЭБ Валитов объявлен в международный розыск по делу о растрате

Арест? ОМОН? Замена аэропорта? Порошенко возвращается в Киев точь-в-точь как Навальный в Москву

Медитация как путь к здоровью

Ограбленная вдова Градского хранила 100 миллионов рублей в сумке под кроватью

Долина вспомнила, как Путин пел «Погоду в доме» со всем концертным залом

Певица Монеточка объявила о продаже квартиры в Москве после раскрытия ее адреса

Концерт "Вивальди. Лучшее"

Мельбурн. Джон Иснер проиграл в стартовом матче

Российский представитель в ООН назвал позорным решение Австралии по Джоковичу

Касаткина поднялась на три строчки в рейтинге WTA

Даниил Медведев опустился на четвертое место в Чемпионской гонке ATP

Видео: Волочкову и ее молодого человека провели под полицейским конвоем в Шереметьево

Друг Градского: вдова наказала себя на 50 "лимонов"

«Четыре золота из пяти»: Авербух назвал шансы российских фигуристов на Олимпиаде в Пекине

Лукашенко заявил, что практически видит будущих президентов Белоруссии

Появились подробности «задержания» Токарева

Введено временное ограничение движения для пассажирских автобусов, маршрутных такси, легковых такси, грузового транспорта на участке М-5 «Урал» в Оренбургской области и Республике Татарстан

Волочкова выступила на высоте

Читатели WSJ возмутились намерением США использовать свою армию для защиты Украины от РФ

Путин в России и мире

Персональные новости


Певец Влад Соколовский познакомился с родителями беременной возлюбленной

News Every Day

A 150mph Hurricane Killed This Gaming PC: Cleaning, Restoration, & Repair

Friends of Today24

Музыкальные новости
"Воскресенье " Олег Митяев

Персональные новости
Близкий друг Путина миллиардер Пугачев. Вся правда о Путине, его семье и деньгах. В гостях у Гордона (2021)

Навальный об уволенном за пост священнике (2021)

Slava Marlow – суперуспех и депрессия в 21 год / вДудь (2021)

Обнаглевшие дети путинской элиты (2021)

Дайте собакам мяса (новый звук) -Владимир Высоцкий

Группа "Рождество" - песня "Так хочется жить!" (Видео с концерта в Киеве группы "РОЖДЕСТВО" в 2011 году в Доме офицеров)

Adriano Celentano Любимая песня Челентано (высочайшая энергетика) talentTV