If Trump's coup attempt fails, beware of another attempt by a smarter, slicker fascist

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2020/12/07/if-trumps-coup-attempt-fails-beware-of-another-attempt-by-a-smarter-slicker-fascist.html


The Know-Nothings on Biff’s sucker list are going to be fed a continual diet of “we wuz robbed in 2020” propaganda over the next four years. The GOP knows that demographics are not on their side with every passing year and will continue with attempts to cheat or to pervert the rules. And the right-wing populist media are going to continue to use social media to create stochastic terrorists.

If the Dem establishment thinks that American conservatives will play by the rules and that the system can withstand the constantly evolving attacks on it, they’re fools.


This. This is why Kamala needs to flex in the Senate from day 1. It’s why Joe’s Justice Dept needs to pursue charges against every last trump enabler. No more of this “healing the nation” bullshit. This country needs some strong medicine and it ain’t going to be Christmas Spirit that heals us.


If most Republican officials are failing to police this ham-handed attempt at a power grab, how many would resist a smoother, less grossly embarrassing effort?

You mean normal American politics? You talk about like this hasn’t been a long held playbook by both sides. Though it’s been used to a better effect by Republicans, see Gerrymandering, voter registry purges, voter ID laws, not allowing ex-cons to vote and everything about George Bush Jr.


You guys were lucky that Trump’s team was so fucking stupid, the next round is going to be just as corrupt, but way smarter.


Isn’t that just…Bush V. Gore?


The trend line from Dubya to Palin to Trump doesn’t really move in that direction though. The next dot on that line looks to me to be some sort of Qanon loon.


The 2022 elections are going to be ugly. They’re also going to be a practice run for 2024.

“Poll watchers” who don’t do anything but disrupt things.

Blatant cheating attempts because “the Dems got away with it, so can I”.

People just outside the boundary at polling places with cameras, filming people, and looking for “illegals” (ie “brown people”).


let’s go down that list a little. we see, waiting in the wings, the likes of Senator Tom Cotton (R AR), Sen. John Cornyn (R TX), Sen Ron Johnson (R WI), Rep Matt Gaetz (R FL) Gov Ron DeSantis (R FL), just to name a few of the wack-a-doo trumpian assholes jockeying for a run at the White House, perhaps to finalize the descent into madness and ultimate fascism that is the wet dream of these idiots and their kind.


I’d add Josh Hawley (R MO) to that list of snakes to watch out for.


I’ve always said that Trump is Stupid Hitler without an ideology. It’s just a dress rehearsal for the next demagogue who actually has an agenda beyond lining his pockets.


Yeah, people keep saying everything is fine because Trump isn’t succeeding, but it misses the point. The entire Republican party is indicating they’re fine with Trump’s overt efforts to steal the election, and thus presumably any such future - and more competent - efforts.

Yeah, when almost half the voters are convinced the other side only came into power by cheating, it gives them license to break whatever laws they want to. And they’ve already started - Trump supporters engaging in voter fraud even in 2016 to “counteract the Dems cheating.” The mass shootings and terrorist plots we’ve already had, inspired by Trump, while he was in office. They’ll feel doubly justified when he’s gone (but still rabble-rousing on the sidelines).

We had that this time. Apparently when the vote tallies started turning against Trump, in many locations the Republican poll watchers were told to just disrupt things as much as possible to prevent any more votes from being counted. E.g. objecting to every vote, for no given reason.

We’re only lucky if we fix the vulnerabilities he revealed. Unfortunately, I don’t think we’ll get the chance to. Instead he’s just provided a road map - with shortcuts - for like-minded authoritarians to follow.


I’ll offer the contrary argument.

It’s disturbingly easy to forget in the glare of Trump, but George W. Bush was once the obvious point of reference for corrupt-yet-idiotic authoritarianism with a manufactured populist gloss. And when the 2006 and 2008 elections finally neutered him, we all looked warily at the Cheneys and Wolfowitzes and Bakers and Gonzaleses and thought, wow, that was close. What happens when the fascist plutocrats run a smart, capable candidate instead of just a retread failson who botches half the missions they give him?

But that was basically McCain, and that was definitely Romney. They didn’t have all of Dubya’s personal character flaws and they were nowhere near as stupid, but ideologically there was no more than a sliver of daylight between the three.

And they lost. And it was an even stupider, even more immoral, even more chaotic candidate who finally won for them.

Twice may be a coincidence, but it makes intuitive sense. Fascism is a tactic that can be put in service to a range of ideologies, but its engine doesn’t really run on “smart” and “slick.” After all, it was fascism that gave us the memorable political maxim “There are many means of persuasion, and the truncheon is one of them.” If your Dear Leader needs his wits and a slick PR operation, he’s as good as dead (politically or otherwise).

Forget the evil geniuses. Beware the dumber, crasser, more selfish version of Trump. You’re going to need a lot of time to even accept that such a creature exists, so start working on it now.


I think your contrary argument holds a lot of merit. I think a dumber, crasser, more selfish version of Trump could win, but it would help that creature has some intelligent enablers.


If you’re fearfully watching the Republican party for the next threat, I think you’re looking in the wrong direction.

The GOP has been trying to do this stuff within the norms for years. And, yes, succeeding (the GOP hierarchy’s version of Turmp, after all, is basically Dick Cheney). But Turmp’s appeal was that he wasn’t promoted from within. If there is going to be a “next Turmp”, I’d look to Tucker Carlson or Alex Jones.

It’s kind of like, the termites have been munching away on the state for years, and it’s becoming structurally unsound. But the proximate danger is not that a mighty King of Termites will arise. The danger is that if a drunken frat boy drives his truck into the building, it’s in no shape to handle that.


Of course the fascists are already in power at the state level. Take a look at this:


I wish I hadn’t.


First time I recall reading an argument along these lines but I find it compelling. Bravo for broadening my perspective on the next fascist to watch out for.

Also, I suppose this moves Tom Cotton up the likely list.


Do you really think it’s a good idea for a politisized justice department go after lists of “enablers” from the previous administration? How about the justice department prosecutes laws regardless of what side they belong to?

I think the background assumption is that the Venn diagram of the two is a circle.