Donald Trump

Dear GOP: Dump Trump

Donald Trump is the closest thing to a fascist in America in generations.


Dear GOP: Dump Trump

When it first began, Donald Trump's presidential campaign seemed like a joke. It is fast becoming a menace: He is the closest thing the U.S. has seen to a genuine fascist in generations.

True, a decade ago posters depicting George W. Bush as Hitler were popular among the liberal proletariat, and essays such as Naomi Wolf's "Fascist America in 10 Easy Steps" were popular among the liberal intelligentsia. But those silly, supercilious comparisons cheapened the coin of fascism; they were little more than primal-scream therapy for the petulant left. As soon as a Democrat reclaimed the Oval Office, liberals regained their love affair with unbridled power.

Trump is something else again—and it is remarkable how many of the touchstones of fascism the Trump phenomenon embraces.

  • It is, to begin with, a cult of personality built around the Strong Man. When asked how he will achieve what he promises, Trump's primary answer is that, well, he is Donald Trump: a "really smart person" and a "great manager" who "beats China all the time"; who has "millions of followers"; who will flat-out dictate oil prices to OPEC ("we have nobody in Washington that sits back and said, 'you're not going to raise that f***ing price' "); who "will be the greatest jobs president God ever created" because he is not a "loser" or a "moron" like the rest of you; etc. etc. Trump does not have plans; he is the plan.
  • The Trump movement has no coherent political philosophy behind it, unlike Ronald Reagan's ascent. Trump says Obamacare is a disaster that must be repealed—but thinks socialized medicine works "incredibly well"; he likes free trade in theory, but detests it in practice. And so on. Take Reagan away and you still would have had a thriving conservative movement that could trace its lineage through Barry Goldwater and National Review back to Russell Kirk and Edmund Burke. Take Trump away and you have a deracinated rabble.
  • It is not merely nationalist—"Make America Great Again"—but puerile and jingoistic. Trump obsesses over the Yellow Peril—China— and the Muslim Peril, too. He promises to "bomb the s**t" out of the Islamic State and "knock the hell out of them" and even "take out their families." He favors torture "even if it doesn't work."
  • It is virulently bigoted against minority groups, chiefly Latinos (Trump will somehow make them build a giant wall to keep themselves out, because they are criminals and rapists) and Muslims (six days ago he proposed banning all Muslim entry into the U.S.). At times, Trump can sound eerily like a white supremacist.
  • It seeks to deploy the tools of the surveillance state against perceived internal enemies: Trump favors making e-Verify a mandatory national program all workers and employers would have to submit to; he has signified his openness to making Muslims register with the government and even suggested shutting down mosques.
  • It favors rule by fiat: Trump says that he would simply "break" the North American Free Trade Agreement and that he would impose a "pause" during which employers "will have to hire" from the domestic labor pool; talk-show host Michael Savage says America should "let him rule by decree and let him straighten the country out."
  • It inclines toward thuggery. Trump has had a reporter escorted out of a press conference, mocked another reporter's disability and suggested that maybe a protester "should have been roughed up." He routinely hurls personal insults at women, political opponents, reporters, and anyone else who touches off his hair-trigger temper. He thinks eminent domain—government confiscation of private property—is "wonderful," and once even tried to wield it against an elderly widow so he could build a parking lot for limousines. Trump uses a lot of tough-guy bluster about taking on entire nations—yet he usually punches down, not up.

Others have noted more parallels, but space here is finite, and the foregoing ought to suffice. Trump is a problem—though primarily for the Republican Party, at least for now. The party needs to ensure he does not become everyone's problem—and the only way to do that is to abjure him, totally and utterly. So far party leaders have failed to do so. Some—such as Karl Rove, Rand Paul and Mitt Romney—even have said that they will support the Republican nominee, no matter who it is.

That would be a mistake. Trump is utterly unqualified for public office, and he represents everything the Republican Party ought to stand against. It is time for responsible Republicans to declare that they will have no part of his candidacy and that they will not support it financially, vocally, or electorally.

Yes, that would be a great trial for the party — but it would be a great favor to the country. And it would demonstrate what everyone hopes is true: that members of the GOP are Republicans second, but Americans first.

This column originally appeared at the Richmond Times-Dispatch.

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  1. I agree with the foregoing – he’s a nasty bully and fascist – but I don’t get how you can be great at doing lots of things (real estate & TV) but so un-self-aware about others. Are there any parallels in history? Bloomberg was a competent mayor.

    1. “””Bloomberg was a competent mayor.””

      Yep, stop and frisk is non-fascist!!!!

      And Obama is doing great as well, overthrowing the Libyan government and creating chaos. Failing at overthrowing the Syrian government and creating chaos. Picking and choosing what laws he will enforce

      Then there is the non-fascist Bush who invaded countries, spied on Americans and tortured people.

      While on the other hand evil fascist Trump has picked on the news media and failed to bow down to the left wing and its open border policy.

    2. It’s not that Trump is a “bad” candidate in the sense that he’s incompetent or stupid. This article is more to the idea that Trump is in fact fascistic. He begins by drawing on how petulant liberals, saddened at his election, painted Bush 43 as Hitler, and then argues that while Bush was hardly a fascist, Trump actually has many tendencies towards fascism.

      Hinkle is right, too. His 5 points he draws upon are very true, and shows how while the political right is usually focused on less regulation, their ideology can quickly move from pro-market to pro-business. Scarier, their pencahnt for “law-and-order” and national security can bring the average conservative into police state mentality. The conservative movement can commonly be a vessel of true liberalism, but populism can quickly derail it into jingoistic, megalomaniacal characters.

    3. Dear Reason: Dump Hinkle, and all of your other so-called writers who couldn’t analysis their way out of a paper bag.

      What ALL of you knuckleheads at Reason fail to understand is where our country is presently. If Hillary wins she will probably bring the senate with her and maybe the house. She will get to nominate 2 or 3 supreme court justices and that will be the death of capitalism for at least the next 75 years. We will all be living the lives of 1950 Russians.

      It is time to throw away your libertarian ideals of a perfect life with no borders anywhere and people should be able to come to our country and participate in our wonderful welfare system and we can all sing Kumbaya around the campfire. WELL, FUCK THAT YOU IDIOTS! (You’re as bad as the fucking socialists)

      Trump is the ONLY person who has a chance of beating Hillary and even he may not be able to do that because we’re already so far down that socialist path.

      Even Ted Cruz is a loser because of his heavy evangelical leanings which is the root of the republicans problems. The GOP’s Wars on Women, Gays and Drugs the last 50 years have destroyed the party.

      To be continued

      1. Continued from above

        Consider the following:

        Trump isn’t owned by ANYONE! How fucking valuable is that?

        Many democrats like Trump (I’ve heard as much as 20%). They see he’s not so fucking heavy on the pie-in-the-sky evangelical bullshit.

        Trump has the most charism of any candidate I’ve seen in my lifetime. Every time he speaks I laugh and I laugh HARD. He will be more entertaining than any president we’ve ever had. Do you really want to see and hear Hillary and that shrill, condescending voice of hers in those God-awful pants suits for the next 8 years?

        1. Plus! Our first female president needs to be an attractive women.

          And for Christ’s sake, there are so many attractive, intelligent women out there. Do we really want a DISHONEST cunt to be our first female president? I don’t think so.

  2. Thanks for more Trump publicity. The louder the establishment/media complains the more I want to vote for the guy.

    1. Wow! That’s a great way to choose a candidate.

      1. Technically I’m in the “Anyone but Hillary” camp.

        1. Mine is the anything but looters camp.

          1. Speaking of looters:…

            Also: There is also an age requirement: kids under the age of 13 will not be allowed to register a drone by themselves.

      2. That’s what makes him Fun at Parties.

        1. Heyooooo

      3. Versus, oh, I don’t know, skin color or sex? I tend to also like anyone who pisses off the media because so far they have not got anything right yet.

    2. It is incredible that Reason digs up these whining scribblers. For good writers they have Jacob, Jesse, … um, Sullum, … Walker… They used to have a guy who knew the units of energy. Petr Beckman was once on their editorial board…
      That’s it… I’m tapped out.

    3. Another day, another anti-Trump hit piece. I think it’s mandatory to help Nick get into more cool kid’s parties.

  3. I’ll never cease to be amazed at how quickly people will turn to a strong-man who supports *their* side, even if their chosen leader is a buffoon, poses a serious risk to liberty, and frequently says things counter to what they (conservatives) say they want. As long as the strong-man is yelling things at the other team, the sheep are happy. Donald Trump is saying “slavery” and the morons hear “freedom.”

    1. Opposed to the sheep this country has been putting up with the past 7 years?

      1. “Tu qoque! I’ll hit him with some tu qoque!”

      2. They’re all sheep. Doesn’t make Trump’s ovine following any less disturbing. The funny part to me is that Trump’s sheep are the ones who have been complaining about Obama’s cult followers. It’s just sad to watch.

  4. I’ll never cease to be amazed at how quickly people will turn to a strong-man who supports *their* side, even if their chosen leader is a buffoon, poses a serious risk to liberty, and frequently says things counter to what they (conservatives) say they want. As long as the strong-man is yelling things at the other team, the sheep are happy. Donald Trump is saying “slavery” and the morons hear “freedom.”

    1. Now I see why people here complain about getting posted twice. Yikes.

    2. Now I see why people here complain about getting posted twice. Yikes.

  5. The real liberty candidates are ignored as the sheep rush to support individuals that have no respect for individual liberty.

    It was the same story with Romney. Had he been a democrat, they would have labeled him a socialist gun grabber.

    The result of the experiment of “a new government” that was supposed to “secure the blessings of liberty” has been an abject failure. Either side votes for their own version of force, theft, coercion, and ultimately slavery.

    They ignore the failure that surrounds their ideology, along with how violent and immoral it is. Why? They face no consequences for their actions. They hold the belief that theft is ok, so long as folks in fancy clothes they elect and folks in costumes that surround them only engage in these acts. They then have the audacity to even sit in a church, where the damn teachings say thou shalt not steal, murder, etc. They hold gov’t higher than their own god. Jesus even warned them about all of this, how essentially gov’t would enslave them, and being they choose to worship it, no matter how much they pray, god wouldn’t be listening as they already chose their god to be gov’t.

    Once individuals can secure private security, and are able to opt out of a violent coercive monopoly, only then can they have a chance at freedom and liberty.

    1. Until the asset-forfeiters pay them a visit. I cote libertarian and my conscience is clean. My vote is also worth ten times as much as a vote squandered on slimy looters.

    2. “The result of the experiment of “a new government” that was supposed to “secure the blessings of liberty” has been an abject failure.”

      The richest nation in history is not a failure. Beats Somalia.

  6. Hinkle, the or I I’d who are supporting Trump think that what they have been saying has for years been marginalized and ignored by the political class. The GOP committing to not support Trump in the general election would only confirm to them what they have been thinking all along and garden their resolve. They would rather burn the system down than see elite opinion get the better of them as they are angry beyond reason.

    Hinkle, please…STOP HELPING!
    You will only serve to make it worse.

  7. Look, I’m not a huge Trump fan, but it’s embarrassing how self-described “libertarian” writers on this site so often (and uncritically) adopt progressive arguments as their own.

    “Dumping” Trump by the establishment would lead to full on revolt by conservative voters. But, hey, I’m up for the occasional revolution. It’ll be good for the Republican party to lose a few establishment scalps.

    1. I’m normally a Hinkle fan but I cringed when I saw “punches down” in the bullet points. Fuck that meaningless Progressive newspeak bullshit.

      1. Even if true? Trump’s a big fan of using government to.take from the poor to give to the rich.

  8. Dear Geriatric Oligach Patriarchy,
    I realize that Trump has twice the brains, ability and honesty of the rest of you put together, and it is for that reason I urge you to quit pressuring Reason to smear him as a favor to the rest of you prohibitionist bigots. After George Holy War brought us mad berserker terrorists and his low-IQ offspring wrecked the economy with asset forfeiture looting, I wouldn’t vote for your party for cash payment. Nor would I vote for the Democrats under torture. I want you to dump Trump so that your entire band of superstitious birth-forcer warmongering fascist liars can lose, lose and lose until anyone wearing your bumper sticker has their car flipped over by angry christian mobs. Let the two party system consist of the libertarian party and whatever bunch of looters is not pushing a religious dictatorship.

    1. Trump doesn’t have brains, he has bankruptcy lawyers.

  9. As much as I would’ve liked Rand Paul to gain some traction, there aren’t really any feasible alternatives to Trump at this point? unless you really want Hillary in office.

    1. LOLWUT? Trump would hand the presidency to Hillary on a silver platter. He’s their least electable candidate by far.

  10. Once again, trotting out the Marxian canard that “fascism had no unifying ideology”. This position has been repeatedly debunked in recent scholarship on the subject as a deception created (whether consciously lr not) by the socialist movements of he early twentieth centiry in order to distance their own very similar motivations (authoritarianism, centrally planned economies, the destruction of all individual loyalties other than to The State) from those of their closest politicsl rivals. In other words, there’s a reason Hitler and Mussolini both started their careers as card-carrying socialists.

    Just because Trump is a cynical, jingoistic douchebag blowhard with no coherent ideology doesn’t make him a fascist in the classical sense and just serves to distract people from the real issues at hand.

    1. Trumps “ideology” comes straight out of his book the art of the deal. His campaign’s foundations is from the basic premises of that book and what he says is his way of making deals. I love how people forget that we have three branches of gov’t. I know obama has made people think there is only one power and two sub powers and maybe this is why people are so afraid. I still believe that he knows he won’t be able to do the monstrous things he’s saying he will do. He has to run this stuff past congress. Part of his deal making is to demand outrageous things knowing they will be countered and working together will come up with something that everyone can live with. Or in obama’s case and the pussy republicans, something very few can live with.

    2. I’ve said virtually the same thing so often, I weary of saying it.

      Orwell was right, I believe. To most people, all “fascist” means is “undesirable things.”

      In most discourse, if you simply do a global search and replace from “fascist” to “bad person” you won’t semantically change whatever was being said.

      Objectively, Obama is much more of a fascist than Trump.

      Trump does have some actual fascist tendencies, (corporatism, support for socialized healthcare, lack of respect for property rights, trade protectionism), but they’re almost never the tendencies that people are complaining about when they call him a fascist.

      1. You’re a fascist.

        1. Nuh-uh!

    3. I don’t think Trump would haven’t gotten to where he is now without Obama on one side and the GOP leadership on more or less the same side.

  11. Didn’t Reason have an article a couple days ago going in length on how Trump wasn’t a fascist?

    And now we are hearing the exact opposite here.

    Make up your mind Reason, is Trump a fascist or not?

    1. It’s not a one-party state to have to conform to a list of dogmas. Different author, different opinion. If you want an echo chamber, there’s plenty to choose from.

      1. Reason is an echo chamber of anti-Trump columns. In fact ‘echo’ is a good word for it. As there are often multiple articles per day. Versus maybe a few per week at most against Hillary, Bernie, and no-name. That is very telling.

  12. “Dump Trump”

    Okay. How??

    Lot’s of reasons why they should dump Trump, no ideas on actually dumping the man.

    You already have every mainstream conservative denouncing his every word. What more could they do?? It’s not exactly like the Republican Party can /stop/ him from running. He isn’t reliant on their support, and has never been. If anything, their opposition is what fuels him.

    Trump being Dumped would probably be a good thing.

    But that doesn’t matter unless you provide a way to dump him.

    1. Either way, Reason will tear the next front runner apart. Be it Cruz, Carson, or even Paul. Yet barely a peep about Cankles. And let’s be honest, the primary factor in Reason have an Trump hate boner is him coming out against open borders early on. and much of Reason is obsessed with open borders, no matter how much damage it causes.

  13. Yet again the comments are more rational and make better reading than the article. Reason is sinking into the slime of mainstream media.
    Oh well, it was only a matter of time until the Reason group began to believe their own BS without a critical eye.
    Gary Johnson for me. As someone else put it, my conscience will be clear and no, I don’t feel I am wasting my vote or electing (fill in the blank).
    Great entertainment though.

  14. Excellent column. Trump’s supporters are fascist retards, and they have no legitimate role to play in politics.

    1. they have no legitimate role to play in politics.

      Sounds pretty fascist.

    2. Fascism? Look in the mirror.

  15. he usually punches down, not up.

    You know I expect Reason to attack Trump for being unlibertarian not for PC Prog bullshit like “punching down”.

    And it would demonstrate what everyone hopes is true: that members of the GOP are Republicans second, but Americans first.

    Um isn’t this the sort of moronic nationalism you were complaining about? Or is it supposed to ironic?

  16. I think the big problem is that there are quite a few people that are hankering for a Strongman who will End the Petty Partisan Bickering and Get Things Done. On the right there is Trump and on the left there is all the yammering about Obstructionist Republicans. During the shutdown wasn’t there a poll showing most people just want Congress to Get Things Done even if they disagree with what is being passed?

    So on the Right we have your Typical Republican Establishment Statist and uh…Trump.

    And on the Left we have your Typical Democratic Establishment Statist and uh…Bernie Sanders.

    Makes me feel so good inside….

    1. We could get Rand Paul, but then, based on my reading here over the last several months, instead of Reason really getting behind the guy, there have been a number of articles tearing him down for perceived libertarian impurities. And that doesn’t include the pants shitting shrill anti-Paul sentiments in the same vein from commenters.

      I find Paul far less than perfect. But he is probably the best candidate in my mind, and clearly from a solely libertarian perspective. But that isn’t good enough. So if libertarians can’t get behind him, why would any of you expect the mainstream GOP to embrace him?

      Considering what I’ve seen around here over the last year or so, I now understand why the Libertarian Party has never gotten any traction. And why libertarianism has not sold well to the general public. When it really should.

      So now there is a very good chance the GOP candidate will be Trump. Or just possibly Cruz. I find Trump disturbing in a number of areas. But he could be far worse. As in Obama or Hillary kind of worse. Cruz would probably be ok. Though most posters here would not agree with that. But then, I fully expect most Reason posters to act in a way that will help get Hillary/Bernie elected despite their hatred for them.

  17. “Donald Trump is the closest thing to a fascist in America in generations.”

    Hahahaha! As if there’s any short of actual fascists in current American politics!

  18. I do not care who America hires to play president.
    I will not vote unless Trump is running.
    I will then support Hillary.

    1. In a Trump vs Hillary scenario, the living will envy the dead.

      1. “The lucky ones went insane”

    2. For someone that does not care you sure have a big hard on for Trump. Lose too much at one of his casinos. At least that would have a grain of coherent logic.

    3. So….you’re a traitor.

  19. Is Donald Trump advocating Occupational Franchise?

  20. Primal scream therapy for petulant liberaltarians….

  21. what a farce!!! Fascism defined: government control of private means of production.

    This is NOT Donald Trump. Please learn what terms mean before using them so carelessly.

    1. Fascism in the minds of the uneducated is just any stuff they don’t like. But they wish to express that with shrill hyperbole.

    2. “Please learn what terms mean…”

      What an outdated concept.

      What terms mean is all about the feelz.

  22. Trump may be the Clinton’s Manchurian candidate, given the history between them. His winning the GOP nomination is one sure way for HilLIARy to win since she is such a poor candidate that pretty much any other GOP candidate will defeat her; it might even work if he runs as an indy. The excessive coverage by the “unbiased” media might even be coordinated because Trump so effectively diminshes the GOP brand.

  23. Do Trump supporters just search the internet all day for articles to troll or what?

  24. Dump The GOPe.

  25. The party would love too, but how? He is leading and following the rules.

  26. So according to unReason, wanting to enforce the immigration laws, keep people from coming here in illegal mass migrations, punish the countries that are encouraging this problem (Mexico), vetting Muslims for terrorism, and requiring US companies to hire citizens in this country before they hire foreigners is bigoted and racist. Hinkle really is a moron. his arguments are nonsense, cherry picked and hyperbolic. And if he’s looking for real fascists, Obama is right there.

    unReason is very close to getting caught in my spam filter.

  27. I don’t know about you but I think Reason writers secretly hate the Donald. Just a wild guess.

    Conversely, I think they secretly love Hillary. She is the only viable open borders candidate and that is the only issue Reason and the Libertarian establishment really seem to care deeply about. That and defeating the Donald.

    This small L libertarian is going for Cruz. He seems like the only consistent and trustworthy candidate. You may not like all his positions but the rest have no positions they will not compromise and therefore deserve no trust from the GOP base.

  28. Donald Trump is the closest thing to a fascist in America in generations

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