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How Donald Trump Could Build an Autocracy in the U.S. - The Atlantic

How Donald Trump Could Build an Autocracy in the U.S. - The Atlantic
点击这里阅读中文版本 It’s 2021, and President Donald Trump will shortly be sworn in for his second term. The 45th president has visibly aged over the past four years. He rests heavily on his daughter Ivanka’s arm during his infrequent public appearances. Fortunately for him, he did not need to campaign hard for reelection. His has been a popular presidency: Big tax cuts, big spending, and big deficits have worked their familiar expansive magic. Listen to the audio version of this article: Download the Audm app for your iPhone to listen to more titles. The president’s critics, meanwhile, have found little hearing for their protests and complaints. Allegations of fraud and self-dealing in the TrumpWorks program, and elsewhere, have likewise been shrugged off. Most Americans intuit that their president and his relatives have become vastly wealthier over the past four years. Anyway, doesn’t everybody do it? The business community learned its lesson early. “Ambition must be made to counteract ambition.”

https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2017/03/how-to-build-an-autocracy/513872/

Related:  Direction of US democracyUS politics

The Autocrat's Language I had visitors from Moscow the other day, and the conversation, naturally, turned to what all of Moscow seems to be talking about these days: a vast urban renewal project that aims to raze all the five-story apartment buildings constructed during the residential construction push of the late 1950s and early 1960s. The thing is, though, that virtually all of those buildings have long since been demolished. The Moscow project of razing five-story buildings from the 1950s and 1960s will bring down four- and seven-story modernist buildings constructed in the early twentieth century—really, anything that occupies land that may be redeveloped. These buildings are not five-story apartment blocks from the 1950s and 1960s, but they will be classified as such.

FBI refused White House request to knock down recent Trump-Russia stories White House officials had sought the help of the bureau and other agencies investigating the Russia matter to say that the reports were wrong and that there had been no contacts, the officials said. The reports of the contacts were first published by The New York Times and CNN on February 14. The direct communications between the White House and the FBI were unusual because of decade-old restrictions on such contacts. On 'sanctuary cities,' Trumpian hyperbole runs up against legal precision NEW YORK—When attorneys for the Trump administration defended the president’s executive order targeting sanctuary cities this month, they urged a federal judge not to take its wide-ranging threats too seriously. The order was merely an example of the president’s use of the “bully pulpit, serving the purpose of highlighting President Trump’s focus on immigration enforcement,” the administration’s council told US District Judge William Orrick in San Francisco. That argument failed to persuade. On Tuesday, Judge Orrick put a temporary halt to Mr. Trump’s executive order threatening to withhold federal funds from jurisdictions that limit local cooperation with immigration officials. It was the third time since Trump took office that a federal court put a halt to one of his executive orders – and the third time a court cited the president’s free-flowing bully pulpit to rule that an order likely overstepped the bounds of the Constitution.

How Women in Media Missed the Women’s Vote The election of Donald Trump has shaken identity politics to its foundations. Appealing to minorities, women, and the LGBTQ population—the so-called “coalition of the ascendant”—was supposed to guarantee Democratic rule into something like perpetuity. Yet more than one in four Hispanics apparently voted for a man who has promised to build a wall to prevent other Hispanics from coming illegally to the United States. An angry, isolated Rust Belt working class flipped the race card, placing a successful bet on its own sense of group grievance. And 53 percent of white women preferred a Mad Men-era womanizer to the would-be first woman president.

bloomberg Donald Trump promised he’d be a different kind of president, and he’s certainly delivered. He’s not one of those politicians who campaigns as one sort of person and then governs as quite another. While voters were weighing him as a possible president, he made it clear that he saw the norms of American politics and government as contemptible. The Frankfurt School Knew Trump Was Coming Shortly after the Presidential election, a small piece of good news came over the wire: the Thomas Mann villa in Los Angeles has been saved. The house, which was built to Mann’s specifications, in the nineteen-forties, went on the market earlier this year, and it seemed likely to be demolished, because the structure was deemed less valuable than the land beneath it. After prolonged negotiations, the German government bought the property, with the idea of establishing it as a cultural center.

Eliot A. Cohen Responds to Donald Trump's First Week - The Atlantic I am not surprised by President Donald Trump’s antics this week. Not by the big splashy pronouncements such as announcing a wall that he would force Mexico to pay for, even as the Mexican foreign minister held talks with American officials in Washington. Not by the quiet, but no less dangerous bureaucratic orders, such as kicking the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff out of meetings of the Principals’ Committee, the senior foreign-policy decision-making group below the president, while inserting his chief ideologist, Steve Bannon, into them. Many conservative foreign-policy and national-security experts saw the dangers last spring and summer, which is why we signed letters denouncing not Trump’s policies but his temperament; not his program but his character.

Donald Rodham Clinton Observers have been waiting for more than a year for Donald Trump to stop acting like a beer hall bouncer and start acting more presidential. On Wednesday, that wish came true, as Baby Donald completed his transformation into a standard chief executive of the United States by espousing many of the hallmark policies one would have associated with President Hillary Clinton. My Politico Playbook colleagues discerned Trump’s recent policy shift in their Thursday tipsheet. Previously, Trump said NATO was obsolete. Ross Douthat’s Argument Falls Short Less than four months into his term, members of Congress and commentators are openly speculating about whether President Donald Trump ought to be removed from office, and about how to do so. There are two constitutional mechanisms available: impeachment, as provided by Article II of the Constitution; or by a majority vote of the cabinet (and, if necessary, the approval of two-thirds of both Houses of Congress), as outlined in the 25th Amendment. In the New York Times on Wednesday, conservative columnist (and National Review contributing editor) Ross Douthat makes a case for the latter. Douthat rejects the idea of impeachment on the following grounds: There will be more talk of impeachment now, more talk of a special prosecutor for the Russia business; well and good. Douthat’s column is bracing reading: an urgent, forceful case for taking decisive action against a president whose conduct is deeply troubling, indeed potentially threatening to American security.

Trump Dropped His Demand To Fund The Wall — That’s Smart Politics “Something there is that doesn’t love a wall.” If Robert Frost had been writing about President Trump’s proposed southern border wall, that “something” would have been the American people — turns out not many of them actually like the idea of building it. In late March, Quinnipiac found that 64 percent of Americans thought “beginning to fund the wall along the border with Mexico” was a “bad idea.” A Hundred Days of Trump On April 29th, Donald Trump will have occupied the Oval Office for a hundred days. For most people, the luxury of living in a relatively stable democracy is the luxury of not following politics with a nerve-racked constancy. Trump does not afford this. His Presidency has become the demoralizing daily obsession of anyone concerned with global security, the vitality of the natural world, the national health, constitutionalism, civil rights, criminal justice, a free press, science, public education, and the distinction between fact and its opposite. The hundred-day marker is never an entirely reliable indicator of a four-year term, but it’s worth remembering that Franklin Roosevelt and Barack Obama were among those who came to office at a moment of national crisis and had the discipline, the preparation, and the rigor to set an entirely new course. Impulsive, egocentric, and mendacious, Trump has, in the same span, set fire to the integrity of his office.

Trumpology: A Master Class The personality that looms largest over the 2016 campaign did not emerge on the political scene as an unknown. In fact, Donald Trump might be one of the most deeply studied presidential candidates ever. Beginning in the early 1990s, as the real estate mogul dealt with corporate calamities, and until last year, when he descended the escalator at Trump Tower to announce his candidacy, a half-dozen serious biographies have been written about a man who has imprinted himself on American culture in towering gold letters. But those biographies—which dig into Trump’s family history, his early business successes and later financial disasters, his tabloid sex scandals and the television showmanship that saved him—had largely receded into the depths of Amazon’s bestseller list. Now those books—which have not always been to Trump’s liking; he sued one of the authors unsuccessfully for libel—have become precious source material for those eager to explain Trump’s surge toward the GOP nomination.

The Death Knell for America's Global Leadership - The Atlantic H.R. McMaster and Gary Cohn may not be the most influential people in the Trump White House. But the national-security adviser and the director of the National Economic Council are surely the White House’s most presentable faces. When they sign their names to a statement of Trumpism at its most dangerous, we are warned: The so-called adults in the room are shirking their responsibilities. On Tuesday, The Wall Street Journal published an op-ed bearing McMaster’s and Cohn’s names. It’s a good guess they did not actually write very much of it.

Unfortunately, this may be the best analysis on Trump so far by Patrice Feb 4

“The benefit of controlling a modern state is less the power to persecute the innocent, more the power to protect the guilty.” by gilles_horvilleur Feb 1

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