Trump authoritarian watch

Trump authoritarian watch

by digby

I've been a little bit disturbed to see some civil libertarian types on my social media seem to take up Trump as the better choice in the upcoming election and it' s a little bit bizarre. This is the guy who openly endorses summary execution, torture, possible retaliatory beheadings, the targeted killing of wives and children of suspects, and greatly expanded police power.

He believes Edward Snowden should be executed:
“I think Snowden is a terrible threat, I think he’s a terrible traitor, and you know what we used to do in the good old days when we were a strong country — you know what we used to do to traitors, right?” Trump said, Politico reported. 
“Well, you killed them, Donald,” said fill-in host, Eric Bolling. 
“This guy is really doing damage to this country, and he’s also making us look like dopes. We can’t allow this guy to go out there and give out all our secrets and also embarrass us at every level. We should get him back and get him back now.”

"If I'm President, Putin says, 'boom  you're gone.'"
He felt the same way about Deep Throat (!):
In 2005, Trump made similar comments after W. Mark Felt revealed himself to be “Deep Throat,” Bob Woodward’s source for the Watergate scandal, during yet another interview with Fox News. 
“I think he’s disgusting. I think he’s scum,” Trump said. “I don’t care how old he is, how sick he is, I think he ought to be arrested. He was an FBI agent, essentially, and he was ratting on the president.”

His famous full page ad in the New York Times calling for the execution of the Central Park five ended with this lovely bumper sticker:
When it turned out that the accused were innocent of the crimes he didn't back down. He doesn't ever admit that he was wrong about anything. He wrote an op-ed in the New York Daily News decrying the 40 million dollar settlement with the accused over the false imprisonment:
Forty million dollars is a lot of money for the taxpayers of New York to pay when we are already the highest taxed city and state in the country. The recipients must be laughing out loud at the stupidity of the city.

Speak to the detectives on the case and try listening to the facts. These young men do not exactly have the pasts of angels.

What about all the people who were so desperately hurt and affected? I hope it’s not too late to continue to fight and that this unfortunate event will not have a repeat episode any time soon — or ever.

As citizens and taxpayers, we deserve better than this.
The "unfortunate event" was the settlement not the false accusation.

And now he's openly threatening to use the government to silence critics:
It’s interesting that you say that, because every hour we’re getting calls from reporters from the Washington Post asking ridiculous questions. And I will tell you. This is owned as a toy by Jeff Bezos, who controls Amazon. Amazon is getting away with murder, tax-wise. He’s using the Washington Post for power. So that the politicians in Washington don’t tax Amazon like they should be taxed. He’s getting absolutely away — he’s worried about me, and I think he said that to somebody ... it was in some article, where he thinks I would go after him for antitrust. Because he’s got a huge antitrust problem because he’s controlling so much. Amazon is controlling so much of what they’re doing. 
And what they’ve done is he bought this paper for practically nothing. And he’s using that as a tool for political power against me and against other people. And I’ll tell you what: We can’t let him get away with it. So he’s got about 20, 25 — I just heard they’re taking these really bad stories — I mean, they, you know, wrong, I wouldn’t even say bad. They’re wrong. And in many cases they have no proper information. And they’re putting them together, they’re slopping them together. And they’re gonna do a book. 
And the book is gonna be all false stuff because the stories are so wrong. And the reporters — I mean, one after another — so what they’re doing is he’s using that as a political instrument to try and stop antitrust, which he thinks I believe he’s antitrust, in other words, what he’s got is a monopoly. And he wants to make sure I don’t get in. So, it’s one of those things. But I’ll tell you what. I’ll tell you what. What he’s doing’s wrong. And the people are being — the whole system is rigged. You see a case like that. The whole system is rigged. Whether it’s Hillary or whether it’s Bezos.
I know Amazon is an enemy of the people in other ways. But this is the Republican nominee of the Republican Party for president of the United States openly threatening to use the power of his office to stifle a critic using the anti-trust laws.  He's threatened the media before.

There is a lot of corruption in our society, we know that.  Big money has too much influence and monopolies are increasingly distorting the economy. There are many good reasons to be unhappy with the status quo. But any civil libertarian who thinks the billionaire fascist Donald Trump is the answer to that problem needs his head examined.