The Monday Morning Teaser

I have a long morning in front of me. There are two featured posts this week, and one still needs a lot of work.

The first is about the even more dangerous and destructive turn the Trump campaign has taken since the polls turned bad for him. When he thought he was winning Trump acted like a bully, targeting politically weak groups like immigrants and Muslims. But now that he’s clearly losing, he’s tearing down trust in American democracy. He’s started claiming that he can only lose by fraud, and hinting at violence as the appropriate response.

I’m not terribly worried that this message will work in a literal, immediate sense. He will still lose (legitimately), and his loss will not touch off a wave of riots and assassinations, much less the “civil war” that some of his more extreme supporters are predicting. But the long-term effect will be destructive. Trump began his campaign by uniting a segment of the electorate that feels — not entirely incorrectly — that they deserve better than what recent trends have given them. If many of them come out of this election feeling that peaceful organizing and voting is pointless, that opens the door for the next demagogue to be even worse. I don’t believe that Trump is Hitler, but it’s possible we may look back on him as Hitler’s warm-up act.

That post — which will include lengthy footnotes explaining why his fraud claim is absurd and his dog-whistle to “Second Amendment people” was not just a joke — is currently called “Democracy Will Survive This, With Damage” and should be out between 8 and 9 EDT.

The other story that deserved more attention than it got this week was the Justice Department’s report on Baltimore’s police. In some sense this was the big-city sequel to the report DoJ did last year on Ferguson. We now have very well documented accounts of how American policing shouldn’t work. Hopefully somebody is working on a model of how it should work. My post on the D0J report is called “It’s Not Just Freddie Gray”. It’s the one that still needs work. Let’s hope it gets out by 11.

The weekly summary will cover the latest attempt at raising a Clinton email scandal and a few other topics, before closing with some classics of literature rewritten in Trump style. Noon? 1? I don’t know.

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  • Herb Feinzig  On August 15, 2016 at 11:29 am

    You are wrong to treat Trump lightly. While he does not have “Brown Shirts”, his calls for violence are heard by those for whom violence is a good solution And it is still too easy to get and use automatic rifles.

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