Today politics has gone beyond surreal. I’m not sure what words actually mean anymore. Definitely the doublespeak has to be decoded, but now the doubling-down on lies is an unbroken circle, like a snake biting its own tail/tale.
As a kid I remember trying to figure out what a fascist was. How was that different from a dictator? Communism—when explained it didn’t sound so bad, then I read Animal Farm, and, again, I was confused. At first glance populism sounded great, like power to the people. Farmers in Kansas experienced a series of difficult years from the late 1880s to the early 1890s. Out of this dissension came the People's Party, a reform movement with roots across the country but particularly strong in Kansas.
How could populism go wrong?
Then along came Donald J. Trump, a populist candidate. He broke the mold of the established politician seasoned in rhetoric that is frustratingly accommodating to the status quo. The amount of time it takes to pass a law or initiate real change can be measured in dog years.
Since the US election of 2016 more and more countries have been putting forth their own populist candidates. Comedians, reality-TV stars, porn queens, media influencers. People with no discernable background. Where the only thing going for them is that they are not the other guy.
Experts used to say populism could not happen in the UK or Germany where populist movements in the form of Brexit and the Alternative for Germany party have taken off. All of these exceptions have fallen one by one,
All I know the power to the people lately has been frightening. If substantially whipped up mobs will elect an anti-immigrant candidate or vote for a referendum that isolates an entire country because of unreasonable economic fears.
Right now I’m watching the UK devolve/dissolve. Just like when I was a kid, I don’t exactly understand what is going on—all I know the words do not match up with the picture.
|Benito Mussolini, in 2001 I visited Salò, Italy. From 1943 to 1945 Salò was the de facto capital of Benito Mussolini's Nazi-backed puppet state,|