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‘That is autocracy’: Russian journalist explains how Trump has already set America down a dangerous path

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President Donald Trump’s inability to check his own impulses — whether it’s baselessly accusing former President Barack Obama of illegally wiretapping his phones or publicly attacking his own deputy attorney general for appointing a special prosecutor to investigate him — has frequently come back to bite him.

However, Russian journalist Masha Gessen tells Slate that Trump’s seeming incompetence shouldn’t blind us to the damage that he is already doing to our democracy.

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Specifically, she notes that such supposedly “incompetent” governing is actually a staple feature of many autocratic regimes.

“I think that incompetence is actually an integral part of autocracy taking hold,” she explained. “Basically, what we mean when we say that he is incompetent, in large part, is that he doesn’t understand the way American government functions. But because he’s wielding power, he’s reshaping government very quickly to fit his idea of how government should function, and that is autocracy. His incompetence is actually an integral part of the damage that he’s doing by turning something like a democracy into something like an autocracy.”

Gessen then explained that Trump’s failures when it comes to passing legislation shouldn’t be too comforting, since legislature can always be reversed, whereas damage to institutions is much harder to fix.

“When he destroys things by eviscerating institutions, by changing the way that they actually function, that’s a much more difficult thing to reverse in a post-Trump era,” she said. “The fact that they haven’t been able to fill positions is actually part of what I’m talking about in terms of the way that government is breaking up into discrete, opaque parts.”

Read the whole interview at this link.

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Doctor fighting fraud charge cites Donald Trump in his defense of doling out COVID-19 drug

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As President Donald Trump promoted the drug hydroxychloroquine, one California doctor took his recommendations to the bank.

According to the San Diego Tribune, Dr. Jennings Staley is being charged in what appears to be the first case involving the drug. The FBI is charing Staley with mail fraud as part of an effort hailing hydroxychloroquine as a "miracle cure" and the "magic bullet" to an undercover agent posing as a patient, court documents say.

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The few police willing to join in solidarity with protesters

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Reports of the protests across the country are focusing on the violence, clashes and property damage caused by a small few rather than the peaceful protest of those rallying against injustice and the police standing in solidarity with them.

A few captured positive moments of cities where officers support the protests and believe Black lives do actually matter.

There were moments of protesters fist-bumping police, hugs with police, and in one incident in New York City over the weekend, one officer was separated from his unit. Protesters surrounded him with locked arms to protect him from those being violent. In Miami, Florida and Seattle, Washington, police joined protesters in kneeling.

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2020 Election

Trump shows all the signs of being ‘rattled’ now that the White House is under siege from protesters: columnist

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In a column for the Atlantic, longtime political observer Peter Nicholas stated that Donald Trump is showing all the signs of a scared man as massive protests have broken out across the country over the murder of George Floyd at the hands of four former Minneapolis cops -- and angry Americans are taking their case all the way up to the White House gates.

As Nicholas wrote, "Presidents live within a protective cocoon built and continually fortified for one purpose: keeping them alive. But inside the White House compound these days, Donald Trump seems rattled by what’s transpiring outside the windows of his historic residence."

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