Trump supporters who attend his rallies regularly break out into angry chants ranging from “Build that wall” to “Lock her up” to “CNN sucks,” among others.
Timothy Snyder, a Yale historian and the author of “The Road to Unfreedom: Russia, Europe and America,” says that there is a direct line between these angry chants and the rituals that fascist dictators have used to build and maintain support among their citizens.
“This is going to be a tough one to hear and people aren’t going to like it, but it’s very hard to understand that, in fascism, we’re not individual human beings who have thoughts and reflect before we speak,” explains Snyder, in a video posted on Sen. Bernie Sanders’ (I-VT) Twitter page. “The idea is that we are tribes.”
The best way to maintain tribal solidarity, says Snyder, is to define the tribe’s enemy that can be a focus of its members’ hatred.
“The politics begins from deciding who the enemy is,” he says. “So rather than being an individual, rather than thinking, what we’re supposed to do is mark ourselves up into a tribe and define who the enemy is.”
He also says that it’s “no accident” that these chants appeal to certain elemental emotions, such as “the feeling that you need boundaries, the feeling of anxiety, the notion that others are different, and therefore threatening.”
Watch the video below.
— Bernie Sanders (@SenSanders) August 16, 2018
Congress still has one big tool left to rein in Trump’s corruption: Oversight Committee Democrat
Senate Republicans may have managed to quash the impeachment trial without calling forth any new witnesses or seriously considering the evidence against President Donald Trump. And the president may feel vindicated and largely invulnerable as a result.
But, Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL) told CNN's Anderson Cooper on Monday, that doesn't mean Democrats don't have one last big play to rein in the president's abuses of power. They can use the first and strongest authority delegated to them: the power of the purse.
"What can Democrats really do when it comes to oversight of the president?" asked Cooper. "I mean, now that impeachment is over, does seem like there are fewer and fewer guardrails, if any."
Trump said he ‘loved’ the fact that America is more divided than ever: ex-GOP congressman
President Donald Trump bragged about increasing divisions in America during a White House meeting, a former Republican congressman explained on MSNBC on Monday.
Former Rep. David Jolly (R-FL) told host Joy Reid that "Donald Trump has intentionally tried to create the anxiety" that Americans are explaining.
"Garry Kasparov, the Russian freedom activist, has said the point of disinformation isn't to manipulate the truth, it's to exhaust your critical thinking," Jolly explained. "To exhaust your critical thinking, that's what we're experiencing as voters."
"I had a colleague that was in a meeting in the Roosevelt Room and he said he heard Trump say, 'Have you ever seen the nation so divided?' My colleagues and others said, 'No, we haven't.' Trump said, 'I love it that way.' This is the currency that he's peddling as political strategy, but it's not one we have to accept," Jolly explained.
Bloomberg and Biden attack Sanders supporters’ ‘Trump-like’ tactics
On Monday, The New York Times analyzed the state of the Democratic presidential primaries heading into the Nevada caucuses. One of the key new developments is a fresh volley of attacks on the behavior of supporters for Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), which is being characterized as "Trump-like" by former Vice President Joe Biden and former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg.
"Former Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg’s presidential campaign, which has largely focused its attacks on President Trump, on Monday mounted a frontal offensive against one of his Democratic rivals for the first time, comparing Senator Bernie Sanders’s campaign tactics with those employed by the president," wrote Thomas Kaplan, Kate Conger, and Reid Epstein.