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Rick Wilson chilled by Trump’s public embrace of nationalism: ‘Violence is the almost inevitable endpoint’

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Republican strategist Rick Wilson found himself deeply disturbed by President Donald Trump’s decision to embrace overt nationalism this week, and he thinks that the logical outcome of that ideology will lead to violence on the streets of America.

Writing in the Daily Beast, Wilson breaks down the history of nationalism in the 20th century and explains how governments that have embraced it as their guiding creed have almost always ended in calamity.

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“It isn’t feckless, PC social justice-warrior hand-wringing to remind you how dangerous nationalism is as a tool in the hands of those who believe racial identity defines a nation,” he writes. “The 20th Century is replete with examples where nationalism slips down a long, bloody trough to violence, ethnic cleansing, and genocide.”

Wilson says that nationalism thrives because it appeals directly to people’s darkest fears of their fellow humans and tells them that their fears are totally justified.

“It’s a story where the wicked ‘they’ have suppressed and insulted the working volk,” he writes. “‘They’ have a different face in every iteration of this grim dirge. Sometimes, they’re Tutsi. Sometimes, they’re the educated class. Sometimes, they’re Jews.”

In his conclusion, Wilson paints a grim picture of where America is headed under Trump’s nationalist leadership.

“Nationalism deafens its adherents to appeals to the better angels of our nature,” he writes. “Nationalism excuses their hatreds, their resentments, and ultimately their violence… and that violence is the almost inevitable endpoint of most successful nationalist movements in the last hundred years.”

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Read the whole piece here.


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Melania Trump statue torched near her Slovenian hometown: report

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On Wednesday, The Daily Beast reported that a wooden statue of First Lady Melania Trump carved from a tree outside her hometown in Slovenia last year has been burned to the ground.

"The artist who had commissioned the sculpture, Brad Downey, had the statue removed on July 5," reported Madeline Charbonneau. "Downey, who is American but works out of Berlin, had hoped his statue of the first lady would create dialogue about American politics, given that Melania Trump is an immigrant married to a president who seeks to stem immigration. Though the investigation is still pending, Downey said he hopes to interview the perpetrators for an upcoming exhibition."

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FBI investigating Chinese businessman who bankrolled media company linked to Steve Bannon

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A Wall Street Journal expose revealed that a Chinese businessman is under investigation by the FBI after he used funds to bankroll a media company with ties to a former aide to President Donald Trump, Steve Bannon.

"Federal Bureau of Investigation national security agents in recent months have asked people who know both men for information on Mr. Guo’s activities, including the source of funds of a media company linked to him that hired Mr. Bannon in 2018 as a consultant, the people said," according to the Journal. "As recently as last week, the FBI met with one person familiar with the companies tied to Mr. Guo, the people said. The probe has been underway for more than six months, and prosecutors from the U.S. Attorney’s offices in Manhattan and Brooklyn have been involved.

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Lady Antebellum changed their name for racial sensitivity — now they’re suing the Black singer who already used the name

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In June, as the national conversation about racial justice in the wake of the George Floyd killing pushed many groups and organizations to examine the racial connotations of their brands, the country music group Lady Antebellum announced they were changing their name to "Lady A" to remove reference to the slavery period of Southern history.

There was just one problem: an African-American blues singer in Seattle, Anita White, already went by that name. Now, according to Pitchfork, the band is going to court for the right to use the trademark.

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