Essay & Op-Ed Archive: The Authoritarian Playbook

When Investigators Threatened His Power, He Declared Dictatorship

He threatened the press, joked about ruling for life and bullied everyone, including the allies who helped him get into office, while enjoying a cult following among his base. When …

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President Rodrigo Roa Duterte and US President Donald Trump

No, Trump is not a madman — because he knows exactly what he’s doing

Many have sought to diagnose President Trump’s mental health from afar, depicting him as delusional, narcissistic or a madman. Such an approach is understandable, since many of us struggle to make sense of his …

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Trump’s authoritarian playbook — what’s next?

Just before Donald Trump took office, I argued that our new President would likely follow the “authoritarian playbook,” an approach toward governance that privileges executive power and makes the leader’s …

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President Donald Trump delivers his Joint Address to Congress

Trump at his most dangerous

Sometimes political change happens suddenly. You wake up, and a military junta has taken over your country, or some other kind of revolution has happened. But other times, the climate …

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President Donald J. Trump signed Executive Orders to advance the construction of the Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines.

Donald Trump and Steve Bannon’s coup in the making

We’re not even two weeks into the Trump presidency. Has your head exploded yet? If so, you’re right where Donald Trump and our shadow ruler, Steve Bannon, want you to …

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President-elect Donald Trump is bringing his post-election tour of gratitude to Hershey tonight, returning to the Giant Center six weeks after he was there for a last-minute push to win over Pennsylvania voters before Election Day.

Donald Trump’s Authoritarian Politics of Memory

In The Captive Mind, Czeslaw Milosz tells a story about a man who ventures out in the immediate aftermath of the fall of a regime. Papers full of state secrets lie …

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Donald Trump raising a fist next to an American flag

Trump is following the authoritarian playbook

n less than a week, America will embark on a new political experience: rule by an authoritarian President. Donald Trump won the Electoral College but lost the popular vote by nearly …

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Donald Trump speaking at a rally in Fountain Hills, Arizona.

An American Authoritarian

Fascism has been back in the news with Donald Trump’s candidacy for the American presidency. His populist claim to speak for the white everyman, along with his menacing leadership style, …

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Donald Trump makes a campaign stop at Muscatine Iowa on 1/24/2016

Donald Trump’s Cult of Personality

Cults of personality: the term might evoke dictators like Joseph Stalin, Mao Zedong, Benito Mussolini, Adolf Hitler, and Kim Jong-un today. Yet cults of personality can flourish in a variety …

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