“Modern America is a society in which a growing share of income and wealth is concentrated in the hands of a small number of people, and these people have huge political influence — in the early stages of the 2016 presidential campaign, around half the contributions came from fewer than 200 wealthy families. The usual concern about this march toward oligarchy is that the interests and policy preferences of the very rich are quite different from those of the population at large, and that is surely the biggest problem.
But it’s also true that those empowered by money-driven politics include a disproportionate number of spoiled egomaniacs. Which brings me to the current election cycle.
The most obvious illustration of the point I’ve been making is the man now leading the Republican field. Donald Trump would probably have been a blowhard and a bully whatever his social station. But his billions have insulated him from the external checks that limit most people’s ability to act out their narcissistic tendencies; nobody has ever been in a position to tell him, “You’re fired!” And the result is the face you keep seeing on your TV.
But Mr. Trump isn’t the only awesomely self-centered billionaire playing an outsized role in the 2016 campaign.”
New York Times
“For a prescient comparison between today’s GOP and 20th Century fascism, it is worth considering Benito Mussolini’s ghostwriter and “philosopher of fascism,” Giovanni Gentile’s definition of fascism. Gentile writes that, “Fascism should more appropriately be called corporatism because it is a merger of state and corporate power.” If that one statement does not accurately describe the Republican Party, and all its iterations, then the Sun rises in the West. It is nearing the point that although large corporations do not yet have ultimate control and power over government, republicans have brought the nation precariously close to government by corporation and achieved their fascist goals by closely following 20th Century fascist tactics of spewing hateful and religious intolerant ideology based on “traditional values;” values they claim the left have destroyed.
Those traditional values of guns, god, and racial purity predominate the official GOP platform that corporate interests fund to elect conservatives to serve those corporate interests; not the people. There is a reason the Republican establishment, or the Koch brothers, have not yet brought their considerable power to bear on Donald Trump to end to his campaign; he is conditioning the base for a “kinder gentler” Republican fascist to appeal to more mainstream voters. It is why fascists like Scott Walker, Rand Paul, and Jeb Bush are being labeled “moderate” when they are just as vicious, just as fascist, and just as much a Koch-Republican as Donald Trump.”