In response to my recent question in a comment thread about when Ethics Alarms first noted that the Democratic Party was embracing totalitarian attitudes, tactics and principles, reader and commenter Zoltar Speaks tracked the post down, which, as I had speculated, was published in late October, 2016, right before the election. It was interesting, in light of having just passed the two year mark in the Trump Presidency, to review my thoughts at the time. Upon re-reading it, I conclude that there is nothing in that post I would retract, and that I wish I was as smart every day was I was on October 20, 2016. This section, however, really stood out in light of what has occurred since; the context was the last debate between candidates Trump and Clinton:
…the leading story coming out of last night’s snark-fest relates to character, not substance. In this case, it doesn’t even relate to practical reality. Donald Trump was asked by debate moderator Chris Wallace,
Your running mate Governor Pence pledged on Sunday that he and you, his words, will absolutely accept the result of this election. Today your daughter Ivanka said the same thing. I want to ask you here on the stage tonight, do you make the same commitment that you’ll absolutely accept the result of the election?
..and after talking around the question interminable, as usual, Trump finally answered,
What I’m saying is that I will tell you at the time. I’ll keep you in suspense, okay?
Hillary Clinton immediately pronounced the answer “horrifying,” and her assessment is currently being echoed on editorial pages and by pundits and analysts as if Trump announced that he was raising an army of NRA members to take the White House by force. Gasped the Washington Post this morning, in an editorial titled, “Trump’s Breathtaking Repudiation of American Democracy,” “Respecting the will of the voters has since the end of the Civil War allowed for a peaceful transition of power that has made this country the envy of the world….[Clinton’s flaws] fade to the status of trivia in the face of an opponent who will not accept the basic rules of American democracy.”The New York Times, in its editorial titled “Donald Trump’s Contempt for Democracy,” pontificated,
Mr. Trump’s meltdown in the closing weeks could be dismissed as a sore loser’s bizarre attempt at rationalizing his likely defeat. But his trashing of the democratic process, in service of his own ego, risks lasting damage to the country, and politicians of both parties should recoil from him and his cynical example.
It in no way excuses Donald Trump to take notice of the “breathtaking” dishonesty here.
The news media, and the Washington Post and the New York Times particularly, have shown their contempt for democracy, leading the way for the rest of the unethical U.S. news media to abdicate its duty to examine, expose and report on the extensive corruption in the Democratic Party and the Clinton campaign, aided and abetted by the Obama Administration and a journalism establishment that increasingly openly acts as a partisan government organ of propaganda, rather than fulfilling its vital duty to inform public opinion, not manipulate it. The New York Times literally called for a moratorium on fair and objective reporting because Donald Trump created an “exception” mandating a suspension of ethics. Hillary Clinton’s campaign manager called on debate moderators to act as Trump adversaries during debates because “Trump’s special,” laying the groundwork for a precedent in which any opposition to President Hillary Clinton is similarly deemed sufficiently “special.”
It should be obvious that the alliance of the press with one party and the government, based on an agreement that certain Americans are “special” and that basic principles of justice and equity can and should be suspended where their lives and rights are concerned is a far greater threat to democracy than any blather issuing from Donald Trump’s inadequately-formed brain though his constantly open mouth. Why isn’t it obvious? Slavery was justified because black people were declared “special.” Women were subjugated because they were “special.” Hitler explained that Jews were special, and damned right I’m going there. The Hillary Clinton campaign and the absolute “the ends justifies the means” operating philosophy it embodies stinks of nascent totalitarianism. Where are the editorials warning voters about that?
And now we know, as the late, great Paul Harvey used to say, “the rest of the story.” For Hillary Clinton, the Democrats and the news media did NOT acept the results of the election. THEY set on a course of trashing the democratic process. THEY defied the core American principle that the Times was evoking when it wrote, “Respecting the will of the voters has since the end of the Civil War allowed for a peaceful transition of power that has made this country the envy of the world….[Clinton’s flaws] fade to the status of trivia in the face of an opponent who will not accept the basic rules of American democracy.”
THEY did not accept the rules of Democracy. THEY did not and still do not accept the will of the voters.
I did not see that coming, because it never occurred to me then that Trump could win. I did see, however, where this party was headed, and the threat it posed, and poses, to our society.