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Happy Shavu'ot

Reader comment on item: There's a Name for Trump's Brand of Politics: Neo-fascism

Submitted by Michael S (United States), Jun 10, 2016 at 04:16

I hope you understand, Daniel, why I feel obliged to respond whenever you call the GOP front-runner a "neo-Fascist". First of all, the candidate you are tacitly endorsing, namely Hillary Clinton, makes me want to lose my lunch every time I think of her. Besides that, I will state why our father-of-a-Jewish-daughter US Presidential candidate, Donald Trump, who has unequivocally supported Israel, is not a fascist.

First of all, let's consider the "Father of Fascism", Benito Mussolini, and the world that made him:

Mussolini's age at becoming Prime Minister of Italy, 39 -- the youngest in Italy's history. Hitler was 44 -- on a par with our own John F. Kennedy, who nearly started World War III with the Cuban Missile Crisis. Joseph Stalin was also 44 when he became the leader of the Soviet Union. Even Franklin Roosevelt was 50 when elected, a fairly young leader.

Hillary Clinton will be 69 at election time, eligible for a Social Security retirement pension. Trump will be 70; Joe Biden will be 73, and Bernie Sanders will be 75. Even Ronald Reagan was a "young" 69 (just eight months older than Hillary) when he was inaugurated. I imagine you get my drift: If Trump is elected, he will be the oldest first-term President in History; and if Hillary wins, she won't be far behind. This is an election, in which all candidates should have a full medical staff, complete with defibrulators and heart monitors, on call for their acceptance speeches. These are not young firebrands like Mussolini -- nor like Hitler, Stalin or Kennedy.

Now let's look at the political environment Mussolini lived in. Here are the Prime Ministers of Italy preceding him, and their dates of assuming office:

Mussolini became PM on 31 Oct. 1922, preceded by
Luigi Facta who became PM on 26 Feb. 1922, preceded by
Ivanoe Bonomi, who became PM on 4 July 1921, preceded by
Giovanni Giolitti, who became PM on 15 June 1920, preceded by
Francesco Nitti, who became PM on 23 June 1919, preceded by
Vittorio Orlando, who became PM on 30 Oct 1917, preceded by
Paolo Boselli, who became PM on 18 June 1916, preceded by
Antonio Salandra, who became PM on 21 Mar 1914

That means that in the eight years preceding Mussolini's rise to power, there were seven Prime Ministers -- along with a king, Victor Emanuel III, who didn't have much authority. Germany was in a similarly pathetic state politically when Hitler rose to power; and Stalin rose to power amidst absolute chaos. By contrast, Mr. Trump, if elected, will take his turn after a continuous 40-year run of full-term Presidents, most of whom were re-elected for second terms. And whereas the dictators of the 30s rose to power on the ashes of a devastating world war, the US has been free of such a war for 71 years.

In other words, Mr. Trump and Mr. Mussolini are about as different as two people can be; and the circumstances of this election bear no resemblance to the days leading to "Fascism". If Trump can be compared to any US President, in fact, the fairest comparison would be to his fellow TV personality, Ronald Reagan -- who was also called a "Fascist" by his detractors; but who turned out to be one of our most capable leaders.

Hillary, on the other hand, whom you are tacitly supporting, is a veteran of a tenure as Secretary of State plagued by a national-security-threatening email scandal, by a complete botch in Benghazi and the Middle East in general, and by covering up for her lying husband while she was First Lady, and more of the same with womanizing and crooked business deals (to whit, simony) while Bill was Governor of Arkansas. She is corrupt, through and through, dishonest, through; and through and dangerous, through and through.

Enough about such sordid affairs! Happy Shavu'ot.

Shalom shalom :-)

Submitting....

Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

Daniel Pipes replies:

I am not tacitly supporting Hillary: https://twitter.com/DanielPipes/status/741992819317968897

I find it amusing that Trumpkins insist that not voting is a vote for Hillary, while her supporters claim the reverse. Maybe not voting is just not helping either side.

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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