Trump the Authoritarian

Democrats like to label Donald Trump an authoritarian. This is why he supposedly is a threat to “our democracy.” The charge is generally groundless. Trump was president for four years, so he has a track record as the least authoritarian president of recent years.

But Trump, being Trump, can’t get out of his own way. So earlier this week, on Truth Social, he handed the Democrats all the ammunition they need to renew their “authoritarian” theme. And, frankly, with good cause. Trump wrote:

So Trump explicitly threatens NBC with retaliation–for treason!–should he again become president. “They and others of the LameStream Media will be thoroughly scrutinized…” Scrutinized by whom? The Federal Communications Commission, evidently: “Why should NBC, or any other of the corrupt & dishonest media companies, be entitled to use the very valuable Airwaves of the USA, FREE?”

Well, Donald, that is how it works. All kinds of people, most of them people I disagree with, use the very valuable Airwaves of the USA, FREE. I take it that Trump is threatening to drive NBC off the air (MSNBC doesn’t use the very valuable Airwaves of the USA) for being dishonest. Obviously, that isn’t going to happen. It would be unconstitutional. It would blow up in Trump’s face. The FCC by law is bipartisan, and Trump couldn’t find a single remotely qualified appointee who would undertake to revoke NBC’s broadcast license. The whole thing is idiotic.

But that is Donald Trump. He does some good things, and then he nullifies them with inexpressibly stupid behavior like this. Everyone who pays attention knows that threats to free speech and the First Amendment come from the left, not the right. But by pronouncements like this one, Trump enables the Democrats to paint Republicans as the enemies of free speech. Stupid, stupid, stupid. And sadly typical.

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