When one aspires to a fascist or fascist-like leadership position, the first thing one does is wrestle control of the media. This is certainly not genius insight, indeed I believe it is likely taught in high school.
That is why it is critical that we all pay attention when this particular White House, and this particular president, make a clear move against the First Amendment, in an attempt to control the press.
Could anything be more obvious?
Brian Karem, the chief White House correspondent for Playboy magazine, said Friday that his press pass is being suspended for 30 days in what he called an “anti-First Amendment move.”
Damn right. Unless, you started a fight or something.
Except, he did not, and the White House knows this all too well.
The suspension will begin Monday, Karem said. In an interview late Friday, he said the White House told him the suspension was related to his actions in the Rose Garden nearly a month ago, where he infamously sparred with former White House aide Sebastian Gorka.
The White House wrote that Karem “failed to abide by basic norms of decorum and order” on July 11, Karem said. The letter further suggested that Karem had been rude to Gorka — “a guest of the president.”
Anyone who follows the news much has seen that clip, and the most charitable view (to the White House’s position) would be to say that Karem did not handle the “attack initiated by the President’s guest” perfectly. I mean that, by the way. He could have handled it better, and he could have handled it much, much, worse – but did not.
He was flat ambushed by Gorka, an oily fascist himself.
So, what is this really about? Oh, perhaps it is because Karem has been a thorn in both Sarah Huckabee-Sanders’ side and Trump’s hide, for quite some time.
Perhaps you recall him asking Sarah Huck if she did not have any empathy, “as a parent,” for the kids separated at the border?
Anyone who doesn’t have empathy for kids separated from parents, even parents who DO commit crimes, anyone without empathy for the innocent kids, is without any redemption and not fit to work in the White House. She could have answered the question easily: “Of course I do. However, there are several moving parts to this and we are attempting to stop other parents from risking their children’s lives in the journey from Central America, we do not want innocent children’s lives lost due to …”
Or even: “My private feelings about any policy are not relevant to the president’s decisions. Thus I will not ever comment upon my personal feelings.”
See? I do not believe a single word of either answer for a second, however they are the types of answers that a press secretary for the White House ought to be able to make off the cuff, I sure did.
But this White House doesn’t work that way. They take pride in inflicting pain without empathy. They want their voters, their base, to know it, wink wink. Ironically, another clear sign of fascism is a total denial of empathy for the perceived “enemy.” They learn that in high school, too, all too well.
Regardless, the White House knows that Gorka went after that guy. Indeed, Gorka might have been told to go after him solely because they wanted to suspend Karem. Yes, that sounds a little conspiratorial, however does anyone think this White House is above engineering a fake reason to suspend a particularly thorny reporter?
I did not think so.
So, here we are. Two undeniable symptoms of creeping fascism taking a dash for the endzone, hoping to put some points on the board. Perhaps a judge can cause a turnover. Someone has to say “no,” someone has to care about the constitution. If not, if this runs up against “Trump sympathizer,” judges, we’re even further along than they had hoped, because that would be a third symptom.
We must take note of each step, and warn others.
My novels are here. Better written, more lively, and Huckleberry Finn-like college student alien abductee.