Opinion: The election shows the United States is a broken country – The Globe and Mail

Sarah Kendzior’s newest book is hidden in plain sight: The Invention of Donald Trump and the Erosion of America.

On election night 2016, I wrote an op-ed for the world and an email titled “A Fascist’s Victory, America’s Moral Loss.” the piece’s premise was considered provocative by those who still cling to the illusion of American exceptionalism. surely the land of the free could not succumb to fascism. surely the checks and balances will remain. surely more than 200 years of constitutional law could not be altered by the former presenter of the celebrity apprentice.

but donald trump was always a would-be autocrat: one who explained his brutal policies during his campaign and put them into practice in office. he followed the dictator’s playbook: pack courts, purge agencies, cash in on the presidency, install his family members in power, demonize minorities, and dismantle institutions that could hold him accountable.

mr. Trump is a historic president: the first president to say that his political opponent (Joe Biden), his opponent’s family (Hunter Biden), his predecessor (Barack Obama), and his former opponent (Hillary Clinton) should all go to jail. he is the first president to be named as “individual-1” in a federal criminal investigation. he is the first president whose former campaign managers were arrested for different crimes. he is the first president to be impeached for soliciting help from a foreign state (ukraine), the first to win an election with the help of illicit foreign aid (in 2016 from russia), and the first to pressure foreign leaders to dirty the rival . he baseless he thought he should be jailed.

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one should view these dubious landmarks with deep trepidation. Mr. trump never set out to govern, but to govern and make profits. Mr. trump’s backers are a mix of corrupt plutocrats, theocrats, oligarchs and other bad actors looking to strip my country and sell it for parts. they see Americans as disposable, as their response to the Covid-19 crisis has made abundantly clear. they will let us die, and they do so with blatant indifference, because they understand that in this system ordinary people have little influence and even less protection. America is not yet a fully fascist country, but it is run like a mafia state.

where does that leave joe biden? he is as vulnerable as the rest of us, running in an election whose basic legitimacy was in question even before he became the candidate. domestic voter suppression, foreign interference, insecure voting machines, and more recently, attacks on the us. uu. the postal service threatened electoral integrity. Failure to address these dangers led to voter disenfranchisement and, in terms of the destruction of postal infrastructure, sabotage by the Trump camp. and even if mr. it is revealed that biden won despite these obstacles, mr. Trump, as we saw in the early hours of Wednesday morning, will likely refuse to budge or claim the election results are invalid.

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The current American crisis is due in part to officials who refused to stop Mr. trump’s worst behavior When organized crime hijacks the government, officials must act aggressively, transparently, and immediately. They can’t mess around like Robert Mueller did with his laborious and appeasing probe. they can’t “judge at the ballot box,” as nancy pelosi, a staunch opponent of impeachment until she bowed to pressure from her colleagues and the public, suggested throughout 2019. they can’t follow the rules when the book is burning .

Regardless of who considers himself president, Tuesday’s results were again, as I wrote in 2016, a moral loss for the United States. Mr. trump still has millions to vote for him. Unlike in 2016, they weren’t voting for a hypothetical president, the savior strongman he billed himself as. They voted for a well-known kleptocrat who let hundreds of thousands of his fellow citizens die.

America is a broken country and a heartbreaking place to live. dangerous times are coming, full of disease, violence and instability, regardless of who wins. a second trump term will likely lead to entrenched authoritarianism. a biden mandate will likely bring chaos as the country tries to rebuild itself. in any case, we will live under a pandemic in a decimated economy. I wouldn’t wish the pain of the next few months on anyone, including those who voted for mr. triumph. We will live and die, as Americans, one nation, united in fear, one another, our government, our future. pundits focus on partisanship, but there are worse things to lose than an election. Americans learned that the hard way.

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