Well, I knew it was just a matter of time: a prominent Cuckservative, Ross Douthat, broaches the subject of whether Donald Trump is fascist (“Is Donald Trump a Fascist?“)
Writing for Slate last week, Jamelle Bouie argued that Trumpism, however ideologically inchoate, manifests at least seven of the hallmarks of fascism identified by the Italian polymath Umberto Eco. They include: a cult of action, a celebration of aggressive masculinity, an intolerance of criticism, a fear of difference and outsiders, a pitch to the frustrations of the lower middle class, an intense nationalism and resentment at national humiliation, and a “popular elitism” that promises every citizen that they’re part of “the best people of the world.”
Why would Douthat — ostensibly a ‘conservative’ — ever quote, and give cred to, a cesspool site like Salon? Well, maybe because Douthat agrees that, yes, The Donald exhibits each of those markers but let’s not be as craven as Salon… Trump is really more of a… ‘proto-fascist’:
Whether or not we want to call Trump a fascist outright, then, it seems fair to say that he’s closer to the “proto-fascist” zone on the political spectrum than either the average American conservative or his recent predecessors in right-wing populism.
Towards the end of his column, while he won’t say the ‘w-word’ Douthat does try to explain Trump’s ascendancy:
Finally, freaking out over Trump-the-fascist is a good way for the political class to ignore the legitimate reasons he’s gotten this far — the deep disaffection with the Republican Party’s economic policies among working-class conservatives, the reasonable skepticism about the bipartisan consensus favoring ever more mass low-skilled immigration, the accurate sense that the American elite has misgoverned the country at home and abroad.