Six months ago when Donald Trump announced his candidacy for the office of President of the United States, I had a simple reaction: No. We all knew that no good would come of this.
Three months later after he didn’t seem to have a problem with a supporter’s desire to “get rid of” Muslim Americans, I had a sinking feeling.
Someone convince me not to write a totally serious Trump-might-be-Hitler post. Because I’m opening the tab right now.
— Matthew DesOrmeaux (@cynicusprime) September 18, 2015
But I held my tongue (at least in long-form). Now that everyone else has caught up, I have an even worse suspicion. No, Donald Trump isn’t a fascist. Rather, he’s not just a fascist. He’s a nihilist.
In most previous cases, fascism rose to power ideologically. A strong man with big (terrible) ideas whipped the people into a frenzy behind him and was elected or took power by force with his own heinous vision for the future. A casual look at Trump’s campaign slithering from one outrageous xenophobic proposal to the next has led some to smack him with the fascist label.
But I think most people are missing an important aspect of Trumpism. He doesn’t actually believe anything he says. In fact, he may not have any beliefs at all.