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-   -   Let's say that Trump went 'Bat-Shit Crazy' and wanted to permanently end all dissent in the US.... (https://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?t=882290)

Mundane Super Hero 09-18-2019 07:01 PM

Let's say that Trump went 'Bat-Shit Crazy' and wanted to permanently end all dissent in the US....
 
He'd have a plan that he'd implement, but he'd want to sew confusion among the people, right?

What websites would he have his people crash first?

How would he justify sending police to peoples houses to arrest them for a dissenting political views?

Would 'Party Faithful' in neighborhoods be escalated to the rank of Kommissar... in charge of control (and execution) of neighbors who disagree with Dear Leader?

How would he go about it? Ship citizens into ICE camps? Separate them from their children? Would he demand that some mark be on the frond door like lambs blood to stave off the angel of death? Maybe a flagpole?


Seriously, how would he do it?

Euphonious Polemic 09-18-2019 07:17 PM

- Accuse certain media outlets of Treason, and get a top level crony at the FCC to shut them down. Use a sharpie to alter evidence if necessary. MSNBC, CNN, Time, Washington Post, New York Times, Buzzfeed, Politico, New Yorker. These are all deemed "security risks" by Homeland Security. Done via executive action or tweet. No "crashing" of websites. Taken down by responsible government officials, for your own safety.

- Police would not be sent to your house. At first. As long as you did not actively protest. If you protested in public, your name would be noted, and you would be charged with criminal offenses. "Ringleaders" and "Troublemakers" would face appropriate legal action. All very above board. If you support the protests you are Antifa. You are a danger to society.

- There will be plenty of volunteers to watch neighborhoods to make sure that Antifa are not infiltrating. Perhaps a national tip line could be established, for safety against Antifa. There are already those on the ground who are keen on participating any way that they can, such as patriot Shane Kohfield:
Quote:

“What is the detailed plan to wipe out antifa?” he probed, repeating the question again before Kohfield launched into it.

After extensive information-gathering involving finding home addresses and dividing cities into grids assigned to specific anti-antifa military veterans, Kohfield said, “the veterans will be broken down into squads.”

The squads, he said, would be given a list of addresses of “the most violent antifa members” and would work “until every one of them was gone in every city in America, if need be, in a single well-coordinated night.”

Larson pressed again: What would be the plan for antifa members found sleeping in their beds, who pose no immediate threat to anyone?

“Well, according to the plan, it would be kill,” Kohfield replied.

Euphonious Polemic 09-18-2019 07:34 PM

Plenty of patriots willing to help out.

Note, this man is not "crazy". He is a respected man of God, and I hope there are no Christian-haters out there who bash him for his religious convictions.

Quote:

During an appearance on Sheila Zilinsky’s podcast this Tuesday, Taylor recounted a conversation he had with God last year, where he was told that if President Trump doesn’t carry out mass arrests of high-level Democratic politicians by this January, there will be blood in the streets.

“What the Lord has shown me is that if they wait too long, it could be another Mogadishu or another Benghazi where the patriots will rise up and say, ‘Enough is enough,’ and they will take matters into their own hands and they will drag their dead bodies through the streets,” Taylor said, adding that these patriots (presumably Trump supporters) will literally hunt down Democrats and drag them out of their “houses or offices.”

“The people are not asking for justice, they are demanding it, so the government has to act,” Taylor said.

PhillyGuy 09-18-2019 08:11 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mundane Super Hero (Post 21868834)
How would he justify sending police to peoples houses to arrest them for a dissenting political views?

It wouldn't matter how he justified it.

But other parts of the rule of law would have to collapse first.

The most obvious path is if CNN, ABC, NY Times, etc., project the Democrat to have won the Nov. 2020 election. Trump then says that it was rigged and his supporters designate slates of Trumpist electors from states he lost, claiming that without fraud he wins those states. Then, when the vice-president presides over the electoral vote count, Pence has to decide whether he subscribes to democracy or dictatorship.

If the Supreme Court we have now were to rule against Trump having a second (or third!) term -- and Trump managed to defy it -- the democratic game, in the U.S., would be up (at least until the dictatorship collapses, or is overthrown).

Democracy doesn't usually collapse quickly. Our best hope is that, due to advanced age, Trump lacks the time and energy to go full caudillo. If he were fifteen years younger, I'd be more worried about your scenario.

Superdude 09-18-2019 08:12 PM

Nitpick, OP... it's "sow confusion," not "sew confusion."

Miller 09-18-2019 08:33 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Superdude (Post 21868946)
Nitpick, OP... it's "sow confusion," not "sew confusion."

So confusing!

Fretful Porpentine 09-18-2019 08:33 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mundane Super Hero (Post 21868834)
He'd have a plan that he'd implement...

I'm pretty sure THIS is the part that is the wildly counterfactual hypothetical, not the part in the thread title.

(I don't, however, see any practical way that it could be done, even if implementing plans were Trump's strong suit; about the only thing that might allow him to do any such thing is taking advantage of some crisis to declare emergency powers, and he'd still have the problem that the potential dissenters outnumber the Trump loyalists.)

manson1972 09-18-2019 08:41 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Miller (Post 21868989)
So confusing!

Sew what?

PhillyGuy 09-18-2019 08:55 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Fretful Porpentine (Post 21868990)
I don't, however, see any practical way that it could be done, even if implementing plans were Trump's strong suit . . .

Yep. Even Putin hasn't done what the OP suggests.

There's a big middle ground between totalitarianism and freedom. In that middle ground, most of the cable operators could have been intimidated into, oh, say, dropping CNN -- but there are no mass arrests, and we might even still discuss how bad Trump is here. That is the kind of move to partial freedom possible in a Trump 2nd term, and likely if Trump manages the 3rd term he keeps on joking about.

E-DUB 09-18-2019 08:59 PM

You guys are putting things way out of order. Before you can have Kristallnacht, you have to have the Reichstag fire. The precipitating incident has to come first. Maybe combining the Reichstag fire with the "Night of the Long Knives" and get groups like "The Proud Boys" out of the way first, blame the whole thing on Antifa, and you're good to go.

Little Nemo 09-18-2019 09:07 PM

I think part of Trump's plan (or maybe the plan of somebody in his administration) involves provoking riots.

That's the reason for the terrible conditions of the ICE round-ups and camps. It's not due to incompetence. It's deliberate. The Trump administration wants to make the conditions so bad that people are driven to fight back.

And when that happens, the Trump administration will be sure to have the cameras rolling. The public won't think about the causes for the rioting; they'll just see footage of brown people rioting and be afraid. And then the Trump administration will say "Just give us the power we need to protect you from this."

Sherrerd 09-19-2019 07:02 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Little Nemo (Post 21869031)
I think part of Trump's plan (or maybe the plan of somebody in his administration) involves provoking riots.

That's the reason for the terrible conditions of the ICE round-ups and camps. It's not due to incompetence. It's deliberate. The Trump administration wants to make the conditions so bad that people are driven to fight back.

And when that happens, the Trump administration will be sure to have the cameras rolling. The public won't think about the causes for the rioting; they'll just see footage of brown people rioting and be afraid. And then the Trump administration will say "Just give us the power we need to protect you from this."

Yes, that's no doubt a favorite fantasy of Stephen Miller et al. And if they think they can get away with it, they'll give it a try.

Quote:

Originally Posted by PhillyGuy (Post 21868944)
...The most obvious path is if CNN, ABC, NY Times, etc., project the Democrat to have won the Nov. 2020 election. Trump then says that it was rigged and his supporters designate slates of Trumpist electors from states he lost, claiming that without fraud he wins those states. Then, when the vice-president presides over the electoral vote count, Pence has to decide whether he subscribes to democracy or dictatorship. ...

Are you suggesting there's actual doubt about this?

my emphasis

Babale 09-21-2019 11:59 AM

Trump isn't going to become a dictator. He's not going to send squads door to door to wipe out dissent. But what he's already done is erode the faith that we as a nation have in the democratic institutions in this country. He's not Julius Ceasar, he's not even Lucius Sulla. He's Tiberius Gracchi, and the real question is, when he's gone, do we make sweeping reforms to our democratic system to ensure it actually represents the will of the people? Or do we keep our current system with no reform, and wait for a Sulla or a Ceasar?

asahi 09-21-2019 01:28 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Little Nemo (Post 21869031)
I think part of Trump's plan (or maybe the plan of somebody in his administration) involves provoking riots.

That's the reason for the terrible conditions of the ICE round-ups and camps. It's not due to incompetence. It's deliberate. The Trump administration wants to make the conditions so bad that people are driven to fight back.

And when that happens, the Trump administration will be sure to have the cameras rolling. The public won't think about the causes for the rioting; they'll just see footage of brown people rioting and be afraid. And then the Trump administration will say "Just give us the power we need to protect you from this."

Emphasis on riots plural.

The Trump administration could attempt to impose martial law, but they need to create a state of perpetual crisis. He needs to have just enough people who are willing to defer to an authoritarian crackdown, and the way it happens is through perpetual crisis. Look at what anti-democrats are doing in Hong Kong. They respond to largely peaceful protests with resistance to the demands of protesters, but also with aggressive counter-protests in which police forces encourage violence. In doing that, this creates a sense of heightened tension among the pro-democracy protesters, and it amplifies their outrage, which could lead some protesters to protest more aggressively going forward. Eventually, the protesters themselves look like the aggressors, and just enough people throw their hands up and say "enough already". Humans may want freedom, but we also want order. There are people who are willing to give up some liberty in order to have peace and tranquility.

HurricaneDitka 09-21-2019 03:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Babale (Post 21873790)
Trump isn't going to become a dictator. He's not going to send squads door to door to wipe out dissent. ...

This is reality (and you'd all do well to remember it). However, the thread is about a hypothetical, and as such, I suppose we could try to imagine how it might go. First off, if President Trump wanted to "permanently end all dissent in the US", he's going to need a bunch of people to go 'Bat-Shit Crazy' with him. It's not something he could do on his own.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mundane Super Hero (Post 21868834)
He'd have a plan that he'd implement, but he'd want to sew confusion among the people, right? ...

I don't know that "confusion" is ideal. I'd think making it crystal clear that dissent won't be tolerated is the best way to "permanently end all dissent".

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mundane Super Hero (Post 21868834)
... What websites would he have his people crash first? ...

I don't think there's much benefit in "crash[ing]" websites. They're probably his best tools to track down dissidents. Leave them up, and mine 'em for data.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mundane Super Hero (Post 21868834)
... How would he justify sending police to peoples houses to arrest them for a dissenting political views? ...

How he'd justify it seems unimportant if we've already conceded that people are willing to go along with arresting dissidents for their political views.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mundane Super Hero (Post 21868834)
... Would 'Party Faithful' in neighborhoods be escalated to the rank of Kommissar... in charge of control (and execution) of neighbors who disagree with Dear Leader? ...

Oh, I doubt he'd use a commie rank system like "Kommissar". Something more 'Merican, like "Patriot".

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mundane Super Hero (Post 21868834)
... How would he go about it? Ship citizens into ICE camps? Separate them from their children? Would he demand that some mark be on the frond door like lambs blood to stave off the angel of death? Maybe a flagpole? ...

Putting them in camps sounds like a waste of taxpayer money. I'd think he'd either deport them immediately, or just kill them. What purpose would it serve to keep them hanging around?

Wesley Clark 09-21-2019 03:45 PM

dictatorships don't just form from democracy overnight. You have to do a lot of things first.

Pack the courts with loyalists
Control the media
make the legislative branch an advisory body
Arm the police, military and militias while disarming everyone else
Abolish/control labor unions, student groups, NGOs
Obtain a steady stream of capital to pay off your loyalists and buy loyalty
Suppress the vote, promote sham voting, rig the ballot counts, etc

If Trump went batshit crazy he'd probably try to use various executive orders to claim criticism of him was treason and call on the military to suppress it. Whether the military would do it, I don't know.

Babale 09-21-2019 04:42 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by HurricaneDitka (Post 21874043)
This is reality (and you'd all do well to remember it).

Just to remind you, that was followed up by:

But what he's already done is erode the faith that we as a nation have in the democratic institutions in this country.

That's the important part. Just FYI.

kayaker 09-21-2019 05:28 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Superdude (Post 21868946)
Nitpick, OP... it's "sow confusion," not "sew confusion."

Some sew confusion.

Velocity 09-21-2019 05:38 PM

I think asahi nailed it. When a government cracks down on opposition with forces, it coerces the opposition into a tough binary choice: They can either 1) just lie down, submit and take it and admit defeat, or 2) they can resist with force, which then generates an image of "chaos and unrest," and then "justifies" further governmental crack down.

The reason China can get away with it in Hong Kong and Trump can't in America, though, is because Chinese leaders don't have to fear upcoming elections; they don't answer to voters.

MartinLane 09-21-2019 07:02 PM

I don't think Trump would have the backing of the military for anything very forceful against citizens. He has insulted the military on various occasions and is trying to divert funds from military operations/construction to build a wall he promised Mexico would pay for.

HurricaneDitka 09-21-2019 08:46 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Babale (Post 21874163)
Just to remind you, that was followed up by:

But what he's already done is erode the faith that we as a nation have in the democratic institutions in this country.

That's the important part. Just FYI.

He hasn't eroded MY faith in them. Has yours been eroded?

Lightnin' 09-22-2019 10:49 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by HurricaneDitka (Post 21874476)
He hasn't eroded MY faith in them. Has yours been eroded?

I don't think anyone would be particularly surprised to hear that your faith hasn't been eroded by Trump's actions.

kaylasdad99 09-25-2019 04:56 AM

Let's say that Trump went 'Bat-Shit Crazy' and wanted to permanently end all dissent in the US....
 
What, you haven’t seen his Twitter feed?

septimus 09-25-2019 02:00 PM

I clicked the links in #2 and #3. Wow.

I'll just say again: The U.S.A. is lucky that the Orange Clown is only an almost incontinent brat who usurped our country primarily just to bilk the taxpayer out of a few millions. How much worse things would be if this oaf had the intelligence of a real tyrant.


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