Every day’s news further and further substantiates that Donald Trump is in fact just as unhinged, unorganized and contemptuous of the rule of law as he seemed on the campaign trail. Because of this, the actual locus of power in the White House for the first week has been Trump’s advisor Steve Bannon.
Bannon used to be the CEO of white-supremacist website Breitbart and is now both the head of the National Security Council and Trump’s chief political advisor. Bannon was one of the key figures in bridging the gap between the “chicks are stealing our video games” digital lynch mobs and the war on Christmas people into the fascist insurgency currently attempting to seize unilateral power in the US.
In the speech to the Vatican, Bannon can barely hide his desire for WWIII to start. From the transcript:
“Now that call converges with something we have to face, and it’s a very unpleasant topic, but we are in an outright war against jihadist Islamic fascism. And this war is, I think, metastasizing far quicker than governments can handle it…
That war is expanding and it’s metastasizing to sub-Saharan Africa. We have Boko Haram and other groups that will eventually partner with ISIS in this global war, and it is, unfortunately, something that we’re going to have to face, and we’re going to have to face very quickly.”
Throughout the rest of the speech he singles out two other foes-secularization of the youth, and bizarrely enough Randian neoliberal capitalism. He singles out Putin as being dangerous. While this has been remarked upon in other articles, it’s important to note that this talk is from 2015, long before Bannon would’ve been aware of any specific relationship Trump had to Putin. Part of the Christopher Seele dossier was given more weight when $19.5 billion in Rosneft shares were transferred to an unknown beneficiary. The Seele dossier said that Trump was to be paid $19 billion in shares. This connection was pointed out by Yonotan Zunger. At this point in time I don’t think it’s unreasonable to suspect a Trump/Russia connection, even if inventing such a connection would seem tactically beneficial to the money bags in the DNC and the interests of the spy agencies.
To think that someone as arrogant as self-proclaimed “Darth Vader” Bannon would refuse to indirectly do business with Putin even if Putin seemed to be Bannon’s gravy train to incredible political power seems naive. Bannon, like the rest of Trump’s appointments and Trump himself, wants the power to impose his paranoid fantasies on the international scene.
What are these fantasies? When Bannon imagines power, what does it look like?
In The Turner Diaries and other foundational documents of the new Nazis, the proto-fascist right makes its aims distinct from those of the John Birch/Austrian neoliberal right. The proto-fascist right nurses intense fantasies of being provoked to violence by various minority groups so that they can be justified in slaughtering them. George Zimmerman and numerous police shootings have all followed this logic-homicidal intent justified by pretending to be a victim of imagined intimidation. It goes back to Bernard Goetz etc. It should be noted that Zimmerman was not white. Neither was Elliott Rodger, nor were several of the police who killed Freddie Grey. Whiteness is an aspirational ideology.
How much of this tradition is Bannon consciously embracing?
I accept the interpretation that the immigration ban was a trial balloon to assess how willing various governmental agencies were to ignore the judicial branch. It’s the only interpretation that makes it a coherent strategic move and I don’t think these people are quite as stupid as they seem.
The immigrant ban also raises international tensions. It acts as a giant advertisement for ISIL. Bannon and by extension Trump need ISIL to be as large as they can get them so that they can have grounds for a giant war. Executive wartime powers further consolidate leverage among the fascist police state’s inner circle.
Both Bannon and Trump want an informal domestic army beyond the right wing lone wolf shooters, police officers and terrorists that have enforced right terror up to now. They’re trying to get this through an executive order making concealed carry permits valid across state lines. Voter suppression is much easier when the person trying to vote has good reason to believe anyone making threats is likely armed. The proportion of gun ownership in the US skews heavily conservative
The coup continues…