They Aren’t Even Pretending Anymore

It is becoming impossible for any honest person to deny the transformation of America’s Republican Party into a racist, anti-Semitic, anti-gay, misogynistic authoritarian cult.  At the recent CPAC meeting in Dallas, speakers and attendees were “out and proud” about that transformation–wildly applauding no less a Neo-Nazi than Viktor Orban.

Viktor Orban, the Hungarian prime minister who has consolidated autocratic power with hard-right opposition to immigration and liberal democracy, addressed a crowd of thousands of American admirers in Dallas on Thursday with a red-meat speech that could have easily been delivered by any Republican candidate on the campaign trail this year.
 Orban presented the two countries as twin fronts in a struggle against common enemies he described as globalists, progressives, communists and “fake news.”

The former GOP would have uninvited Orban after his delivery of a widely reported and truly horrifying speech in which–among other things– he railed against Europe becoming “mixed race.”  In the wake of that speech, one of his  close advisers resigned in protest, calling the speech “pure Nazi.”

Among Republicans In the U.S., however, there was nothing but agreement;  Donald Trump, Tucker Carlson and Ohio Senate candidate J.D. Vance applauded the speech, and Trump referred to Orban as his “good friend.” 

As the Guardian noted, the assembled crowd “roared, whooped and gave Orban a standing ovation.”

Calling for Christian nationalists to “unite forces”, Orbán told CPAC: “Victory will never be found by taking the path of least resistance. We must take back the institutions in Washington and in Brussels. We must find friends and allies in one another. We must coordinate the movements of our troops because we face the same challenge.”

He noted that US midterm elections will be later this year followed by the presidential contest and European parliamentary elections in 2024. “These two locations will define the two fronts in the battle being fought for western civilisation. Today, we hold neither of them. Yet we need both.”

Rarely has the alliance between nationalist parties across the Atlantic been so bold, overt and unshackled. CPAC was once the domain of cold warrior Ronald Reagan. But in recent years guest speakers have included the Brexit cheerleader Nigel Farage and Marion Maréchal-Le Pen, niece of the far-right French politician Marine Le Pen.

A Washington Post column by former Republican Max Boot described the speech and the response.

All you need to know about the state of the Republican Party today is what happened at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Dallas on Thursday. Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, who has been destroying his country’s democracy, received a standing ovation less than two weeks after he gave a speech in Romania in which he endorsed the white supremacist “replacement theory” and denounced a “mixed-race world.”

One of Orban’s longtime advisers quit over what she described as a speech “worthy of Goebbels” before backtracking a bit. But Orban hasn’t recanted his repugnant views, and right-wingers in Dallas thrilled to his denunciations of immigration, abortion, LGBTQ rights and “the Woke Globalist Goliath.” He even excoriated Jewish financier George Soros, a Hungarian native, as someone who “hated Christianity.” The racist and anti-Semitic signaling was not subtle.

Boot took to task the observers who see the primary victories of Georgia’s  Governor Brian Kemp and Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger as evidence of Trump’s waning influence in the party.

That was an aberration. In other races across the country, Republicans are nominating far-right fanatics who claim that the 2020 presidential election — and any election that they lose, for that matter — was “rigged.” By refusing to accept electoral defeat, they embrace authoritarianism…

Taking a cue from Trump, the winners of Republican primaries traffic in authoritarian imagery and rhetoric. Guns have become a de rigueur accessory in GOP campaign commercials. Arizona U.S. Senate nominee Blake Masters wants to lock up Anthony S. Fauci for trying to slow the spread of covid-19. And Arizona gubernatorial nominee Kari Lake wants to lock up her opponent for certifying Biden’s election victory.

Boot is hardly the only former Republican appalled by the extremist takeover of the party and the abandonment of long-held principles.

The libertarian-leaning Republican Party I grew up with in the 1980s is long gone and not coming back. Republicans still use the language of “freedom,” but their idea of freedom is warped: They want Americans to be free to carry weapons of war or spread deadly diseases but not to terminate a pregnancy or discuss gender or sexuality in school….

The most apt phrase for this American authoritarianism is the New Fascism, and it is fast becoming the dominant trend on the right. If the GOP gains power in Washington, all of America will be in danger of being Orbanized.

Ironically, Orban and the GOP embody their own “globalism”–that  of the fascist Right.


  1. Well, anybody doing a little research of their own will see that the comedian turned hero leader in Ukraine is no less of a Neo-Nazi by jailing all opposition. Most of the banana republics the USA has set up across the globe are of the Neo-Nazi brand because that is the only way to force decaying capitalism on a populace.

    Sadly, it requires brute force, except in the USA, where the zombies are glued to their TV sets and will willingly support policies against their interests and applaud the oligarch class for being good businessmen.

    The GOP today is our future, and they will use the national surveillance and intelligence apparatus against the opposition. It’s coming while the pathetic Ds set it up for them.

    It’s a show coordinated by the mass media owned by the plutarchy. The oligarchs know their only resistance will come from the left, which the D party keeps squashing but will be unable to contain the young people. They are much more awake and will work around the D party. They are forming their worker unions. Same in the UK.

    It’s pretty obvious to see if Americans would just turn off their TVs and do a little of their research. The propaganda keeps the American delusion alive for the Oligarchs.

  2. I have said before and will say again, the House Un-American Activities Committee needs to be reactivated and concentrate on all Trump Republicans now sitting in office and running for office in this mid-term election.

    The appearance of Hungary’s PM Viktor Orban speaking here in this country before Trump’s Republicans reminded me of the old news reels from WWII of Hitler’s speeches with UK’s abdicated King Edward and his American bride, Wallis Simpson, sitting in the front row with Hitler’s top generals. Does anyone understand how fortunate the entire world was then that Wallis had Edward so “whipped” he abdicated his position as King of England taking with them his support of Hitler’s Fascism? This country is being turned more and more toward that WWII Hitler dictatorship control within our own Congress in this 21st Century America. The Cincinnati FBI office attacked by one of the January 6th insurrectionists with an AR-15 may become today’s firing on Fort Sumter which started the Civil War or “the shot heard ’round the world” which began the American Revolution. Today it will be the “Un-American Revolution”. Only the inauguration of President Biden on January 20, 2020 and the slim majority of the Democratic party prevented it from happening at that time.

    A reinstated House Un-American Activities Committee might want to take a close look at Todd Smeckens whose ugly comments today sicken me. Only Sheila’s requirement of commenters remaining civil to one another is keeping my thought in my head rather than stating them here. It should be no surprise here in Indiana to have our own Rush Limbaugh with a following in small towns within his voice range where we have so many “Good Americans” to compare with those WWII “Good Germans”. His comment “The GOP is our future…” has been the meaning of most of his daily statements here in one form or another.

  3. JoAnn, take my advice and just bypass Todd’s comments.

    Unfortunately, too many people just want to be left alone. Don’t ask most Americans to care about the Constitution. They’ve never read it and have no idea what it’s even about. Don’t ask them to get out and vote. They believe, like Todd, that it’s just two sides of the same coin. Don’t ask them to get engaged. They don’t have the time. “Don’t ask them!” should be our national motto.

    Now may I say a word of appreciation for Merrick Garland? Yesterday he called tRump’s bluff AND he defended the men and women who work for him. I sometimes dream of having a guy like that on the Supreme Court.

  4. I have been watching an excellent 9-part documentary on Amazon Prime called: “The Impossible Peace”. It is about the short span of 20 years between the two World Wars of the last century. The most fascinating aspect of it to me is the general rise of fascism, nationalism in Italy, Germany and Japan and the leaders whose political fortunes bloomed as a result, especially Mussolini and Hitler. The former reminded me so much of Trump I had to laugh – they are both bombastic clown shows. Hitler reminded me more of DeSantis (or DeathSantis as his detractors call him).

    But the other key parallel between then and now is not as obvious. The name if the series calls out the conditions of the world at the end of WWI, which were extremely unstable and fragile, and the political climate of countries on every continent volatile. It made me think of the events that have led to the condition of political instability in the world today and three come to mind: The breakup of the USSR in the early 90’s, the 9/11 attack on the World Trade Center, and the collapse of the global financial system in 2008. Again, a span of only 20 years.

    It reminded me of writers over that period of time who argued that America’s elected officials have drastically underestimated the tectonic changes that these global events launched and how they have mostly just done everything they can to maintain the current global and national power structure and institutions….thinking that ALL of its elements are equally sacrosanct. That they were and are obviously not is what led to the rise of “Lock Her Up” on the right, and “Black Lives Matter” on the left.

    The 1930’s had their Roosevelt, but I don’t see his 2020’s Doppelgänger. Not yet anyway.

    Check it out:

    Watch Impossible Peace: The Time Between World Wars | Prime Video

  5. Peggy; Todd’s comments and his “Voice of Muncie” are why we need to fear the local rural Republicans who are keeping Trump in control.

  6. JoAnn and Peggy,
    I’m going to start a drinking game-
    every time he writes ‘oligarchs’ I take a shot!
    You know I could single handedly support our local liquor spot!
    I do feel bad for the residents of Muncie, however. Other than Ball State, not much going on there any more.

  7. Peggy,

    You are so right on: “Unfortunately, too many people just want to be left alone. Don’t ask most Americans to care about the Constitution. They’ve never read it and have no idea what it’s even about. Don’t ask them to get out and vote. They believe, like Todd, that it’s just two sides of the same coin. Don’t ask them to get engaged. They don’t have the time. “Don’t ask them!” should be our national motto.”

    They need an existential threat – climate doesn’t seem to be enough, Covid wasn’t enough, The Duck wasn’t enough…where are the Martians when we need them?

  8. Apparently, the GOPIGS (Not PIGGIES, any longer) are at a place from which “pretend” is no longer needed.
    I expect that if the FBI attacker had survived he’d find succor in Orban’s home, and applause from some of
    Trump’s major supporters. It will not be surprise, to me, to hear him getting post-mortem kudos from some of
    our very own congresspeople.
    Allow me to introduce you to a forerunner of the most recent CPAC meeting. I’m sure that Goebbels was literally
    very pleased with this:

  9. Really Lester?

    I am very involved, but repeating actions that don’t make a difference is insanity. Party cheerleaders get all emotional and reactionary to the shenanigans of the GOP hyped by our mass media outlets 24/7.

    Have you noticed there are never any meaningful consequences or changes?

    If you look over these fiascos, you will see the money and the oligarchs pulling the strings to their benefit. Look beyond the puppet show.

  10. It is far past the time to call the far right goppers exactly what they are – Fascist Nazis! No more referring to them as anything less than what they are. The gop long ago started using derogatory words for democrats and progressives as part of their propaganda to take control of the narrative. Being civil and kind when speaking about their nazi characteristics and their plan to turn this country into a fascist regime has not ever worked and never will work. They are all bullies and that is why they admired and still admire trump. When dealing with bullies the only thing that stops them is when they are treated the same way they treat others. You can’t change their minds or behavior with kindness or understanding.

    We have got to start shoving them back into their rat holes now.

  11. BIG THANKS TO MITCH FOR POSTING THIS LINK! If you haven’t seen it….take a look & then share it.

  12. I’ve got to be Debbie Downer.

    If the Republicans are so bad,why are Democrats doing everything possible to become just like them? Outside of the Democratic Party apparatchiks, everyone is well aware Democrats are Republican-Lite.

    Democrats and Progressives have become mutually exclusive. Just because one is a Democrat does not mean one is Progressive with a capital P. There is way too much empirical evidence to substantiate my statement. In fact,I would go as far as to say the DNC and DLC acolytes hate Progressives much more so than they hate Republicans. Support for Manchin and Sinema come to mind. “Vote Blue No Matter Who”. How puerile. Indeed,both private organizations are not pretending anymore. Why would anyone vote for either orgs unless you’ve been conditioned to follow the formula,bury your head in the sand and support kayfabe.

    Acolytes of political orgs remind me of WWE fans. And followers of religious cults.

  13. And yet, the loyal Republicans who would never embrace neo-Nazis still subscribe to the “party over all” loyalty, hoping if they close their eyes, everything will go back to Reagan.

    Nancy, you are so right – We call Manchin “moderate”, except that he is a conservative Democrat – Biden is the moderate and Warren is the progessive – big tent. But then they call Collins a “moderate” while she goes along with the GOP slide into the Orban sphere. The GOP have embrace white nationalism — full stop.

  14. There is no question that there are many Americans who have been taught all of the conceivable threats to their advantages and are resisting all of them. That’s the way of the entitled. After all, that’s what aristocracy has always done. That’s why we had to fight so hard in the Revolution, Civil, and World Wars, they didn’t want to give we the people anything without a fight.

    Equality is that hard.

  15. Peggy and Joann: Yes, yes, yes!
    Beth: To Todd’s list you must be sure to add Julian Assange. He’s obsessed with that guy. You’ll get more shots that way. Better buy extra!

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