Trump’s War Against the Media Isn’t a War

[ Originally published on this site as post ]

Sick people.” “Fake news.” “Crooked.” “Dishonest.” People who are “trying to take away our history and our heritage.” The current American president is not a fan of the current American press. “I really think they don’t like our country,” Donald Trump explained, at a rally in Phoenix in August; the elaboration, at that point, of course, was unnecessary. Margaret Sullivan, a media columnist for The Washington Post, has called Trump’s angry dismissals of the American new media, as a whole, “the most sustained attack any president has ever made on the news media.”

The attacks are extreme. They are excerpted, albeit with a distinctly Trumpian flair, from the authoritarian handbook. They may well end in physical violence waged against members of