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The message of 45 in his Poland speech was all about fear, painting images of a world teetering on the brink of disaster. On a smaller scale, the threat of imagined violence during the demonstrations in Hamburg against the G29 summit was a pretext for a massive police presence and the use of police violence against people who, at the time, were carrying out a peaceful demonstration. The disasters that threaten us are not those that 45 so vocally evokes, but rather those created by the policies that his fear-mongering and that of his acolytes make possible.

In response to my original post on Facebook, Rick wrote: There were plenty of disasters around the world before 45 arrived. He has made some of them worse. So has Magic Money Tree May, Let Them All In Merkel, Erodgan the Insane, Devil Dueterte, and an assortment of other corrupt characters.

Rick is right. 45 is not alone. But the comparison tends to relativise the damage done by 45. My intention in writing what I did was to underline that 45, and other leaders, some of whom he cites, use the threat of catastrophe to set one group of people against another (in particular minorities) so as to push through policies that otherwise would be unacceptable: curtailing the freedom of the media, limiting the right to protest or demonstrate or even to question government decisions, removing the right to a fair trial, undoing policies designed to help the poorer people, giving massive tax cuts to the very rich while taxing the poorest, repealing laws designed to protect workers, the more vulnerable citizens and the environment, using his office as president to make his companies and those of his family all the richer, … and ultimately challenging reality so that his fear-mongering claims go unchallenged by most. That is why 45 and his cohort of neoliberals are the major fermentors of catastrophes (or at least who profit from naturally occurring ones by ignoring the needs of the stricken while using the wave of shock and public confusion to push through their own agenda).

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