It emerged late Thursday that the Justice Department had secretly seized years of email and phone records of a New York Times reporter in connection with a leak investigation. This marks a clear escalation of the Trump administration’s attempts to intimidate journalists and their sources. In doing so, it seems that the Justice Department may have violated its own policies for obtaining reporters’ communications — strict standards that are in place because of the importance the Constitution places on freedom of the press.
“Absolute power corrupts absolutely.”
*He was not the first to express such sentiment, but did obey Shakespeare’s axiom that “brevity is the soul of wit”.
The GOP, especially Trump are doing Goebbels proud.
The free press and an independent judiciary are critical for maintaining US democracy. It seems clear from this action and past actions that Trump is taking aim at both. The Republicans have been chipping away at a another critical part of democracy, the ability of citizens to elect representatives by gerrymandering, voter ID laws, purging voter rolls, etc. Unlike in Germany in the 1930s which quickly became a fascist state, it looks like the right is using a strategy of slow changes to transform the US into a fascist state controlled by the right. Although there remains a concern that some sort of event will provoke a state of emergency being called and in attempt to end democracy abruptly.
We haven’t had a free press for decades, operation mockingbird never ended.