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Donald Trump has inspired blogger Manny Schewitz to update a famous quote attributed to writer Sinclair Lewis, the first American to win a Nobel Prize in literature.

Bless Donald Trump

Donald Trump: Anti-Prophet and Blessing—Ken Wolf

"When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross," Lewis supposedly said in the 1930s.

“When Fascism Comes To America, It’ll Come Wrapped In Racism And Wearing A Bad Toupee,” Schewitz headlined a recent posting on his Forward Progressives blog.

“We’ve seen a lot of hatred from the GOP over the past few months prior to the new resurgence of Islamic extremist terrorism,” Schewitz wrote. “They’ve talked a lot about America being a ‘Christian nation,’ and candidates like Donald Trump have embraced an ultra-nationalist ideology which is extremely disturbing.”

Trump—and every other Republican running for president—is also fiercely anti-union. Like me, Schewitz packs a union card, and his politics lean unapologetically leftward.

But Trump’s pandering to racial and religious bigotry is attracting charges of “fascism” from a few folks who proudly sport the “conservative” label.

“Trump is a fascist. And that's not a term I use loosely or often. But he's earned it," tweeted Max Boot, a conservative fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations. Boot is advising GOP presidential hopeful Marco Rubio, a Florida senator.

Ohio Gov. John Kasich, another Republican presidential candidate, has put out a web ad tying Trump to the Nazis.

“The 60-second spot, titled ‘Trump's Dangerous Rhetoric,’ features retired Air Force Col. Tom Moe, a prisoner of war in Vietnam, speaking at an event before Trump's campaign stop…in Columbus,” The Huffington Postreported. “Moe paraphrases Protestant pastor Martin Niemöller, who spoke out publicly against the Nazi regime and spent years in Nazi concentration camps, as images of Trump's controversial rhetoric flash on screen.”

“Forced federal registration of US citizens, based on religious identity, is fascism. Period. Nothing else to call it,” John Noonan, wrote on Twitter. Noonan is national security advisor to candidate Jeb Bush, President George W. Bush’s kid brother and a former Florida governor.

Another GOP aspirant, ex-Virginia governor Jim Gilmore, accused Trump of “fascist talk.”

Gilmore, Rubio, Bush and Gilmore are far behind Trump in the polls. Even so, bully for Boot, Kasich, Gilmore and Noonan for calling Trump’s blatantly bigoted hand.

Trump personifies everything the rest of the world despises about America: casual racism, crass materialism, relentless self-aggrandisement, vulgarity on an epic scale. He is the Ugly American in excelsis.

Yet the Republicans have nobody but themselves to blame for The Donald, according to Paul Thomas of The New Zealand Herald in Auckland, the nation’s largest city.

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Thomas doesn’t pull punches. “The takeover of American conservatism by evangelical Christianity, Fox News and a handful of shadowy billionaires has transformed the Republicans into the party of willful ignorance: doctrinal purity is more valued than intelligence; tolerance has been supplanted by persecutory moralising; paranoia has replaced realism.

“This process may be reaching its logical conclusion with the emergence of property billionaire Donald Trump as the front-runner for the party's presidential nomination.”

I suspect few Republicans care what foreigners like Thomas think of their party or of America. Indeed, they turn disdain from abroad to their advantage, claiming naysayers like Thomas are just jealous of America.

“Trump personifies everything the rest of the world despises about America: casual racism, crass materialism, relentless self-aggrandisement, vulgarity on an epic scale,” added Thomas. “He is the Ugly American in excelsis.”

Republicans might respond to doubting Thomas with the “USA! USA!” chant. But we’d be in a big-time bind if other countries refused to let us quarter our soldiers, dock our warships and base our warplanes on their soil. (New Zealand is a U.S. ally, having sent troops to fight alongside Americans in Vietnam and Afghanistan.)

“You might expect a tycoon/buffoon cross to be a political player in some Latin American failed state or backward former Soviet republic, places with no democratic tradition or public institutions that have stood the test of time and no such thing as ‘the people’ in the sense of an educated, civic-minded citizenry,” Thomas wrote

“The fact that so many Republicans are comfortable with the thought of this monumentally unqualified individual in the Oval Office shows how warped the party has become. To borrow the rhetoric of their candidates, the party is now an existential threat to America's leadership of the global community.”

The two other current frontrunning candidates for next year’s GOP presidential nod, Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas and Dr. Ben Carson, are almost Trump’s equals in rank demagoguery.

Cruz recently appeared at a forum where a preacher called for the execution of gays. Carson seemed to liken homosexuality to pedophilia and bestiality, and, feeling the heat, apologized. Carson also claimed gay marriage might lead to polygamy and he compared Syrian refugees to rabid dogs.<

But Trump is taking the hate cake.

“America has just lived through another presidential campaign week dominated by Donald Trump’s racist lies,” The New York Times recently editorialized. “Here’s a partial list of false statements: The United States is about to take in 250,000 Syrian refugees; African-Americans are responsible for most white homicides; and during the 9/11 attacks, ‘thousands and thousands’ of people in an unnamed ‘Arab’ community in New Jersey ‘were cheering as that building was coming down.’”

“In the Republican field, Mr. Trump has distinguished himself as fastest to dive to the bottom. If it’s a lie too vile to utter aloud, count on Mr. Trump to say it, often. It wins him airtime, and retweets through the roof.

[dc]“T[/dc]his phenomenon is in fact nothing new. Politicians targeting minorities, foreigners or women have always existed in the culture. And every generation or so, at least one demagogue surfaces to fan those flames.”

Berry Craig

A couple of other presidential candidates come to my mind – Segregationist “Dixiecrat” Strom Thurmond in 1948 and George—“segregation now, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever" – Wallace 20 years later.

Berry Craig