“As a political ideology, fascism has eight main traits. As a political movement, it has three more,” writes historian John McNeill, a professor of history at Georgetown University. Then he grades Donald Trump on each characteristic:
- Glorification of violence and readiness to use it in politics.
- Fetishization of youth.
- Fetishization of masculinity.
- Leader cult.
- Lost-golden-age syndrome.
- Self-definition by opposition.
- Mass mobilization and mass party.
- Hierarchical party structure and tendency to purge the disloyal.
McNeill concludes that Trump is “the most dangerous threat to pluralist democracy in this country in more than a century” and “semi-fascist.”
But in comparison to real fascists in Germany, Spain and Portugal, “Trump is a loser. Even Spain’s Francisco Franco and Portugal’s António de Oliveira Salazar might score higher.”