Weekly Lists

Experts in authoritarianism advise to keep a list of things
subtly changing around you, so you’ll remember.
Photo Highlights

March 18, 2017

Week 18

Events and actions this week lend credence to an evolving theme: Trump isn’t all that interested in typical legislative stuff like passing healthcare or his budget — his passion and focus are on enriching himself, and making America white.

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March 11, 2017

Week 17

This week, some threads from past weeks’ lists continue to unwind: Trump and his regime’s ties to Russia, conflicts of interest, and the dysfunctional and largely unstaffed executive branch. But the broader story of Week 17 is an underlying shift away from democracy, and it’s not subtle at all!

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March 04, 2017

Week 16

This week’s theme was undoubtedly the continued taint of the Trump regime for their ties to Russia. For the first time since Election Day, Trump seems unable to drive the media storylines.

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February 25, 2017

Week 15

This week had two themes. The first was Trump’s lack of empathy — the cruelty and heartlessness towards Americans not white, straight, Christian, and male. Trump and his regime continued to target the defenseless, including transgender individuals, Native Americans, and people of color. The second theme was Russia: ties between the Trump regime and Russia are continuing to pour out — meanwhile, the regime is actively seeking to suppress information.

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February 18, 2017

Week 14

After a slight reprieve last week, this week was again chaos, and the longest weekly list so far. An overarching theme to watch is the consolidation of power: positions in the executive branch are going unfilled and layoffs continue. Meanwhile, Trump, his children, and his small circle of insiders are making all major decisions domestically and abroad.

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February 11, 2017

Week 13

Given that we’re 13 weeks into this tracking exercise, starting this week I’ll be adding a section at the bottom of the list: “Some Things We’ve Already Normalized.” The goal is to remind us of items in the early lists, that at the time were unprecedented and shocking, but have long since been accepted and forgotten. We must remember what normal used to be in order to resist, and find our way back — and so we begin!

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February 04, 2017

Week 12

An observation on Week 12: several of the most important items in this very long list are the ones not getting coverage: including Ukraine, and the many abuses of power to silence dissent and stomp on ethics. Conflicts of interest abound, unfettered.

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January 28, 2017

Week 11

This week was chaos. Journalist Dan Rather described it as “the Twilight Zone,” and author Stephen King, “The ugliest first week of a presidency in the history of the American republic.” This week, there were numerous articles about Trump transforming America into an authoritarian state.

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January 21, 2017

Week 10

An observation: this week’s list includes two articles, one by McClatchy and one by the NYT, with breaking news on Russian interference in our election, including possible Trump team complicity. Both articles are shocking and disturbing, yet garnered little attention. It’s as if the American people are losing faith and trust in our institutions, and giving up that there will be accountability and consequences.

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January 14, 2017

Week 9

This was not a good week for our country: this is the longest, and most troubling list. I want to note that the purpose of the authoritarian list is to highlight subtle changes, and so business as usual, as upsetting as it may be — like the GOP’s attempt to repeal the ACA — are not covered.

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