Michael Moore Wants You To Know That We Are In The Middle Of 'A 21st Century Coup'
On Monday night, activist filmmaker Michael Moore tweeted out a warning, telling his 3.85 million followers that anyone who hadn't yet realized "a 21st century coup" was underway needed to snap out of it.
Moore's tweet linked to a New York Times article about Trump advisor Stephen Bannon being given a national security role usually reserved for generals. Bannon has also been credited with being behind many of the new administration's most extreme positions.
Moore, who has been a vocal critic of President Trump, is not alone in his fears. On Saturday, a Google engineer went viral with a Medium post about whether the immigration ban issued by Trump on Friday (and the ensuing chaos) was a "trial balloon for a coup."
Yonatan Zunger, the engineer who authored the post, posited that the administration was "testing the extent to which the DHS (and other executive agencies) can act and ignore orders from the other branches of government," as Trump systematically reduces longstanding checks on executive power.
"This is as serious as it can possibly get: all of the arguments about whether order X or Y is unconstitutional mean nothing if elements of the government are executing them and the courts are being ignored," Zunger explained. Eerily, this was written before Trump fired acting Attorney General Sally Yates on Monday night for refusing to enforce challenges to the ban.
But what exactly is a coup? In the simplest of terms, it has to do with the seizure of power, specifically the illegal seizure of power by a small group of people at the top. "A coup consists of the infiltration of a small but critical segment of the state apparatus, which is then used to displace the government from its control of the remainder," according to military strategist Edward Luttwak, who wrote a seminal book about coups.
Well, that definitely doesn't sound anything like what's happening in America at the moment! Keep moving everyone, nothing to see here...
In the meantime, people are still being subject to lengthy detentions at Los Angeles International Airport, and Moore has called on citizens to show up en masse at their local courthouses and federal buildings tonight when Trump announces his pick for the Supreme Court.
We must all go to our local federal building or US Dist Courthouse tonight as Trump announces his Supreme Court pick. Dems must block this!— Michael Moore (@MMFlint) January 31, 2017