Fintan O’Toole: Trump’s test-marketing of barbarism entering new phase

Last year’s trial run for fascism was a success. Now the policy is being refined

Kirstjen Nielsen with Donald Trump, who dismissed her as  secretary for homeland security despite the fact that she  fully implemented his successful testing of the most basic human boundaries. Photograph: Al Drago/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Kirstjen Nielsen with Donald Trump, who dismissed her as secretary for homeland security despite the fact that she fully implemented his successful testing of the most basic human boundaries. Photograph: Al Drago/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Euphemism is integral to every level of atrocity, from collateral damage to legitimate target to final solution. A new one is marinating right now in the White House kitchen: binary choice.

It has absorbed all the necessary essences of modern evil. It has just the right self-cancelling contrariness of flavour: “binary” as the seasoning of technological rigour and moral neutrality, “choice” with the humane hint of sweetness and light. But it tastes of evil.

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