While protests have taken place in the United States and around the world, the Huffington Post points out that from a European perspective, President Trump is nothing new: in fact, they have had their fair share of "mini-Trumps" for quite some time, each messing up its respective country in its own special way. Above, a video by Yale University, where professor Timothy Snyder discusses the politics of inevitability, and what European history can teach America about its future.
And yet, Trump is nothing new. Europeans have been dealing with their own mini-Trumps for decades. Silvio Berlusconi also began his career in real estate before becoming a billionaire media mogul. A womanizer and right-wing populist who promised to create a million jobs, Berlusconi led his Forza Italia party to victory more than 20 years ago in 1994. He would eventually serve as prime minister in four governments. He didn’t follow through on his promise to create a million jobs. In fact, the Italian economy sank deeper into debt and corruption, and Berlusconi became mired in a succession of scandals.
Silvio Berlusconi was, as The Economist put it indelicately, “the man who screwed an entire country.” Those are big shoes for Trump to fill.
Further east in Europe, Poland, Hungary, and Slovakia have all produced their own mini-Trumps over the years. As America braces itself for the landfall of Hurricane Trump, it’s instructive to look at the trajectory of these populist leaders for they hold clues to our future.
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