Modern Authoritarians use ideology to control the population. The leader talks about the “great past” the country once had. “Make America Great Again” is Trump’s famous line. The only problem, no one can agree when the country was great! Everyone has a different time period. Black people don’t have a great history in the USA. They spent most of their time as slaves or second-class citizens.
They speak to people’s fears both real and imagined. There are external and internal enemies. Villainizing legal and illegal immigrants stokes xenophobia. Hitler did it with the Jews. Trump does it with Hispanics. Duterte villainizes the “drug dealers” which is code for anyone opposing him. Some enemies can be both internal and external. In the USA, MS-13 is both a Central American gang and operates throughout the United States. It recruits both inside and outside the USA.
Control Over Life Choices
To control the adult population, the government housing system becomes a more significant part of the market. Want a nice house? Follow what the government tells you to do. In capitalism, work hard within the system and get a bigger house. Try to work outside capitalism or replace it with another system; you live in never-ending poverty. The public sector employees grow under Authoritarian regimes. In theory, if you are more dependent on the government, you are more compliant.
After indoctrinating the adults, authoritarians shift their focus to the next generation. The State takes complete control of the educational system. It’s not that hard to do as the government already controls most of the education system. They slowly change the curriculum to indoctrinate. Kim Jong-un’s father never went to the bathroom in his entire life according to North Korean school textbooks. The State can expel students for not following the “rules” or believing the doctrine. If you disagree, you are a lousy student and shunned by “polite” society.
Authoritarian leaders are taking control of major countries around the world. As more of the world’s population lives under Authoritarian and Authoritarian-leaning leaders, we need to stay ever vigilant to safeguard our human rights before they are gone. Under Authoritarian regimes, human rights get in the way of the government.
Stay in the way!