In Thursday’s New York Times, reporter Alexander Burns brought in 88-year-old Walter Mondale, failed presidential candidate in 1984, to bash Trump as a “hate advocate” in “Trump May Break Mold, but He Fits a Pattern, Too.” (A Nazi one.) Another aggrieved reporter defended Hillary Clinton from GOP “venom” that had a “strikingly sinister tone that makes the days of Swift-boating and Bush-bashing at past conventions seem tame.”
Walter F. Mondale, the former vice president and 1984 Democratic presidential nominee, said he saw Mr. Trump as an heir to a tradition of isolationism and cultural paranoia that surfaces from time to time as a “recurrent theme” in American politics. Mr. Trump, he said, had articulated a familiar exhortation “for America to withdraw from the world, that we have only threats coming from abroad.”
Mr. Mondale, 88, said Mr. Trump appeared determined to undermine American traditions of internationalism and multiculturalism. He called Mr. Trump a “hate advocate.”
Historians see in Mr. Trump’s candidacy the winding together of different strains in reactionary politics under a single banner. No reality television star has run for president before, but Mr. Trump, with his grasp of the art of notoriety, has forebears of a kind in General MacArthur and Charles A. Lindbergh, the celebrity aviator whose “America First” slogan Mr. Trump has appropriated, and in Hearst and Henry Ford, a pair of renowned and eccentric tycoons who eyed the presidency.
His message contains echoes of George Wallace, the segregationist Alabama governor who sought the White House on a law-and-order platform, and of Mr. Perot and Lee A. Iacocca, modern industrialists drawn to politics and preoccupied with economic threats from Asia and Latin America.
To the extent that he has an ideology, it is a kind of fortress conservatism, taking a bunkered outlook on the world and fixating on challenges to America’s economic supremacy and to its character as a nation defined by the white working class.
In domestic matters, Mr. Trump’s main impulse is toward hard-line law and order. He is indifferent to civil liberties and contemptuous of objections to racial targeting. For decades, he has described the country as harried by rampant crime, and has typically placed blame with different nonwhite communities, including urban blacks, Hispanic immigrants and Native Americans.
Long before he called for banning Muslim immigration and torturing terrorism suspects, Mr. Trump argued for unleashing the New York Police Department to attack social unrest with a mailed fist. He spoke approvingly of the Chinese government’s brutal crackdown in Tiananmen Square. He recently expressed admiration for Vladimir V. Putin, Russia’s autocratic president, and Saddam Hussein, the Iraqi dictator, whom he praised as tough on terrorism.
He is not the first American businessman with presidential aspirations to be drawn to strongman government: Hearst and Ford, the anti-Semitic car manufacturer who considered a presidential bid in 1924, both maintained cordial and even admiring relations with emerging fascist regimes in Italy and Germany.
Burns let a pro-Hillary group basically call Trump a Nazi.
Meg Whitman, a Republican who runs Hewlett Packard Enterprise, reached for a different comparison: At a June conference hosted by Mitt Romney, she said Mr. Trump reminded her of the rise of Mussolini in Italy and of Hitler’s National Socialist Party in Germany.
That darker view is shared by some in Hillary Clinton’s orbit. The Center for American Progress, a liberal think tank with extensive ties to Mrs. Clinton, conducted a study of Mr. Trump’s ideology in the spring and concluded that his candidacy was an echo of the European far right. Neera Tanden, the group’s president, said Mr. Trump was “very consistently a national socialist.”
Reporter Alan Rappeport was aggrieved on Hillary Clinton’s behalf in “From Links to Lucifer to Calls for Execution, Republicans Seethe at Hillary Clinton.”
There have been aerial signs reading “Hillary for Prison,” rallying cries of “lock her up,” misogynistic souvenir swag mocking her body parts and, in a violent turn, a public call for Hillary Clinton to be executed.
Political conventions are usually a mix of talking up the party’s nominee and denouncing the opponent. But as Republicans gather in Cleveland to nominate Donald J. Trump, the venom being directed at Mrs. Clinton, the presumptive Democratic nominee, has taken a strikingly sinister tone that makes the days of Swift-boating and Bush-bashing at past conventions seem tame.
Here are some of the harshest attacks leveled at Mrs. Clinton this week.
Hillary Clinton’s responsibility for the deaths of Americans in Benghazi, Libya, in 2012 has been a regular topic of conversation among Republicans, and on Tuesday Al Baldasaro, a delegate for Mr. Trump from New Hampshire who advises him on veterans issues, suggested that she had committed treason.
“This whole thing disgusts me -- Hillary Clinton should be put in the firing line and shot for treason,” Mr. Baldasaro said on The Kuhner Report radio show.
Mrs. Clinton has not been charged with committing any crimes.
If execution is taking things too far, sending Mrs. Clinton to prison is another popular wish at the Republican National Convention.
The chants of “lock her up!” echoed through Quicken Loans Arena on Monday night when Michael Flynn, a retired lieutenant general advising Mr. Trump, ripped into Mrs. Clinton for her “careless” use of a private email server as secretary of state.
No such worries were voiced by Times journalists when liberals for years called for Bush and his national security team to be frog-marched to jail for war crimes for the invasion of Iraq.
A trio of Times reporters live blogged the third night of the convention and didn’t appreciate the media being called out for bias -- and after hours of whining about the low-energy of the convention hall, one reporter lambasted Ted Cruz for going off script and making politics exciting/enraging again.
Adam Nagourney: "The attack on the press is the biggest applause line of the night. Yikes."
Nick Confessore: "You’ll never go wrong dissing the press at a Republican campaign event. Or, increasingly, at a Democratic one....It often substitutes for having anything substantive to say.”
Here’s Nagourney attacking Ted Cruz after a speech in which the senator failed to endorse Donald Trump: “That Cruz-Trump thing was like historically bad. It showed how fractured the party is. It’s going to dominate the news tomorrow. And Trump will not forget....For Cruz, it’s just another chapter in the long story of why people -- or at least elected Republicans -- don’t like Ted Cruz.”